Buy Ice Maker
Yes, keeping your ice maker clean is a crucial step. Some ice makers have self-cleaning functions to make it easy on users. However, you want to clean those without well making sure you eliminate any standing water. Standing water can be a prime atmosphere for mold and bacteria growth. A deep cleaning once a week should suffice.
Not really. Ice makers are not freezers. While the chamber is cold, it will not keep ice frozen for an extended period of time. If you need to keep the ice frozen, put it in a separate container and hold in the freezer until use.
A filtering system will result in the best possible ice. Since not all ice makers include filters, we recommend using filtered or bottled water for better taste and better drinks. It'll also keep the machine clean and free of limescale.
If you pile drinks with ice (and want the option to control your ice machine via an app) the GE Profile Opal 2.0 Nugget Ice Maker is a great choice. We also liked the Luma Comfort Clear Ice Cube Maker Machine for crystal-clear, slow-melting hard ice that is great for cocktails. Finally, if you want a budget countertop ice maker, the Magic Chef 27-Lb. Portable Silver Countertop Ice Maker is a solid pick.
We looked at more than 50 different models of ice maker for this guide and have tested seven of them since we began reviewing them in 2017. We also heard from representatives from a couple of ice-maker brands, including FirstBuild, NewAir, and Magic Chef. And to answer a question about drinks that get too fizzy, we got in touch with David Reguera, professor in the department of fundamental physics at the University of Barcelona.
We found more than 50 listings for portable ice makers from a couple dozen brands. But on closer inspection, there are only a handful of unique designs, built by just two manufacturers, as far as we can tell.
The king of cheap ice makers seems to be Hicon. Only one brand (Magic Chef) would confirm that Hicon manufactures its machines. Curtis International (which sells Igloo and Frigidaire ice makers), Whynter, and Hicon itself did not reply to our request for comment. But it looks to us like Hicon does make models for Frigidaire, Igloo, and NewAir, and possibly for Whynter, Della, Costway, and other brands, too.
The seller page for Hicon on Alibaba (a popular business-to-business marketplace) has dozens of listings for unbranded portable ice makers that are identical to the branded models that appear at retailers in the US.
And we found a promotional video made by Alibaba with footage from the Hicon factory, where several popular variants of these portable ice makers are being assembled or packaged, or just sitting on display.
We tested several of the popular small, nine-bullet models, including the Magic Chef MCIM22/HNIM27, Frigidaire EFIC108, and Della Premium Ice Maker; a large, 12-bullet model, the NewAir AI-215; the FirstBuild Opal nugget-ice maker (also sold under the GE Profile brand); and a clear-cube, waterfall-style model, the Luma Comfort IM200SS.
The Luma (and models like it) can reliably make clear ice because the cubes form slowly, with running water, to prevent air pockets from forming. In our testing, we never got a batch of cloudy ice. And of all the complaints we read about this type of ice maker, cloudy ice was not among them.
The main downside to clear-cube makers like the Luma is that they take longer to make a batch of ice. The Luma usually took 20 to 25 minutes to complete each batch of ice at regular room temperature, and more like 30 minutes in warmer temps. That said, it also makes about three times as much ice per batch, so it works out to be roughly equivalent over time. Plenty of other waterfall-style models claim to work about 40% faster, too.
Outdoor entertaining is more enjoyable and convenient when you have everything in your outdoor kitchen. This outdoor ice maker eliminates unnecessary trips inside to get ice for your beverages. The Blaze outdoor ice maker can produce up to 50 pounds of cube ice per day and can hold 25 pounds in its removable bin. Inside the ice maker, a cool blue LED illuminates the contents, making things easy to see. The ice maker also includes a self cleaning mode and convenient one button operation. The Blaze ice machine features an in-line water filter which filters out impurities, ensuring the ice production is free of contaminants. The unit is made from durable stainless steel and features a reversible door to suit your specific needs. The front venting design allows it to be used in a built-in application, or it can be used as a freestanding unit. The bottom of the ice maker is equipped with four leveling legs for a perfect fit. It operates on environmentally friendly R134a refrigerant, carries an Energy Star rating and UL listing for outdoor use. This ice maker includes a stainless steel ice scoop, drain line and water line.
Crystal-clear ice truly makes a difference in the taste and experience of your beverages. Learn more about how Scotsman ice makers can enhance your indoor and outdoor entertaining by scheduling a visit to a Clarke Showroom in Boston Seaport, Milford, Massachusetts or South Norwalk, Connecticut where you can have all your questions answered and see for yourself.
Outdoor kitchen and bar setups are all the rage these days, and you can get a lot more enjoyment out of your patio space with a tabletop ice maker that creates ice on the daily, keeping you well stocked for refreshments while enjoying an ice cold drink under the summer heat.
Portable Ice Makers are generally compact in size; they do not need a permanent water line; they plug into any standard 110V outlet; and you only need to pour water into them. Portable ice makers will make ice very quickly, sometimes in as little as 6 minutes, depending on the model. However, frequently these units do not double as freezers and thus will not keep the ice frozen for any length of time. The ice will melt, and the machine will continuously recycle the water to make more ice. Also, these small models can only hold a tiny fraction of their full ice making capacity, which generally caps at up to 35 lbs per day. This means you will need to empty them frequently if you need more ice to be made.
One of the best uses for a portable ice maker is its ability to be easily moved between the kitchen, rec-room, bar, patio, poolside, etc. Their small size also makes them great companions while camping, during picnics, tailgating, boating, or any other outdoor application.
As the name implies, Undercounter Ice Makers are designed with front ventilation to allow them to be built in or between cabinetry. Built-in ice makers should be installed by a professional plumber. They take a permanent water line, and some of them also need a drain line. These can store much more ice than a portable model, and can keep it frozen for longer periods of time.
The vast majority of consumer oriented built-in ice makers do not offer a refrigerated storage bin. At some point the ice produced will melt and the resulting water may need to be drained from the machine. The most common way to achieve this goal is to establish a permanent gravity drain line. The gravity drain line will exit the back of the machine and carry the water to a nearby drain located below the ice maker.
Families that go through ice at a quick pace can buy these machines for their home and integrate them right into their kitchen. Offices, churches, and anywhere else where lots of people are likely to gather and need ice, can also benefit from a built-in ice maker. If the demand for ice is ongoing, such as in a restaurant or hotel, you may be better off with a commercial ice machine that is designed for high-capacity production.
If a built-in ice maker sounds like a good fit for you and your lifestyle, there are a few things you should know before buying one. The below guide will help give you a better idea of the best brands out there, as well as some of the main factors you should consider while browsing your options.
The manufacturers of built-in ice machines should provide specs on the production rate for each specific model they sell. This rate is going to be based on the quantity of ice the unit can produce within a 24-hour period. The production rate they provide will depend on your ice maker being kept in what they consider the optimal environment, which usually means properly installed, is properly ventilated and the temperature around the machine is kept at approximately 70F. If your ice maker will be located somewhere that gets hotter than that, you should expect the production rate to fall.
The tricky thing about getting the right capacity is that how much an undercounter ice maker can hold is directly related to how big it is. If you have limited space to work with, then getting a machine that can store a lot of ice at once and still fit in the space available may be a bit of a challenge.
Make sure to measure out the space you plan on installing your built-in ice maker, so you can be sure to get one that will not only fit seamlessly into your kitchen, but also capable of being easy to install.
Undercounter ice makers typically cost somewhere in the range of $250-$5,000. Most of the ice makers on the upper end of that range offer high production rates and a large storage capacity, while the more affordable ones will be smaller in both production and storage.
While size and capacity are some of the main factors that influence the overall price, some built-in ice makers will cost more due to having a strong brand reputation or coming with some extra features, such as a water filter or the ability to make nugget ice.
The overall look will come down to your personal preference and current decor of the area in which you plan to install it. Most consumers prefer to buy an undercounter ice maker that matches the other appliances in their kitchen, most commonly being black or stainless steel. If you fall into this category, then you wil