Chocolate Fountain Rental Instructions

Setup, Assembly, & Take-down Instructions


1. Before using the fountain, wash basin and other removable components with warm, soapy water and dry thoroughly. The basin bowl should be hand washed and not be submerged in liquid or put in a dishwasher. All other removable components are dishwasher-safe. Do not allow water to enter the fountain housing through the vent holes, bottom grate, or other openings as this will damage the electrical components.

2. Make sure fountain basin is secured tightly onto fountain base. Turn clockwise to tighten; do not over-tighten.

3. Place the fountain base on a sturdy, level surface. The fountain MUST be level in order for the chocolate to curtain properly. Rotate the adjustable leveling feet up or down until all sides are even. Assess the level of the fountain by placing a spirit level on the basin rim in several different places if necessary.

4. Position the cylinder to fit inside the stainless steel sleeve located in the basin so that the cylinder stands in place. The welded knob on the cylinder should fit inside the groove on the sleeve. Press down on the cylinder to ensure that it is firmly placed.

5. Slide the largest tier over the cylinder until it stops in position over the bottom step on the cylinder wall. Position the remaining tiers in the same way, working from largest to smallest. All tiers should slope downward. On the Cortez fountain,
the top tier is attached to the crown and will be positioned in step 7.

6. Place the stabilizer over the auger knob. Holding the auger by its knob, lower it into the cylinder. Fit the auger over the square pin in the center of the basin. The lip of the stabilizer will rest on the top of the cylinder. Turn the auger clockwise to be sure it is securely in place. You should feel resistance. If melting chocolate in the basin, wait until the chocolate is completely melted before inserting the
auger into the cylinder.

7. Fit the crown on top of the cylinder. The widest part of the crown should be at the top.

8. Plug the fountain in and move the switch to PREHEAT. Turn the temperature dial to 10 and allow the basin to preheat for 5 minutes. Once basin is preheated, see “CHOCOLATE PREPARATION” for melting temperatures and instructions.

*** All tier set components should be at room temperature before adding melted
chocolate to the fountain. Chocolate will harden if it comes into contact with cold metal and can cause the auger to bind. ***


We strongly encourage you to use Sephra Fondue Chocolate, available in Dark, Milk, and White varieties. Sephra chocolate is specially formulated with the proper viscosity to flow perfectly through the fountain every time. Our unique fondue chocolate is exquisite in taste and aroma and your guests and clients are sure to be delighted.

Before using the chocolate, store it in a cool, dry place. Do not freeze or refrigerate it as moisture affects the chocolate’s consistency. 

Melt chocolate directly in the fountain basin, in a double boiler, or in its microwavable bags according to the instructions on the bags.WHEN MICROWAVING CHOCOLATE, ALWAYS USE HALF-POWER TO PREVENT SCORCHING.

Melting chocolate directly in the fountain basin takes approximately 35–60 minutes. Add chocolate 1-2 pounds at a time to expedite the melting process. Stir chocolate every 2-3 minutes, scraping it from the basin with a spatula as you go, to prevent scorching. Milk and White chocolate are more susceptible to scorching so be sure to stir more frequently (every 2-3 minutes) and use appropriate temperature settings.

Melting Chocolate in Fountain Basin: Cortez


(16 lbs)

Heat Setting


Approx. Melting Time


Dark 8 35
Milk 7 45
White 7 45

*CAUTION: The heat setting should never be higher than 7 when melting White chocolate.

Overheating White or Milk chocolate causes it to thicken or become clumpy
and it will not flow properly. If this happens, see “TROUBLESHOOTING” item #2.



1. Ensure that the fountain is on a sturdy, LEVEL surface.

2. The fountain itself must be level in order to operate and curtain properly. Please see “FOUNTAIN ASSEMBLY” for instructions on leveling the fountain.

3. Check to see that the fountain basin is securely tightened.

4. Ensure that the fountain vent holes and the bottom of the base housing are not
covered. These areas allow heat to escape from the motor and heating element
during use. Obstruction of the air flow will cause damage to the motor and
internal electrical components.

5. Fill the basin with chocolate according to the “CHOCOLATE PREPARATION”


6. Place the auger with the stabilizer into the cylinder and turn it clockwise to check that it is locked in place over the center square pin. Place the crown on top of the cylinder.
7. Press the toggle switch to START. The auger will turn and carry the chocolate up through the cylinder, causing it to flow over the crown and tiers and back into the basin. As the cylinder fills with chocolate, there may be a brief knocking noise
from the auger spinning against the cylinder. This noise will go away quickly as
the auger is coated with the chocolate.

Recommended Chocolate (or Fondue) Amounts

Fountain Model

Guests Served

Minimum Choc.


Minimum Fondue 


Maximum Choc.


 Maximum Fondue


Suggested Amt. to Begin Event


Suggested Amt. to Begin Event


 Cortez  <100  6  2.5 10   4.5  3.75

Adding Additional Chocolate to the Fountain

Twenty pounds of chocolate will serve approximately 200 people. Additional chocolate can be added using the following methods:


Pour chips directly on top of the fountain crown, approx. 1 cup at a time. Allow the chips to become melted before adding more.


To add a large amount of chocolate, melt it prior to adding it to the basin. You can melt it in its microwavable bags or in a double boiler.

Chocolate Operating Temperatures

Chocolate Heat Setting Approx. Chocolate Temp. (F)
Dark 6 115-125
Milk 6 115-125
White 5 105-115

Chocolate temperature may be affected by the addition of chocolate or by environmental factors, such as operating the fountain in a cold area. In such conditions the fountain temperature may need to be adjusted accordingly.

Generally, if White or Milk chocolate becomes too thick, decrease the temperature. If Dark chocolate becomes too thick, increase the temperature. Scrape sitting chocolate from the bottom of the basin and stir frequently throughout event.



  • Food handler gloves
  • Spatula (s)
  • Large container or sturdy plastic bag(s) for leftover chocolate
  • Large plastic bags for tier set parts

Before cleaning:

Turn the toggle switch to OFF. Always unplug the power cord from the
electrical outlet before cleaning the fountain. Never permit the electrical cord to come into contact with water.

Do not use abrasive scouring pads or powders to clean the stainless steel basin or other components. Doing so will mar the finish.

Cleaning Your Sephra Chocolate Fountain:

1. Wearing food handler gloves, scrape excess chocolate from the crown and
stabilizer with a spatula. Remove crown and stabilizer and place them directly
in the sink.

2. Pull the auger out of the cylinder by its knob, scraping the excess chocolate
off with a spatula or gloved hand as you go so that it falls back into the
cylinder. Move the auger to the sink.

3. Use a spatula to scrape excess chocolate from the tiers. Remove the tiers and
cylinder and place them in the sink.

4. Twist off the removable basin and pour leftover chocolate into a bag-lined and move basin to sink. Never pour chocolate directly down the drain.
Chocolate can harden in the pipes and damage the drain system.


1. Always provide each guest with a plate and skewers. (Guests should use a
separate skewer for each food item). Wooden, Bamboo and Plastic forked
skewers may be ordered online at It is also good to have a
generous supply of napkins available.

2. Guests should never “double dip,” placing a food item that has been bitten back into the fondue flow. Food items should only be dipped in the fondue once.

3. Cut all dipping items into bite-size pieces so they can easily be placed on

4. Other fondues such as cheese, caramel, and barbeque sauce have a different
consistency from chocolate and may flow in a different manner than Sephra
Fondue Chocolate does. This is due to the inherent differences in the make-up of
various fondues.

5. Never allow water to come into contact with chocolate as it can thicken
and ruin the chocolate. This includes water-based flavorings and food
colorings. Use oil-based products instead.

6. Keep chocolate in a cool, dry place. Do not freeze or refrigerate it as moisture
may adversely affect the chocolate.

7. Always reduce the temperature setting from the melting temperature to the
operating temperature once the chocolate is completely melted in the basin.
Failure to do so may cause the chocolate to scorch.

8. Do not add more than the maximum amount of fondue to the fountain basin. If
too much fondue is added, it will overflow the basin when the fountain is turned

9. Air is often trapped in the cylinder and the bottom exterior portion of the crown
when the fountain is initially turned on. This can cause uneven fondue flow. To
correct this, simply turn the fountain off, wait 15-30 seconds to allow the air to
escape, and turn it on again. Repeat until flow improves. If air pockets are
present at the base of the crown, take a rubber spatula and scrape around the
area to release the air.

10. If you are not using Sephra Fondue Chocolate, you will likely need to thin your
chocolate according to the directions under “CHOCOLATE PREPARATION.”

11. When cleaning up after an off-site event, place fountain parts in plastic bags and return them to their storage cases until they can be properly cleaned.

12. Grout sponges (sold at hardware stores) work well for cleaning the fountain.

• Power Usage (120 V): 4 amps for


1. Fondue does not curtain properly:

a. Fountain is not level: The base of the fountain must be level in order for
fondue to curtain properly. If the fondue is flowing heavily on one side, raise
that side of the fountain using the adjustable leveling feet until the fondue
flows evenly.

b. Air bubbles: Air is often trapped inside the cylinder when the fountain is
initially turned on or if the fondue level in the basin becomes too low. This
causes gaps in the fondue curtain. To resolve this, simply turn the fountain
off, allow it to sit for 15-30 seconds, and turn it back on. Repeat this
procedure until the fountain is flowing at full capacity.

c. Not enough fondue: Refer to the “RECOMMENDED CHOCOLATE AMOUNTS” table to ensure that you are meeting the minimum capacity requirement.

d. Chocolate is too thick: Chocolate will not flow correctly if it is at the wrong
temperature. Generally, for Dark chocolate, the temperature should be
increased. For White and Milk chocolate, the temperature should be decreased. Please see “CHOCOLATE OPERATING TEMPERATURES” for appropriate heat settings.

e. Food blocking fondue flow: Turn the motor off and use a spatula to check for food items that may have become lodged between the bottom of the cylinder sleeve and the basin.

f. Small food particles in the fondue: Small pieces of food flowing in the fondue
may cause gapping as the pieces flow over the tiers. Turn the motor off
and try to remove the food with a spatula or strainer.

2. Chocolate is thick and clumpy: When chocolate is overheated or scorched, it
becomes clumpy. White and Milk chocolate are especially susceptible to
overheating. If this occurs, stir small amounts of vegetable oil or cocoa butter
into the chocolate until it reaches the appropriate consistency. Chocolate may
also be placed in a blender and mixed with the thinning agent. Consult the
“CHOCOLATE OPERATING TEMPERATURES” to ensure you are using the appropriateheat setting. To avoid scorching, stir the chocolate often with a spatula, scraping it from the bottom of the basin as you stir. Chocolate will also become clumpy if it has come into contact with water.

3. The fountain will not heat properly:

a. Electrical problem: Make sure that the fountain is plugged into a working
electrical outlet and that the switch is in the ON or PREHEAT position. If you
have another appliance plugged into the same outlet, the fountain may not
be receiving enough electricity.

b. Damaged thermostat: Move the temperature dial gradually from 1-10.
Listen closely at the base of the fountain to hear a “click” when raising the
temperature. If you hear a click, the thermostat is functional and the
problem may be a wiring issue. If you do not hear a click, please call
Customer Service for further assistance.

c. Loose wiring: Unplug the fountain, turn it over, and remove the
protective screen. Check to see that all of the wires and contacts are firmly
in place. Important: Before touching any wires, discharge the
electricity from the fountain to avoid electric shock. Do this by
switching the fountain from START to OFF several times once the fountain is
unplugged. If there are any loose contacts for which the original position
can be easily determined, reattach them. Please call Customer Service for
further assistance.

4. The fountain will not turn on:

a. Bad electrical connection: Power may have been interrupted by an electrical
breaker being tripped. Fountains with a 120V power supply require a
dedicated 10-amp breaker to provide the fountain with an ample supply of
power. These models will draw 4–9 amps when the motor and heat are on.
The 240V fountains draw 2-5 amps total and require a 5-amp breaker.

b. Fuse has blown: Replace fuse with a 15-amp straight or 10-amp slow blow
fuse (Cortez fountains require a 10-amp straight fuse). The fuse
can be replaced from the fountain exterior by twisting the fuse cap off
(flathead screwdriver or coin may be needed), exchanging the fuse, and
repositioning the fuse cap.

5. The fountain makes a knocking noise:

a. If knocking is coming from the cylinder: When the fountain starts up, the
auger may knock against the cylinder momentarily until the chocolate has
coated the inside cylinder walls and auger. If knocking continues, make
sure the stabilizer is correctly positioned at the top of the cylinder around
the auger knob so the auger is held in the center of the cylinder. Make sure
the auger is completely settled on the square pin in the basin. Also check to
see that the cylinder is resting firmly in the sleeve.

b. If knocking is coming from the base: Fountain parts may be cold. If the
cylinder was cold when the fountain was turned on, chocolate may have
hardened inside the cylinder, causing the auger to bind and not turn
properly. Use a blow dryer or heat gun to warm the chocolate inside the
cylinder before restarting the fountain

For more information on one of our Chocolate Fountain Dipping ItemsChocolate Fountain Setup, Assembly, Takedown