Repairing Portable Ice Maker

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by David Babbitt, Dec 16, 2011.

  1. David Babbitt

    Thread Starter Member

    Oct 8, 2010
    I've repaired 3 portable ice machines for 3 different symptoms and will share my experiences. There are U-tube videos that show other symptoms by others.
    1) The first had a broken drive end at the plastic tray. The motor's shaft had a pin through it which, with its 2 ft-pounds of torque to reverse direction of rotation, broke the tray's input shaft. I repaired it by epoxying a partial wooden dowel to it and surrounding the end with a copper ring. You may have seen other threads I submitted about AC synchronous motors and what it took to reverse their direction. For these ice machines with a 100:1 gear ratio, it is as stated at the output transmission end or 1/100 of that at the drive motor inside.
    2) The second problem had the machine indicating no water in it when, in fact, the reservoir had a sufficient level to it. The screws that check for conductivity through water had become fouled with silica so that they indicated infinite resistance. I scraped the covering from the screws to renew the steel surfaces. One photo shows the electrical wiring to a screw and the other shows both of the screws.
    3) The third problem was that a tray would become one solid chunk of ice. It wasn't dumping water at the end of a cycle nor melting the thimble shaped ice cubes off the freezing fingers. I found the microswitch that indicates it had dumped water defective so that the microprocessor prematurely decided the ice harvesting process was completed. It immediately refilled and froze on itself. I disassembled the microswitch, found a broken spring inside and made a new spring, quite small, from 0.005" thick flat copper material that was resilient. I wish the microswitch had been otherwise readily available.