An ice maker machine can come in handy when the temperature’s hot and you want to enjoy iced drinks to cool you down.
Having ice on hand can be useful in a variety of situations.
Why should you own an ice maker machine?
Having an ice maker machine means you don’t have to stock up on ice before large gatherings and parties.
Best of all, an ice maker will prevent unhygienic ice. With that in mind, let’s explore how an ice maker machine works and how you can keep it in good condition.
What, Exactly, Is An Ice Maker And How Does It Work?
As its name suggests, an ice maker machine makes ice!
Although these are simple to use – you press a button and ice cubes pop out – they can be quite complex.
Ice makers contain various parts, such as a heating element, a motor, and a water valve. A timer ignites the water valve, which then fills the ice mold in a few seconds.
The thermostat will detect that the ice has frozen and then it activates the heating element. This warms up the mold to soften the ice cubes a bit so that the motor can spin and scoop the ice cubes out of the ice tray with its arms.
This puts the ice cubes into the storage bin, from where they can be accessed. After reading that, you’re sure to have more appreciation for how ice is made in a machine!
Do You Need To Buy An Ice Maker?
Whether or not you should purchase an ice maker for the home really depends on how regularly you need ice and how much of it.
If you’re only popping a few ice cubes into your drink every now and then, all that extra ice is going to go to waste. You might as well just make use of your ice tray in the freezer.
On the other hand, if you regularly entertain friends and guests at your home, you find yourself always running out of ice, or you’re buying bags of ice every few days, then purchasing an ice maker is worth it.
Pros Of Ice Makers
- They are easy to set up and start using.
- They work quickly to make ice.
- They can make a lot of ice – you’re looking at approximately 80 to 90 cubes every day.
Cons Of Ice Makers
- They take up counter and storage space in your kitchen.
They need to be cleaned regularly.
How To Clean Your Ice Maker Machine
You might think your ice maker doesn’t need regular cleaning because only water is going inside it, but water can be problematic!
Hard water contains minerals in it that can accumulate inside the ice machine and result in limescale and mold, both of which can damage the machine.
There are some easy to spot signs that your ice maker machine needs to be cleaned. These include the following:
- The machine is making ice cubes that are smaller than they should be.
- The ice cubes look cloudy.
- The ice cubes smell or taste weird.
- The ice cubes are softer than they should be and melt at a faster rate.
So, you really want to give your ice maker a good clean every now and then!
- Start by switching off your ice maker and unplugging it.
- Turn off the supply of water to the ice maker.
- Make sure you empty the machine and dispose of all the water and ice that’s in it.
- Remove the parts of the machine that you’re allowed to clean, based on the machine user manual.
- With three parts water and one part ice machine cleaner, take your time to thoroughly clean all the parts of the machine.
- When you’re done, you should rinse the parts with clean water.
- Put the parts back in place and wipe down all the surfaces of the machine with a soft cloth.
- Allow the machine to air dry.
- Plug the machine back in and switch on the ice maker. Make one batch of ice. This should be thrown out.
- Now you’re ready to start making and using clean, fresh, and hygienic ice!
What if you don’t have an ice maker machine cleaner?
You’ll be pleased to know that you can use humble vinegar to give your ice maker machine a thorough clean. Let’s look at some common ways in which you’ll use vinegar to clean your ice maker.
You’ll first need to make a quick vinegar solution to clean your ice maker.
Mix two cups of white vinegar, a cup of water, and two tablespoons of lemon juice. Put the mixture into a spray bottle.
How To Clean A Portable Ice Machine Maker
- Switch off the ice maker machine. Remove its ice bin. You should also remove the drain cap on the ice machine and remove all the water.
- Using the vinegar solution, spray the inside of the machine. Wipe it with a clean cloth and then spray the inside of the machine with water. You’ll have to spray it a few times with water to properly eliminate all the vinegar and lemon.
- Put the ice bin back into the machine, and screw the drain cap back on.
- Switch the machine on and make two batches of ice that you’ll throw away.
- Turn off the machine and drain its water. Replace the machine’s drain cup and refill the ice maker with water.
- Switch the machine back on. Now you can use it to make ice that you’ll enjoy in your favourite drinks!
How To Clean A Refrigerator Ice Machine
If you want to clean the ice machine in your refrigerator, you’ll have to follow these tips:
- Pull the ice maker rod up and toward the refrigerator so that it can’t move up anymore. This will turn off the ice maker.
- Remove the ice from the ice bin and replace the bin.
- Pour a cup of hot water into the ice machine to melt the ice that’s inside the tray.
- You might have to repeat the above step to ensure that the ice has completely melted.
- Then, remove the water from the ice tray with the use of a clean cloth.
- With the above-mentioned vinegar solution, you will spray the ice maker and let it soak for about five minutes.
- Rinse the mixture with water.
- Pull the rod in the refrigerator down so that you can use the ice maker.
- Make two batches of ice and throw them out before using the machine so you can be assured of no strange odors or tastes in your drinks.
Easy Tips For Ice Maker Machine Maintenance
Besides cleaning your ice maker regularly, you also need to ensure you keep it in good nick by maintaining it well.
Here are some tips.
- Regularly replace the ice maker’s filter. You should do this every three, six, or 12 months, depending on what it says in the machine’s user manual. Changing the filter is important because it ensures the quality flavour and no strange smells, while some filters go the extra mile to prevent volatile organic compounds from getting into the ice.
- Prevent ice clogs. Refrigerator ice makers are susceptible to experiencing clogs, as a result of the frozen ice or smashed ice pieces getting into the chutes. Remove the ice bin and any cubes that have got stuck. Then use a damp cloth to clean out the bottom of the bin and the chute. Do this regularly.
- Keep the vents free. Stand-alone ice maker machines will have vents to ensure they function properly. Check where your machine’s vents are located and make sure that nothing blocks them.
How often should you clean your ice maker machine?
You should clean your ice machine every six months to keep it running smoothly and working well.
What’s a good ice maker machine cleaning product to use?
If you want to use a product to clean your ice machine, a good one to try is Affresh Ice Machine Cleaner that’s formulated to remove mineral and hard water build-up. It’s really easy to use and available from Amazon.
Having an ice maker machine in the comfort of your home is a great way to save money on buying bags of ice and avoid running out of ice when you really need it.
In this article, we’ve looked at some important things to know about ice maker machines, such as their pros and cons as well as how to clean them so they stay in good condition.