Many small businesses in Kansas and Missouri need ice for customers. Coffee shops, cafes, and delis all use ice, even if they don’t have a lot of room for a large ice maker. One of the most common models new business owners ask for is a 100 lb. commercial ice maker.
Ice-Masters has been serving businesses in Kansas and Missouri since 1950. We have many 100 lb. ice makers, but many times a machine of this size is too small for the average business. So, when is a 100 lb. ice machine the right choice for your business needs – and when is it time to size up?
How Much Ice Does My Business Need?
Most businesses in Kansas and Missouri cannot get by on 100 lbs. of ice alone.
The average hospital near Kansas City uses around 10 lbs. of ice per bed. The average restaurant requires around 1.5 lbs. of ice per customer. Bars and cocktail lounges use around 3 lbs. of ice per customer since bar patrons tend to order more drinks than restaurants. While these examples are merely average estimates, it shows how different ice usage can vary across other industries.
Estimating your ice needs gets even more complicated when you consider the other areas you use ice – aside from drinks.
For example, many restaurants use ice for food preparation, like ice baths. Many sports bars use a beer tub full of ice to hand out cold brews on busy game days. Kansas and Missouri hospitals use physical therapy ice machines to treat injuries, like sprains and bruises.
Simply put, there are many factors you need to consider when estimating how much ice your business needs – and undercutting that amount with a 100 lb. ice maker can cost you.
We’ve included our handy ice machine calculator to help you estimate the ice needs for your industry. Our team of Ice Machine Experts can also help you choose the right sized ice machine for your business if you need additional help!
A 100 lb. Ice Maker Should Not be Your Only Machine
In most cases, a 100 lb. ice machine is not going to cut it as your only source of ice. While you may run a business that’s small enough to get by on 100 lbs. of ice, you should know that a commercial ice machine produces ice in batches, not all at once.
Industrial ice machines list their maximum production rate over 24 hours. So, if you buy a 100 lb. ice maker, it will take a full 24 hours to produce 100 lbs. of ice. Knowing this is important if you run the type of business where you see an influx of people during lunch or breakfast time. Customers or employees can go through ice fast, leaving you with little to finish out the workday.
You should also consider the amount of ice a 100 lb. ice machine can hold. Most 100 lb. ice machines store around is 50 lbs. of ice at a time. If you need 100 lbs. of ice on hand for a busy lunch hour, you should consider buying a larger ice maker with more storage. Most 100 lb. ice makers have storage built into the unit, so upgrading to a larger bin is not an option.
Running out of ice is not only a hassle; it can end up costing you money over time. Convenience stores sell 10 lb. bags of ice for around $2-$3. If you need to replace 50 lbs. of ice to get through the rest of the day, you’ll spend around $30. If you can’t pull someone from the floor, a delivery service can bring you ice, but they will likely add a fee for the trouble.
Thirty dollars may not seem like a lot, but if you run out of ice during a busy day once, you’ll likely run out of ice again. If you find you have to make repeat trips to grab additional ice, it’s going to cut into your business’s bottom line.
If you run a small business, you should consider installing an ice machine that produces slightly more than you think you need. A larger ice machine may cost more, but if you find yourself going through more than 100 lbs. of ice a day, you’ll end up saving money in the long run.
Where are the Best Places to use a 100 lb. Ice Maker?
Ice machine manufacturers wouldn’t make 100 lb. ice makers if they weren’t useful in certain areas. 100 lb. ice machines make for great office ice machines.
Small commercial ice dispensers are a good addition for doctor and office waiting rooms, which don’t see a large influx of people at one time. If you have a small workforce, 100 lb. ice makers also work well in breakrooms. Most countertop ice makers provide between 100-300 lbs. a day.
Bars can also benefit from a small commercial ice maker.
Undercounter ice makers, like the Hoshizaki IM-200BAB square ice machine, are designed to fit underneath a bar, so bartenders have their own supply of ice at their feet. The Im-200 produces up to 186 lbs. of square ice a day (which is a great type of ice for high-end cocktails).
Need a Small Ice Maker for Your Business?
Even if your business can get by on 100 lbs. of ice a day, a 100 lb. ice maker may not be the best option. You run the risk of depleting your ice supply on busier days and paying inflated costs for bags of ice. Choosing the right sized ice maker can be a challenge, but we can help!
If you’re a small business owner looking for an industrial ice cube maker, Ice-Masters has one of the largest selections of commercial ice equipment in Kansas and Missouri. Or Ice Machine Experts have experience helping business owners from all industries.
We have a wide selection of ice machines for sale for any sized business. Our full-service ice machine rentals come with the best commercial ice makers from the leading brands on the market. We include preventive maintenance and cleaning to ensure your ice maker produces safe, sanitary ice year-round.