Question about Hoshizaki Commercial Freezer KM-500MAH

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Ice Cubes won't drop

I've got a Manitowoc Series 150 Icemaker, and the last problem I have to fix on it is acheiving the proper balance so that it's far enough back that the water curtain coats the ice tray enough to get ice cubes forming (and doesn't drip out over the front of the trough), and far enough forward so that the ice cubes actually drop out of the top and down into the bin.

No matter how much fiddling I do, during the harvest cycle the ice cubes still seems to drop part-way out of the tray, but get stuck on the bottom and the whole sheet of cubes just leans out onto the plate, but isn't at the right angle to swivel the plate out of the way in order to let the cubes drop out.  (like this --->   |//   )Then a new cycle starts, water cascades over the stuck sheet of cubes, and pours down into the collection bin - melting any ice successfully formed.  :(

So, I use up a lot of electricity and still get no ice.
I've fixed EVERTHING else on this machine, just not this.
Very frustrating.

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  • creativechem Feb 15, 2009

    So, something strange happened.
    I was doing P/M - cleaning the ice machine, removing scale, and cleaning the ice tray (nickel plating is a little spotty in a few places).

    After I rinsed out the machine and tried to start it up, at first, the water pump wouldn't run in the freeze cycle, and then one it finally started up, it would shut off after a few seconds (CLICK - sounded like the harvest cycle started.) The next day - it's freezing ice again, but the cubes are still not dropping. Weird. Could have been something to do with the ice bridge probe...
    Happy that it sorta "fixed itself" and I can manually drop the ice and at least get SOME - but still troubled that it's not working quite right.


  • creativechem Mar 20, 2009

    Great suggestions, the only issue that could be making a minor contribution to the problem is the water curtain hole where the plastic pin expands into is cracked -so I fixed that with cyanoacrylate.

    I had a distributor ask his HVAC guy, and they didn't have much to suggest except adjusting the ice bridge thickness. I wasn't sure what that would accomplish since the whole sheet was releasing, just not falling into the bin, but I turned the adjustment screw down 2 full turns (!) until the ice started to fall into the bin in a sort of haphazard fashion. Tilting the machine forward helped to provide enough momentum to the falling sheet to have it function pretty reliably for the past several weeks.

    I have photos of the Ice tray, showing clear vacuum-release holes, some flaking of the plating, and the style water curtain used.
    Not sure how to post / link to those ...

    But thanks for all the thought and helpful input. It might all help me get this dinosaur up and running the NEXT time it fails!


  • steve
    steve May 11, 2010

    You are undercharged on refrigerant or you have a inefficient TXV or hot gas bypass valve.
    You also stated the plating is deteriorated in places. That alone causes the slab to stick.
    What are your pressures at the beginning of freeze and at harvest initiation?
    How much time from freeze to harvest?
    How long in the harvest mode?
    Ambient temperature in the room?
    Water temperature entering machine?
    Is the water valve or purge valve leaking?


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Something is holding your Ice Slab at the bottom from your description.
Some causes are
1 Dirty - scaled up evap, or just dirty w muddy covering,
2 the vacuum breaking holes are stopped up If it is making a sla whith the evaporator warm no ice take a flashlight and hold it where its shining to the back of the evap and look for the light on th cube forming slots next to the ones your shining the light into Upper corners of each hole must be open.
3 The slab is freezing uneve most like cause is a stopped up distributor tube at the top thats feeding the water down the evaporator.
4 On some models thay had a closer fitting water curtian (the cover in front of the slab) and the top of the sheet touched this and caused the slab to stay uprite and continue the "slide" forward.If your curtian is of the older style and has metal hooks on it with verticle slots n the curtian look at the slots and see if the slots are worn making the whole curtian slide down ward I have seen this several times.4B On some older models there is also a plactic coated wire diverter on the bottom infront of the evaporator. If the palstic coating is gone or the bottom or is not even, the slab could hang up there. 4C If you have the newer plastic pins make sure thay are seated in the mounting properly.
5 Nickel plating could be comming off (any copper color on the lower 1/3 of the evaporator?).
6 I have seen some of the horizontal plates them selves be loose and not in flush try pushing and pulling on them especially the ones at the bottom. ANy that are loose and comming out is your problem.
This lengthy extrapolation is by no means all of the possibilities but most of the common ones. If this helps you solve your proble please rate me accordingly. If it leads you to the correct and completed repair WOULDNT WE MAKE A TEAM?? And Good luck to you.

Posted on Mar 18, 2009

  • Farley Redfield
    Farley Redfield Mar 18, 2009

    Oh yes I hate to ask but if you get to the bottom of your problem please give me as high rating as you can I'm trying to get my % back up. If your still having trouble after this please post what you got to look at and what you did, I'll try to help you on through..

  • Farley Redfield
    Farley Redfield Mar 20, 2009

    Ok now that I remember what Im doing is the floor and machine level? Maybe its pitched slightly. The horizontal bars are at 15'. If its off a 1/4 bubble or even an 1/8th on a 2 foot level this will make a real difference. When cleaning it did you move it around? Bump it? re check the top from back to front on the sides (both sides with the top in place. And use the feet levelers to level as needed. See it has to be level so the 15' will help the slab fall off. And if your getting a whole sheet falling forward your thickness is ok. Its a problem if yuor sheet isnt thickenough or too thick. the bridge between the cubes should be about 1/8 to 5/32 thick. Thicker it wont break up when it falls and smaller it may not weigh enough or may sepperate and melt a lot of the slab before falling, and 1/4 of a turn CW is usually quiet a lot. does yuor machin ehave a red lite that blinks then the water touches the thickness probe? You can see it if you touch the probe while running if you have on. If you dont then your machine is older.

    Oh yes the water pump has a delay built in befroe it restarts. this is to let the evaporator place cool down befroe applying water.

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I realize this is a very late post, but it might help those who are currently researching the above problem.

I solved it by drilling a 3/8" hole through the center of the top half of the plastic curtain. I screwed a bolt into the hole from the outside and then placed two nuts at the end of the bolt to lock each other in place.
The purpose is to prevent the top half of the ice from leaning against the plastic curtain at such a sharp angle that it can not place enough leverage to the curtain to open it up while at the same time much of its weight is directed back towards the bottom of the icing unit. Hence, the ice hangs up and YES, the unit will either shut off in error or try to run water across it to remove the problem.

Not only does the simple bolt work like a charm but it causes the ice slab to fall out fast enough so as to allow the next freezing cycle to immediately begin without turning off for the 2 or 3 minute delay time which was typical when the slab had difficulty dropping, but would eventually do so and this became the accepted norm, until the above quick fix was applied.

Yes, of course cleaning is a necessary duty even with pre-filters.
I think I could get a patent from Manitowoc?

Hope this is all clear. I know how frustrating it is when everything else seems to check out just fine.

Posted on Aug 07, 2015

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The cubes are released by hot gas. So an undercharge will not allow this.

Posted on Apr 04, 2010

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I have a Manitowoc 150 series and the cuber plate doesn't get hot during harvest (so the ice doesn't release). Eventually this trips the GFCI, and no ice gets made. Any help would be great.

Posted on Feb 14, 2010

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