Perfect Fry Fryer Troubleshooting & Error Codes

/ Commercial Fryers, Troubleshooting / April 12

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When it comes to frying food, Perfect Fry has been a game changer in the foodservice industry. Their line of ventless, countertop commercial fryers are not only used in restaurants, but they’re also ideal for portable kitchens, catering stations, fairs and temporary locations.

While it’s rare, small issues can pop up after years and years of daily use. But don’t worry! We have Perfect Fry troubleshooting tips and a list of error codes to help you identify the cause quickly. The instructions and codes below are for DSA, DSE, PFA, PFC, PFM and SFC models.

Won’t Turn On

If the fryer won’t turn on when you press the ON/OFF key, check for the following causes:


  • Not plugged in – See if the power cord was accidentally knocked out of the outlet and plug it back in.

  • Circuit breaker needs to be reset – See if the circuit breaker needs to be reset. If not, the fuse might have to be replaced.

  • Faulty wiring – There could be an issue with the unit’s wiring. Have an authorized service technician resolve the problem.


Won’t Heat

If the fryer is on but not heating, look for the potential issues below:


  • Faulty heater module connector – See if the connector on the heater module is broken or working improperly. If so, replace the heater module.

  • Faulty electronics box module – Check if the electronics box module is broken and needs to be replaced.


Baskets Won’t Lower or Rise

If the fryer baskets won’t low into the oil or rise out of it, see if the following issues are present:


  • Basket lift not working – Double check to see if the basket lift was installed properly. If the wiring is the root cause, it need to be check or replaced by an authorized technician.

  • Motor not working – If the motor is broken, it will need to be replaced.


Food Floats Out of Basket

Whenever food floats out of the basket, you might have filled too much oil into the vat. Remove some oil so it’s not filled above the cold oil line.

Cooking Oil Constantly Spills Into Tray

If oil excessively spills into the tray, check for the possible causes below:


  • Excessive oil – See if there is too much oil in the vat. It shouldn’t be above the col oil line.

  • Excessive ice or cold water – If the food you’re frying has too much ice or water on it, this can cause problems. Make sure frozen food is fried at the right temperature and that any extra ice is removed prior to placing in the basket.

  • Excessive food – Too much food in the basket can make oil spill out. Never fill the basket above the top.

  • Oil has reached max. life – Make sure to change out the oil accordingly.


Exterior Surface is Very Hot

If the exterior surface is unusually hot, look for the following:


  • Dirty grease filter – The grease filter might be filled with too many particles and debris. Be sure to remove and clean it as soon as possible.

  • Plugged air cartridge – A plugged air cartridge can cause overheating. Replace the air cartridge filter when this happens.

  • Fan not working – Check if the air flow in the fryer’s rear to see if the fan is working correctly.


Excessive Smoking or Foaming

If you notice excessive smoking or foaming coming from the unit, check for the possible causes below:


  • Broken down oil – When oil breaks down, it can cause foaming and smoking. Make sure to replace it before this occurs.

  • Moisture buildup – If your food has an excessive buildup of ice crystals or moisture, remove it prior to frying.

  • Soap residue – Leftover soap residue on food can cause foaming. Rinse parts carefully using a vinegar solution.


Food Won’t Come Out

If food doesn’t come out on PFC, PFA and DSA models, the following could have occurred:



  • Too much food – When too much food is inserted using a manual drawer or dual load, removing it can be difficult. Only insert an amount that totals one drawer full per cooking cycle.

  • Too much heavily battered food – A large volume of heavily battered food also can be difficult to remove. Adjust the FTS value to 5. Check your owner’s manual for instructions.

  • Improperly installed basket – Use the owner’s manual to check if the basket was installed correctly.


Food Won’t Go In

If you have trouble loading food on PFC, PFA and DSA models, look for the possible causes below:


  • Too much food – Overfilling the drawer can make loading difficult. Only insert an amount that totals one drawer full per cooking cycle.

  • Improperly closed front panel – Make sure the front panel is closed all the way and latched shut.

  • Improperly installed drawer shovel – Use the owner’s manual to see if the drawer shovel was installed correctly.


Noisy Spin Basket

If the spin basket on an SFC model is too noisy or vibrates, it might not be loaded evenly. Make sure it’s loaded evenly.

Perfect Fry Error Codes

Perfect Fry fryers display error messages when certain issues occur. The LCD screen will display the message “SYSTEM ERROR PLEASE CHECK” followed by one of these prompts:


  • FRONT PANEL – This typically means the hinged front panel isn’t shut or installed correctly. Check the two black latches to see if the front panel is secured properly.

  • FILTER PLACEMENT – The air cartridge is installed incorrectly. Make sure the cage is latched in place and the filter cartridge is seated properly.

  • GREASE FILTER – See if the grease filter is installed properly. Check that the filter is seated properly in the grease tray or that the entire tray is in the right position.

  • PRIMARY OVERTEMP. or HEATER BOX – Both messages mean the heating element isn’t installed correctly. See if the heater module is seated in the oil vat properly or the electrical connection between the module and connector in the back of the fryer compartment is attached. In some cases, a dirty connector could be causing the issue. Clean both the male and female terminals with a cotton swab and rubbing alcohol.

  • SECONDARY OVER TEMP. – The cooking level might be too low. Check the rear of the vat to see if the oil level is between the cold and hot lines. If the level is normal, the temperature could be overheated. Press the up and down keys together to reset. Contact an authorized service technician if issues isn’t resolved.

  • AIR FLOW/AIR FILTER – The message appears when there is improper air flow. See if the front air intake and rear exhaust vents are clogged and clean accordingly. In some cases, you might need to clean the grease filter or replace the air filter cartridge.

  • FIRE EXTINGUSIHER – When this appears, pressure in the fire extinguisher has been lost and needs to be recharged. Contact an authorized service technician to resolve this issue.

  • MAIN FAN, CONTROL FAN or EBOX FAN – If the main ventilation, control or ebox fan isn’t working correctly, you’ll notice the fan blades and air aren’t moving. See if there is something obstructing the fan or the electrical connection needs to be repaired.

  • DRAWER MOTOR or BASKET MOTOR – If either of these motors are blocked, look for an obstruction near the source and clean it accordingly.

Need more troubleshooting help? Check out our selection of Perfect Fry manuals for assistance.


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