Commercial Ice Makers

How Much Do Commercial Ice Makers Cost?

In general, a commercial ice maker is going to cost between $1500-$4650. Calculate your cost for ice machines in this free buying guide from Kwote Advisor.

Ice Maker Buying Guide

Alarming, but true, the first ice makers used toxic chemicals as refrigerants. We’ve come a long way since then. 

In modern cafes and restaurants, an ice machine is something every establishment needs. But apart from use in a restaurant setting, it may also serve other purposes in some other environments. For instance, it can be useful in a hotel or perhaps a spa or health club. 


Before you make the investment, however, you need to find out what commercial ice makers cost. You might think that commercial ice machines are simply more expensive, but you have a wide range of options available to you. 

Are you getting ready to run a business and need an ice maker? Not sure what commercial ice makers cost? In this article, explore how to find the perfect ice maker to use in your business.

Types of Commercial Ice Makers

We are going to talk about three types of ice makers you can buy. Similar to the type of ice, you’ll want to choose an ice maker that fits your needs and the needs of your guest, clients, or employees. 


You may be surprised to learn that a countertop ice maker can produce about 400 pounds of ice a day. If you need a lot of ice but don’t have a ton of space this is a great option.

These machines produce nuggets or pellet ice which is why it’s popular in the hospital setting. The majority of them can dispense water which can be useful in an office.


Modular Ice Machine (IMH) 

A modular ice machine is a stackable unit where the ice dispenser stacks with the storage bin. Depending on what size you purchase it can hold up to 12 hours of ice production.

The most common sizes are 22, 30, and 48 inches wide. It is a much bigger machine than the countertop ice maker and can produce up to 1200 pounds of ice a day. 

Under the Counter Ice Machine 

If you have a smaller business and don’t need a thousand pounds of ice a day, there is an under-the-counter option. It can be great if you want to keep the machine out of sight.  Measure before you buy but the majority of them fit under a standard kitchen cabinet.

Types of Condensers

Think of the condenser as the engine of your commercial ice machine. Once you decide on the type of ice maker and type of ice you’ll need to pick which type of condenser you want. 


70% of ice makers use air-cooled condensers. This condenser regulates the temperature in the machine by releasing all the hot air. However, this means the machine needs to have space on all sides. 

A machine with an air-cooled condenser can’t be placed in a cabinet. The downside of this condenser is it can be really loud and shouldn’t be exposed to hot temperatures. A cool air-conditioned room is the best place for a machine with an air-cooled condenser. 

Remote Cooled

This condenser is must more costly than an air-cooled but if you’re concerned about noise then this is the perfect option. The remote-cooled condenser uses air to keep the machine cooled but it’s usually mounted on the roof, wall, or ceiling. 


A water-cooled condenser is significantly quieter than an air-cooled machine and doesn’t require as much space around it to release air. However, you can expect your utility bill to be higher due to the constant need for a water supply. 

Storage Bins

Similar to the condensers and types of ice there are a few options with it comes to storage bins. Choosing the wrong one could be costly and inefficient.

commercial ice machines

Assess your needs, sometimes having a bigger ice storage bin will cost you more money because you’ll have to throw out and waste ice that doesn’t get used. However, fit you’re expecting your office to grow, opting for a bigger storage bin may be beneficial. 

You don’t always have to have a storage bin that matches the capacity of your machine. Consider your peak times and when you need the most ice. A bigger storage bin might be useful with a smaller machine and vice versa. 

It’s also important that water doesn’t sit too long at the bottom of the bin. The ice sometimes melts and refreezes and it can be a host for bacteria. 

How to Choose a Supplier 

Finding a supply can be overwhelming as there are many to choose from but it’s important to find the right one. We are going to give you a few things to consider in your search. 


Take time to compare different quotes, if one is significantly more expensive there’s probably an explanation, be sure to ask the supplier for a breakdown of the cost. You should also ask for a comparison of the cost of leasing commercial ice makers vs the cost to purchase. They may offer services that cost more like delivery, setup fee, and maintenance fees.

The most expensive machine might not be the right option for you and the cheapest one won’t necessarily be low quality. Get a few different quotes and stay within your budget. 


When you are looking for a commercial ice machine supplier, check their reviews and ask for recommendations. Here are a few questions you should ask before committing to buying a machine:

  • Do you provide regular service tune-ups?
  • If yes, what is the fee?
  • Why are you better than your competitors?
  • How long have you been in business?

You should take into consideration their customer service.

How you they treat you? How responsive are they to your inquiries? These are important questions that will help you determine if you want to work with them. 


You’ll need to ensure the supplier has the machine and equipment you. The types of ice, the machine, and the type of condenser that you need will need to be available.

It’ll be much easier if you can get everything you need from one supplier. Their products will also need to be reliable, it’ll be frustrating if your machine is constantly breaking. 

Getting Ready for Delivery 

There are a few steps that must be completed before your shipment is delivered. Be sure you measure the space to make sure the machine is going to fit properly.

Be sure you leave plenty of room on all sides, too. This will make it easier to access and allow proper airflow.

You’ll need to be sure you are following all the local codes. Check to see if there is a floor drain close by and ensure the water supply is set up properly. 

Depending on the machine you bought it might need some extra electrical installments. You’ll want that to be complete before the installer arrives. 

Hotel Ice Makers 

As a hotel owner or manager you probably already know the importance of having ice readily available for your guests and employees. Since there are a few different types of ice, it may be beneficial to have multiple options at your establishment. 

First, you’ll need to decide which types of ice you need. Many hotels use whole or half cubes. A machine that dispenses ice is typically preferred as it reduces the spread of germs.


If all the guests are reaching into the same ice bin you run the risk of bacteria and unwanted particles getting into your ice maker. Having these commercial ice makers available to the guest 24 hours a day is a small element that many people will appreciate.

These large machines with dispenses typically require regular maintenance which can increase the commercial ice maker’s cost. Cubed iced is the most common as it won’t water down guest drinks as fast.

However, large cubes can make it more challenging to fit a Champagne bottle into a budget. Providing the best hotel service often means having many options. If a guest requested nugget ice it would be beneficial for your business if you can accommodate the request. 


If you are opening a change hotel reach out to compare to find the estimated amount of ice that is needed daily before you order your machine. If you opening a boutique hotel then it might be hard to predict the amount of I’ve you’ll need.

Reaching out to colleagues or other professionals in the business may prove to be helpful as they can help you estimate how much you need. You can guess every room will need a budget of ice per night. Once you calculate that amount it may be wise to order one size up to accommodate the busy seasons and holidays. 

Be sure the machine will fit in the space you have available. Take into consideration that the machine may have hoses and other parts that will take up room.

You’ll need to be sure the machine won’t be blocking any doors, windows, or hallways. The ice machine will have to be hookup to water and an electrical source so don’t forget to factor that in when you are looking for places to put your machine. 


It’s crucial to have regular maintenance on your hotel ice maker. It will keep your machine running smoother and will make it last longer which will help you save money in the long run. Replacing an ice maker because you failed to take care of it is the last thing you want to do. 

If you decide to buy a used machine or you’re machine is older you can expect to spend more on maintenance and upkeep. You’ll likely spend more on repairs as well. 

Top Commercial Ice Makers

There are many brands to choose from when it comes to commercial ice makers. It may take you some time to find the best one for you so take your time researching and contacting each one. 


Ice-O-Matic is a great company to purchase your commercial ice maker from for a few different reasons. Their elevation series are easy to maintain and clean, just click one button and it does the work for you.


The parts that do need to be removed such as the water dispensing tube can be easily removed and placed in the dishwasher. It also has a dual exhaust feature that will allow you to fit it into smaller spaces even with the hot air blowing.

It has an easy setup process as well. It exceeds all regulations set by the D.O.E and is extremely efficient.

Maxx Ice 

The MIM452 30″ Modular Ice Machine is can accommodate lots of different needs. If you need an ice machine for your office space, hospital, hotel, or night club this ice maker may be the one for you.

This machine cost $3,069 and it’s durable. It’s expected to last years so you won’t have to worry about having to replace it.

It can make half cubes and whole cubes and produces up to 1000 pounds of ice. This Maxx-Ice machine is 30 inches wide which makes it easy to pair with other soda dispensers and storage bins. 


We are going to review a few machines from the company Manitowoc and the cost of leasing commercial ice makers. Leasing may be a better option for you and your business. You should also consider leasing a few before you decide to purchase. 


The NEO 140/190 Commercial Ice Machine costs about $2200 if you want to buy it outright. However, there are a few different options if you want to rent. Renting may be ideal if you aren’t sure how long you will be in your current space or if you need it for an event.

Renting for one day will likely cost you around $150, if you want to rent by the week you can expect to pay $200 to $250. Monthly rates typically run at about $400.

Keep in mind some companies will charge you a deposit fee. This machine produces up to 200 pounds of ice a day and has the capacity to hold 90 pounds at a time and produces whole cubes.

The Indigo Series 450 is bigger than the Neo and therefore more expensive. It costs about $100 more to rent this machine for a day and for a week. While renting for a month will cost you significantly more at $650. 

It has technology that makes upkeep and cleaning must easy than other machines. It can produce 400 pounds of half cubes daily. 

If you are looking for a bigger machine the Manitowoc SD100-2A is the way to go. It will produce anywhere from $700 to $900 pounds of ice in 24 hours. Renting this machine will cost you about $1500 per week or $4500 a month. 

Blue Ice

Another popular commercial ice maker brand is Blue Ice. Below we compare a few different machines and their prices.

BLUI-150A Under Counter Ice Maker

This under-counter machine is about $3000 If you decide to finance you can expect to pay about $50 a month.  It’s 36 inches tall and makes about 200 pounds of ice.

It holds about 60 pounds at one time. It has a removable air filter and stainless steel components that make it durable and sturdy. 

BLMI500A Commercial Ice Machine

Similar to the ice maker above this machine has a stainless steel cabinet and evaporator. The average cost is $2900.

During a 24 hours period, you can expect the BLMI500A to make 500 to 600 pounds of ice. To make life a bit easier this machine has a digital diagnostic system.

This feature will allow you to identify any issues and turn the machine on and off. It will also notify you when it’s time to clean it and change the filter. When you are deciding what machine to buy you may be thinking “what is the cost of commercial ice makers to buy”, while this is an important question to ask be sure to ask about warranties. 


Scotsman is another reliable company that has a wide variety of ice makers. There are plenty of options ranging from large machines to under-the-counter ice makers. 


Prodigy Plus C1448 Ice Machine

This is one of the most reliable ice makers. It’s quick to identify problems and it has an easy access panel. It produces about 900 pounds of cubed ice per day.

This machine is more expensive than other pricing at sound $7000. The cost to rent this large machine for a day is around $300 and $700 per month. 

MDT6N90A-1H Commercial Ice Machine

If you’re looking for the perfect machine for your restaurant or medical facility this one is for you. This commercial ice maker makes about 750 pounds of nugget ice a day and is 36 inches tall. 

It has a stainless steel exterior and a self-contained condenser. While it can produce a lot of ice and it can only about 90 pounds at a time. 

Types of Ice 

There are three different types of ice. The business you own will determine which form of ice you need. 

Nugget Ice

Nugget ice or “chewblets” are in pellet form and are softer than cubed ice which we will talk about next. This type of ice can be found in restaurants and hospitals. 


Cubed ice is the most common and is typically found in restaurants, bars, and offices. About 80% of ice makers produce cubed ice.

It melts slower than other types and comes in a range of different sizes. Some machines will also have an option for half cubes as well. 

Flaked Ice

Flanked ice is a bit different than the previous two that we discussed. It comes in shade form and isn’t made for consumption. It’s used for preserving and packing meat and it’s also found in medical facilities and labs. 

Specialty Ice

If you own a high bar or restaurant you may want to consider purchasing a machine that makes different-shaped ice. This can add a little flair to your establishment. If you run an event space having gourmet ice may be beneficial at weddings and events and the ice typically melts slower. 

What Do Commercial Ice Makers Cost?

The average cost of commercial ice makers for hotels is about $4300. However, depending on how much ice you need, you can purchase a machine for as low as $1800. On the high end, you’ll find machines that cost almost $7,000. 

It’s hard to say exactly how much your commercial ice maker is going to cost. The price is dependent on the type and the type of ice maker you purchase. The type of condenser and the size of the storage bin will also affect the cost. 

You’ll also need to factor in your utility bill when you are making your budget. Your monthly bill will likely increase depending on how many machines you install. 

If you’re purchasing multiple machines for your hotel or restaurant ask the supplier about discounts. They may offer a special for those who buy in bulk. 

The main determining factor is the output. Typically the more ice the machine creates the more expensive it will be. 

Time to Buy

It’s more than possible that your restaurant, lounge, bar, or hotel could go through up to 240 pounds of ice each day. Whether you’re looking for a way to reduce food waste or have customers itching for beverages served with properly chilled ice, investing in a commercial ice machine might just be the move you need to make.

Knowing how much commercial ice makers cost ahead of time can help you budget and plan better. That said, you’ll want to do your research before committing to one type over the other. After all, that initial investment is quite high! 

We hoped you found this article informative and helpful. Check our page for more information about commercial ice makers.

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