Helpful Hints

Choosing the Best Ice Machine for Your Needs

Estimate your usage to save on costs.

Selecting the correct ice machine is important to ensure you're getting the most out of your purchase.

Air cooled or water cooled?
An ice machine removes heat from water to produce ice. Most ice machines come in two different options - air cooled or water cooled.

Air cooled machines remove the heat from the water by moving that heat into the air surrounding the machine. These machines are noisier than water cooled machines but use smaller amounts of water for ice production.

Water cooled machines remove the heat from the water by moving that heat into waste water. These machines are generally quieter than air cooled machines but use more water.

Level of ice production?Under-sizing can be a nightmare, while having too big of an ice machine can mean unneeded costs. Use the chart below as a basis for determining the best production level of ice for your institution.

Consider your estimated ice usage when determining which ice machine is best for your operation. Follow these guidelines for best results:
1-11/16 lbs. per customer

Cocktail Lounges:

3 lbs. per person

Salad Bars:

Add 35 lbs. per cubic foot of display. Multiply by 2 or 3 depending on estimated refills required.

Fast Food:

7/8 lbs. per customer or 7-3/8 lbs. per seat. Use 2 oz. per 8-10 oz. Drink, 4 oz. per 12-16 oz. drink, 6 oz. per 20 oz. drink and 8 oz. Per 32 oz. drink.


3 lbs. per room (substantially more if guests are allowed to fill ice ches

Health Care:

7 lbs. per patient bed and 2 lbs. per employee