How Often To Clean Your Ice Maker?

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Regular maintenance of ice makers is essential to maintain an optimal performance level and eliminate the likelihood of risks to health through harmful bacteria and dirt that may accumulate in the appliance over time. Illnesses from bacteria are quite common, and one of the most likely reasons people can contract such illnesses at home is through the consumption of unhygienic or contaminated food or water. 

If you have an ice maker at home that you use frequently, you would not want it to become dirty or a breeding ground for harmful bacteria, so you should clean it regularly.

One common question that ice maker users ask is how often they should clean their ice maker. If you are wondering the same, read this article to find the answers you are looking for, along with helpful tips on how often to clean ice maker.

Why should you clean the ice maker?

Like any food item, ice must be handled with care and subjected to the same standards and protective measures. Any part of the appliance that comes in contact with water may develop scale, mold, or slime over time which can contaminate the ice and poses a risk to the health, besides affecting the ice maker’s performance and longevity. 

Hence, it is imperative that you regularly clean, disinfect and maintain your ice-making machine. Continue reading to learn how often and how you should clean the ice maker. 

How often should you clean the ice maker?

There is no hard and fast rule dictating how often an ice maker needs to be cleaned. While most manufacturers recommend cleaning your ice maker once every two to six months, there are certain exceptions to the norm.

Ideally, the frequency of cleaning an ice maker should depend on how often it is used, the environment where it is used, and how it is stored.

Considering these aspects, there are certain instances where the frequency of cleaning the ice maker may be more. 

  • If you use the ice maker frequently, for instance, during the summer, you may need to clean it at least once a month. 
  • If you get hard water in your area and use it to make ice, this will result in mineral deposits in the ice maker’s reservoir, which can compromise the taste of the ice. 
  • If you live in an area with high moisture, this may lead to mold or fungus growth in the appliance. 
  • If you tend to leave water inside the ice maker’s reservoir, it can cause the growth of bacteria and fungi and contaminate the appliance’s inner environment. 

You may have to clean the ice maker sooner than the recommended duration in all these cases.

How to tell if the ice maker needs to be cleaned?

Besides the recommended cleaning frequency and the conditions stated above, you may also notice some tell-tale signs indicating that your ice maker needs to be cleaned.

  • The ice cubes appear cloudy or taste different
  • There is an odor inside the ice maker or in the ice cubes
  • The ice maker takes longer to make ice
  • There are foreign matter or debris particles in the ice cubes or the machine.

If you notice any of these, clean your ice maker before using it again. Read on to learn how you can clean your machine.

How to keep the ice maker clean?

The process of cleaning an ice maker is fairly quick and simple. You can also take a few measures to keep the ice maker clean for longer.

First, use distilled or filtered water to make ice in the ice maker. This will prevent the accumulation of dirt or debris in the machine and help keep it clean for longer. 

Second, empty and dry the ice maker after every use, and do not store it with water inside. Stored water can become a breeding ground for bacteria, and keeping it dry will prevent the growth of bacteria or mold.

Third, keep a check on the quality of the ice produced and the performance of the ice maker. If you notice a change in the taste or appearance of ice or feel that the ice maker has become slow, clean it right away.

Regular and proper cleaning and maintenance will enable you to enjoy your ice maker for a long time.

Paul Wade
About the author

Paul Wade

I’m Paul, and I founded Ice Maker Basics with my friends. We are dedicated to good drinking with ice and great living.
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