5 key things to consider
when buying an ice machine
Every big decision can benefit from careful consideration. At Memphis Ice, we help customers buy ice machines every day. To hopefully make your decision-making process easier, today we are outlining the five most important things to consider when buying an ice machine.
Keep in mind, you don’t have to figure this out alone. Want help? Just give us a call!
1. Capacity and storage
How much ice do you need to produce in 24 hours? How much of that will you need to store? If you have an 8 hour window where your ice usage is fairly steady…that would only require a smaller storage bin. On the other hand, if you’re using all the ice at 8 AM to load up trucks, you’ll need a larger storage bin. When the ice storage capacity aligns with the usage timeframe, it means you’ll always be in ice when you need it. Plus, understanding your usage allows us to figure out if a slightly larger ice machine (that could run fewer hours) would be a more economical choice. Here are more details on sizing your ice maker.
Where will your ice maker go? What’s the best location? The ideal space is large enough, climate controlled and has plenty of airflow (locking it in closet is not an option). For the best setup, the space has plumbing, water and a drain with 6-8 feet of the ice machine.
3. ice types
Which type of ice is best-suited for your application will determine your ice maker:
4. condenser type
A condenser cools the ice machine. This cooling process can happen in different ways:
- Air cooled means the air gets sucked in from the back and blows out on the sides. This is the most common type of condenser.
- Air cooled with a remote condensing unit is ideal for situations where your ice machine is someplace you don’t want noise or hot air blowing. It’s fairly common in restaurants that want a more aesthetically-pleasing indoor environment. In this case, refrigeration lines can be run to an outdoor condensing unit, either on the roof or the ground. It’s similar to an air conditioning system which has a condenser unit outside.
- Water cooled condensers circulate water instead of air to cool the unit. This method is highly efficient for cooling, and much quieter since no air is blowing, however the constant circulation of water means very high levels of water usage. This can be suitable for larger facilities that are on a closed-loop water system.
5. Your maintenance schedule
This is the time to decide if you’re going to be committed to cleaning the ice machine at certain intervals, or if you will hire a preventative maintenance company. Will you clean the ice machine yearly, bi-annually or quarterly? If you’re in an area which requires a water filter, how often will you change it?
P.S. Sometimes when folks are considering buying an ice machine, they realize that renting an ice machine is actually a better fit for their needs. Renting means you don’t have to worry about the big chunk of cash, the maintenance schedule, timely repair or the flexibility issues should your needs or output change.At Memphis Ice, our ice machine rental program has many benefits including peace of mind.
Thinking about buying an ice maker? Get in touch and we’ll present all the options, then help you decide what’s best.