Air-cooled ice maker? Water-cooled ice maker? How to choose?


         The reason why the ice maker system can make ice is achieved by the heat exchange and phase change between the refrigerant and the surrounding medium, such as water and air, running in the system: it runs to the liquid refrigerant in the evaporator (such as the boiling point of R404a) -46.1℃) After contacting with the normal temperature drinking water on the surface of the evaporator, it rapidly boils and gasifies (at this time, the drinking water is equivalent to the heating source); the high-temperature refrigerant after gasification is compressed by the compressor and transported to the condenser for heat dissipation and condensation It becomes a liquid, and then the refrigeration cycle is repeated.

There are two ways for high-temperature gas refrigerant to condense and dissipate heat in the condenser: Water-cooled heat dissipation, that is, "to take away the high temperature of the refrigerant through tap water"; Air-cooled heat dissipation, that is, "to take away the high temperature of the refrigerant through a fan" ". These two condensation methods correspond to different types of condensers, namely "water-cooled tube condenser" and "air-cooled condenser".

1. Air-cooled ice maker

As the name suggests, this type of ice maker is an ice maker that uses an "air-cooled condenser" to dissipate heat from the refrigerant in the ice making system. This type of ice maker is the most common in the market. The air-cooled ice maker uses fans and heat sinks to dissipate heat to the ice making system. Even some air-cooled ice machines have obtained higher energy efficiency levels certified by the country.

However, if the ice machine needs to be used in a hot and humid environment, such as the kitchen, outdoors, or hot southern areas, we do not recommend the use of air-cooled ice machines. Because in these areas, the air temperature is too high to effectively help the system to dissipate heat, resulting in a serious decline in the ice efficiency of the ice making mechanism. What's more serious is that if the ice machine cannot "exhaust heat" in time, the machine will even "burn out" due to overheating.

Advantages and disadvantages of air-cooled ice maker:

Advantages: Low installation cost; Low water consumption, which can meet the requirements of areas with regulations on sewage discharge; Low energy consumption;

Disadvantages: The heat radiated by the machine will cause the temperature of the ice machine installation area to rise; Depending on the air outlet and the installation position of the machine, additional cooling vents need to be arranged on the side and above the machine body, resulting in an increase in the cost of machine processing; Using the machine in high temperature areas If the type of ice machine is used, the capacity of the ice machine may decrease.


Air-cooled condenser

2. Water-cooled ice maker

The water-cooled ice maker has the best effect in terms of heat dissipation in the ice making system, but it also means that this type of ice maker consumes a lot of water. Unlike air-cooled ice machines that use fans and heat sinks to dissipate heat, water-cooled ice machines use tap water running in the condenser tube to take away the heat of the gaseous refrigerant to liquefy it.

Generally, the condensed water of general commercial water-cooled ice machines is directly discharged through the sewer after flowing through the condenser, and cannot be recycled.

Since water instead of air is used to dissipate heat from the ice making system, the output of the ice machine is not affected by the surrounding air temperature. However, because some cities and towns have related requirements for water resources protection, the use of water-cooled ice machines in this area is strictly restricted.

Advantages and disadvantages of water-cooled ice maker:

Advantages: The temperature of the ice machine installation area will not increase due to the heat dissipation of the ice machine; The most effective way for the ice making system to dissipate heat; This type of ice machine can be used in any temperature environment.

Disadvantages:  Huge water consumption, for every 45 kg of ice made, the condensation system will consume 0.46 tons of water;  It will significantly increase the cost of water and sewage for users of the ice machine.


Water-cooled condenser

So, which type of ice machine to choose? Water cold? Wind cold? Or buy ice cubes directly? All this requires a scientific prediction based on the amount of ice used.