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Ice Types and the Advantages of Portable Ice Making

A little ice history:

Ice harvesting and trade started in the United States in 1805. Because yellow fever was raging in the West Indies, Frederic Tudor of Boston, Massachusetts had the idea to cut ice from a local pond and send it to the Indies in hopes of helping to combat the disease and reduce body temperatures.

Ice Cubes

His idea was not well-received. Skeptics thought the idea outrageous and unproductive, believing it would not heed results.

According to CNN Living, on Feb. 10, 1806, The Boston Gazette reported, "No joke. A vessel with a cargo of 80 tons of ice has cleared out from port for Martinique. We hope this will not prove to be a slippery speculation."

Apparently it was, because the ice arrived in good condition but no one bought it. One year later, Tudor continued the venture and eventually it paid off.

Today, the ice industry pulls about 2.5 billion a year. However, its dominance is not what it used to be. The invention of ice makers, and more importantly portable ice makers, have changed the industry significantly.

The Advantages of Portable Ice Making

There are several reasons to invest in an ice machine. First, most ice makers produce about 26 to 35 lbs. of ice per day. They provide enough ice for any party you might have or for your family to enjoy whenever they want a cold beverage.

Second, they're portable. Taking them with you on vacation or to a party is convenient. If you're a boat owner or you like to travel in your RV, a portable ice maker is a great kitchen accessory. This handy appliance lets you make ice on the road. All you need is a plug!

Third, they're compact in size. Most models fit on virtually any countertop, making them perfect for small living spaces. No matter where you plan to use this handy appliance, there's room for it. Use it at work in the break room or in your apartment size kitchen. It's easy to set up and even easier to store.

Lastly, these appliances make ice in minutes. Averaging about 12 minutes a batch, they're amazingly convenient for any occasion.

What Kind of Ice Do You Prefer?

Clear ice is all the rage and everyone wants to know how to make it. According to TLC, clear homemade ice cubes begin with distilled water. Making it isn't easy as you have to boil water and then freeze it in metal ice trays. Although effective this process takes time. You can buy distilled water; however, the freezing time is just as lengthy.

With a home ice machine, you can use purified water to make clear ice and enjoy it in minutes. Presentation is everything, so if you like to entertain and you're looking to serve mixed drinks or sparkling water to your guests, clear ice is the way to go! What's the difference? Below is a brief explanation.

Clear Ice


Ice is clear when it's made with purified water. The purer the water the clearer the cube. Pure water only contains Hydrogen and Oxygen. It's water in it's simplest form.

Another contributing factor is the way the ice is frozen. If it's frozen slowly and in thin sheets, it will maintain a clear appearance.

The metal plate in the ice maker is the reason the ice cube comes out so clear. Freezing ice in metal trays produces a similar result.

If you want to serve beautiful beverage to your guests, it's a good idea to invest in a portable ice maker for perfectly clear ice cubes.

Cloudy Ice


Ice gets cloudy when it's made with tap water. Tap water contains a lot of disolved air and impurities.

Salt, calcium, fluoride, nitrates, chloramines, and microorganisms are sometimes found in tap water.

When water is frozen too quickly air molecules get trapped, form bubbles, and essentially cloud the water. Ice machines limit the entrapment of air, so the ice produced is clearer.

 A Few Fun Facts

  • Hot water freezes faster than cold water
  • You can chill water passed its freezing point and it still might not become solid
  • Water has memory in the form of a hydrogen bond network
  • Throwing boiling water in the air in subzero weather turns it to instant snow
  • The first ice cube tray was invented in 1844 by Dr. John Gorrie to help yellow fever patients
  • Dr.Gorrie also built the first refrigeration unit using ice and snow to keep items cold


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