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What You Should Know Before Purchasing a Bottled Water Dispenser

Updated: Jun 25

A convenient water dispenser or cooler that dispenses filtered, purified water from a reservoir is a great way to encourage family members to drink plenty of water that's free of the contaminants and additives sometimes found in tap water.


The Benefits of Bottled Water

Tap water can still contain toxins and contaminants depending on where a the water is drawn and the filtering and treatment techniques used. Bulk bottled water, on the other hand, is either acquired from deep earth springs that naturally filter out impurities or is piped water that has been factory filtered to remove all possible contaminants.

About half of commercially bottled water comes from a natural sources, with the rest being highly filtered and refined tap water.

This isn't to assume that mineral or groundwater water is generally purer; all "purified" water must meet KKM Standards before it can be classified as such. Here are a few points to know:

  • · Purified bottled water is not heavily chlorinated, thus it is better tasting.

  • · Federal standards ensure that purified bottled water is free of dangerous levels of contaminants.

  • · Bottled water dispensed from a cooler is less wasteful since a cooler can instantly chill water as needed—you do not need to keep bottled water in the refrigerator constantly chilled.

  • · Save space in the refrigerator since you no longer need to keep so many bottled water in it.

Delcol supplies RO (Reverse Osmosis) water to many offices and residences for over 25 years.

  • Two Options for Dispensing Water

The appliances used to dispense purified water from bulk jugs purchased at a store or delivered by a water service come in two main types: water dispensers with a simple tap that allow you to pour out the water at room temperature as you need it or electrical appliances that can dispense chilled water and, sometimes, hot water.

  • ·Water Dispensers

Water dispensers are simple appliances in which large bottles (usually 5 gallons) of water sit are placed at the top of the dispenser and water is fed down to the tap through gravity. The bottles are easily swapped out when empty. These simple water dispensers are the classic appliance that are still hugely popular thanks to their low cost and ease of use.

  • Water Coolers/Heaters

Increasingly popular, are electrically powered dispensers that feature cooling coils that allow water to be chilled as it is dispensed from the tap via 4- or 5-gallon jugs of purified water. Many models also offer a second tap that can dispense hot water for making hot drinks or instant soups. These appliances often look much the same as a simple dispenser, but they require a plug-in outlet to run the cooling and heating features. Some water coolers use the same top-loading design as basic water dispensers, but other designs hide the water jugs in a cabinet beneath the taps.

  • Freestanding Floor Models vs. Countertop Dispensers

Whether you choose a standard dispenser or an electric dispenser that heats or cools the water, you also have the option of buying an upright, freestanding floor model or one that is designed to sit on a countertop or other surface. Freestanding floor models are the type most often used in offices, but large, busy families might also find the 4- or 5-gallon capacity worthwhile. If you don't have the kitchen floor space or you do not need a large capacity, a countertop model that uses 1- or 2-gallon bottles is probably sufficient. Remember that water coolers or heaters need to be plugged in, so they will need to be positioned near an outlet.


Other Options to Consider

In addition to the basic decision of whether to buy a standard dispenser or a heating/cooling appliance and whether to opt for a floor model or a countertop model, there are other variables to consider when buying a water dispenser:

  • · Local availability of refill bottles: You should confirm the availability of bottled water in your area before buying a cooler. For homeowners who may have physical limitations, keep in mind that you can usually downsize the bottle if a 5-gallon size is too heavy to carry or load onto your water cooler. At Delcol we offer a delivery service for exchanging bottles on a regular schedule.

  • Capacity: Many water coolers or dispensers will accommodate standard pre-filled plastic water bottles in 2-, 4-, and 5-gallon sizes, but you should confirm this before buying. Others, especially countertop models, are limited to smaller bottle sizes.

  • Drinking water temperature: For cooling or heating models, remember that water temperature tends to vary between models and brands. Colder water temperature depends largely on the size and type of compressor or other technologies used in the design. If this is important to you, check the specifications of the dispenser before buying. Coolers that have bottom-mount bottles and those smaller models that sit on a countertop typically do not chill the water as much as freestanding top-mount models.

  • Child safety locks: · Hot water faucets should have safety child locks to prevent accidental burns. This is a most important function to have if you have children staying with you as accidents may happen at any time.

  • Tap design: · If you want to refill personal water bottles, tall glasses, or travel mugs, there should be adequate spacing between the drip tray and the faucet, and the nozzle should be small enough to insert into your personal bottle for refilling.

Another Option: A Bottle-less Filter

Another option for purified drinking water is to install a point-of-use filter system directly to a supply line carrying household tap water. These systems come in many styles, often with multi-stage filters designed to capture many different types of contaminants. The filter canisters can be located under the kitchen sink or in another nearby room and can be connected to any cold tap water line.


Delcol supplies many types of electrical appliances for your water filtration needs. Please contact us for consultation as to what system best suits your needs.

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