Is your Hoshizaki ice machine not functioning the way it should? Some ice machines may experience issues which may slow down the production of ice over time.
To help you figure out why your Hoshizaki ice machine might be slow to produce ice, we’ve consulted with Nestor Moscoso at B&G Refrigeration in Jacksonville, Florida. Nestor has worked on commercial refrigerators and ice machines for more than 50 years. He is a very experienced commercial refrigeration expert, and even taught at the Tulsa Welding School in Jacksonville.
- Ice machine takes longer than usual to drop ice
- Ice machine does not produce its rated amount of ice in 24 hours
Causes: Nestor says, “Slow ice production is usually linked to dirty water, electrical issues, or low refrigerant.”
Electrical issues can arise in a number of ways including sensor failures, and improper ice machine installation or configuration.
Nestor described how some ice machine owners may try to adjust settings on the control panel to accelerate or slow down the production of ice. However, the ice machine is usually not designed to operate optimally at these settings. As a result, parts may prematurely fail, or the ice machine may be operating at significantly reduced efficiency.
Nestor advises ice machine owners to NEVER move sensors, or adjust the settings on the ice machine’s control panel without the help of a trained professional.
Nestor said, “Sometimes restaurants become more popular, and more ice might be required on a day-to-day basis. The restaurant’s ice machine which produced a sufficient amount of ice initially may not be producing enough ice for the newly increased demand.”
“Instead of tampering with the ice machine, and forcing it to operate in a way it was not designed to, restaurant owners should consider upgrading to an ice machine with a greater daily production of ice. Choosing the right size ice machine for your exact needs is extremely important.”
Apart from electrical issues, Nestor said slow ice production may be resulting from a low level of refrigerant in the ice machine. Low refrigerant in the machine may be caused by a small leak, or by not filling the ice machine with the adequate amount of refrigerant.
Nestor said, “In trying to diagnose an issue, some ice machine owners may use their own gauges to measure the amount of refrigerant in an ice machine. However, up to one ounce of refrigerant in the ice machine may be lost every time the gauges are put on. This may put the ice machine in a condition of super heating or sub cooling which adversely affects ice production.”
Solutions: Nestor advises ice machine owners to enlist the help of a commercial refrigeration expert for any electrical or refrigerant issues which contribute to slow ice production.
Nestor says, “Ice machine owners may think they are saving money by doing adjustments or repairs themselves. More often than not however, I see ice machines encounter more problems when they are worked on by nonprofessionals. If the ice machine breaks, because it was not worked on by a professional, the ice machine owner typically loses more money than if he or she hired a professional in the first place.”