Ever wonder how often restaurant owners need to upgrade their kitchen equipment? These expensive appliances are not something you should simply brush off. But restauranteurs can easily get caught up in the rest of the work that goes into making a successful business.

But when equipment goes bad, it can cause decreased food quality and even pose health and safety hazards that could get a restaurant shut down. Nip it in the bud before that happens by knowing when to upgrade your equipment and setting the money aside beforehand.

Bizarre Noises

Kitchens are noisy places, there is no doubt about that. But the wrong kinds of noise coming from the appliances can be telling as to how it is performing. Your kitchen staff can probably tell the appliances’ normal sounds from ones that are starting to not sound right. If your staff come up to you with complaints about noisy machines, you need to take them seriously. Go investigate the noise yourself. If you are unable to diagnose the issue, contact a mechanic to come in and check it out.

If your equipment is faulty, you might need to think about replacing it as opposed to repeatedly fixing it. Repairs can rack up thousands of dollars in bills, and it can sometimes be cheaper in the long-run to just buy a new appliance.

Dwindling Efficiency

Chefs and restaurant owners will put up with inefficient equipment for a while since it at least still works. But these machines could be compromising your food’s quality. And an inefficient appliance (like an oven) can take extra long to get to the proper heating level. This means the kitchen can get backed up with orders, the food takes longer to cook, and guests might get served with food that is not fully cooked. Customers are not fond of long waits, so inefficient equipment could end up leading to bad reviews.

Adding New Menu Items

Are you thinking of changing up your menu? If so, you might find that you need to invest in some new equipment. If you are adding a series of burgers to the menu, for example, you might want to snag some hamburger moulder equipment. This can shave time off of prep work and cooking. You can get equipment that allows you to make different sized patties and supplies you with patty paper.

Always do your research before you buy a new piece of equipment. Find out what other restaurant owners and their chefs have to say about a particular model. Some perform their functions well while others might end up being a big waste of money.

Questionable Reliability

Veteran chefs and line cooks can tell you all kinds of stories about having to use unique methods to get a stove to fire up or a hot plate to heat. Sure, their stories often come with a funny twist, but the truth is, no chef or cook wants to deal with unreliable appliances.

Any appliance with questionable performance can hold you back at the worst possible time. (Think: dinner rush.) When you hire in new kitchen staff, they will likely find out the hard way how to deal with these appliances. Save yourself and your staff some stress and time by replacing these appliances with more reliable ones.

Keeping up with your kitchen is not an easy task, but it is a necessary one if you want to be a successful restaurant owner. Set money aside far enough in advance to cover the cost of buying a new appliance when needed. The biggest takeaway you should get here is never, ever let an unreliable appliance or bizarre new issue with one slide. It could end up costing you time, money, customers, and even staff who don’t want to stick it out.