[posted August 22, 2012]
Air Cooled or Water Cooled? Consider a Remote Air Cooled Condenser
There is a smaller, popular bar that operates a few miles away from my home. This bar is constantly packed due to their creative marketing, generous drink specials, and the way in which they incorporate people from all walks of life into the bar. On any given night, you may find a popular local band, a major sporting event special, or perhaps most popular- their trivia events taking place. When this bar was established a few years ago, it became an instant success and is still extremely popular. The only fault I have found in this bar is how crowded and warm it becomes when people pack in for the weekend events.
Now, when business is good, the last thing with which you may concern yourself is your ice machine, its location, and its production. But if your ice machine is located in a warmer area of the building, it may not be performing all too well. Air cooled models operating in warmer conditions tend to lose 25-30% of their production when temperatures increase. Water cooled models may allow your ice machine to keep its production more consistent, but they may require the use of thousands of gallons of water to keep your machine cool each day. Those bills add up quickly, and the water cooled condenser may not be the best solution to your issues. A remote air cooled condenser provides the ideal balance between performance and cost efficiency.
In the aforementioned bar, there may be a vicious cycle that causes your appliances to work harder, and your establishment to require greater amounts of money to be spent on utilities. As the building heats up, a stronger air conditioning system is required. In warmer areas, not only will your ice machine’s production lack, but it must also work harder to keep up with ice production. When it is forced to work harder, the ice machine’s condenser inevitably gives off more heat, and produces more noise than it normally would. A remote air cooled condenser will allow you to break this cycle.
Generally, the ice machine operates in a warmer area of the building- the kitchen in many establishments. By purchasing an ice machine with a remote air cooled condenser, the condenser can be relocated outside and away from the building- in most cases, up to 50 feet away. This allows you to place the condenser on the roof, or aside the building, and allows production to remain more consistent. Ice machines with air cooled condensers generally only see production fall by 15-20% when air and water temperatures increase.
All major brands of commercial ice machines usually offer a few ice machines with remote air cooled condensers. While they may cost slightly more (the condenser must be purchased as a separate unit), the benefits received are well worth the investment. A remote air cooled condenser will allow your ice machine to operate more quietly, produce less heat, and provide more consistent production. Most are ENERGY STAR qualified as well, providing additional relief to water and utility bills. Scotsman, Ice o’matic, Hoshizaki, and Manitowoc all provide a remote condenser to ease the burden on your ice machine. Before you make any ice machine purchase, be sure you fully assess your options to find the perfect machine that suits your business best, and as always, know that we at IceMachinesPlus.com are here to help you along the way.