Commercial mixers blend ingredients to make foods such as cookies, desserts, breads, sauces, soups, bisques, and more. These appliances use a motor to mix and blend ingredients. A speed controller varies the amount of electric current used and manages the speed of the beaters. Typically comprised of stainless steel with metal components to withstand long-term and frequent use in commercial kitchens, commercial mixers are versatile and available in many varieties of styles, including portable (hand), countertop and stationary (stand/floor) models.
Types of commercial mixers:
- Planetary mixers
These versatile commercial mixers can be used not only to mix, but come with up to three other attachments as well. Planetary mixers house the motor above the actual unit and drive the attachment around the bowl in a circular motion, hence the name planetary mixer. They can be used for a variety of applications, from cookies to salad dressing.
- Spiral mixers
Spiral mixers are used only for the mixing and kneading of dough and are excellent for mass dough production. In this style mixer the motor is housed underneath the container, and the bowl is spun, not the attachment.
- Hand mixers
These commercial mixers are portable, lightweight and easy to operate. They have smaller motors and are typically used for small, easy mixing and blending jobs.
- Countertop mixers
A good compromise for operations not quite large enough to need a large floor mixer, these commercial mixers can vary in size from 5 to 25 quarts and are typically much larger than their residential counterparts. They are available only in planetary styles. The size of a countertop mixer generally depends on what it is used for and if the kitchen utilizes a floor mixer as well.
- Floor or stand mixers
These commercial mixers are large, from 12 to 80 quarts, with bigger motors for mixing extremely large batches of ingredients or heavier-duty mixing, such as kneading dough. They are available in either spiral or planetary styles. They take up a great deal of space and are significantly more expensive than other models; however, these mixers offer much more in the way of speed and performance.
There is no end to the variety of attachments available for commercial mixers. Traditional beaters, whipping paddles, graters and slicers are a few examples that can add even more versatility to these kitchen staples.
- The mixer won’t start.
This may be the cause of one of two things: a faulty switch or a defective motor fuse. In either case, removing the housing to expose internal components is necessary to diagnose these issues using a continuity tester or multi-tester probe, therefore professional service is advisable.
- Certain speeds on the mixer won’t function.
This typically indicates a faulty speed control that is in need of service or replacement.
- The motor hums, but the beaters won’t turn.
The motor may be seized and in need of replacement.
- There is excessive vibration when mixing.
The beater shafts may be bent or the ends may be worn, indicating a need for replacement. If this is not the case, see if the gears are broken or misaligned and in need of service. If the shaft is bent or the motor is sparking, however, it will need to be replaced.
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