Water Coolers & Dispensers

10 Best Water Coolers; Top & Bottom Load Models Reviewed After Extensive Lab-Tests (2021)

When I finally decided last year to lose some weight to improve my health, both my doctor and my trainer insisted that I drink more water. A lot more water. But buying bottled water can become expensive and wasn’t necessarily convenient if I didn’t have the time to go shopping. That was, until the day that the water cooler in my office gave me the idea to purchase my very own. So off I went to look for the best water coolers.

It’s really quite amazing how many choices are available. You can choose from among top-loading, portable, bottom–loading and even a “point of use” type connected directly to your water source so it doesn’t require refilling.

Whatever your specific needs are, there is a choice for you. Go through this page and see which of our reviewed units fits your needs the most.

Top Water Coolers : Comparison Chart

Pick NameThumbnailProduct NamePrice
Our Top-Load ChoiceAvalon Premium A1CTWTRCLRBLK Hot/ColdCheck Price
Top Bottom Load ChoiceWhirlpool Self Cleaning Hot & Cold with LED IndicatorsCheck Price
Best Budget Water CoolerSEPTLS385421 – Igloo 400 SeriesCheck Price
Top Wall Mount ChoiceElkay EZS8L Wall Mount Non-Filtered CoolerCheck Price
5thNutriChef PKTWC10SL Water CoolerCheck Price
6thAvalon A4BLWTRCLR Bottom Loading 3/5 Gallon BottleCheck Price
7thPrimo Bottom Loading Water CoolerCheck Price
8thFarberware FW29919 Freestanding Compact Hot & ColdCheck Price
9thGiantex 5 Gallon Water CoolerCheck Price
10thClover B7A Hot and Cold Bottled Water CoolerCheck Price

Why Should You Trust Us?

Well, here at FaucetsReviewed, you will find a group of home improvement product experts. We’re here to help our audience make the most of their home and living accessories with the right guidelines. Our reviewed products and how-to articles are here only for people like you that do not have sufficient knowledge about the industry.

We are the industry experts and we know what we are talking about. You will definitely find this platform beneficial whether you are looking for a kitchen faucet or an undermount sink or any household tool.

However, our reviews are totally unbiased because we have no connection with the brands of the tools that we test. So, you can be sure that our efforts are solely for the benefits of our audience and this has been proved with the large audience that we already have.

How Did We Choose These Products?

We spent a lot of time researching these machines in order to provide you with as much information as possible. With so many choices available, we created a process for our final selections. We initially dedicated approximately sixteen hours to web research in order to gain perspective about exactly what the market has to offer.

We chose two dozen of the most renowned water coolers available. We began testing as many of the coolers on our list as possible for several weeks. If we couldn’t test all of them personally, we assigned some of the coolers for testing to a volunteer team that reported their findings to us. We also looked into which of these products were particularly popular in the community, and we consulted the experts about manufacturing, reliability and overall product quality.

Finally, we focused on selecting the top rated water coolers for our list based on the overall customer experience together with features and the relation between cost and quality. Our judging criteria included design, space requirements, electricity consumption, features, safety, warranties, and overall performance.

Once we had established our top ten products, we compared our list with user feedback available on various e-shops including Amazon, to see if the user experience confirmed our findings. We feel confident that our list will provide you with excellent choices for your specific needs, not just good products, but exceptional products for your consideration.

Our Top 10 Water Coolers

When formulating this list, we kept in mind the many options available on the market and tried to provide you with reliable choices. We considered type and capacity, features, quality, price and overall performance together with safety, maintenance, and ease in using. We felt it was important to furnish you with as many variables as possible to help you choose the right water cooler for your home. Read on to find your perfect match.

1 Our Top-Load Choice: Avalon Premium A1CTWTRCLRBLK Hot/Cold

Best Water Coolers: Avalon Premium Water Cooler Dispenser

Avalon’s Premium A1CTWTRCLRBLK provides both hot and cold water for your every need. The waterspouts are paddle styled to give you the maximum convenience when drawing water. The great features of this countertop freestanding cooler are that it has the qualities of a high-end water dispenser and a child safety lock on the hot water tap making it a worry-free appliance for families with small children. This unit is UL/Energy Star Approved, which indicates that it has met all security standards.

Avalon provides an extraordinarily efficient compressor in this device with cold water measuring at about 47° F. The hot water faucet will allow you to easily prepare tea, coffee or other hot beverages at about 180°F. It is compatible for use with both 3 gallon and 5-gallon water bottles, allowing you sufficient water for family use.

Measuring 13 x 12 x 19 inches, it features a seven-inch space underneath the tap to allow for very large cups and bottles.  The removable drip tray is big enough to accommodate spilling as well. The design is sleek and stylish and its dimensions allow for it to be used in smaller or restricted spaces.

This cooler uses filtered water which you purchase and a top loading format, making it very easy to see if your water bottle needs to be replaced. It does not offer room temperature water. The unit is not noisy and is often quieter than a refrigerator if noise is a concern. The hot and cold light indicators turn on or off depending if the unit is actively operating to heat or cool the water and not because the desired temperature has been reached.

Specifications

  • Weight 30 lbs without the water bottle
  • Size 13 x 12 x 19 inches
  • Plastic
  • Top-reservoir
  • Color Black
  • Complies with standards of Energy Star

Pros

  • Delivers hot water instantly
  • Adjustable water temperature
  • Perfect size for a countertop
  • Convenient handles for transport
  • Child safety lock

Cons

  • Cold water isn’t very cold
  • Lights not indicative of the desired temperature being reached

Our Verdict

This is a great choice if you’re looking for a quality countertop choice for a smaller or restricted space in your home. It is a wonderful option for families with small children, thanks to the child safety lock on the hot water faucet and the benefits of the purified water it dispenses. While it may not possess all the features of some of the more expensive models, it is definitely an excellent choice.

2 Top Bottom Load Choice: Whirlpool Self Cleaning Hot & Cold with LED Indicators

Best Water Coolers: Whirlpool Self Cleaning Bottom Load Water Cooler

While Whirlpool has developed a complete offering of water coolers for every preference and need, this is really top of the line when it comes to water coolers. This unit provides cold water, hot water or room temperature water instantly. The bottle fits underneath hidden inside a cabinet and with the use of a pump, it moves water into the hot and cold reservoirs.

This Whirlpool model is completely made of stainless steel and features the “6th Sense Self-cleaning” technology, which utilizes oxygen to break up bacteria and any viruses present in your water. The design is sleek with a stainless steel front. It is a 5th generation bottom-load water cooler by Whirlpool.

This stainless steel model makes use of Whirlpool’s technology known as Accu-Chill. It chills water at 9° F and offers steaming hot water for your hot beverages. Ice forms on the sides of the reservoir to keep water cold regardless of the season.  This means that you will have hot, cold or room temperature water available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

It features an excellent compressor that uses a proprietary cooling system, which turns on the compressor less often to ensure a long life for your compressor. The design is robust with unbreakable water taps.

This unit offers an LED indication system that provides you with the necessary information e.g. it indicates when the cooler is self-cleaning as well as when the hot and cold temperatures of your water have achieved your desired setting. No guesswork with this device.

Specifications

  • Weight 40.3 lbs without the water bottle
  • Size 15 x 12.6 x 40.5 inches
  • Color Stainless steel
  • Warranty by the manufacturer for one year
  • Self-cleaning
  • Compatible bottle sizes are 3 or 5 gallon

Pros

  • LED Indication System
  • The steel frame can sustain up to 300 pounds of the top weight
  • Unbreakable water faucets
  • Bottom load avoids heavy lifting
  • Self-cleaning avoids work and worries

Cons

  • Bottom -load requires a water pump which may eventually need to be replaced and bottom loaders tend not to empty the bottles as completely as top-load coolers.
  • Rather pricey with no Energy Star features.

Our Verdict

Whirlpool is a renowned industry leader known for investing a great deal of effort into designing and manufacturing its products. This unit offers safety, quality and extraordinary convenience for family members. It is an excellent choice for a family home. The only drawbacks to be considered are the price and how much energy it consumes. Nonetheless, this Whirlpool model is a nice choice for home use.

3 Best Budget Water Cooler: SEPTLS385421 – Igloo 400 Series

Best Water Coolers: SEPTLS385421 - Igloo 400 Series Coolers

The Igloo Company was founded in 1947 and manufactures chest coolers, lunch boxes, cooler bags and various accessories such as ice substitutes or bottle openers. Its products are used primarily for cooling beverages and foods. Their products have been simplifying camping, fishing, and sporting trips or traveling in general.

The SEPTLS385421 model is part of the Igloo 400 series of water coolers. It features a smaller capacity for two gallons of liquid and is to be used for storing only liquid. This water cooler is made from plastic, which features an anti-corrosive layer. Manufactured in yellow, it is safe from fading if exposed to direct sunlight.

This device is very user-friendly and will not require you to transport large water bottles when using on a trip or at your work. If you find yourself in hot summer temperatures, you’ll have cold water everywhere you take it. It dispenses liquid thanks to a spigot with a push-button. This spigot is slightly recessed on the cooler and angled to prevent leaking or spilling,

The lid of the Igloo cooler features a molded handle and fits the cooler thanks to pressure exerted on the lid. It also features a keeper cord to prevent dirt from contaminating the water or from dripping. The Igloo cooler also boasts a sanitary white liner. The drinking water imprint for this device meets OSHA standards.

This portable unit can be washed regularly with a simple detergent in order to maintain the cleanliness and hygiene of the unit.

Specifications

  • Weight 5 lbs
  • Size 12 x 11 x 15 inches
  • Capacity 2 gallons
  • Plastic
  • Color red and yellow

Pros

  • UltraTherm insulated
  • Pressure fit lid
  • The product can be cleaned with detergent
  • Push-button spigot

Cons

  • Some top lid leakage reported

Our Verdict

If you’re looking for a nice, portable water cooler for sale to keep your beverages cold and help your ice last in the hot summer months, this is definitely an option to consider. Made out of brightly colored durable plastic, it is very reasonably priced and comfortably portable. The ease in cleaning it for use or storage is also remarkable.

4 Top Wall Mount Choice: Elkay EZS8L Wall Mount Non-Filtered Cooler

Best Water Coolers: Elkay ezs8l Cooler Wall Mount

This is a very popular water cooler drinking fountain which is wall mounted. It features easily operated touch controls making it simple to operate for both adults and children. The design complies with the Americans with Disabilities Act if installed properly.

The plumbed in Elkay EZS8L is certified to be free of lead in accordance with the Safe Drinking Water Act. Elkay coolers are produced with a waterway system that uses copper components and is entirely lead-free. The joints are brazed using only a silver solder. Each water cooler comes with a screen, which is easily cleaned. The screen traps any waterborne particulates before they enter the water cooler.

The cooler has a hermetically sealed motor compressor with a sealed lifetime supply of oil. It comes with a three-pronged molded rubber plug and electric cord and has a factory pre-set enclosed adjustable thermostat

The water cooler’s construction includes a steel chassis that mounts on a wall and a stainless steel basin with a drain grid. The exclusive “Flexi-Guard safety Bubbler has a pliable anti-bacterial polyester elastomer to avoid mouth injuries or accidents. There are no exposed fasteners on the water cooler to prevent accidental injuries in general.

The cooler comes with a one-year limited warranty that covers the cooler and accessory to be without material or workmanship defects. The Manufacturer also provides a five-year warranty for the compressor and refrigeration system, which is hermetically sealed.

Specifications

  • Weight 59 lbs
  • Size 18.4 x 19 x 19.8 inches
  • Wall mounted
  • Open front, corded electric
  • Color light gray granite

Pros

  • User-friendly and a top seller
  • Extra deep basin to minimize splashing
  • Anti-microbial safety bubbler
  • Impact resistant and vandal resistant
  • The water system is without brass parts which contain lead

Cons

  • Some reported loosening of the Flexi-Guard bubbler head over time

Our Verdict

The Elkay EZS8L is a popular fountain often found in shopping malls, schools or government buildings. It is a basic functional water cooler fountain with a competitive price. It offers good flavor, thanks to a solid filtration system. It is ADA compliant as well as certified to be free of lead. If you’re looking for a basic, simply designed cooler with clean lines, this water cooler drinking fountain should definitely be up for your consideration.

5 NutriChef PKTWC10SL Water Cooler

Best Water Coolers: NutriChef PKTWC10SL Water Cooler

If you are looking for a standard a hassle free and quiet dispenser that will not only cool your water, but also heat it up simultaneously, we have the right solution for you. NutriChef’s PKTWC10SL countertop model will definitely blow your mind with its amazing performance day in day out.

We like water dispensers that snugly sit on a table, that way we feel most comfortable to fill our glasses. This table top model also packs a number of useful features, for example, there’s a child-safety-lock preinstalled in the system, so, you wouldn’t need to worry about your little children using the machine themselves.

The model is ideal for both professional and private use. It can withstand heavy duty usage by as many as 50 people without any major issue. Being a tiny model, it can fit in any corner of the office or a dining space. For smooth performance, it packs a built-in compressor. What’s more, you wouldn’t notice its existence as it runs an ultra-quiet operation.

Specifications

  • Weight 9.93 lbs without the water bottle
  • Dimension – 13″ x 13.2″ x 22.1″
  • Compressor- Built-in
  • Water output- Cold: 50-55°F, Hot: 185-205°F
  • Quiet operation
  • Compatible bottle size- 3 or 5 gallon

Pros

  • Durable construction
  • Ultra-smooth performance
  • Quiet operation
  • Portable
  • Safety locking

Cons

  • Temperature of the cold water outlet isn’t freezing cold

Our Verdict

As mentioned earlier, this model is consistent in its noiseless operation. Many people didn’t like its cooling capacity, but for us, it does the job. Moreover, it’s not healthy to drink water that is way too cold. You have a freezer for that. We also liked its lightweight design language that you can rely on for years. It should attract the minimalists who prefer saving space.

6 Avalon A4BLWTRCLR Bottom Loading 3/5 Gallon Bottle

Best Water Coolers: Avalon Bottom Loading Water Cooler Water Dispenser

This machine features a beautifully designed cabinet in stainless steel with settings for three temperatures so you can personalize your drinking preferences. These include piping hot water, room temperature water, and cold water. It fits well into any home kitchen space and boasts a built-in nightlight that allows you to get a drink of water easily in the middle of the night.

The stainless steel cabinet features bottom loading to facilitate replenishing your water supply without any heavy lifting or unnecessary strain and to avoid spills during water installation or replacement. This water cooler is compatible for use with water bottles that are 3 gallons or 5 gallons. It also has a safety lock designed specifically with children in mind on the hot water faucet, making it a worry-free appliance for families with small children.

The spouts feature easy-to-use push buttons making water supply convenient. Simply push the button of choice for your preferred water temperature and place your bottle or cup under the appropriate faucet. The cold water is approximately 47° F while the hot water allows you to prepare tea, coffee or other hot beverages at approximately 185°F. Room temperature water is also an option.

The nine-inch space below the faucets can accommodate large bottles and cups, and it comes equipped with a large removable drip tray for eventual spills and drips. It also has a light indicator that turns on letting you know when your bottle needs to be replaced. This cooler is UL listed and meets the required standards of ENERGY STAR.

Specifications

  • Weight 42.7 lbs
  • Size 41 x 12 x 13 inches
  • Freestanding
  • Bottom load
  • Stainless steel

Pros

  • No lifting, bottom load
  • Three water temperatures
  • Built-in nightlight
  • UL/ENERGY STAR approved
  • Light indicator for bottle replacement

Cons

  • Some reported problems with the water pump
  • Some difficulties in pushing the buttons

Our Verdict

Avalon A4BLWTRCLR’s sleek design coupled with the three water temperature options make it an appealing kitchen appliance for your home. Use a water softener to lengthen its lifespan. We liked the bottom load and child safety features. We really like the built-in a nightlight for those who like a glass of water at nighttime. The ENERGY STAR approval adds to the appeal. All things considered, we think that the Avalon bottom load water cooler is an attractive option for those seeking a home water cooler and we recommend considering it when making your selection.

7 Primo Bottom Loading Water Cooler

Best Water Coolers: Primo Bottom Loading Water Cooler

How many of us are aware of the fact that our inhouse tap water can contain dangerous poisons like mercury, Cyanide, LED, Ethylbenzene and arsenic. Long time exposure to any or all of these chemicals could lead to critical health hazards affecting thyroid glands, kidney and liver. Primo, a US brand with global prominence, offers water dispenser and cooler and hotter combo kits that also filter dangerous chemicals from tap water.

People are interested in bottom loading design for a number of reasons and Primo hit the right spot with their BLZ-13898 bottom loading water dispenser model. You are going to get cool and hot water within an hour of installation.

The installation is super simple–stuff your 5 or 3 gallon water bottle in the bottom section of the dispenser and put the water drawer kit on the mouth of the bottle and plug it in. That’s all you need to do. It takes 15-20 minutes for the machine to produce hot water and about an hour for cold water.

There is a safety switch option for getting the hot water from the dispenser. It’s specially made for kids who might accidentally get scalded by pushing the red button. Overall, this is not only safe from germs, but also from dangerous chemicals.

Specifications

  • Weight- 40 lbs
  • Size- 12″ x 14.2″ x 40.9″
  • Freestanding
  • Bottom load
  • Stainless steel panel

Pros

  • Bottom load, no lifting required
  • Hot water tap contains child safety lock
  • Both hot and cold water
  • Fast dispensing

Cons

  • Some noise reported
  • Difficulties if air enters the water line

Our Verdict

If you care about the water you drink and want an elegant looking water dispenser that will ensure ease of use and safety, the Primo bottom loading model is an ideal option for you. Simple installation and durable built make it a spot-on deal on the market. Grab it before the stock runs out.

8 Farberware FW29919 Freestanding Compact Hot & Cold

Best Water Coolers: Farberware Freestanding Compact Water Cooler

This freestanding water cooler by Farberware is a stylish, compact cooler, which provides both hot and cold water and occupies little space. Its storage unit is not really very roomy at about half the depth of the entire cooler, with dimensions of 13 x 8 x 6 inches, but may be sufficient to store cups or glasses. This model can accommodate either 3 gallon or 5-gallon water bottles, giving it a good water capacity.

The cooler, being engineered for low energy consumption, uses a modest amount of energy at only 550 watts for hot water and only 75 watts to cool your water. Water is heated to approximately 185° F and cooled to approximately 59°F. It is perfectly engineered to save energy. Another plus with this model is that it isn’t very noisy. If noise is an issue for you, you may appreciate this unit’s low noise level.

The cooler features hot and cooling switch on the back of the cooler, which needs to be flipped in order for the cooler to work. Reasonably priced, this water cooler is easily transported due to its compact size and weight.

Specifications

  • Weight 15 lbs
  • Size 35 x 13 x 13 inches
  • Freestanding
  • Top Load
  • Plastic

Pros

  • Hot and cold water dispensing
  • Energy and heat efficiency
  • Good capacity
  • The small storage cabinet underneath
  • Compact, easily transported

Cons

  • The top load which can present difficulties for some
  • Limited distance between spouts and shelf making larger cups difficult to accommodate

Our Verdict

If you’re searching for a reasonably priced water cooler that is compact, freestanding and provides both hot and cold water, Farberware FW29919 is definitely worth considering. The design is stylish and the cooler is lightweight. The bottom storage space is not refrigerated. While it may not offer some of the features of more expensive products, the low energy consumption and low noise, together with easy transportability make this top load water cooler an appealing option when choosing.

9 Giantex 5 Gallon Water Cooler

Best Water Coolers: Pelican Products Progear Elite Cooler

Giantex Water Cooler Dispenser comes with a simple and multi-functional design that fits in any occasion keeping a low profile with an aesthetic and elegant look. This cooler is a perfect gadget for both personal and professional uses. The ergonomic design helps the users get water effortlessly within a second. One should consider installing this one due to the convenience and comfort it offers.

This water cooler dispenser has options for both hot and normal temperature water. The normal temperature water ranges from 6 to 10 degree Celsius. We got this cooler very effective as it can contain almost 3.5L of normal water. Simultaneously, it has a compartment to carry 1L of hot water. The heating temperature is 88-95 degree Celsius, but you don’t have to worry about burning your hand as it comes with a child lock protection.

We found it very easy to operate by using the red and green buttons dedicated to turn on and off the cooling and heating process. You will not accidentally switch on or off the buttons due to the visible and lucid design. Moreover, it is easy to disassemble, maintain and clean these coolers. This Giantex Top Loading Water Cooler Dispenser has an anti-dust mite feature to ensure the optimal hygiene and safety for your health.

It can easily contain 5-gallon water without compromising the strength and durability of the cooler. This large capacity has helped this cooler earn a spot in the list of daily usable gadget for home and office. I was amazed at the effective heating and cooling feature of this Giantex cooler.

Specifications

  • Weight: 20 lbs.
  • Size: 11.8×11.0x31.5(LXWXH)inches
  • Material: Plastic
  • Top-reservoir
  • Setting: Hot & Normal
  • Normal Temp: 6°C- 10°C
  • Heating Temp: 88°C-95°C
  • Color: White

Pros

  • Delivers both hot and normal water instantly
  • Easy two-switch operation
  • Suitable for home & office
  • Anti-dust design for convenient cleaning
  • Child safety lock
  • Aesthetic white finish
  • Digital and readable screen

Cons

  • Cold water isn’t ice-cold

Our Verdict

This Giantex Top Loading Water Cooler Dispenser is a great piece of equipment for personal and professional uses. You can enhance the beauty of your home, office, library or any establishment by employing this thing in the room. The child lock safety and anti-dust mite design are the two exclusive features you should take into account. We recommend you to buy this cooler if you aren’t so much obsessed with ice-cold water.

10 Clover B7A Hot and Cold Bottled Water Cooler

Best Water Coolers: Clover B7A Hot and Cold Bottled Water Cooler

The Clover B7A is constructed with a steel frame covered by molded UV-protected polyethylene plastic. The reservoir features a stainless steel tank, which helps prevent the development of mold or bacteria. A one-piece ABS drip tray is easily removed for cleaning.

An attractive feature is a cold water thermostat that you can control for your personal preferences. The thermostat on this cold water dispenser can be regulated from 35 to 53 degrees F. The condenser is efficiently cooled through convection. The hot water temperature cannot be controlled and is set automatically at approximately 185°F.

This unit is an ENERGY STAR award recipient and as such friendly to the environment. It complies with the standards set by the Environmental Protection Agency as well as the Department of Energy for energy efficiency. It does not consume a lot of energy even if left running continuously.

Another nice feature is the double float, which includes a secondary safety float in order to avoid spilling and loss of water.  This machine does not have a built-in filtration system or filter so you will need to purchase water bottles. This water cooler is compatible for use with 5-gallon water bottles. The cooler also comes with a handle, making it easily transportable.

Specifications

  • Weight 31.4 lbs
  • Size 33 x 12.4 x 37.8 inches
  • Material Polyethylene
  • Top Load
  • Black
  • One-year warranty

Pros

  • ABS drip tray easy removed and cleaned
  • Pleasing sturdy design
  • Superior resistance to UV degradation
  • Cold and hot water can be temperature controlled
  • Hot water safety feature

Cons

  • Some noise reported
  • Cabinet plastic subject to breakage

Our Verdict

If you’re looking for a basic economical water cooler, we recommend considering this Clover model. Even if the hot water temperature cannot be modified, the cold water temperature adjustment is certainly an added plus. The UV protected polyethylene shell and the stainless steel reservoir add to the appeal of this cooler. Being ENERGY STAR rated, the Clover B7A is environmentally friendly. This cooler is a practical solution for consumers who prefer to purchase bottled water while protecting the environment. No wonder why it has found a position on our list of the best water coolers.

Water Cooler vs. Water Dispenser

While water coolers do dispense water, not all water dispensers cool water. This can be an important feature depending on your needs or preferences when choosing. A water dispenser basically provides water from a tank or receptacle through the use of a tap. Your kitchen and bathroom faucets are as much water dispensers as a large water jug with a tap.

A water cooler, by comparison, is also a water dispenser and provides water through the use of a tap, but it also has a compressor that cools the water. Some coolers even feature up to three dispensing taps in order to provide cool water, hot water or water, which is room temperature.

Nowadays more and more private homes are installing water coolers for the convenience of having potable cooled or heated water that is readily available, but you should clean the unit regularly to ensure the purity. What’s more, they are available in both bottled and bottleless versions.

Why Do I Need a Water Cooler?

The primary reason to consider purchasing a water cooler for your home is health safety. They can reduce the risks of germs, bacteria, and chemicals that may be present in your tap water. You’ll also be inclined to drink more water getting those daily eight glasses easily because all you need to do is place your glass under the tap.

These units are easy to use because they’re designed for convenience. Imagine not having to fill up a pitcher with ice cubes and enjoying clean and cool water instantly. You’ll probably save space in your refrigerator as well, and you may not run out of cool water on those hot days because of the amount of water that a water cooler can provide.

If you choose a cooling unit with hot water, you won’t have to boil water for a cup of coffee or tea, saving you time. And finally, you’ll be doing a favor for the environment. You’ll be able to avoid gas to boil water, and you can select as large as a 10 gallon or even a 20 gallon unit that is energy efficient.  No more plastic bottles that end up in landfills. You’ll be protecting your health and the health of the environment as well.

What to Consider When Looking for a Water Cooler?

1. Type

The water source. How will you be supplying water to your new unit? Do you want both cold and hot water? Some units available offer both alternatives. If you want a product, which is multifunctional, you’ll want to consider this. Check on the unit’s capacity for both cooling and heating water. Do you prefer a Bottom-Load system, Top-Load system, a countertop unit or a “Point of Use” or bottleless unit which needs a direct-water hook up with the convenience of having a continuous water source but with more complicated installation?

  • Bottom-Load: Water coolers that bottom load have a design that eliminates the need to lift or flip bottles of water. Bottles are normally concealed below inside a cabinet. They can be more expensive than a top-load water cooler.
  • Top-Load: Top-load water coolers require you to lift and flip the bottle to install it on top of the cooler. They can be difficult to load and cause back problems for some.
  • Countertop: These water coolers are an excellent choice for kitchens that do not have space for a freestanding water cooler. They are less expensive than freestanding units. Some are equipped with a filtration system and they can be found in both the bottle or bottleless versions.
  • Point of Use (Bottleless): Bottleless models never need to be refilled. There is no purchase of water bottles. But they do require a direct connection to a water source and can be difficult to install. They require additional filters.
  • Reverse Osmosis (RO): In this process, water is forcefully passed across a membrane that is semi-permeable. This helps remove contaminants like bacteria, pesticides, arsenic, nitrates, sulfates, fluoride, pharmaceuticals, and more. This type also helps improve the taste and the appearance of water through removing these pollutants.

2. Electric or Non-Electric Unit

If you prefer a unit which provides cool or hot water every time you use, as opposed to just room temperature water, you will need to choose an electrically powered unit.

3. Power Consumption

Depending on how cold you like your water, you will want to check out the size and type of the unit’s compressor. If the compressor is small, the water will be less chilled. The colder your water, the more power the unit will consume.

4. Capacity

The majority of water coolers use standard 2, 4 or 5 gallons sized water bottles. Check this out when selecting your unit as well as the availability of refills in your area. Also, consider the weight of a larger bottle if you have difficulty in carrying or loading.

5. Self-Cleaning Technology

If you want really low maintenance and don’t want to have to clean your water cooler on a regular basis, consider a machine with self-cleaning technology. This technology uses oxygen to break up bacteria or viruses found in water. Some models come with LED signals to let you know if the unit is self-cleaning.

6. Water Temperature

Depending on your choice of unit, you may benefit from refreshing cold water, room temperature water and/or a hot water tap that is convenient for soups, tea, coffee or hot beverages in general. Some models come with an ice maker and even a mini fridge to serve you ice cold water.

7. Ease of Use

You will want to check out how much space there is between the faucet and the drip tray depending on your needs. The better models will allow you to fill up larger glasses and mugs as well as water bottles. Also, consider the size of the faucet nozzle. It should be small enough to enter into bottles.

8. Filtration System

To ensure the purity of the water, the best water coolers of the market come with a filtration system. For those units with filtration systems, the filter types include carbon charcoal filters, ultraviolet filters, and water distillers.

9. Safety Features

If you have small children, a key feature to look for will be a child lock, particularly if you are considering a freestanding model, which has taps within a child’s reach. This safety feature will prevent a child from opening the tap and flooding the floor around the unit. You’ll avoid losing the water and the cleaning up afterward. If you are considering a unit, which provides hot water, this feature is a must.

10. Construction & Design

Water coolers today come in various materials and finishes. You may find units in white, black, silver, orange, stainless steel, galvanized, or porcelain among others. They also come in many different shapes and sizes, so you should have no problem finding the perfect machine for your space. You will also want to consider if you do have room for a freestanding water cooler, which is generally larger or if you need to choose a more compact model like a countertop unit or wall fixed water cooler.

11. Outer Assembly

A water cooler that has plastic reservoir risks having the water taste like plastic. Stainless Steel reservoirs avoid this problem. You’ll want your water to be great-tasting.

12. Maintenance

Low maintenance is a priority when acquiring a water cooler. Most units have few maintenance requirements, however, they must be kept clean particularly in the tap or faucet area. Look for a drip tray, which is easy to remove in order to facilitate cleaning. Also, check out the filtration system where maintenance is concerned. Some units may have mineral build-up, so they may require descaling.

13. Price

While electric units tend to have higher prices than non-electric models, if you have a limited budget, you will want to consider a cheaper option that will still serve your needs well. You may want to consider a countertop model as the freestanding models are more expensive. Over time, however, you should expect to save considerably thanks to your investment. We found that the best water coolers would maintain a fair balance between price and quality.

How to Install a Water Cooler?

Nowadays most water coolers are easily installed, as designed by the manufacturing companies and thus create little difficulties for most consumers. Clearly, you will want to follow all the instructions provided by the manufacturer. Here are some considerations for those who install their new coolers personally.

The Bottle Water Cooler

  • Place your unit on a level surface leaving approximately 4 inches space on each side for ventilation
  • Remove the no tamper seal from the water bottle cap without removing the cap
  • Clean both the top and neck of the bottle with warm soapy water
  • Lift up your water bottle and insert it onto the probe until the plug inside the bottle cap goes inward and the bottle is level
  • Finally, plug the cooler unit into a wall outlet

A Point-of-Use Water Cooler

  • Place your unit on a level surface with at least four inches of space on all sides for ventilation
  • Clean the faucets, cooling tank, and hot & cold water applications divider or baffle
  • Following the Manufacturer’s instructions, install the filter
  • Connect the blue colored tube to the cold water supply behind your cooler
  • With the water supply turned off, plug the unit into a wall outlet
  • If the cooler has a hot water option, turn it off momentarily
  • Once your water reservoir has filled, control all connections for any leakage. Turn on each tap to check that the water runs freely
  • Now turn on the hot water option by pressing the switch to reset

Care & Maintenance

Best Water Coolers

In order to keep your water cooler functioning well and to ensure that it lasts, you will need to understand how a water cooler works, and clean the cold reservoir at least every three months together with the water lines in your cooler. Here are some suggestions for cleaning your cooler.

  • Remember to always unplug your cooler before attempting to clean it
  • After unplugging, remove the water bottle
  • Rotate the water cooler so that the back faces away from the wall
  • Position a very large bucket underneath the drain plug behind the water cooler
  • Open the taps of your water cooler and remove any water that is still in the cold water reservoir
  • Take out the probe assembly by rotating it counterclockwise
  • Take out the plastic baffle from within the reservoir
  • Clean both the baffle and probe assembly with a soft cloth and a mix of one gallon of water with one tablespoon of household bleach. Rinse well afterward
  • Use the same mixture to wipe the inside of the reservoir and the faucet area
  • If you have mineral build-up, use a specific product that removes calcium, lime or rust
  • Rinse out your entire system by pouring two gallons of water through the cooler into the bucket underneath
  • Open the taps of your water cooler and remove any water that is still in the cold water reservoir
  • Now return all the parts to the cooler including the silicon plug, baffle, probe assembly and drain cap
  • Rotate the cooler and return it to the wall. Install a new bottle of water and plug the machine in

Final Words

We hope that our in-depth reviews will assist you in your shopping venture to find the best water cooler for your home or office as per your own needs. We have attempted to provide you with as many details as possible when analyzing consumer options and to provide you with a comprehensive guide to those options.

In our search for the high-end options, we researched electric water coolers in the top-load and bottom-load versions, portable coolers for traveling or camping, and wall mounted drinking fountain coolers. But there were also other popular brands like Hamilton Beach, Vitapur, Culligan, Sunbeam, Quench, Nestle, Wellsys, Polar, Viva, Absopure, and Ragalta that had excellent choices. But their units were not able to compete well with these 10 choices. Besides that, you ill also find water cooling units designed with ultra-modern technologies, such as  Drinkpod, ION Bottleless, or the Bevi Machine.

Remember to focus on your necessities for space and capacity for your home and family when selecting your cooler. Seriously consider whether a top-load or bottom-load cooler is more convenient for your lifestyle. Hopefully, our guide will aid you in your choice.

Happy shopping!

FAQs

Q: What are the best water coolers?

Ans: Our water filtration experts and market analysts ran extensive research to find out the ultimate water cooler models available today. Our top 10 list includes Avalon Premium A1CTWTRCLRBLK, Whirlpool Self Cleaning Hot & Cold Cooler, SEPTLS385421 – Igloo 400 Series, Elkay EZS8L, NutriChef PKTWC10SL, Primo Bottom Loading Water Cooler, Avalon A4BLWTRCLR and Farberware FW29919. You can totally choose any one of them depending on your preference and requirements.

Q: How much does it cost to maintain and keep a water cooler?

Ans. You wouldn’t need to spend more than 5o bucks per month to maintain a water cooler at home. It’s neither cheap, nor too expensive, especially when it comes to drinking water. The cost may rise if you have a large family with higher fresh drinking water requirements.

Q: Are water coolers hygienic?

Ans: Water coolers can breed bacteria and germs if you don’t keep them clean or wash them on due time. Since these coolers deal with water, as we all know that bacteria and germs find wet conditions friendly for growth, you need to follow the right cleaning instructions made by the manufacturer.

About the author

Warner Levit

Water Filtration Expert

As a trained chemist and an independent researcher I started working on a portable water filter project as part of my business plan. While carrying out my research, I got involved with FaucetsReviewed. My fields of expertise include environmental science, biochemistry and water purification chemistry. Apart from contributing to this website, I’m currently working on my book “Water Filtration Science”. It will be published soon. I grew up in California, and completed my postgraduate degree from the University of California-Berkeley. I also work as a private counselor on the household water management system.

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