top of page

Leasing vs. Buying: Making the Right Choice for Your Commercial Ice Maker

Updated: May 22

For any food service business, having a reliable and efficient commercial ice maker is essential to meet the demands of customers and ensure a seamless operation. However, the decision to lease or buy this crucial piece of equipment can be a challenging one.

restaurant grade flake ice maker
Flake ice maker installed

Leasing a Commercial Ice Maker

Lower upfront costs. One of the most significant advantages of leasing a commercial ice maker is the reduced upfront cost. Unlike purchasing, leasing allows you to acquire the equipment without a substantial initial investment. This can be particularly beneficial for startups or businesses with limited capital, as it frees up funds to be utilized in other critical areas of your operation.

Access to more advanced, newer technology. Leasing provides the opportunity to access the latest and most advanced ice maker models without having to worry about depreciation or obsolescence. As technology evolves, newer and more energy-efficient ice makers become available. By leasing, you can upgrade to a more advanced unit at the end of the lease term, ensuring your business stays at the forefront of ice-making technology.

Easier maintenance and repairs. Many leasing agreements include maintenance and repair services, relieving you of the burden of unexpected costs and downtime. With leased equipment, you can often rely on the leasing company to handle repairs promptly, allowing your ice maker to be up and running again quickly.

Buying a Commercial Ice Maker

More savings in the long term. While purchasing a commercial ice maker requires a higher initial investment, it can lead to long-term cost savings. Once you own the equipment outright, you eliminate the ongoing lease payments. Over time, these savings can outweigh the initial purchase cost, making ownership a more financially viable option for established businesses with predictable cash flow.

It’s an asset. Buying a commercial ice maker adds an asset to your business, contributing to its overall equity. As you make payments towards ownership, the equipment's value becomes an important part of your company's assets, potentially enhancing your business's creditworthiness and financial standing.

Freedom and flexibility. Ownership provides you with the freedom to use and customize the ice maker as per your preferences and operational needs. Unlike leasing agreements, you are not bound by any restrictions set forth by the leasing company, giving you greater flexibility to manage the equipment according to your business requirements.

What Factors Should I Consider?

Budget and finances. Assess your budget and financial stability before making a decision. If you have limited funds or are uncertain about the stability of your business, leasing might be the more prudent choice. On the other hand, if you have the financial capacity and can foresee long-term benefits, buying may be the better option.

Business needs and projected growth. Consider your business's growth trajectory and ice production requirements. If your demand for ice is likely to fluctuate or increase substantially, leasing might provide the flexibility to upgrade or switch to a larger capacity ice maker when needed. Conversely, if you have a consistent and predictable demand, owning a unit tailored to your specific needs may be more advantageous.

Lease terms and ownership options. Carefully review the lease terms and conditions before signing any agreement. Some leasing contracts may offer options to buy the equipment at the end of the lease term, while others may not. Understanding these options can influence your decision, as it provides you with an exit strategy if you decide to buy after leasing for a certain period.

The Bottom Line

In the leasing vs. buying debate for commercial ice makers, there is no one-size-fits-all answer. Each approach comes with its set of advantages and considerations. Leasing offers lower initial costs, access to advanced technology, and hassle-free maintenance while buying provides long-term cost savings, asset ownership, and operational freedom. Assessing your business's financial situation, growth prospects, and ice production needs will ultimately guide you toward the right choice. Whether you choose to lease or buy, investing in a reliable and high-quality commercial ice maker will undoubtedly play a crucial role in your food service business's success.

Call Us

Interested in anything ice machine related? Need help with your current ice machine, looking for a quote, or on the market for a brand new one? Need some professional insight or help in choosing the right ice maker for your business? Interested in advice, purchasing, maintenance, or anything else regarding your ice maker? Please don’t hesitate to call us here at Tri-Point–we’d love to be a part of your journey. We’re excited to help you along the way, and with regular servicing, we can keep your equipment running smoothly and healthily, while also extending the reach of your dollar.

For a direct line to any of our employees ready on the line to help you, please call…(512) 651-4565 for our Austin, Texas community (806) 686-0050 for our Lubbock, Texas community. Or check out our website at



Commenting has been turned off.
bottom of page