When buying a commercial ice machine, modular style machines are the most popular. These styles of ice machines provide the widest range of sizes, but they only make ice. You still need to purchase a bin to store all that ice. A used ice storage bin can be a very cost-effective way to provide storage to your ice machine. Still, with any used equipment, there are risks.
Choosing the Right Sized Ice Bin
If you already own am ice machine, you’ll want a large enough ice storage bin to hold the amount of ice it produces. Ideally, you want your ice bin to hold 100% of your ice machine’s maximum output.
To make sure ice bins don’t overfill and cause a freeze up, ice machines come with an ice machine bin control. The bin control is responsible for shutting the ice machine down before the bin overfills. So, for instance, if you were to place a 600-lb machine on a 300-lb used ice bin, the machine would shut down as soon once the ice in the bin reaches around 300 lbs (or a little less than 300 lbs unless you level the ice out).
Large and smaller bins come in different designs. Really large bins that hold over 1300 lbs of ice have two sets of doors, one toward the bottom of the bin where users grab ice and another slide door to view your ice supply.
Bin and Machine Compatibility
Ice machines come in a range of widths, namely 22”, 30”, 44”, 48”. Ice bins come in a range of sizes as well, but luckily there are ways to fit a smaller ice machine on a larger bin.
Adapter kits allow smaller ice machines to fit on a larger bin while still maintaining a seal. The ice machine stays securely on top of the bin and protects your ice supply.
When shopping for a used ice storage bin, look to see if there is any exterior damage. Used commercial ice equipment is bound to have a few dents here and there, but large dents and holes in the bin can affect how well it can keep ice cold.
Things to look for are:
- Large, deep dents that could hinder the effectiveness of the insulation
- Holes that might let moisture enter between the bin lining
- Rust or corrosion which signifies a leak
- Broken or stiff hinges on bin doors
- Sweating around bin doors and exterior panels if ice is present
- Damage to drain fitting threads
You’ll also need to check inside the bin for damage as well. The interior of an ice storage bin consists of a plastic liner with foamed-in-place insulation behind it.
Make sure the liner is free of damage Here are some of the things you’re looking for:
- Holes or cracks in the liner, which can leak moisture into the insulation
- Liner separation or bubbling. If you can depress the liner, or the liner pulls away from the insulation.
- Water behind the liner
All of these issues will affect the integrity of the insulation inside a used ice storage bin. If you see any of these signs, consider another bin.
Be Smart When Buying Used Ice Storage Bin
If you decide on buying a used ice storage bin, just make sure to look out for the warning signs. Buying any used commercial ice equipment could mean you run the risk of paying for the past owner’s mistakes. When buying a used, look for the warning signs to make sure you’re getting the best ice machine and bin for your money.
If you’re looking for a dependable industrial ice machine for your business in Kansas or Missouri and, give Ice-Masters a call. With an Ice-Masters rental, you get a top-of-the-line ice machine with maintenance and cleaning included for an affordable charge.