How Much Electricity Does a Portable Ice Maker Use?

Summer is approaching and soon our need to sip chilled drinks all through the day will start. Our refrigerator freezer units are not going to help us with the constant supply of ice, as the freezer takes at least 4-5 hours to make a try of ice, no matter if it is an ordinary refrigerator or an appliance with quick ice promise. So what are our options? How about buying an ice maker machine that can chunk our ice cubes in 10 minutes? Sounds interesting right. 

Portable ice makers can help us with a steady source of ice to keep the water and the drinks chilled all through the day. But what about our utility bills? If you have an appliance that works throughout the day transforming water into ice, how much power will it consume? Well, there is nothing much to worry about, as portable ice makers consume very less electricity compared with other freezing units and even the refrigerator. And with some smart actions, such as using chilled water and proper maintenance of the unit, we can speed up the ice-making process and save on our utility bills as well. Let us discuss these aspects in detail here.

How Much Electricity Does a Portable Ice Maker Use
Source: Pixabay / Credit: OtoZapletal

How Much Electricity Does Portable Ice Maker Consume?

A portable ice maker is capable of producing 9 cubes/nuggets/gourmet shaped ice cubes between 7-10 minutes, which is the average size and duration of a batch of ice. They make use of the standard 120V wattage current, that we have in our home and commercial establishments. There is no additional power or wattage consumed by these machines and thus, we can use them without any worries about the utility bills. 

Check out: Best Portable Ice Maker Under $200

What Should I Do to Save Energy with My Ice Maker Appliance?

Though most portable ice makers seem to consume an optimal quantum of electricity, there are still a few ways we can help save them power better. 

1. Choose a reliable brand with an energy star rating

We generally make our purchase based on the cost of the appliance and its reliability in terms of functioning. Now there is a new clause added to the purchase model. It is absolutely important to choose an electrical appliance based on its energy star rating, even if it means spending additional dollars on it. Appliances with 4 or 5 energy stars are energy efficient and consume less power than those with fewer stars.

2. Try making Ice overnight

Experts state that the best way to save electricity with ice maker machines is to prepare ice at the night and store them in a freezer, rather than making the appliance run all through the day. This is because electricity is generally charged based on demand apart from being charged on consumption. When we say demand, it is the peak amount of power that customers draw in a month. When we use the appliance at a time when the demand on the electric grid is low (at night we generally don’t operate other appliances) we can save on utility bills. But can be a little hectic to stay late hours and remove the ice to be transferred to the freezer. 

3. Choosing between air-cooled and water-cooled appliances

Water-cooled ice makers are more energy-efficient than air-cooled machines. These appliances make use of water instead of air to cool down the condenser coils by transferring heat away from them. But they can consume a lot of water and cannot be used in places where scarcity of water exists. Air-cooled appliances are commonly available in the market but are not energy efficient.

4. Check the quality of water that is fed into the appliance

Always ensure that the appliance is fed with clear and clean water. If we use impure and untreated water, it will result in impure ice and the process of making ice will also be extended. And, try using cold water instead of water at room temperature as this will speed up the ice-making process and also makes ice in less time, consuming less energy.

5. Concentrate on regular maintenance of the appliance

It is mandatory to clean the ice maker appliance regularly as instructed by the manufacturer. The buildup of impurities and salts in the appliance will slow down the ice-making process and this will have a direct impact on the utility bills. Also, it is a good idea to use a water filtration system to delay the buildup of limescale in the internal components. 

Some FAQs on Saving power With Portable Ice Makers

Is it true that we should not use the countertop ice maker outdoors?

We can use them outdoors after all the portable units are for parties and vacations. But avoid exposing them to direct sunlight, as it can heat the internal components and delay the ice-making process.

Does the size of the icemaker reflect on the utility bills?

Yes! Commercial refrigerators consume more electricity than portable units. Larger appliances with more ice-making capacity consume more energy. But we can save power by storing the large volume of ice produced by them in a few batches, rather than allowing the portable ice maker to run all through the day.

What is the best way to clean the ice maker?

Keeping the ice maker clean is one best way to save power. It is better to follow the instructions of the manufacturer in cleaning the appliance. It is also a good idea to clean it regularly with warm water and vinegar.

Must Read: How to Clean an Ice Machine?


The Portable ice maker machine doesn’t consume much energy, compared with commercial ice maker machines and other freezing units. But we can try our part in protecting the environment and conserving energy by using the appliance only when it is needed and maintaining certain protocols like using cold water, keeping the lid closed, and avoiding direct exposure of the appliance to sunlight. But we can be sure that in its effort to offer us cold drinks all through the day, it consumes less energy than expected.

I'm Sara Wilson, the founder, and author of HomeyCart. I'm also the head of the expert team that tests various ice makers and brings the best advice.

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