Cleaning your Commercial Ice Machine

Practice Regular Maintenance

It’s easy to forget about proper cleaning and maintenance of Ice machines since they don’t directly interact with food products.  It is important to make sure we DON’T forget about regular maintenance and cleaning to make sure everything works effectively and something doesn’t break in an emergency.  If we neglect our ice machines, water can build up and sediment can settle in the ice cubes and become visible inside.  Not cleaning, or lack of cleaning can result in rust, lime scale, and mold- which can be dangerous to your customers.  These problems are not only unhygienic, but can also be harmful to your machine

Fortunately, it is relatively simple and easy to keep your ice machine clean and free of problems.

Understand when your ice machine needs cleaning

Commercial ice machines should be cleaned every three to six months.  You can also look at the quality of your ice to determine when your machine needs cleaning.  If ice becomes smaller or softer your machine may need some maintenance.  If you notice your ice has an odd flavor or is cloudy, your machine is probably overdue for a thorough cleaning.  Some machines have an automatic cleaner that simply needs to be run but others require manual cleaning. For manual cleaning, you will need a nickel free ice machine cleaning solution.

Properly Cleaning Your Ice Machine

  • In order to clean your ice machine it’s necessary to remove all water and ice that is currently in it. It is all also safest to turn off and unplug your machine. Check your machine’s manual for specific cleaning instructions as some ice machines have more working parts than others.  Remove the parts of the machine that the manual instructs you to take out.
  • Many solutions will foam on contact with lime scale or mineral deposits as they clean. Wait for the foaming to stop and then scrub your machine with a brush or cloth.
  • Some parts may need to be soaked to completely remove extreme build up of scale. Remember to rinse all the parts that you have cleaned with water once you have scrubbed them so that they no longer have chemicals on their surfaces. It is also very important to discard the first batch of ice you make after cleaning your machine to ensure that no contaminated ice reaches customers.

It is especially important to take good care of your ice machine and practice regular maintenance to keep it running smoothly.  Customers will appreciate quality ice and your ice machine will last longer and need fewer repairs when you clean it regularly

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