141 Industrial Blvd. | P.O. Box 49 | Turners Falls, MA 01376

Customer Service/FAQ

If you have questions about any of the products or services we offer, our friendly and knowledgeable staff are only a phone call away, 1-800-332-6566 or e-mail us at info@mowstore.com You can also use the form on our Contact Us page to reach us as well.

We want to make your job as easy as possible. We’ve been gathering information about meal delivery for over 40 years to help us assist you. Usually we can help you solve a problem immediately, but if not, our technical staff will call you back with advice or assistance. And…you do not need to be a customer to ask questions.

  • Look through our Frequently Asked Questions below to see what others have inquired about.
  • Our Resources menu at the top also leads to tips and ideas on starting a REusable Tray Program (with printable instructions).

MEAL TRANSPORTERS:    thumb-transporters202x120

How long will a Meal Transporter or Thermal Bag keep food at 140º F?

Our products give you the best advantages for maximizing heat retention; but, performance will always depend upon your unique circumstances and the care you take to conserve heat at every step. Was the carrier stored at room temperature or in a cooler space before loading? (While preparing the meals, you can pre-heat the carrier with a plastic jug of hot tap water.) Plastic trays can be pre-heated in a warm water bath before placing food in them. Do you use our Heat Units, Electric Bag Heaters or some other supplemental heat source during delivery? How hot was the food to begin with? How long did it sit before going out? How cold is it outside? What’s the temperature in the car, or the room where it was sitting before taking the food en route? For other heat maintenance strategies, give us a call!

What is the best way to clean Regular and Electric Meal Transporters?

For most stains, a houshold cleaner such as Lysol Basin, Tub&Tile Cleaner is adequate. It is often possible to remove more difficult stains, such as indelible marking pens, using rubbing alcohol or denatured alcohol (for your safety, this must only be done in a well ventilated area or outdoors and away from any potential source of flame or sparks). Take special care with electric models. The area around the control panel should be cleaned only with a slightly damp cloth, wrung out thoroughly. Moisture which gets trapped in electrical components may short circuitry and destroy thermostats. Denatured alcohol will also help remove grease from around the control panel on the electric models, but it may remove print from the panel. Do not use rubbing alcohol around the control panel since it contains water which may get inside and harm the electric circuitry.

THERMAL BAGS:          thumb-thermal-bags202x120

Do the Thermal Bags hold heat as well as the insulated plastic Meal Transporters?

Generally, no. Although our Nutri-Systems® Thermal Bags are the best on the market, no bags compete with the heat retention qualities of our own One and Two-Compartment Meal Transporters. The positive tradeoff of the Thermal Bag is its light weight and flexibility. However, our Electric Thermal Bags produce sufficient heat to maintain appropriate temps as long as the bag is plugged in.

I can get something like your Thermal Bags at Wal-Mart for $30. Why would we pay so much for a Meals on Wheels Store product?

Most likely, an insulated bag you find at a discount store is manufactured with the cheapest possible materials. While such a bag may be good for recreational purposes, it is unlikely to retain heat anywhere nearly as well as our Thermal Bags. And cheap materials don’t tend to last very long.

How many meals does each Thermal Bag hold? What about the Meal Transporters?

Please refer to the product information pages on this website for details on capacities.

Are the Insulated Pads, Bottom Trays and Thermal Bag Liners sold separately from the Thermal Bags?

Each Regular Thermal Bag includes one liner, one Bottom Tray, and one Insulated Pad/Divider. Our Electric Bags have a liner and bottom tray. If you require additional Thermal Bag accessories, they are all available separately. See our Products > Accessories page.

How hot do electric bags get? How do they plug in?

Electric Thermal bags have a built in heater that wraps around the whole inside of the bag, radiating heat into the air space around your meals. An empty bag gets to abut 165F, but your results will vary depending on how often and how long the bag is opened along a delivery route and how hot your meals are when they are plated.

The Electric Bag comes with a replaceable DC vehicle accessory socket plug. We also have AC to DC power converters that allow the bag to be plugged into AC wall current. One per bag.

HEATING DEVICES AND THERMOMETERS:   thumb-temperature-control202x120

How do the Heat Units/Cooling Units work?

The Heat Units are filled with a wax-like material that absorbs heat when it melts at about 154oF. They’re placed in boiling water for about twenty minutes or until the material melts. As they cool down, the material re-solidifies giving off heat. The cooling units are similar to “Blue Ice”™ , but they are more durable for the repeated use of a daily meal delivery program, and they are designed to fit in with the meal trays.

How many Heat Units or Cooling Units do we need to order at a time?

You may order as many or as few as you like. We ship them out in boxes that hold two, four, six, ten, and twelve; but you may order just one or any other number.

How does the Electric Bag Heater work?

The Electric Bag Heater (EBH) is a rigid 8.5″ x 13″ pad with a thermostat control of 190F. Plugged into the accessory socket of your delivery vehicle, it should be placed standing upright at the back of your bag with the cord coming out at the zipper closure. This way more heat gets to the whole airspace around your meals. Never lay it flat in the bottom of your bag, only the bottom meals will get all the heat! It may also be plugged into wall current with our AC to DC Power Converter.

REUSABLE TRAYS:    thumb-reusable-trays-and-bowls202x120
For tips on starting or converting to a REuseable tray program, see our info page… REusable Tray Program

What temperature is safe for the Leeds trays?

Leeds Trays are made of the same high impact material as fighter jet window canopies, have a low temperature range of -40º to +260ºF, All our trays are microwave safe, freezer safe and dishwasher safe. Of course, when re-thermalizing a frozen meal, the meal should be defrosted first before heating the tray in order to prevent cracking. The defrost setting of a microwave may be safely used to speed up defrosting.

How do REusable Trays compare in cost to supposedly cheaper aluminum, plastic or cardboard disposable trays?

First of all, disposable trays are not cheaper. Over a two-year period, disposables can be 2.5 to 5 times more expensive than REusable Trays. Since you can re-use our trays, they’re more economical in the long run–usually paying for themselves in 6 to 9 months compared to disposable trays. You’ll also find that our three-compartment REusable trays afford a visually pleasing meal presentation. Further, unlike most aluminum trays, our trays are microwave safe. And they’re better for the environment!


Is it possible to receive samples of products?

We send free samples of REusable trays and soup & salad bowls to any nonprofit meal program that asks. Call for details.

Is there a Nutri-Systems Meals on Wheels Store™ representative in my area?

No. All sales are direct from the Meals on Wheels Store. We keep your cost as low as possible by not using sales representatives or distributors. However, we do attend the Meals on Wheels Association of America (MOWAA) and National Association of Nutrition & Aging Services Programs (NANASP) conferences every year, so you can see our complete line at those shows. For links to those associations and others see our Resources > Useful Links page.


How do we go about ordering?

We do not require advance payment or credit references of government or non-profit meal delivery programs. We do ask that first time customers call to set up an account (1-800-332-6566). For-profit enterprises must call to make arrangements. We accept orders by e-mail, phone, fax and post. We will send you a bill at the same time we ship your order.

Once we order, how long will it take for the products to arrive?

We ship by U.P.S. ground service to all locations in the “lower 48” United States and most locations in Canada. Nutri-Systems Meals on Wheels Store is located in Massachusetts. The closer you are to us, the sooner your shipment will arrive. Depending on where you are located, your shipment will arrive in between one and six business days unless we are out of stock of something you ordered. Shipments to Alaska and Hawaii are sent by US Postal Service. Next day and second day air service are available to most locations on request, but this can be costly.

Is there tax? Shipping charges?

Unless you are a for-profit organization in Massachusetts, we don’t charge tax. We do pass UPS charges along to the customer, which are calculated according to package weight and the customer’s zip code. Some states may require you to pay taxes on mail order products. Check local sources for such information.


All Transporters, Thermal Bags, Reusable Trays and Electric Bag Heaters are warranted for materials and workmanship for one year. Defective items will be repaired or replaced. Return shipping is customer responsibility.

Exchanges and Returns

Any item that is unused and in re-saleable condition may be returned within 30 days for a refund or exchange/credit. Shipping is customer responsibility.

Between 30 days and 6 months, any unused item in re-saleable condition may be returned for store credit only. Shipping is customer responsibility.

No returns accepted after 6 months.