February 16, 2024 0 Comments

Choosing a fridge van in 2024: The ultimate guide

As we enter 2024, with longer days and warmer weather, the demand for refrigeration increases, particularly for businesses carrying perishable goods nationwide. For these industries, efficient transportation is paramount to their success, so investing in the right equipment, including a refrigerated van, is essential. 

In this ultimate guide, we’ll discuss what key factors you should consider when selecting a refrigerated van, and how Cool Running Rental can help you get started. 


Do I need a refrigerated van?

The first question you should ask yourself is ‘Do I need a refrigerated van?’. While refrigerated vans can benefit various industries, they may not be essential for your specific needs. A refrigerated van is non-negotiable for industries that rely on efficient delivery of perishable goods, such as foods, flowers, and pharmaceuticals.

When considering a refrigerated van, consider what stock you are carrying, how far you are delivering this stock, and how frequently you would need a refrigerated van for your business. 

What temperature refrigerated van do I need?

Once you’ve established that you would benefit from a refrigerated van, you need to consider what minimum and maximum temperature you require your van to control. The purpose of a refrigerated van is to maintain a constant controlled temperature, ensuring perishable goods are protected between deliveries. For example, if you are transporting cut flowers, they need to be stored between 0 and -1°C, whereas frozen food must legally be stored at -12°C. Read more about transporting food at safe temperatures.

The temperature needs of your stock will dictate which refrigerated van you require. Refrigerated vans can be separated into 3 classes:

Class A: The cooling system allows the temperature to be set from +12°C to 0°C.

Class B: The cooling system allows the temperature to be set from +12°C to -10°C.

Class C: The cooling system allows the temperature to be set from +12°C to -20°C.

What size refrigerated van do I need?

Refrigerated vans come in various sizes, each one suited for different needs. Smaller vans, such as the Volkswagen Caddy, are the ideal size for smaller jobs. Whereas the Mercedes Sprinter Luton Box is better suited for larger-scale jobs. This is because the Luton Box van is larger, with a bigger payload and loadspace. Payload means the total weight the van can accept, including passengers and stock. The loadspace is the area behind the driver in which your stock is stored. 

When choosing a refrigerated van, consider the weight of your stock and the potential passengers on board, along with the storage area so any larger items can fit. 

luton temp cont

Refrigerated van with additional features

You may be thinking to yourself that a standard refrigerated van doesn’t meet all your needs.  For example, if you are a catering business, serving both hot and cold food, your van requirements will include separate compartments for different temperatures, shelving and possibly even window displays built in. Before making a purchase, consider what extras you might need and factor these into your decision. The Jiffy Van might be more suited to you in this case. 

New or used refrigerated van?

One of the major decisions in owning a refrigerated van is whether to purchase a new or used vehicle. The most influencing factor is likely to be the price difference, paying more for a brand-new van. 

With Cool Running Rental, however, we offer a ‘Try Before You Buy’ scheme, allowing you to hire your desired refrigerated van for some time before deciding to purchase. 

When the time does come to put some money down, consider buying second-hand. Pre-owned refrigerated vans can be a more budget-friendly option, and through purchasing with Cool Running Rental, we guarantee you are getting a fully serviced and maintained van, so you don’t need to worry about any hidden costs. Take a look at our second-hand refrigerated vans for sale. 

Maintaining a refrigerated van

Regular maintenance and servicing are crucial for the smooth running of your van’s refrigeration system and to prevent breakdowns. When buying a van, you should consider whether you can conduct routine check-ups, schedule regular expert inspections, and fix problems when they arise. With Cool Running Rental, whether purchasing, hiring or leasing, your van will be fully serviced, giving you peace of mind that everything is in perfect condition. 


Hire or lease a refrigerated van

Another option you could explore before purchasing a refrigerated van is to hire one. If your business is just starting up and you aren’t fully convinced yet that purchasing a refrigerated van is the right thing to do, hire one. Hiring a refrigerated van can be a cost-effective option for businesses that only operate infrequently, or perhaps aren’t yet generating enough profit to warrant a large expense on a van. At Cool Running Rental, we offer flexible short-term and long-term hiring on all our vehicles. 

Alternatively, if you are looking to make use of a refrigerated van for a more prolonged period or on a more regular basis, you may wish to lease a van, offering you better value for money. With leasing, rather than paying a large upfront cost, you pay monthly instalments as part of a contract. Find out more about van leasing.


There you have our ultimate guide to choosing a refrigerated van in 2024. After considering all your options, you should now have a clearer idea of what to look for in a van, and what buying options are best for you and your business. 

Ready to get started? Get your free quote with Cool Running Rental today, with expert help and advice in beginning your freezer van journey.