What is the Difference Between Clear and Cloudy Ice?

We all have the experience of going out to eat at a restaurant and being served a cool, refreshing glass of ice water to go along with our meal. Many people may not consciously notice it, but restaurant ice water is typically filled with clear ice, making it look and taste far superior to the cloudy ice we can make at home. How are clear and cloudy ice different, why is ice from home cloudy, and how can homeowners get clean and clear ice instead?

Why Should I Care About Clear and Cloudy Ice?

The simplest answer to this question is that clear and cloudy ice differ in aesthetic. Clear ice simply looks better than cloudy ice. Serving a glass of water with a bunch of cloudy cubes can make even the cleanest water look unappetizing and unappealing. Pursuing clear ice because it looks better may seem trivial to some, but at-home mixologists could benefit greatly from serving up fancy homemade cocktails with clear ice for a superior aesthetic.

Additionally, even if the appearance of cloudy ice doesn’t offend you, the taste of cloudy ice just might. Cloudy ice often tastes musty or freezer-burned, which can greatly affect the flavor of drinks made with, or poured over, ice. Finally, clear ice thaws more slowly and evenly. Cloudy ice cubes that contain pockets of air melt more quickly, leaving beverages diluted and watered down much faster than those made with clear ice cubes.

What Causes Cloudy Ice?

Ice cubes may come out of the freezer with an opaque appearance for many reasons. One of the most common reasons is that a home’s water has not been properly filtered and purified. In this case, cloudy ice may be caused by contaminants like tannins, minerals, and other dissolved solids. Investing in a high-quality water filter and purification system that utilizes reverse osmosis is a crucial step on the road to obtaining clear, great-tasting water and ice.

person-pouring-ice-cubes-into-moscow-mule-cup-on-wooden-ba

At Aquarius Water Conditioning, we always recommend Kinetico water filtration systems and water softeners, as they consistently and efficiently provide the cleanest water at an affordable price. Once you have a proper water filtration and purification system in place, you’ll likely notice a major difference in the taste and texture of your home’s drinking water. This will translate directly to the quality of ice you make in ice cube trays or from your freezer’s ice maker.

If your home is already furnished with a high-quality water filtration and purification system but your ice still looks cloudy, the freezing process may be to blame. In a typical home freezer, water is surrounded by frigid air, causing ice cubes to freeze from the outside in. This forces air bubbles, and potentially impurities, toward the middle of the ice cube to freeze last, giving ice a cloudy appearance. The presence of air within an ice cube can also give it an “off” flavor.

Why Do Restaurants Have Clear Ice, and My Home Doesn’t?

When it comes to clear and cloudy ice, restaurants have an interest in providing clear ice to customers. Restaurants typically purchase state-of-the-art ice machines that use a vastly different cooling process than what most of us have at home. Commercial ice makers have jets that spray small amounts of water into ice molds. Instead of freezing ice cubes all at once like we do when we place an ice cube tray in the freezer, these jets allow ice cubes to form in layers. This prevents air bubbles from convening in the middle and creating a cloudy aesthetic.close-up-of-ice-cubes-in-water-with-bubbles

Interestingly, this is similar to the way icicles are formed. Icicles freeze gradually as drops of water drip down slowly and freeze together. Most icicles freeze completely clearly, making them striking to look at on a cool winter day. If you are interested in obtaining restaurant-quality, clear ice for your home, you can invest in countertop professional ice makers that use the same process. These devices typically cost a couple of hundred dollars. A professional ice maker would be a fantastic investment for a household with a cocktail enthusiast, or for anyone who simply wants restaurant-quality ice available at a moment’s notice.

Unfortunately, even a professional ice maker cannot make clear ice if the water source isn’t properly filtered and purified. Before investing in a professional ice machine, make sure your water is as clean and clear as possible.

How Can I Mimic Restaurant-Quality Clear Ice Without Expensive Equipment?

There are a few steps you can take to minimize the cloudiness of ice cubes you make at home, but they likely won’t create 100% clear ice. Even still, they can drastically improve the look of your home’s ice cubes.

The easiest way to reduce cloudiness is by boiling a pot of water and placing it in ice cube trays. Boiling water can help reduce the amount of oxygen inherently in the water, potentially reducing the number of air bubbles that become visible once the cubes are frozen. The best way to do this is by bringing filtered water to a boil, letting it cool, bringing it to a boil again, letting it cool again, and then putting it in ice cube trays that go in your freezer. This method won’t yield perfect results, but it may improve the appearance and taste of your ice cubes.

Another strategy for obtaining clear water is by placing a filled ice cube tray into a small cooler, and then placing that cooler into your freezer. This can help ice cubes freeze from the top down instead of from outside in, possibly reducing trapped air bubbles in the center.

How Can Aquarius Water Conditioning Help Me Get Clear Ice?

The professionals at Aquarius Water Conditioning are experts in all things water filtration, purification, and softening. We can help your home get the highest-quality water, which in turn, can help you get clean, clear, great-tasting ice.

If you’d like to learn more about the Kinetico devices we carry and which services we offer, please contact us today!

 

Andrea Rivera
Andrea Rivera
1716425284
Very professional and polite. I never felt in the dark, Nick explained everything so I could understand. I will, for sure, make Aquarius my first call for all my home services.
James Lecuyer
James Lecuyer
1716415402
James Warner
James Warner
1716399596
As always, Aquarius technicians are excellent and professional. They explain things in understandable terms and willing to answer questions. Today Alec was excellent in doing a check of our A/C system.
PJ Jewelle
PJ Jewelle
1716394162
Mike did an EXCELLENT job! I have a very old AC unit and I can’t afford to replace it. I was concerned I had caused the AC to not work when I cleaned it off with a garden hose. He assured me that I didn’t cause it; it was just time for the parts to be replaced. He showed me what he replaced and explained where/how each part failed. I have called on Aquarius Home Service for many things in the last three years and will continue to be a loyal customer. I have referred them to others, as well. I highly recommend!
Mary Marette
Mary Marette
1716341978
Very knowledge, he showed me all that would would need to be done during installation of my heat pump/furnace, etc. answered all my questions. When the electrician was here they were very quiet, showed me the work that is being done. Very respective of my home
Susan Klang
Susan Klang
1716330622
JAMES BOWER
JAMES BOWER
1716326737
Excellent service
Eric Hynnek
Eric Hynnek
1716324973
Nick with Aquarius was great. If possible I wish he serviced our home each and every time.
Connie Dageford
Connie Dageford
1716311934
Nick was extremely professional and thorough. We appreciate the service he provided!
Ryan Lill
Ryan Lill
1716306904
Matt Mellenthin
Matt Mellenthin
1716304530
Robert Partyka
Robert Partyka
1716267917
The technician was excellent
Robert Martin
Robert Martin
1716245744
Aquarious is my go-to when I’ve got issues in the house. Brandon was fantastic, thorough and informative. Solved an air flow problem with adjustments I didn’t even know I could do.
mary bond
mary bond
1716234670
Our water heater went out on Fri evening. We called Aquarius early Sat morning and they said earliest they could get out was Mon. On Sun I received a text confirming our Mon appointment but on Mon morning they called and said the earliest they could get to us was the following week !We should be without hot water till then ? We are not a new customer…. 5 months previously we had a new furnace and air conditioner installed at quite an expense. I am appalled at their service or rather lack there of ! As an established customer they felt waiting approximately 10days without water was acceptable Bad, Bad, Bad !
Karen Harshbarger
Karen Harshbarger
1716223680
2022 and 2023 Annual furnace and air tune-ups performed by Brandon and Nicholas, as well as our 2024 annual air conditioner tuneup by Ethan EXCEEDED our expectations - very professional, accommodating and thorough, always take time to debrief, go the extra mile and provide maintenance tips. THANK YOU for taking care of our home.
Andrea Chung
Andrea Chung
1716220631
Nick was very patient and helpful while he was doing a maintenance routine tune-up for the furnace and A/C!
Mark Blomgren
Mark Blomgren
1716219435
Explained everything well
gino hebzynski
gino hebzynski
1716164964
The service rep, Alec was excellant, very efficient, courteous and informative.
D Ringler
D Ringler
1716145650
We have had Aquarius out for several jobs and they have done an outstanding job. This was with Paul and AJ for some exterior electrical work. Installed a fan on our covered porch and two additional outlets. Paul thought of going through the attic to install the fan so we did not need to have any exterior conduit showing. We will definitely have them out as our service needs dictate.
Haley Lasché
Haley Lasché
1716002159
We had an excellent experience with Aquarius. Our plumber, Erik, was efficient and thorough. He made a complete assessment and gave me different options for the repairs I could make. He also prepared me for the costs of the repairs we knew we needed to make now as well as the repairs we will likely need to make in the future. I felt like I was able to make a good choice about what needed to be done today, and I’m ready for what to expect in the coming years as we care for and repair the 75-year-old house we love so much. I will absolutely use them again.
James Pike
James Pike
1715985966
Brad and his crew did an outstanding job and were very informative walking through the system. You should be proud to have those 4 men working for you.
Ronald Peterson
Ronald Peterson
1715970709
Problem solved. Simple error on our part with the power switch turned off by mistake. Quick effective service.
Donn Satrom
Donn Satrom
1715916044
Wanda Bester
Wanda Bester
1715915730
Excellent!!
Jon Roloff
Jon Roloff
1715893001
Christopher Eggert
Christopher Eggert
1715885010
Had a very good experience with our plumbing needs as our service technician Gordy was very knowledgeable and provided solutions for our plumbing issue. Gordy also identified a couple of potential future issues and provided options and bids for those as well.I would recommend Aquarius Home Services to others based on my personal experience
vivek javangula
vivek javangula
1715805530
Nick visited my home today for an AC tuneup, he certainly did a great job beyond expectations and explained how to take better care of my furnace unit and AC unit. Hands down the best
M Engelen
M Engelen
1715798674
Kay Milbrath
Kay Milbrath
1715789778
Alec was great at explaining the features of our air conditioning and the work he performed.
Jerrold Wood
Jerrold Wood
1715739574
Part of Aquarius Home ServiceKnows his business re HVACAppreciates customer position
Jason Anderson
Jason Anderson
1715725775
John has a great guy. Great help deserves a fat raise.
betty cornwell
betty cornwell
1715721398
Nick is polite, on time, and does a great job!
Vincent Ruane
Vincent Ruane
1715716313
Very positive HVAC service call by technician Riley.Riley is professional, competent, respectful and very thorough.He explains his findings and recommendations very effectively. He is clearly driven to providing a outstanding result.
mark stevenson
mark stevenson
1715708324
Paul was very professional, very knowledgeable and got things done quickly....thanks
Danielle F
Danielle F
1715706224
Nick was very personable and professional at the same time. Staff was easy to work with in getting services scheduled. The reminders of the appointment were nice to have, the phone call when they were on their way is also nice. (Instead of waiting a 6 hour block and not knowing when they will arrive.)
Kyle McKeever
Kyle McKeever
1715701178
David Schaeffer was great!
Gary Long
Gary Long
1715653431
Technician Brent was informative and thorough during my AC tune up. Thanks again Aquarius!
Aliciea Her
Aliciea Her
1715642256
Nicholas did a wonderful job with our AC and furnace tune up. His attention to detail, friendly demeanor and focus on education the customer is unmatched.
Derrick Chamley
Derrick Chamley
1715626310
Professional and informative. Mike C was great!
C. C.
C. C.
1715625592
Nick was great! Easy to communicate with & explained things in layman terms!
Daniel Bakken
Daniel Bakken
1715615714
John Jansen
John Jansen
1715554236
Tech arrived and completed the service as requested. Very knowledgeable and answered any questions that I had.
bruce armstrong
bruce armstrong
1715453376
Aquarius service tech Matt did an excellent job as usual.Very helpful and thorough.
Gary Winkel
Gary Winkel
1715432198
Dale Ebben
Dale Ebben
1715372986
Aquarius Home Services recently replaced our furnace and matching Air Conditioner in a one day job. Scheduling kept us informed on the arrival of each service person in the various trades and the project went smoothly and on schedule. All tradesmen were knowledgable, personable and considerate from the original sales person to the final walk through technician. I readily give them my highest recommendation.
Thomas Gruetzmacher
Thomas Gruetzmacher
1715369765
Paul was great! He went above and beyond installing our new water heater! He was so polite and explained everything to me clearly. Thank you for doing a great job!
Eric Meyer
Eric Meyer
1715364134
A big thank you to Nick S. With Aquarius service. My heat pump was not working for cooling. Nick diagnosed that a power cord had gotten wrapped around the fan blade and wasn’t allowing it to spin. After removing the blade, disentangling the cord and re-threading it, he put it back together again. We fired it up and it works great now! I’ve worked with several people on the Aquarius team and they are all knowledgeable, friendly, and great to work with—Nick is no exception. Prompt, same day service, plus no charge for warranty work.
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