How To Clean an Ice Machine

When looking into ice machine hire or purchasing one for yourself, cleaning it can be an easy thing to overlook. You may have even had an ice machine for years and not thought twice about if it needs a thorough cleaning and how to do it.

Here is the definitive guide on why, when, and how to clean your ice machine.

Why Clean Your Ice Machine

It’s understandable that you might think an ice machine doesn’t need cleaning. After all, the only thing that goes into and comes out of it is water, which is a clean resource that we use to rinse, wash things and drink to survive. The issue is when that water becomes stagnant.

You don’t want to serve dirty ice to your customers!

You don’t want to serve dirty ice to your customers!


Water has all sorts of minerals and tiny bits and pieces in it, and if these are left to sit and build up they can taint your water, and the subsequent ice that is made from it. This can be damaging to your health, so it’s important to ensure you clean out your ice machine on a regular basis.

On top of this, it’s entirely possible for dirt and grime to sneak into your ice machine, making cleaning all the more necessary.

When to Clean Your Ice Machine

There are some tell tale signs that your ice machine needs a good clean, all coming from the ice it produces. If there’s any change at all in the ice that’s coming out of the machine it’s good practice to clean it. This can be anything from the size of your ice changing, the ice not freezing as well as it once did, or any noticeable changes in colour or smell. All of these are warning signs that something is wrong, so change out the filter and clean your ice machine before using any more ice.

Even if your ice machine isn’t presenting with any of these signs, it is a good rule of thumb to clean it and change the filter every 3-6 months, or however frequently the manual recommends. Keep in mind that if you’re hiring an ice machine it will come to you freshly cleaned.

Have a restaurant? Here are some of our top tips for how you can use ice in your business!

How to Clean Your Ice Machine

Every ice machine is different, so when cleaning your ice machine it’s best to consult the manual. Some will require you to physically get in there and scrub out all the compartments, while others have automated self cleaning functions that do the hard yards for you.

It’s important to find out what type of ice machine you have so that you can clean it effectively. Look up the make and model if you don’t have the manual before you start taking anything apart.

Just like anything else, ice machines need a clean every now and again to stay healthy and in tip top shape. Make sure you reference the manual for your specific ice machine before cleaning and pay attention to the ice your machine or hired ice machine produces. If you have any questions or would like to know more about ice machine hire and care, contact us.