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Top 5 Commercial Ice Makers for Energy Savings and Efficiency

Running a commercial kitchen or bar involves managing a myriad of operational costs, and one significant expense is energy consumption. Ice makers, essential for many businesses, can contribute substantially to these costs if they are not energy-efficient. Fortunately, advancements in technology have led to the development of commercial ice makers that are not only high-performing but also energy-efficient. This blog will explore the top five commercial ice makers that help save on energy costs without compromising on quality and performance.

Why Energy Efficiency Matters in Commercial Ice Makers

Before diving into the top five models, it’s important to understand why energy efficiency is crucial for commercial ice makers. Energy-efficient ice makers:

  1. Reduce Operating Costs: Lower energy consumption translates directly to lower utility bills.
  2. Enhance Sustainability: Energy-efficient appliances help reduce your business’s carbon footprint.
  3. Improve Performance: Advanced, energy-efficient models often come with improved features that enhance overall performance.
  4. Comply with Regulations: Many regions have energy standards and regulations that businesses must comply with, making energy-efficient equipment a necessity.

Now, let’s look at the top five commercial ice makers that excel in energy savings and efficiency.

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1. Hoshizaki KM-520MAJ

Hoshizaki is a well-known name in the commercial ice maker industry, and the KM-520MAJ model stands out for its energy efficiency and reliability.

Key Features

  • Energy Star Certified: This model is Energy Star certified, ensuring it meets strict energy efficiency guidelines set by the EPA.
  • Production Capacity: It produces up to 556 pounds of crescent ice per day, making it ideal for medium to large establishments.
  • CycleSaver Design: Hoshizaki’s unique CycleSaver design allows the unit to produce ice using fewer cycles, which reduces energy consumption.
  • EverCheck Alert System: This feature provides constant monitoring and alerts for any potential issues, helping maintain optimal performance and efficiency.


The Hoshizaki KM-520MAJ offers a blend of high production capacity and energy efficiency. Its CycleSaver design significantly reduces the number of cycles needed to produce ice, which not only saves energy but also extends the unit’s lifespan. The EverCheck alert system ensures that the machine operates smoothly and efficiently, minimizing downtime and maintenance costs.

2. Scotsman CU50GA-1A

Scotsman is another reputable brand in the ice maker industry, and the CU50GA-1A model is particularly noted for its energy efficiency and compact design.

Key Features

  • Energy Star Certified: This model is also Energy Star certified, guaranteeing energy-efficient operation.
  • Production Capacity: It produces up to 65 pounds of gourmet ice per day and has a storage capacity of 26 pounds, making it suitable for small to medium-sized businesses.
  • Compact Design: Its compact design allows it to fit in smaller spaces, making it ideal for bars, cafes, and small restaurants.
  • Self-Contained Condenser: The self-contained condenser simplifies installation and maintenance, contributing to lower overall energy consumption.


The Scotsman CU50GA-1A is perfect for businesses with limited space but a need for high-quality ice. Its energy-efficient operation and compact design make it an excellent choice for reducing energy costs while still meeting daily ice production needs. The gourmet ice it produces is slow-melting and ideal for upscale beverages, enhancing customer satisfaction.

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3. Manitowoc NEO UR-0140A

Manitowoc is known for producing high-quality and energy-efficient commercial ice makers, and the NEO UR-0140A is no exception.

Key Features

  • Energy Star Certified: This model meets the Energy Star standards, ensuring it operates efficiently.
  • Production Capacity: It produces up to 132 pounds of ice per day and has a storage capacity of 90 pounds, suitable for small to medium-sized operations.
  • Intelligent Diagnostics: The NEO UR-0140A features intelligent diagnostics that provide 24-hour preventative maintenance and diagnostic feedback for trouble-free operation.
  • Delay Function: This function allows operators to pause ice production during slow periods, saving energy.


The Manitowoc NEO UR-0140A is designed with efficiency and user-friendliness in mind. Its intelligent diagnostics and delay function help businesses manage energy consumption more effectively. The unit’s compact design and high storage capacity make it a versatile and practical choice for various commercial settings.

4. Ice-O-Matic ICEU150FA

Ice-O-Matic has a strong reputation for producing durable and efficient ice makers, and the ICEU150FA model is a testament to their commitment to quality.

Key Features

  • Energy Star Certified: Ensuring energy-efficient performance, this model meets Energy Star certification requirements.
  • Production Capacity: It can produce up to 185 pounds of ice per day with a storage capacity of 70 pounds, making it suitable for medium-sized establishments.
  • Harvest Assist: This feature ensures consistent ice production while reducing energy consumption.
  • Built-In Antimicrobial Protection: The built-in antimicrobial protection helps reduce the growth of bacteria and slime, ensuring cleaner and safer ice.


The Ice-O-Matic ICEU150FA combines energy efficiency with high production capacity. Its Harvest Assist feature helps maintain consistent ice production while minimizing energy use. The built-in antimicrobial protection ensures that the ice remains clean and safe for consumption, enhancing overall customer satisfaction.

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5. Kold-Draft GT361AC

Kold-Draft is known for producing high-quality, energy-efficient ice makers, and the GT361AC model is a top performer in their lineup.

Key Features

  • Energy Star Certified: This model is Energy Star certified, ensuring it operates efficiently.
  • Production Capacity: It produces up to 366 pounds of large ice cubes per day, making it ideal for larger establishments.
  • Exclusive Water Plate Design: The unique water plate design enhances energy efficiency by reducing water and energy usage.
  • Durable Construction: Made with stainless steel, this unit is built to last and withstand heavy usage.


The Kold-Draft GT361AC is perfect for businesses that require large quantities of ice. Its exclusive water plate design ensures energy-efficient operation by minimizing water and energy consumption. The durable construction and high production capacity make it a reliable and cost-effective choice for high-demand environments.

Tips for Choosing the Right Energy-Efficient Ice Maker

When selecting an energy-efficient ice maker for your business, consider the following factors to ensure you make the best choice:

Assess Your Needs

Determine the daily ice production and storage capacity required for your business. Consider factors such as peak demand periods and the type of ice needed (e.g., crescent, gourmet, or large cubes).

Look for Energy Star Certification

Energy Star certified models are guaranteed to meet strict energy efficiency guidelines. Choosing a certified model ensures you are getting a unit that operates efficiently, reducing energy costs.

Consider the Unit’s Size and Placement

Ensure the ice maker fits the available space in your establishment. Consider undercounter ice maker models for smaller spaces or larger free-standing units for high-demand areas. Proper placement can also impact energy efficiency, so ensure adequate ventilation and access for maintenance.

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Evaluate Additional Features

Look for features that enhance energy efficiency and ease of use, such as intelligent diagnostics, delay functions, and antimicrobial protection. These features can help reduce operating costs and improve the overall performance of the unit.

Check Warranty and Support

Choose a reputable brand that offers a comprehensive warranty and reliable customer support. A good warranty ensures you are protected against potential issues, and reliable support can help address any problems quickly, minimizing downtime.

Investing in an energy-efficient commercial ice maker can significantly reduce your operating costs while ensuring a steady supply of high-quality ice for your business. The top five models highlighted in this guide—Hoshizaki KM-520MAJ, Scotsman CU50GA-1A, Manitowoc NEO UR-0140A, Ice-O-Matic ICEU150FA, and Kold-Draft GT361AC—offer a range of features and capacities to suit various needs and budgets.

By assessing your specific requirements, looking for Energy Star certification, considering the unit’s size and placement, evaluating additional features, and checking warranty and support options, you can make an informed decision and choose the best energy-efficient ice maker for your business. With the right ice maker, you can enjoy cost savings, improved performance, and enhanced customer satisfaction.

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