Businesses in Kansas and Missouri need a reliable source of ice to meet their customers’ demands. To help business owners buy an ice machine that meets their business needs, manufacturers include the AHRI rating. 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 Ice Machine Experts at Ice-Masters show you how to read AHRI ice machine ratings so you can find out exactly how much ice your unit is likely to produce.
What are AHRI Ice Machine Ratings?
The AHRI (Air Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration Institute) Product Performance Certification Program is a program that monitors various types of heating, ventilation, air conditioning, refrigeration, and water heating products so they perform according to manufacturers’ published claims.
Products that are certified through the AHRI are tested by an independent third-party source to test a product’s ability to meet rating standards or specifications.
There are two AHRI ratings most business owners should be concerned with. You can find this information in an ice machine spec sheet:
AHRI/Maximum Production: This measures the amount of ice an ice machine will produce under ideal conditions of 70-degree ambient air and 50-degree inlet water temperatures. Both a Hoshizaki model number and a Manitowoc model number include the maximum capacity of ice these models produce.
AHRI/Standard Production: The ice cube production by the machine under typical operating conditions – which are defined by the AHRI as 90-degree ambient air and 70-degree inlet water temperatures.
How Can I Use AHRI Ratings to Increase My Ice Machine’s Performance?
The AHRI ratings are designed to help Kansas and Missouri business owners estimate their ice machine’s performance. Commercial ice machines that operate in 70/50 air and water temperatures produce more ice on average than ice machines that operate in higher temperatures.
Commercial ice equipment in high temperatures must work harder to produce a batch of ice. Over time, that increases wear and tear on the ice machine’s components, leading to more ice machine repairs. Machines in warmer climates will also use more energy and more water, raising utility bills.
If you run a business in Kansas or Missouri that has a hard time maintaining 70/50-degree temperatures, like a hot kitchen or warehouse, the AHRI rating can help you estimate if you’ll need a large ice maker or high-volume ice machine.
If your work environment has temperature control, the AHRI ratings can help you adjust the temperature to increase your ice supply. Often, simply lowering the temperature on your thermostat can improve your ice machine’s performance, but there are other factors to consider.
“Here at Ice-Masters, we make sure to free up at least 1 foot of space on all sides of any ice machine we install – that includes the ceiling.”
If you have an air cooled ice machine, ventilation is also an important factor to consider. Ice machines closer than 1 foot from a wall or other structure can trap heat around your ice machine – even if the rest of the room is relatively cold. Measuring the temperature directly around the ice machine can tell you whether heat is lingering around the unit. If so, you should free up space around the ice machine (which is never a bad idea). Here at Ice-Masters, we make sure to free up at least 1 foot of space on all sides of any ice machine we install – that includes the ceiling.
Water temperatures are much harder to maintain than air. However, there are things plumbers can do to lower the temperature of your incoming water if they are higher than AHRI ratings.
To test your water temperature, run a thermometer under any faucet on the same water source as the ice maker. Run the water for about 30 seconds to empty any hot water still in the water line. Next, run a thermometer under the water for around 1-2 minutes. If the water measures higher than 90 degrees, you should call a plumber. Plumbers can help to insulate water lines to keep water within your AHRI ratings. This is especially important if you own a water cooled ice machine.
A Reliable Ice Machine Service Can Help Increase Your Ice Supply
At Ice-Masters, we perform a site survey before installing any ice machine. We also work with Kansas and Missouri business owners to find the best commercial ice machine for their business needs. We sell all the top ice equipment brands like Hoshizaki, Manitowoc, and Follet.
Under our all-inclusive ice machine rental program, we install ice machines under optimal conditions that ensure their performance. We also include routine ice machine service and cleaning to keep the machine performing according to the manufacturer’s AHRI ratings.
If you need help sizing an ice machine in a challenging work environment, give us a call, and we’ll work to find the perfect fit.