How to Start a Food Service Equipment Repair Business

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A restaurant is a complex machine of staff end equipment that must all work together to prepare the food and serve the customers. The restaurant manager is in charge of keeping this machine running at peak efficiency. Most managers in the food-service industry are proficient in food preparation, training and service. There is one area that is lacking in the average restaurant manager's arsenal. Equipment repair knowledge is usually contracted out to qualified individuals or companies. You can supply this need if you possess the necessary knowledge and experience with your own food service equipment repair business.

Apply for a business license with your county's licensing authority. Purchase an insurance policy covering you for $1 million of liability. Fill out the necessary forms to obtain a state and a federal tax identification number for your business.

Organize your tools and cleaning supplies in your van. Be sure that all of your equipment is secure so that it will not move, spill or become a projectile inside of the vehicle while you are driving. Keep your van locked and the alarm set whenever you are not in the vehicle.

Register your business with local parts suppliers. Let each supplier know you are in business and provide a copy of your license to get contractor discounts and credit lines that will help your business grow. Keep a current catalog and price list of the parts available from each of your suppliers.

Visit local restaurants. Meet with managers during hours that are in between the rush periods. Hand out business cards.

Keep a laptop with wireless Internet service in your van during calls. Use the laptop to look up specific procedures for equipment you have not previously serviced.

Meet with prospective clients and negotiate the details of the specific services they expect from you and the price you will charge for each service. Have all of your clients sign a service contract that has been drafted by your attorney.

Show up as soon as you can when a client calls. Fix each problem promptly. Clean every piece of equipment you repair before you reassemble the piece to extend its life and eliminate more problems in the immediate future.

Warnings

  • Work gloves and safety glasses are required when using hand tools.

References

About the Author

After learning electronics in the U.S. Navy in the 1980s, Danny Donahue spent a lifetime in the construction industry. He has worked with some of the finest construction talent in the Southeastern United States. Donahue has been a freelance writer since 2008, focusing his efforts on his beloved construction projects.

Photo Credits

  • Thomas Northcut/Lifesize/Getty Images