Between periods – as soon as the last ice hockey player has left the furrowed ice – it begins… the whirring or quiet sound of the ice maintenance machine. It appears as if the ice keeper has lost his orientation but then he makes his last turn and sweeps over the last spot of cut ice. Now the ice surface shines as if it has never been skated on before!
What took place? The ice resurfacing machine has done its job. The machine has planed off the used cut ice, deposited the residue into the snow tank and has laid an even layer of warm water onto the surface with the attached towel. The water freezes almost immediately and covers all the small furrows resulting in a new ice surface.
The ice skates themselves desire a clean and mirror-like surface. Clearly more skaters will flock to a properly maintained facility than to a poorly maintained one. It may also be necessary to shave off an ice layer that is too thick in order to achieve the optimal ice thickness. An additional centimeter of ice thickness can increase the energy usage by 15-20%!
An ice resurfacing maintenance machine is vital for the operation of an ice rink!