Resurfacing the Ice Rink

Drive consistently and keep at the same pace when resurfacing an ice rink. Make sure the blade is sharp and the towel clean.


Resurfacing the Ice Rink


Before starting to resurface the ice rink, check that the blade on the ice resurfacer is sharp and has been changed regularly. It’s important to cut the ice with each ice clean and not just simply picking up the snow.  Shaving the ice during resurfacing will cut out the ruts and ensure the ice in your arena remains clear.


If possible start an early morning dry shaving routine to cut off the ruts in the ice. This will increases the clarity, and reduces the amount of water used throughout the day, and also helps to maintain the optimal ice thickness (1 ¼” and 1 ½) and therefore reduces the load on the refrigeration equipment. Use wash water if your ice resurfacing machine has that option.



Check the towel. Is it clean or full of rust spots? A clean towel makes a big difference to your ice quality.


When resurfacing the ice, it is important to drive consistently and pay attention to the speed. No operator should slow down or speed up anywhere in the rink when shaving ice and laying down water. It is important not to put down too much water along the boards to prevent the ice from building up too high.


Going over creases turn off the water and raise the blade. Once past the crease, turn the water on again and lower the blade. Take your time: For an NHL rink use at 8-10 minutes, for an Olympic size arena 10-12 minutes. Ensure a 5-minute window before the next user group is scheduled to be on the ice.