5 Quick Ice cream maker Fixes, even YOU can do

Suddenly, your ice cream maker rebels and quits working. Maybe it started well, and has just been churning for the past 2 hours and now all you have in the bowl is a soupy mixture. Of course it had to be on the day you are hosting the annual family meet-up, and you had spent weeks promising everyone hearty scoops of your newly discovered recipe.

What now? Just before you panic and start to rip your hair out, run through these 5 checks and see if the machine starts to work again.

Whilst the different types of ice cream makers i.e. automatic self contained units with in-built compressor models, freezer bowl models and models that use salt and ice, have their own unique problems, these are a list of the  general problems that they may develop.

  1. Problem: Ice cream maker is not coming on.
    Cause: There is no power going into the machine.
    Possible solution: Ensure that there is power going into the machine. If it doesn’t work while plugged to one power outlet, try another one. Also check that you have turned the machine itself on. I am not trying to make you feel silly, but some ice cream makers have 2 different switches to prevent accidents. Therefore if both of them are not switched on, the machine will not run.
  2. Problem: Ice cream base stays liquid.
    Cause: The freezer bowl may not be frozen solid.
    Possible solution:- Ensure that the bowl is completely dried before placing in the freezer. Also ensure that the freezer bowl is completely frozen solid. You check this by giving it a slight shake. If you can hear liquid sloshing within the walls of the freezer bowl, that means it isn’t ready for use.
  3. Problem:- Ice cream base isn’t becoming firmer after 30 minutes.
    Cause: The freezer bowl may not be cold enough.
    Possible solution:- The freezer bowl needs to be kept, for up to 24 hours straight, at a constant temperature of 0 oF. I stress the word constant, because in the real world, the freezer will get opened at least a few times a day. This will make it take longer to freeze the bowl enough for you to use.
  4. Problem:- The ice cream base is still liquid after 30 minutes.
    Cause: The ice cream base may not be at the right temperature.
    Possible solution: This depends on the ingredients you use in your ice cream base, If they are readily prepared ingredients or a store bought mix, chill it for about 40 minutes, to make the ice cream making process quicker. If using a recipe that requires heating, e.g. with a custard base, ensure that the mix is cooled to room temperature, then place in the fridge for at least one hour to chill it, before you pour it in your ice cream maker.
  5. Problem: The paddle/dasher in the ice cream maker doesn’t seem to run.
    Cause: In some models, the motor that makes the dasher turn is in the lid of the machine and if the lid is not properly clamped on and locked in place, there is no power flowing to the motor, therefore the paddle will not turn.
    Possible solution: Ensure that the lid is correctly fixed to the body of the machine.

If you have gone through all these checks, and the machine is still not working like it should, I’m afraid you will have to contact the manufacturer. Look up the receipt that came with the appliance, or if you have thrown that out, simply Google the company name and get a customer care number.

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