Investing in an ice machine is a fantastic way to get access to high volumes of ice for your home or business. But, many people are using standard tap water in their ice machine, which produces poor quality ice and it can cause other problems too. In this article, we will take a closer look at the benefits of choosing filtered water in your ice machine.
Hard Water Problems
Standard tap water in most areas is hard water that contains a high concentration of dissolved mineral content, including calcium, magnesium, iron, barium, aluminum, manganese and zinc. In high concentrations, these minerals form scale that can damage water using appliances and plumbing pipes. This is bad for your ice machine, but the other main problem is that these impurities create poor quality ice. Regular descaling can help to mitigate the effects of hard water, but the best option is to use water that has lower mineral content in your ice machine.
Understanding Your Ice Machine
It’s important to understand that certain ice machines have very specific requirements where filtered water is concerned. The water that you use needs to have appropriate conductive properties, which means it has to be capable of passing an electrical current. This capability is measured in Siemens/cm which is expressed as S/cm. Some water filtration methods are almost too effective for an ice maker. They remove large quantities of minerals and salts, which lowers the conductivity level and prevents the ice machine from working efficiently. The minimum conductivity level for the water you use in your ice machine should be in the owner’s manual. When you choose a water filtration system make sure that it can reach those requirements.
Choosing a Water Filtration System
When it comes to making ice, you need a water filtration system that can remove a wide variety of contaminants. Most public water treatment plants use chlorine or chloramine (chlorine plus ammonia) to disinfect the water. This is effective at killing certain microorganisms, but it imparts a “swimming pool” like taste and odor which is bad for ice. Another problem is the aforementioned hard water minerals that can cause the ice to be cloudy and it will melt unevenly in the glass.
The best option to remove contaminants is a reverse osmosis (RO) filtration system installed at the kitchen sink. This allows you to make ice, beverages, clean produce, and many other tasks using purified water. This process takes a little time, so the purified water is stored in a tank under the sink for on-demand access at any time.
To remove the hard water minerals, you will need a water softener that uses an ion-exchange system. This will replace the ions that cause hard water with sodium or potassium salt ions that make the water softer and easier to use.
Using these two water treatment systems together will give you purer water that will produce superior ice. The formation of scale will be prevented, and the useful lifespan of your ice machine may be extended.
If you want to install a RO filtration system and/or a water softener in your home, contact your local water treatment specialist today.
By EcoWater Systems.
EcoWater Systems of Nebraska is the largest water treatment company in the state and is a member of Water Quality Association.