Ice Makers and the Way Ice Is Made

Ice Makers and the Way Ice Is Made

Ice is indispensable in today’s foodservice operations … all of them, of every type and size. Whether the operator buys ice from a commercial source or makes it on the premises, every foodservice operation uses ice. That is largely due to what foreigners see as the American Devotion to overly cold drinks: ice water, iced soft drinks, iced tea, ice in bar drinks, cold beer, etc. But it is a fact in this country that ice is a necessity for the foodservice operator, and a majority either own or lease their own ice making equipment.

Ice Making Equipment in Foodservice

According to a survey was taken of the age of ice making equipment in use in foodservice operations. Nearly a third of all commercial restaurant operators, including chains, reported using machines four to eight years old. In institutions, nearly the same percentage said their machines were eight to twelve years old. Overall, however, the majority of participants in the survey reported machines four to eight years of age. At least one manufacturer estimates that the practical life today of an ice machine is seven years; other claims twelve years as a practical life (before maintenance costs become excessive).

Ice machine manufacturers believe that, if anything, the average age of ice machines in use is increasing. For great results, portable ice maker reviews are what you need to become a wise consumer. Many of the machines are in operations where traffic counts have grown substantially since the time the unit was purchased and in many cases demand has outpaced the production capacity of the machines. This is an excellent opportunity for the alert sales rep to identify and bring to the customer’s attention the need for and savings from new ice making equipment.

How Ice Is Made?

There are a number of different methods of making ice and many different styles of ice produced. There are machines which produce square or rectangular cubes, cylindrical cubes (often with holes through the centers), hourglass-shaped cubes, cubes shaped like watch crystals, cone-shaped cubes, crescent-shaped tubes, and other shapes all in varying sizes. There are also machines which produce flake ice or which produce crushed ice from cubes. And there are dispensers which do not make ice, but merely dispense it from storage containers which must be filled with ice produced in another machine.

Cube ice is produced in a number of ways. One is for a machine to fill a divided tray (like the one in a home refrigerator) with water, freeze it, apply heat to the outside and dump out the cubes. Another is to freeze water into a single flat sheet, then drop it on a grid of hot wires that cut the sheet into cubes. Or the water may fall through refrigerated tubes, freezing against the sides, until a cylinder of ice is formed.

  • The sides of the tube are then heated and the ice cylinders slide out the bottom and are cut into individual cubes as they emerge. Still another method is to pour water onto a continuous, segmented belt where it is frozen and carried over a heated roller, which frees the cubes as they are inverted over a chute or a storage container. Another model allows water to flow over round, flat areas that freeze into a lens like shape.
  • Flake ice is produced by freezing water on the surface of a cylinder and then scraping off the thin layer of ice. Probably the most common type of flaker is the auger, in which a continuously revolving drill-shaped device scrapes off the ice. Rotating knife systems and flexible belts have also been used to form flake ice, as have perforated “drip” sheets.
  • Crushed ice can be made by grinding or chopping ice cubes. Some cube makers are equipped to produce crushed ice as well, either with switch selection or with an automatic cycle by which one of two storage containers is filled with cube ice, and then the other is filled with crushed ice, in an alternating


Now, you know more about ice makers and how ice is made. If you are interested in own one for yourself, pick up the best ice makers from reputable brands. For myself, I have just chosen a best portable ice maker with a real bargain. Just make sure your products’ review to have perfect choice.


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