Cleaning and sanitizing are an important part of commercial soft serve ice cream machine maintenance. Unfortunately, there is no definitive answer to the question of how often to clean an ice cream machine.
The best way to set a cleaning schedule is to contact the local health department for the required cleaning frequency. Some local health departments require machine cleaning every day, while other health departments are not as strict. Some local health departments allow for less frequent cleanings dependent on the cleaning process; business owners should ask if there are any allowances for their preferred cleaning solutions.
Why do soft serve ice cream machines need to be cleaned and sanitized?
Ice cream machine cleanings and maintenance are beneficial for two reasons: 1) preventing food borne illnesses 2) extending the life of the food service equipment. The first reason makes cleaning a top priority; any action (or inaction) that causes food borne illness can be extremely expensive for customers, restaurants, and businesses. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 1 in 6 Americans suffer from food borne illnesses every year, and the cost to the economy is more than 15 billion annually.
In addition to cleaning and sanitizing, these machines require regular lubrication and occasional part replacement. Regular maintenance ensures a consistent product and long machine life.
What ice cream machine cleaning and sanitizing processes are available?
Exact instructions for soft serve ice cream machine cleaning is detailed in the product manual, such as in this manual from Taylor Company. For a more efficient and cost-saving soft serve ice cream machine cleaning, consider using Hydra Rinse cleaning products. Hydra Rinse cleaning products require less than half the time of a manual clean and uses less water during the process. Contact a local food service equipment professional for more information on the specifics of this soft serve ice cream machine cleaner.