Commercial Ice Makers
How Does a Commercial Ice Machine Work?

Extensive usage of commercial ice makers takes place in many businesses. Generally, the companies that require a large amount of ice make use of such commercial refrigerator freezers.

These machines are more robust and bigger in size than the ice makers used for the residential purposes. A simple professional system uses a large metal tray for disposing ice cubes. This tray is positioned vertically.

How Commercial Ice Machines Work?

Commercial Ice Machine Manufacturing Process

Ice makers use heat exchanging pipes similar to the ones you have in the back of your refrigerator. These pipes are connected to the metal ice tray. Through the continuous process of expansion and condensation, a compressor drives a stream of refrigerant liquid.

This process cools the ice trays inside, which is to be filled with water by pouring it from the collection sump. Repeat the process till the tray is full and then press the button of the ice maker to push out the ice tray and extract the ice cubes. Hold a container at the extraction point.

You must be sure about the efficiency of the ice maker before buying it. Always opt for the ice machines that have the Energy Star rating as these units can save about 15 percent more energy than those machines that come without this rating.

How to Choose a Commercial Ice Maker

When shopping for an ice maker be aware that they can go by several names. But the commercial upright freezer or commercial ice cream freezers are completely different machines and are not the same as the ice maker.

commercial-ice-makersYou want the machine to make ice as quick as possible when you are using it for a business. Therefore, there are certain aspects that you need to consider before purchasing commercial ice makers.

First, consider the amount of ice that you require daily. You'll also want to ensure the kitchen plumbing can handle the water need for ice creation. Consider if you want to serve ice in the shape of cubes, shaved or round. The machines should complement the drinks that you serve.

Consider also the energy efficiency aspect of the machine so that it functions economically. Opt for a unit that comes with the Energy Star rating. Placing the machine in your coolest place also helps to save a considerable amount of energy.

The machines that feature sanitation standards make a good choice. Generally, the local health department sets this standard, which is essential because ice dispensers may include many harmful bacteria if they are not sanitized on a regular basis.


Maintenance of the ice making units in restaurants or any other commercial centers is often overlooked. If you want the machine to work for a long period then it is essential that you follow certain maintenance procedure, which includes:

  1. Replacing the water filter every six months. It clears sediment from the water and also keeps the ice clean. It also removes bad taste and odor.
  2. Buying antimicrobial protection. Mold and slime grows in commercial ice makers, but you can combat this by placing an antimicrobial stick inside the machine.
  3. Regular sanitization of the machine. Clean the ice maker on a regular basis emptying and thoroughly washing it every six months.

Best Commercial Ice Makers to Buy

Hoshizaki-F-330BAH-CFor a continuous supply of fresh ice cubes you can purchase the Hoshizaki F-330BAH-C model. It includes a self condensed condenser and can produce 320 lbs of ice in 24 hours.

Manitowoc-QM-30AMade of stainless steel, this model can store up to 80 lbs of ice. The measurement of the machine is 24"w x 26"d x 39"h with 6" legs and is priced around $2,944.

Manitowoc QM-30A is another example of a good commercial ice maker for those whose requirements are smaller. It can store only 3 lbs and dispenses 65 lbs of ice every day.

It is quite economical as it costs around $1,490.

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Updated February 2011