Informational Guide

How To Clean A Scotsman Ice Machine (2023 Instruction Guide)

Follow our step by step instructions on how to clean a scotsman ice machine. Get crystal clear icy drinks every time with our guide.

by Ian Haynes

If your freezer doesn’t have a built-in ice machine, it makes sense to invest in a standalone ice maker like the Scotsman. Scotsman ice machines come in handy for people who don’t have constant ice produced by the freezer, or just anyone who loves fresh ice.

The thing to keep in mind about your Scotsman - and any ice machine for that matter - is that it requires regular maintenance, and a bit part of that maintenance is a thorough cleaning. Learn how to clean Scotsman ice machines in this complete guide in order to keep your Scotsman pumping out fresh ice for years to come.

Before getting into the details on the Scotsman ice machine clean cycle, let’s touch on the different models and compositions from this brand. Most Scotsman have similar cleaning patterns, but the model you have determines the exact steps you’ll follow.

When you shop on the Scotsman site, the first step is to choose between residential and commercial models. From there, you’ll decide on whether you prefer cube or nugget ice, and those decisions will determine the exact machine that’s right for you.

Here’s a quick breakdown of the ice systems by Scotsman:

  • Legacy Cuber (Model DCE33):
    This under-counter ice machine creates clear, tasteless, odorless cube ice in quantities of up to 30 pounds in 24 hours. It’s composed of a stainless steel wrap-around door and an optional built-in drain pump that makes maintenance easier
  • Brilliance Cuber (Model SCC30):
    This model is very similar to the Legacy, with the main difference of a more robust hinge system that’s more suitable for heavy-duty users.
  • Brilliance Nugget (Model SCN60):
    This is another under-counter system that can pump out up to 80 pounds of ice each day. But instead of cubes, it creates nuggets that are softer and easier to chew.
  • Scotsman Prodigy (Model C0330):
    This is a commercial-grade machine that self-monitors to continuously create ice to keep up with commercial settings like restaurants and bars. It has features like Auto-Alert indicator lights, WaterSense purge control, and Smart-Board advanced features.
  • Scotsman CU50:
    This is another cuber machine that is designed for commercial applications, producing gourmet ice with a unique shape. The ice is designed to be slow-melting, and this machine is approved for outdoor use, meaning keeping up with cleaning and maintenance is more important than ever.
ice cubes

Considerations Before Cleaning a Scotsman Ice Machine

Before buying your Scotsman ice maker, the first consideration is whether this is for commercial or residential use. Scotsman manufactures machines for both, so you’ve got options.

In terms of cleaning, it’s a little more complicated than that. Depending on the size and capacity of your Scotsman, cleaning will be more challenging for some than others. The good news is that Scotsman has designed these machines to be as easy to clean as possible, so the process will never be too difficult.

Before getting started, these are the main things to remember for how to clean a Scotsman Nugget ice machine or cube ice maker:

Read and follow the directions on the instruction manual

This is the first thing you’d do with any machine’s cleaning process, but it’s especially helpful for Scotsman. Your user manual will give you step-by-step instructions on the cleaning process, so follow it.

Remove all the ice from the machine

You won’t be able to clean the machine with ice still in it, so after perusing through the manual, removing all remaining ice is the next step. To do that, you need to remove the front panel and push and release the Harvest button. Once released, wait for the machine to finish the cycle and to stop running.

Remove the evaporator cover

The evaporator is a refrigerated vertical tube filled with water that contains a water seal and auger. It’s responsible for producing the ice by absorbing both sensible and latent heat from the water as it passes over its outer surface. It doesn't sound very easy, but all you need to know is that this needs to be removed for cleaning.

Do the descaling process twice a year

Descaling is the process of removing key parts of the ice machine, rinsing them with the cleaning solution (as well as the inside of the machine), and putting it all back together again. So first, turn your Scotsman Off, remove all the remaining ice, take apart the parts and pieces, add in the liquid cleaner, and allow the cleaning cycle to finish.

Cleaning Your Scotsman Ice Machine: DIY Step-by-Step Guide (by Model)

While most Scotsman models have the same procedures for cleaning and sanitizing, there are some slight differences between them. The good news is that the general steps remain the same, which are:

  • Step 1:
    Remove all ice from the bin, remove the machine’s front panel, and push/release the “Harvest” button. Allow the machine to go through this cycle.
  • Step 2:
    Once the machine has stopped entirely, remove the evaporator coil. Then, push/release the “Clean” button.
  • Step 3:
    Pour about 12 ounces of the Scotsman Ice Machine Cleaner into the reservoir, and then replace the evaporator coil. This cycle will take about 10 minutes to complete.
  • Step 4:
    After 10 minutes, push/release the “Clean” button again, which will allow the machine to go through the rinse cycle. Once rinsing is complete, push/release the “Freeze” button and secure the front panel back into place.

For more detailed instructions on your specific ice machine, refer to your user manual. You can access these manuals either through the Scotsman website or by clicking the links below:

scotsman ice machine

People also Ask (FAQs)

How do you clear clean light on a Scotsman ice machine?

One aspect of your ice machine cleaning and maintenance guide is to reset the clean indicator light, and Scotsman says to “press and hold On/Off button and Clean reset button for 5 seconds until yellow light begins to blink then release (yellow light should remain blinking).” It’s as simple as that.

What is a Scotsman Clear 1 ice machine scale remover?

This is a product made specifically by Scotsman to clean and descale Scotsman ice machines. It’s a highly-concentrated, food-grade solution that helps to remove limescale deposits on and in these ice makers.

How long is the clean cycle on a Scotsman ice machine?

A full cleaning/descaling cycle takes about 10 minutes. That’s how long it takes the cleaning solution to circulate and penetrate the machine. Once the 10 minutes are up, the machine still needs to go through the rinse cycle, which takes about 20 minutes.

Can I use bleach to clean my ice machine?

Yes, and Scotsman actually recommends it. According to them, bleach is a great cleaning solution for the ice bin. According to the cleaning and maintenance guide, here’s the best way to sanitize: “Make sanitizing solution. Use locally approved sanitizer or mix 1 ounce of household bleach with 2 gallons of warm water.”

Why is my ice maker making dirty ice?

Dirty ice could have to do with dirty machine components, which is yet another reason why it’s essential to stay on top of maintenance. If a good cleaning doesn’t fix the problem, it most likely has to do with your water source.


Regular cleanings and descaling are two of the best things you can do to keep your Scotsman ice machine running smoothly. Not only that, cleaning the machine will actually result in better tasting ice, so whether you’ve invested in a commercial or residential ice maker from Scotsman, the trick is to keep it clean.

Ian Haynes is an expert writer who has successfully deployed over 500 plumbing pages and other related content. He has an excellent understanding of home plumbing issues and translates his experiences via Plumbing Lab so readers can have a better understanding of common household problems. Outside of his work, Ian likes exploring Brooklyn with his Labrador.