Ice can get contaminated due to several reasons, including but not limited to airborne particles, polluted water sources, dirty utensils, contaminated food handlers, and even amateur ice handling.
1. Train Your Staff
There is, indeed, such a thing as proper ice handling, and, unless your staff knows what it is, they can’t keep the ice clean and sanitary forever.
Some of the instructions for proper handling include:
- Wash hands before touching the ice.
- Don’t grab anything but the handle when holding the ice scoop.
- Don’t touch the ice with bare hands, and never scoop it out with other vessels.
- Ice, once dispensed, must not be returned to the bin.
- Don’t keep the doors of the machine open longer than necessary.
- Store the scoop outside the ice maker not in use.
- Wash and decontaminate the scoop every day.
- Don’t use the ice machine for other purposes.
- Clean the machine regularly and check for problems.
2. Clean and Check for Problems
Performing some shallow cleaning every few days would keep all the parts and, in turn, the ice clean. You’ll still have to hire professional cleaning at some point, but until then, you can just keep the frequently used surfaces clean with EPA-approved solutions.
While you’re at it, check if the exterior surface of the machine is in good shape. See if there’s any mold or scum inside. If yes, you need to clean it immediately. Be sure to discard any ice that’s still inside before starting the cleaning.
3. Scheduled Maintenance and Major Cleanings
Your ice dispenser needs some professional TLC at least twice a year. This entails opening up the machine for inspection, deep cleaning, and thorough sanitizing.
Here’s what a professional cleaning and service look like.
- Turn off the machine and empty the bin.
- Remove any protective covers that might be there.
- Clear the drain.
- Clean the interior with hot water and detergent.
- Wipe the interior with an antibacterial sanitizer and allow it to air dry afterward.
- Follow the same drill with the curtains, cover, scoops, and other ice machine accessories.
- See if the door gasket is in fine condition to prevent air contamination.
- Check the taps and hoses attached to the machine for damage or wear.
- Change the water filter, especially if you get a lot of dust, yeast, and other contaminants.
- Put it back together and turn on the machine.
- Make sure it works properly before leaving.
Entrust Our Ice Machine Rental Services with the Task
Cleaning an ice machine and making sure you’re in the clear with regulators can be a hassle. That’s why our ice machine solutions come with installation, filter replacements, scheduled maintenance, and repairs.