Chicago businesses need an ice machine that can consistently keep up with customer demand. To help Chicago business owners buy an ice machine that meets their needs, manufacturers include AHRI ratings to help them estimate their ice production rate. This rating shows how much ice commercial ice equipment can produce in 24 hours, which is often listed in the model number as well.
In this article, the experts at Automatic Icemakers show you how to read AHRI ice machine ratings so you can find your ice machine’s ice production rate.
What are AHRI Ice Machine Ratings?
AHRI stands for Air Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration Institute. It is a product performance certification program that monitors heating, ventilation, air conditioning, refrigeration, and water heating appliances. The rating shows the machines performance under specific conditions so buys know their products can perform according to manufacturers’ published claims.
Products are tested by an independent third-party source to ensure the product can deliver what standards or specifications suggest.
There are two AHRI ice machine ratings most business owners should be concerned with, which you can also find in an ice machine spec sheet:
AHRI/Maximum Production: This rating identifies the amount of ice a machine will produce under 70-degree ambient air and 50-degree incoming water temperatures.
AHRI/Standard Production: This rating measures ice cube production under “standard” operating conditions defined by the AHRI. Ice machines are measures under 90-degree ambient air and 70-degree incoming water temperatures.
How Can I Use AHRI Ratings to Increase My Ice Machine’s Performance?
The AHRI ratings are designed to help Chicago business owners estimate their ice machine’s performance to make the right choices for their business. On average, commercial ice machines produce more ice in 70/50 air and water temperatures than machines installed in higher temperatures.
As temperatures rise, the ice machine must work harder to produce a batch of ice. All that extra work leads to more wear and tear on the ice machine’s components which lead to expensive ice machine repairs. in addition, the machine is forced to use more energy and water, raising utility bills.
If you run a business in Chicago where maintaining 70/50-degree temperatures is difficult, like a hot kitchen or warehouse, the AHRI rating can help you estimate if you’ll require a high volume ice machine.
AHRI ratings can help Chicago businesses with temperature control increase their ice production rate. Simply adjusting the temperature on your thermostat will often increase your ice supply and improve your ice machine’s performance – however, there are other factors to consider.
“At Automatic Icemakers, we recommend freeing up at least 1 foot of space on all sides of the ice machine, including the ceiling.”
Air cooled ice machines require plenty of ventilation to operate. When these machines are closer than 1 foot from a wall or other structure, heat can get trapped around the unit. Trapped heat can be very tricky to identify because the rest of the room can stay relatively cold. The only way to catch this is to measure the temperature directly around the ice maker. If heat is trapped, you’ll need to free up space around the unit. At Automatic Icemakers, we recommend freeing up at least 1 foot of space on all sides of the ice machine, including the ceiling. We follow this protocol on every ice machine we install.
Water temperatures can be trickier to maintain than air. However, plumbers can insulate the water line to help keep your incoming water around AHRI ratings.
If you want to test your water temperature, you’ll need to run a thermometer under a faucet on the same water source as your ice maker. Before checking the temperature, run the water for around 30 seconds to empty any hot water still in the line. Next, place the bulb of the thermometer under the water for around 1-2 minutes. If the temperature registers higher than 90 degrees, you should call a plumber. This is especially important if you own a water cooled ice machine.
A Reliable Ice Machine Service Can Help Increase Your Ice Supply
At Automatic Icemakers, we perform a thorough site survey before installing any ice machine. We also work with Chicago business owners, so they can choose the best commercial ice machine for their needs. We sell and lease commercial ice equipment from the leading brands like Manitowoc and Hoshizaki.
With our full-service ice machine lease program, we make sure ice machines are installed under optimal conditions to guarantee their performance. We include biannual ice machine service and professional cleaning to keep machines performing according to the manufacturer’s AHRI ratings.
If you run a challenging environment, like a Chicago pub of pizzeria, give us a call, and we’ll work to find the perfect fit.