Need The Best Portable Ice Maker? See These 2017 Reviews

Best Portable Ice Maker Reviewed in 2017 for the Price - Igloo Ice Maker

Igloo RCA Portable Ice Maker Review
  • 26 pounds of ice per day
  • Makes Ice in as little as 6 minutes
  • 2 sizes to choose from
  • Automatic overflow protection
  • Stainless steel look or multiple color choices to match any kitchen
  • Not super high capacity
  • Storage bin doesn't have super-high capacity
  • Owner manual for ease of use

A very popular countertop appliance is the portable ice machine. It can be used for supplemental ice or for other purposes. While it’s commonly used in a kitchen environment, this countertop ice maker with its compact design can be used almost anywhere where you have electricity. A lot of people buy one for a small bar that they have in their home.

The installation of a bulky freezer or refrigerator can require an enormous amount of effort, so a lot of people prefer to purchase a smaller appliance. As you might have gathered from the name, these appliances can be used almost anywhere, and they don’t require any installation.

The easy-to-use control panel with LCD display means that all you need to do is pour water into the water reservoir and choose your desired settings. You should have a fresh batch of ice within minutes. You also get to avoid the use of ice trays. You can use this appliance in RVs, boats and campers; you can even use it for tailgating.

However, as mentioned earlier, an ice maker does require a source of electricity, so that is something to remember. Most countertop ice-making machines are created to match existing décor, so if you want to use it for that purpose, you have nothing to worry about.

Some of the newest ice maker machines have a long list of features and make the process easy and enjoyable. Most models have an insulated storage bin, so the ice that you make with the model doesn’t melt very quickly.

A lot of the newer models give you a few different ice sizes and shapes to choose from, so if you don’t need large cubes, you can have the machine make smaller cubes or even crushed ice.

How They Work

When compared with the alternatives, these machines operate differently. They freeze water directly, so the amount of time that is needed to make a single batch of ice is dramatically reduced.

In the beginning, water must be added to the machine’s reservoir, which should be filled to wherever the fill line is located. The nature of the machine requires you to manually fill it with water because it’s not connected to a water source like a freeze or refrigerator.

It doesn’t matter what you fill the machine with – you can use water from a jug, bucket or faucet. The unit should have a freeze tray in the top portion of it, but the location of this component can vary from one model to the next.

There should be a small hole in the bottom of the machine, and water is pumped through the hole and up into the freezer element. Any excess overflow water should find its way back into the reservoir.

Metal prongs are lowered into the water that is located in the freeze tray, and the prongs get extremely cold, so they’re able to freeze the water in minutes.

This is how many portable models make ice, but there are many other methods that these machines use to make ice. It depends on the brand and available features.

What You NEED To Know

Anyone who currently owns or plans on purchasing an ice machine needs to read all of the information below. Some people have been told that they need a water line for their portable ice machine.

All that you need to do is pour water into the appliance. Another question you might have concerns how long it takes the machine to make ice. The majority of models will start dropping ice cubes into the bin within a few short minutes.

A traditional ice tray can take hours to freeze ice, so it should be quite obvious what product is better. With a portable unit, you can get the ice that you need whenever you need it.

If you’re wondering about the size, most of these appliances are small enough to fit comfortable onto a countertop, but they’re large enough to hold enough ice to make them worth using. Most models are about the size of a standard bread maker.

Why Are They Portable?

These appliances are classified as portable devices because they don’t require a designated water line. They also don’t require a drain line – all they need is a power supply.

You can take one anywhere that you have a 110 to 120V outlet. However, if you want to take them on a boat or similar, you can purchase an inexpensive power inverter which will give you the electrical outlet required for the appliance.

Cleaning and Maintenance

Once you’ve made your purchase, it’s important to understand cleaning and maintenance for these appliances. Fortunately, ice makers require minimal maintenance.

They don’t really require much more than occasional cleaning, which ensures the device runs smoothly. It’s also a good idea to use a special cleaner that is made for ice machines occasionally. The ice scoop should also be cleaned periodically.

Storage and Capacity

There is a difference between storage and capacity. A machine’s ice production refers to how much product the machine can produce during a 24-hour period.

The storage capacity is the amount of ice that the compact ice maker is capable of holding. Some people worry about overflow, but fortunately, most models have a mechanism that stops the machine from making more ice if the bin is full.

Types of Ice

You will find that, due to the nature of the machine, most of these appliances produce bullet ice, which is exactly what it sounds like – many ice cubes in the shape of a bullet.

These chunks of ice have a cylindrical shape. While a lot of models produce the cloudy type of ice that you would get from using a traditional freezer, there are some models that produce impurity-free product, which is what you typically get from a restaurant.

Also remember that these appliances almost always use a three-prong plug. One of the greatest benefits of owning such a machine is the ability to use it outdoors.

While many consumers will use it on the countertop in their kitchen, many more will use it outdoors, such as while boating. It can be used anywhere where there is a usable power source.


Are you looking for the best portable ice maker? If you are, then you’ve found it here! All of the research has been done – we’ve done it for you. We compiled all of it into this top-three list, so you can use it to quickly and effortlessly find what you need.

1st ChoiceIgloo Portable Ice Maker in Black

For our second choice portable ice maker machine, we went with the Igloo Portable Ice Maker in Black, and we really feel that this was a good choice. The Igloo Ice Maker has the compact design, portable design that you would expect from such a machine. It can be used in boats, RVs and virtually anywhere that you have a power source.

At 26 pounds per day, it produces 2 pounds less than our top pick, but that is to be expected. Once you own this ice-making machine, you’ll never need to purchase ice from the store again, and if you know how expensive a few pounds of ice are at the store, you will see that this machine is more than a bargain.

It has an LCD display control panel, which is very easy to read. Sadly, you only get to choose two different settings for ice size, but this isn’t a big deal.

All you need to do is plug it into a power supply, add an adequate amount of water and wait 15 minutes for the freezing cycle to run its course.

This portable ice maker machine has been designed in a way that gives it an amazing reputation, and reviews from consumers don’t lie about this. We really believe this ice maker is perfect for your houseboat, but you can use it anywhere. You can click here for Igloo.

2nd Choice

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Since all of these products are so similar, we had a hard time deciding on this one in our ice maker review. We ended up going with this model. There are several reasons why this model made the top of the list. It can make as much as 28 pounds of ice in a single day.

  • Small footprint
  • Great ice production (26 pounds)
  • Very reasonably priced
  • Various ice cube sizes

It can be used at barbecues, picnics and parties. It will literally give you a supply of ice whenever you need it. The portable design makes it very easy to use indoors or outdoors. It will fit on tables and countertops – and basically wherever you might need it.

When operating it, you can choose from three different  ice cube sizes, and these sizes are small, medium or large. It has a fast freezing cycle, which takes about 6 to 15 minutes, so you can get a brand new batch of ice after the cycle finishes.

The electronic controls are easy to use and do what they say they do. It also has indicator lights that will tell you when it’s time to add more water or when your ice is ready to use.

In case you’re wondering, this model makes bullet-shaped ice, as these machines usually do. This is a great machine with virtually no negative reviews. It has all of the features that you need, produces fresh ice and is portable. You can click here for Avalon.

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3rd ChoiceAvalon Bay AB-ICE26R Portable Ice Maker

The third choice was also slightly difficult to make because there are MANY comparable models in the same price range. We thought “oh – too many choices!”

We really think this model is worth the money, and we chose it because it’s about the same price as many comparable models but has more to offer and significantly better consumer reviews.

With this product, you WON’T have to buy any more ice from the store, and if you find yourself needing quite a bit of ice frequently, then this product will satisfy those needs.

It’s easy to use and doesn’t produce a huge mess to clean up. Like many comparable models, it makes about 26 pounds of ice per day, assuming you were using it continually. Fortunately, you don’t have to connect it to a water line. You just pour the water in, turn on the power and let it do its thing.

A full freezing cycle will take about 6 to 13 minutes, which is how long you must wait in between fresh batches of ice. Each batch contains 9 cubes.

We really like the silver exterior of this model – it’s modernized and will match virtually any setting. Also, silver just makes you think of fresh ice.

Another reason why we chose this model is because it’s lightweight, at only 20 pounds. It has an LED display that is really easy to read – even for those who would usually have trouble – and it’s an all-around great product for the money. You can get more info here.

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