Last updated: August 12, 2021

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Welcome to Monedero Smart, your review portal on the internet. Summer has arrived and with the tropical climate of our country, what is better than an ice cold drink? An ice machine can be the ideal option to help refresh your summer days. Buying ice can be costly, especially if you have an unexpected event. With an automated machine, you will be able to prepare ice at high speed and can save your party. If you are one of those forgetful people who never fills their trays and want to buy an ice machine, Monedero Smart has separated some models and a tutorial with everything you need to know to buy your first ice machine.




Summary

  • Ice machines can produce ice in different formats: cubes, scales, crushed and others. Be attentive to buy the machine that meets what you need.
  • Most machines are not bivolt, so check the voltage voltage of the device, so that it is compatible with the place you want to use.
  • Different models offer different times for making ice. Pay attention according to your needs.

The Best Ice Machines: Our Picks

Buying guide

If you've ever had to run somewhere to buy ice in the middle of an event you know how useful an ice machine can be. And although it's not such a popular piece of equipment, many people are already looking for one of these for their parties. Stay with us to learn all about the ice machine in this comprehensive buying guide.

Women holding glasses of cola with ice at table

The ice machine ensures that your drinks always stay cold. (Source: thamkc/ 123rf)

What is an ice machine?

Classified as electro-portables, ice machines are devices designed to produce ice in an automated way, without the need to use the freezer or refrigerator. The main characteristic of the ice machine is the capacity to produce continuously (of course, respecting the storage limit). Thus, it is not necessary to fill trays, since it works in an automated way.

Why buy an ice machine?

If you are used to hosting parties or receiving friends and family, you must know how inconvenient it is to have to prepare a lot of ice relying only on a few ice cube trays. Even in more modern refrigerators, which offer the option to speed up ice production, you often still have to buy ice packs, which can weigh on your pocket in the long run. Therefore, automated machines that produce ice quickly can be a great option to avoid the hassle of filling ice cube trays or spending on bags per kilo.

Did you want the advantages and disadvantages of buying an ice machine?

Because they are compact, you can take them wherever the fun is. So you won't have to worry about buying or producing ice in traditional ice cube trays, which may not be enough for your demand. With an ice machine, you still have the advantage of choosing the water of your preference: mineral, filtered or even coconut water. Your drinks and barbecues will never be the same after you get used to using an ice machine.

However, a point that can be considered negative is the cost of this type of device, after all it is a considerable investment for your kitchen. Another point is the noise generated by the machine, which can be annoying if you want the machine to produce during the early hours of the morning or in the middle of a party.

Advantages
  • Produces ice automatically
  • It is possible to create flavored ice
  • It can be a decoration piece for your bar or kitchen
Disadvantages
  • High cost of the device
  • Most models are not bivolt
  • The noise of the ice machine is high

How does an ice machine work?

Most portable models do not need to be connected to a water mains, as they have their own water reservoirs. All you need to do is plug the appliance into the socket and fill its reservoir. As most of the models have computerized panels, you can start the ice production with just one button. Then just sit back and wait.

With your command, the machine cools a tray with the ice mould and sends the water from the reservoir to the internal mould and after a few minutes (from 6 to 10 minutes, depending on your model), you will have ice cubes or shavings. Most machines propose to prepare a good quantity of ice, varying from 10 to 15 kg of ice per day, in an economical and silent way. If you have never seen an ice machine in operation, it is worth checking out the video made by Flavio Souza, which shows in detail an appliance in action.

How much does a good ice machine cost these days?

The convenience of having an ice machine may not be very cheap in the short term, mainly because it is not yet a very popular household appliance. Its prices range from $1,000 to $1,500, depending on the model, its features and the amount of ice that can be produced daily. Although it may seem expensive, if you are in the habit of buying ice frequently, it is worth estimating this monthly expense, as eventually the machine will pay for itself through its convenience.

Where to Buy an Ice Maker?

You can find portable ice machines in large department stores, or even in supermarkets with sectors specialized in electronics, such as Casas Bahia, Americanas or Wallmart. If you are a fan of online shopping, it is possible to find great ice machine models at shops like Amazon, Submarino and the online versions of the aforementioned shops. The ease of buying online is that you don't have to leave home and receive the product at your doorstep.

Criteria for purchase: What to consider before buying an ice machine

Choosing the appropriate model when you are going to make a product purchase for the first time, especially one that is new, can be challenging. But don't worry, you don't have to become an expert on the subject overnight. Before making your purchase, consider the cost-benefit ratio and what features will meet your expectations so that you have the perfect ice machine for your home. It is worth checking a few points:

Check these points in detail before making the best purchase that brings an ideal cost-benefit for you and your kitchen.

Voltage

Stay tuned, because most models of ice machine do not offer the option to be bivolt. Before buying, check the voltages available in your home to avoid unnecessary renovations. The portable models can be found with 110V/127V or 220V option. It is also worth noting the kWh consumption, as it can vary according to the power of your ice machine.

Reservoir Size

Portable ice machines have an internal water reservoir, thus avoiding that they need to be connected to a water main. It is therefore worth taking a look at the models and the size of their reservoirs, as this will directly influence the amount of ice it will be able to make before being refilled.

Speed of production

The biggest advantage of portable ice machines is the speed with which they can produce a reasonable amount of ice.

The faster the machine, the more ice it will be able to produce in less time.

In the main models found in the market, it is observed that ice machines are capable of producing "batches" in an average of 6 to 10 minutes, restarting production automatically afterwards.

Therefore, the higher the production speed, the faster you will have a significant amount of ice ready for your drinks and preparations. This production speed makes an ice machine the ideal equipment when you need to make a large quantity of ice or if you just want the convenience of producing more ice as you consume it at a party or family barbecue.

Types of Ice Produced

You can find a variety of ice types capable of being produced by an ice machine according to the features of each model, such as cubes, spheres or flakes.

In most models, you choose the size of the ice.

Most models also offer the option for you to make different sizes of ice, such as small, medium or large, which can be useful depending on the preparation you decide to use it for. Although models with more features can cost a bit more, if you want to give a more sophisticated look to your events, it is worth opting for a model that offers different shapes and sizes. If you are more traditional, a simpler model may suit your hot summer days better.

Production capacity per day

One of the indications that different ice machine models offer is their production capacity per day. This basically means how much ice you can produce in a single day on an uninterrupted production cycle of the machine. The models available today are capable of producing an average of 10 to 15 kg per day, quite a considerable amount for a portable option. To reach this level of production, it is necessary to pay attention to the amount of water in the reservoir, replacing it whenever necessary, besides emptying the machine according to the ice production.

Ease of movement

One of the great differentials of the modern ice machines is that they are considered portable, even if some models reach the weight of 15 kg. Without much difficulty, since it is not necessary an electric or hydraulic network preparation, you can take and install your ice machine wherever you want, being necessary only an outlet and a certain amount of water.

However, before taking your machine around, you must take some precautions, such as not moving the machine while its reservoir is full or while it is in operation. So, you can take it from your kitchen to a recreational area, to a barbecue at a friend's house, or if you are a bit creative and have access to electricity, you can chill your drinks and juices even at the beach.

(Image source: Warut Sintapanon/ 123rf)

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