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Making ice cream is a cold and treacherous business. Unlike milk, which can be easily stored and shipped, ice cream requires a constant supply of fresh ice to keep its delicate flavors and textures.

Finding the best ice cream maker for your needs can be difficult. There are many types of ice cream machines, and there is a lot to think about when choosing the ideal one for your business.

With these considerations in mind, we’ve put together an ice-cream maker buyer’s guide to assist you in selecting the best commercial ice-cream maker for your establishment.

What are the things to consider when buying a commercial ice cream maker?

Ice cream types

When purchasing a commercial ice cream maker, the first consideration is the type of ice cream you want to sell. Not all commercial ice cream makers produce all types of ice cream. And the machine you choose should be capable of producing the type of ice cream you choose for your business.

Are you, for example, planning to create an ice cream shop with a large choice of flavors? Do you own a gelato shop that sells gelato to go? Perhaps you’d want to include a soft-serve machine in your event space. Frozen yogurt might be a good addition to your summer cuisine. You may even have sorbet served between dishes in a high-end restaurant.

The point is that depending on the type of ice cream you want to produce, the best ice cream machine for the job will vary. 

Capacity

Your commercial ice-cream maker’s capacity relates to how much product it can contain. Gallons and liters describe the capacity of a commercial ice cream machine. Because higher-capacity machines are more expensive, capacity is essential when choosing between models, so you should know how much product you need, especially during peak days. 

Energy efficiency

Energy is essential for two reasons. To begin, you must have enough power to run the engine, turn the augers, keep the pumps working, and have the product freeze and churn efficiently.

Second, electricity is costly. Purchasing an energy-efficient commercial ice cream machine reduces utility bills since the efficient arrangement of the components consumes less electricity.

Mobility

Consider whether you’ll need to move your ice cream maker. Some types have wheels/castors that can be locked to keep them stationary. It is easier to clean the equipment if it is kept mobile. 

Placement

Keep your ice cream maker out of direct sunlight to avoid forcing the commercial ice cream machine to work more than necessary.

Power outlets should be considered as well. You’ll have to pull the industrial ice cream maker out to reach the outlet if it’s right behind it. Ideally, the electrical outlet for your business ice cream machine will be on the side or above the unit for better access.

Output

This is the amount of product produced by an ice cream machine every hour. The required output varies depending on whether you’re serving the product immediately from the machine or making multiple flavors stored for later use. 

Size

The size of an ice cream maker refers to the physical space that the machine takes up in your place. The actual size of the machine, also known as its footprint, will vary substantially depending on the volume of production required to meet client demand. A fine dining restaurant, for example, would require a significantly smaller machine (far less capacity) than a regular ice cream shop because it only serves small amounts of ice cream or sorbet to complement a multi-course meal.

Another consideration is how your business ice cream maker will fit into your kitchen. Take some measurements before buying a commercial ice-cream machine to ensure the appliance won’t obstruct traffic, can be transported and installed easily, and perfectly fits in your kitchen.

Floor standing and countertop types of commercial ice cream machines are available. Floor-standing machines are larger and usually, come with more features. Countertop ice cream makers may have similar features to floor-standing models, but they are constructed to be more compact and space-saving. Double-check that commercial countertop ice cream machines are the correct length and width to fit properly on your counter or equipment stand.

Installation

Inquire about the installation process before deciding on the best ice cream machine for your needs. The first thing to consider is whether it will fit through your venue’s doors. Are there any up and down steps? Do you need to move the machine over a doorframe? Are there any curves to avoid or narrow passages to navigate?

To ensure optimal performance, have your industrial ice cream maker professionally installed. Hire an electrician to check the voltage to ensure you can run the equipment. Also, if the machine requires it, make sure you have adequate drainage underneath or nearby.

Training

Ensure that the commercial ice cream maker provider is willing to instruct you and your team on how to use and clean it. Make sure they give you a complete parts and service handbook and that they’ll be available for refresher classes on how to assemble, disassemble, operate, and clean the equipment. 

Insurance, warranty, maintenance, and repairs

In the event of theft or unintentional damage, your ice cream maker should be protected under your general business insurance. Check to see if your ice cream maker is itemized on your policy so you may file a claim for its true value.

A new commercial ice cream maker must come with a warranty. If you buy new, you’ll probably get a 12-month parts guarantee but no labor warranty. Before you buy, be sure you understand the warranty. Consider this a red flag if there isn’t one.

In an ideal world, you’ll be able to contact a service and repair specialist in an emergency. If not, this may impact your purchase of a commercial ice cream maker. After all, how much money would you lose if your ice cream maker broke down for a few days or weeks?

Remember that when you purchase a commercial ice cream machine, the cost and availability of replacement parts will be factored into your continuing expenses. Different machines may have more expensive parts to fix or replace. 

Commercial ice cream maker provider in Denver

We hope this article has provided you with enough information to help you narrow down your search for the best ice cream maker for your business.

If you’d want professional help and guidance, don’t hesitate to contact Mountain Sales and Services for Food Service Equipment. If you prefer to jump right in, visit our website to check out the commercial ice cream makers we offer.