The First Ice Making Solution Designed Specifically for Healthcare Facilities



Frequently Asked Questions


1. What are the benefits of the SAFE ICE system?

*    SAFE ICE insures that the ice machine and the ice is kept clean at all times.

*    SAFE ICE eliminates the ice maker as a potential source of nosocomial infection.

*    SAFE ICE greatly reduces the need for periodic cleaning.  Manufacturers typically recommend cleaning every 90 days in healthcare facilities. 

*    SAFE ICE minimizes the need to buy, handle and dispose of hazardous cleaning chemicals.

2. Does SAFE ICE eliminate the need to sanitize or clean the ice machine?  

Typically, the need to clean is reduced greatly, but may not be eliminated.  The recommended cleaning frequency will depend on the water treatment system used and the use of the ice.   For example, in locations where the water is treated with a reverse-osmosis filter and the ice is used in a conventional hospital ward, the recommended cleaning frequency is once every 18 months.  Please contact SAFE ICE for the recommended cleaning frequency for your application.

The following exceptions may apply:

* If the ice making water is extremely dirty, de-scaling may be required periodically. This can be done using the manufacturer’s recommended de-scaling procedure.  For SAFE ICE machines, this procedure can be done without disassembling the machine and with the SAFE ICE system running. 

* Sanitizing is required if something in the evaporator compartment needs to be repaired.  In this case the machine will need to be re-sanitized (using the standard NSF-approved sanitizing procedure) before it is put back in operation.

* If something disrupts the SAFE ICE system, re-sanitizing is required.  This can happen, for example, if there is a prolonged power interruption that exceeds the battery back-up, or in the unlikely event of a dual failure of the SAFE ICE blowers.

3. Does SAFE ICE keep the ice clean?

Yes.  The ice is made in an environment that is completely clean and free of organic contaminants and particulates and is completely clean. 

4. How does SAFE ICE compare to the alternate sanitizing systems?

a.) Antimicrobial compounds (e.g., AgION):  These molded-in compounds are only used in select plastic parts.  They reduce microbial growth - they do not keep the ice clean and it does not eliminate the need to clean the machine.  Even the growth reduction effect is very limited: 

*  Antimicrobials do not eliminate or prevent biological contamination.  The parts will still need to be sanitized on a frequent basis.

*  They do not inhibit or prevent growth on untreated parts or in the machine.

*  If the parts become covered with scale, the antimicrobial effect is lost.

*  Antimicrobials do not prevent fine particles or insects from entering the machine.  These things contaminate the ice and can and do cause machine malfunctions.

SAFE ICE eliminates airborne biological contamination.

b.) Ozone:  Ozone can be toxic to humans and it does not always work.  The ozone concentration must be high enough to be effective, but not so high that it becomes toxic to humans.  It is very effective close to the point of injection into the machine, but loses effectiveness as you move away from that point.  It does not keep the ice clean, and it does not eliminate the need to clean the machine.  SAFE ICE uses no dangerous chemicals or toxins and keeps ice clean in the bin. 

c.) UV:  Ultraviolet light is also an effective sanitizing method; however it is difficult to apply and is a significant safety risk since UV light can cause blindness. It does not keep the ice clean, and it does not eliminate the need to clean the machine. SAFE ICE keeps the ice machine and the ice clean.

d.) Ice machine cleaners:  Normal ice machine cleaning chemicals are hazardous.  They are difficult to handle properly (rubber gloves and protective masks are recommended) and can be harmful to flush down the drain. They do not keep the ice machine clean in-between cleanings and do not eliminate or reduce the need to clean the machine.
The SAFE ICE system reduces the need to use ice machine cleaning chemicals.

5. Does SAFE ICE  increase the size of the machine? 

No. The SAFE ICE system fits inside the ice machines and does not increase the size of the machine in any way.

6. What about typical air leaks in an ice machine with SAFE ICE? 

Typical ice machines are not designed or built to be air-tight.  However, even with these inevitable air leaks, SAFE ICE maintains positive air pressure at all times, with a very small blower.  This style of blower is used in the computer industry and has a long life (e.g., 11 years). 

7. Does SAFE ICE melt a significant amount of ice? 

No.  Testing has shown that the amount of melting caused by the SAFE ICE system is insignificant compared to the melting which is typical of unrefrigerated storage bins and dispensers used today.

8. How often will the HEPA filter in the SAFE ICE unit need replacing?

The HEPA filter will need to be changed every 24 months and the easily accessible pre-filter every 3 months.  More frequency may be needed in extremely dirty environments.  SAFE ICE uses a dual system of twin HEPA filters with twin blower units, which means the replacement procedure can be done with the SAFE ICE system still up and running, never disrupting service.  Please contact SAFE ICE for the recommended HEPA replacement frequency for your application.


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