Removing Ice from Freezer Floor

Discussion in 'Professional Chefs' started by pete, Oct 25, 2017.

  1. pete

    pete Moderator Staff Member

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    Hoping you guys have some ideas for me. We had some flooding in my current kitchen and a considerable amount got onto my freezer floor and froze. Some areas are only slightly ice covered while in other parts there is about 1/2 an inch of ice. I would prefer not to have to use an ice chipper on this floor but was wondering if you all had any brilliant solutions for removing ice from the floor, short of pulling everything out of the freezer and defrosting it. I don't have any other freezer space to transfer the food to.
     
  2. flipflopgirl

    flipflopgirl

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    Buckets of hot water....fill bucket and set on edge of skating rink and be ready with towels or whatever to soak up the melt.
    Move on to the next spot and repeat.
    I say towels but mean rags that you can toss out when you are done.
    I personally wouldn't use the regular kitchen mop even if fresh from the laundry but then again I was a nurse and never got over the semester of microbiology I had to have as a pre req lol.

    mimi

    This just came to me....
    Try a reg hammer.
    Just crack and pick it up and toss in a bucket
     
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2017
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  3. cheflayne

    cheflayne

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    Put an inch or so of hot deep fryer oil in a rondeau. Place on floor. As ice melts, move rondeau and soak up with bar towels or mop. Repeat until gone.
     
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  4. Pat Pat

    Pat Pat

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    We use a portable steamer to deal with any kind of ice build up. You don't even have to melt the whole thing. Just position the nozzle at an angle right on the floor and you can cut the ice up in blocks for easy disposal. Very fast and efficient.
     
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  5. cheflayne

    cheflayne

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    I like dry heat methods because the moist methods I have seen people use leave a frost on the floor.
     
  6. flambae

    flambae

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    This might sound crazy, but you should use rubbing alcohol. Using hot water will raise the temp of your freezer considerably and you don't want things thawing and sticking together, especially breaded stuff. The alcohol will loosen the ice enough so that you can easily break and sweep it up then use a squeegee or dry mop to get the alcohol up, it will not freeze and your freezer floor will be squeaky clean.
     
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  7. cheflayne

    cheflayne

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    Great suggestion! I hope that I am never in a position to put it to use, but it has been filed away in my memory banks. Thanks!
     
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  8. lagom

    lagom

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    Well I guess I’m fortunate enough to have a floor heater in my freezer so I don’t get a build up. However, in the past I would us cold, not hot water. Cold water melts just fine and you don’t get moisture from the steam on your freezer unit like you do from hot water. Quickly scrape the water from the floor out the door along with the melted ice. Takes all of 5 minuets.
     
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  9. pete

    pete Moderator Staff Member

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    Thanks for all the ideas everyone!
     
  10. Jayvader

    Jayvader

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    having grown up in a cold weather area where my driveway would freeze regularly, my first move would have been salt, but that alcohol idea is pretty good not sure which costs more though
     
  11. Pat Pat

    Pat Pat

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    How does that work? I have never seen one before. Wouldn't the two be fighting each other? Like the freezer tries to keep the temperature down and the heater tries to raise the temperature?
     
  12. lagom

    lagom

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    The floor heater in not on all the time. I turn it on about 20 minuets before we want to scrub it, set the walk-in to a defrost setting then 20 minuets later wet scrub with a brush, rinse and scrape with a floor squeeze. Dry any moisture with a towel and reset everything back default settings of -22c. It literally is a 5 minute cleaning process.

    David
     
  13. Pat Pat

    Pat Pat

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    That makes much more sense than I previously thought. Thanks for clearing that up for me.
     
  14. chefsing

    chefsing

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    Steamer/Floor heater ideas work great for breaking up the ice, I finish mopping it up with a mixture of glass cleaner it won't freeze back to the bottom and I can use a floor squeegie to pull the remaining floor scum out
     
  15. cheftux

    cheftux

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    Ecolab also makes a product called Kool Klene that is designed for moping freezers, you'd have to chip up the thicker spots but that'll help as well.
     
  16. chefkal

    chefkal

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    Great idea!
     
  17. mtnthai

    mtnthai

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    having spent a few decades in Vermont i always use a bit of Ice Melt beads /pellets, the same ones we used on the sidewalks, steps and parking lot.

    [​IMG]

    use just enough to start melting small holes in the ice on the floor (sometimes we would do this at closing and then do the second stage of the task in the morning.

    granted, it was most often in patches and not the entire surface.

    once the ice starts to melt and crack and begin to break up from simply walking on it, we would sweep it out of the walkin with a stiff bristle broom or scrub brush on a long handle.

    that part can be a 1 person task.

    then 2 people would go in and working quickly using warm water (preferably from a hose), we would clean the leftover ice and salt pellets out with a a large squeeze by pushing the water out of the walk-in and then mop it up and wring it into a the mop bucket.

    in walk-ins and kitchens that have drains in the floor this can be a very straight forward process that should not consume too much of your time.

    not a perfect solution, but it gets the ice out and the floor clean.

    i have worked in places that have either a terra cotta, ceramic tile or regular sheet metal or diamond plate floors in the walk-ins, so different approaches were used, and were also dictated by which type of ice melting products were available. if the floor is sheet metal, you definitely want a non-corrosive product. if it is terra cotta or ceramic, worst case scenario you can use regular salt crystals intended for outside use.

    if you do employ this method be certain that you are not using a corrosive salt or pellet that can damage some floors. you also want to distribute the pellets from as low to the floor as you can so that they don't bounce up and get into any food product. if you are fortunate to work in a place with utility/cleaning staff i suggest coaching them through it the first time.
     
  18. flipflopgirl

    flipflopgirl

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    Your warning re to scatter those pellets low had me pulling the msds on the Prestone Ice Melt.
    Can be a pretty nasty product if used improperly and so IMO overkill for the job at hand.
    Used as directed (in the open air of a driveway) any fumes will become diluted in the open air and disperse.
    In an airtight area such as the walk ins not so much...one small oopsie and you will have an avoidable tragedy to deal with.

    mimi
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2017
  19. mtnthai

    mtnthai

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    after 30 years of managing kitchens i personally never have anything uncovered and open anywhere, in particular a freezer. dry goods stores and coolers as well. do you? further, there are many things in kitchens, hotels and restaurants that are not food safe. however, if used intelligently they do not pose a problem IMO. like most anything, it is the human factor that can be the problem.

    i also mention that it is to be used very sparingly, and after the place is de-iced, and properly cleaned and sanitized, i see no problem.

    again, i find it is not the products that are the problem a greater percentage of the time, but the staff who are using them, which is why i say to be sure to oversee its use by staff who may not have a complete understanding of what they are doing.

    needless to say any products that are not meant for the plate are stored separately and properly far from food stocks.
     
  20. mtnthai

    mtnthai

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    @ flipflopgirl

    to comment further, may i ask if you have ever used any oven or grill cleaners/degreasers, to name just one family of products?

    most employers i have worked for do not like to spend the money required to buy eco or "safe" products to accomplish many chores, and the old school ones are used because they are cheaper. both oven and grill cleaner emit fumes, are not food safe, and can actually do some damage to the users skin if not used properly while wearing a protective apron, gloves and a filter mask.

    again, it is how products can be improperly or carelessly used that results in mishaps.