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Van Refrigeration Units: Keeping Your Products Fresh on the Road

Transporting perishable goods such as food, beverages, pharmaceuticals, and other temperature-sensitive products is a critical task that requires special equipment. Whether you’re a small business owner, a catering company, or a logistics provider, having a reliable van refrigeration unit can make all the difference in delivering fresh products to your customers. In here, you will know the basics of van refrigeration units, how they work, and benefits of the refrigeration units for vans.

What is a Van Refrigeration Unit?

A van refrigeration unit, also known as a refrigerated van, is a type of vehicle that is equipped with a refrigeration system to maintain a specific temperature range inside the cargo area. These units are commonly used for transporting temperature-sensitive products that require specific conditions to prevent spoilage, contamination, or degradation. Refrigerated vans come in different sizes, shapes, and designs, depending on the type of product being transported and the distance of the delivery route.

How do Van Refrigeration Units Work?

Van refrigeration units work by removing heat from the cargo area and transferring it outside the vehicle. The refrigeration system consists of several components that work together to maintain the desired temperature. These include the compressor, condenser, evaporator, expansion valve, and refrigerant.

Here’s how they work:

The compressor compresses the refrigerant gas, which raises its temperature and pressure.
The high-pressure refrigerant gas flows to the condenser, which is located outside the van. The condenser dissipates the heat from the refrigerant, causing it to condense into a liquid.

The liquid refrigerant flows to the expansion valve, where it expands and cools down. This process reduces the pressure and temperature of the refrigerant.

The cool refrigerant flows to the evaporator, which is located inside the cargo area. The evaporator absorbs the heat from the air inside the cargo area, cooling it down.

The refrigerant returns to the compressor, and the cycle repeats.

The temperature inside the cargo area is controlled by adjusting the pressure and flow rate of the refrigerant. The refrigeration system can maintain a range of temperatures, from below freezing to above ambient temperature, depending on the type of product being transported.

Benefits of Van Refrigeration Units

Van refrigeration units offer several benefits for businesses that rely on transporting temperature-sensitive products.

Here are some of the advantages:

Preservation of Product Quality: Van refrigeration units ensure that the products being transported remain fresh, safe, and in good condition. The controlled temperature range prevents spoilage, contamination, and degradation, ensuring that the products are delivered to the customers in the best possible condition.

Increased Flexibility: Refrigerated vans allow businesses to transport their products to a wider range of locations, including remote areas, without compromising their quality. This increases the flexibility of businesses and allows them to expand their customer base.

Cost-Effective: Van refrigeration units can be more cost-effective than renting or buying cold storage facilities. They eliminate the need for additional storage space, reduce transportation costs, and improve the efficiency of the logistics chain.

Better Customer Service: Delivering fresh products on time is essential for customer satisfaction. Van refrigeration units allow businesses to meet their customers’ expectations and provide better customer service.

Types of refrigerated vans

For the refrigerated transportation, we know that refrigeration units for vans, so what types are there in the process of use?

Insulation-only van

This type of van contains a thick layer of insulation in the loading bay, usually made out of styrofoam or polystyrene. This van would be a good choice for businesses like florists who want to keep a consistent temperature inside the van but don’t need to worry about chilling their items.

Chiller conversion van

This type of van is similar to the insulation-only van as it has a thick layer of insulation inside, Usually, this type of van can chill items to as low as 0 degrees and as high as 8 degrees, if you add the van refrigeration units on it, the products temperature range can get -25 degrees to +18 degrees.
which is ideal for many food products. A chiller conversion van is a versatile option for any business that wants to ensure their items will stay at the same, optimum temperature throughout a long journey.

Semi-freezer conversion van

A semi-freezer conversion van has a much thicker layer of insulation than the previous types of vans and has its own freezer system. With a semi-freezer conversion van, temperatures as low as -15 degrees are achievable, which makes this the perfect type of van for businesses who want to transport frozen goods.
The kind of van has some extra features too – the ‘reverse cycle defrost’ means that your goods can be automatically defrosted by reversing the actions of the condenser and evaporator. This only takes seconds! The ‘hot gas defrost’ uses the hot gas produced in the system to quickly defrost your items as well – these are handy features if your goods require fast defrosting.


Van refrigeration units are designed to keep the contents of a van or truck at a low temperature to prevent spoilage of perishable goods during transportation. Some of the product features of van refrigeration units include:

Cooling capacity:

Van refrigeration units are designed to cool the contents of a van or truck to a specific temperature range depending on the type of goods being transported. They come with different cooling capacities to accommodate different types of vans or trucks.

Temperature control:

Most van refrigeration units come with temperature control features that allow the user to adjust the temperature inside the van or truck according to the specific needs of the goods being transported.


Van refrigeration units are usually insulated to prevent heat from entering the van or truck, which could cause the contents to spoil. The insulation also helps to maintain the temperature inside the van or truck.

Size and weight:

Van refrigeration units come in different sizes and weights, depending on the size of the van or truck and the cooling capacity needed.

Power source:

Van refrigeration units can be powered by different sources, including the vehicle’s engine, an external power source, or a rechargeable battery.

Noise level:

Some van refrigeration units are designed to operate quietly to prevent noise pollution during transportation.

Maintenance requirements:

Van refrigeration units require regular maintenance to ensure they function properly and efficiently. This can include cleaning the unit, checking and replacing filters, and servicing the compressor and other components.

Safety features:

Van refrigeration units often come with safety features such as automatic shut-off in case of overheating or other malfunctions, and alarms to alert the driver if the temperature inside the van or truck exceeds a certain range.

how to Effective use van refrigeration units

Pre-cool the unit:

Before loading perishable goods into the van or truck, it is essential to pre-cool the refrigeration unit. This means turning on the unit and letting it run for a sufficient amount of time to reach the desired temperature.

Load the van or truck properly:

When loading the van or truck, it is important to ensure that the goods are stacked properly and not overcrowded. This will help to ensure that the cold air circulates evenly throughout the van or truck and that the temperature remains consistent.

Monitor the temperature:

It is essential to monitor the temperature inside the van or truck regularly to ensure that it remains within the desired range. Most refrigeration units come with a temperature gauge or digital display that allows you to monitor the temperature.

Avoid opening the doors frequently:

Each time the door of the van or truck is opened, cold air escapes, and warm air enters, which can cause the temperature inside the van or truck to fluctuate. It is therefore important to minimize the number of times the door is opened.

Regular maintenance:

Regular maintenance of the refrigeration unit is essential to ensure that it functions properly and efficiently. This includes cleaning the unit, checking and replacing filters, and servicing the compressor and other components.

Power source:

Make sure that the refrigeration unit is powered by a reliable source. If it is powered by the vehicle’s engine, make sure that the vehicle’s battery and alternator are in good condition to avoid any power failures.

By following these tips, you can effectively use van refrigeration units to ensure that perishable goods are transported at the right temperature and remain fresh and safe to consume.

application of cargo van refrigeration units

Van refrigeration units are commonly used in a variety of industries that require temperature-controlled transportation of goods.

Food Delivery:

Van refrigeration units are commonly used in the food industry for delivering perishable items such as meat, dairy, fruits, and vegetables.


The pharmaceutical industry also relies heavily on van refrigeration units to transport temperature-sensitive medicines, vaccines, and other medical supplies.


Flowers, plants, and other delicate plant products require temperature-controlled transportation to maintain their freshness and quality.

Beverage Distribution:

Beverages such as beer, wine, and soft drinks require temperature-controlled transportation to maintain their quality and taste.

Medical Supplies:

Medical equipment, organs for transplant, and other medical supplies also require temperature-controlled transportation.

FAQ of refrigeration units for vans

Q: Are you provide customize packaging?
A: Yes, we accept custom packaging order.
Q: What is your fast production delivery ?
A: we usually need 7-15 working days for delivrey time, but if you have any special or urgent order, I will try help to apply for a top urgent order with faster delivery time for you, my friend.
Q: What will be included in the package?
A: Condenser, evaporator, controller, hoses, wire harness and installation kits, expect for compressor bracket, belt and
Q: What’s your warranty for refrigeration units?
A: We will provide one year warranty for all refrigeration units for vans. During warranty, we will offer free spare parts; Out of warranty, spare parts will be supplied for products life time.
Q: What ambient temperature that your refrigeration units can survive?
A: Our refrigeration units perform well under ambient temperatures between -18°C to +25°C.

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