The Best Undercounter Ice Maker

Undercounter Ice Makers: Who Offers What

The undercounter ice machine provides some great benefits for the smaller cafe, bar, and also in the home or office. These ice machines provide ice on smaller scales, and this article will be examining the benefits of some of the undercounter ice machines with greater production rates. We will be comparing four of the larger models from Ice-o-matic, Hoshizaki, Scotsman, and Manitowoc. The four selections will be assessed based on a variety of criteria, and you will be able to see exactly what you are receiving from each brand. The four models to be compared are the ICEU300 from Ice-o-matic, the CU3030 from Scotsman, the QD-272 from Manitowoc, and the KM-260 from Hoshizaki.

These air cooled, undercounter ice machines each offer the greatest ‘pound per day’ production from their selected brand. There are however, many factors that go into choosing the right undercounter for you. Some areas offer rebates for ENERGY STAR qualified machines, so that could influence your decision. Others perform less reliably when the temperature increases, so you may not always receive the ice production you desire. Bin capacity should also play a role in your decision, as this will be the maximum amount of ice you may have readily available at any given time. The ice maker will make ice until the bin is full, then it will stop until more room is available in the bin again. The following graph illustrates the aforementioned ice machines and how they stack up against each other.

Brand Model Maximum Production Loss (lbs) in Stress Bin Capacity Hourly Prod & Prod Rate In High Temps* Height Water Use (Gal/100 lbs) Energy Star
Ice-O-Matic ICEU0300
309
81
112
12.875; 9.5
39″
32.9
Yes
Scotsman CU3030
250
33
110
10.4; 9.0
39″
18
Yes
Manitowoc QD-0272
280
76
100
11.7; 8.5
38.5″
32
Yes
Hoshizaki KM-260BAH
263
57
100
11; 8.3
39″
20.3
Yes

* Denotes the per hour production rate of each ice machine in ideal conditions, followed by the per hour production rate when water and air temperatures increase.

As we can see, Ice-O-Matic provides the greatest production per day in terms of ice when conditions are ideal, (air is 70°F and water is 50°F). However, when under stress (assumed when the air is 90°F and water temperatures reach 70°F) its production drops dramatically, by 26%. The Ice-O-Matic bin however, does hold the greatest amount of ice at 112 pounds, but it again sees some drawbacks as it uses the greatest amount of water, at 32.9 gallons per 100 pounds of ice created.

Scotsman’s large undercounter offering is the CU3030, and it produces an above average amount of ice at 250 pounds per day. When under stress, production only falls by 13%, to 217 pounds. The bin is not far behind Ice-O-Matic with a 110 pounds capacity. Best of all, Scotsman’s ice maker is from their Prodigy® line of ice machines. These ice machines use far less water and electricity than their competitors, and is evident when we see that the CU3030 uses 18 gallons of water per 100 pounds of ice created.

Both the Manitowoc and Hoshizaki undercounter ice makers are similar in terms of production, production under stress, and bin capacity. Manitowoc’s QD-272 also uses a good amount of water for their ice creation, 32 gallons per 100 pounds of ice created. This is not as efficient as Hoshizaki, but none are nearly as efficient as Scotsman when it comes to water consumption.

This information in no way makes one brand better than the other overall. This is simply a comparison of four specific undercounter ice machines from the top brands in the commercial ice machine industry. Manitowoc’s Indigo™ cuber heads offer great advancements in technology, while the stainless steel evaporator in Hoshizaki’s ice machines lasts incredibly long, and requires less service and maintenance than others. Ice-O-Matic offers the longest warranty in the industry, and Scotsman’s Prodigy ice machines are incredibly conservative with regards to your utility consumption.

At IceMachinesPlus.com, we urge our customers to take time like this to find the ice machine that is perfect for their business. An undercounter ice machine from Scotsman may be your best bet based on the information provided here, but if you need a cuber head, perhaps one of Manitowoc’s Indigo™ ice machines will suit you better. Of course, you can also forgo the research process entirely, leave the creative chart making to us, and give us a call for the most in-depth information around. We’re here to find you the best ice machine possible.

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