You might be ready to buy a new water dispenser, and be wondering which to go for: a smart, next-gen water cooler, or an old-school one. Or, you might already have a water dispenser but you're looking to upgrade. Here are four questions to ask yourself when making your choice about whether to go for a smart, next-gen water cooler or a traditional, old-school one.
1. What Is the Size and Shape?
Old fashioned water dispensers are often very big. This is partly because these coolers use gravity to draw the water out. As a result, the tap has to be positioned under the large tank. For this reason, you may also find that counter-top versions are very tall. Another thing to consider is that because the tap is lower down, the design requirements mean there's less room under the tap for something bigger like a jug.
Next-gen water dispensers like Nano don't use water bottles or gravity, so it's small and sleek. Actually, Nano is the smallest water cooler in the world! Nano uses water pressure instead of gravity. Nano's heating solution also spares a lot of space. Nano was made small because no one wants large appliances cluttering up their kitchen. There's also a separate stand available for the Nano, so you can place it anywhere - not just on your counter-top.
2. Do You Want Hot Water, Too?
Not all dispensers can make hot water. But, if an old-school water dispenser has a hot water spigot, then whatever you do - don’t use it. Those old-school water coolers can keep water cool, but they aren’t very good at heating water. This is because heating those large, half-gallon tanks takes a long time. Of course, nobody wants to wait 10 minutes or more for a cup of hot water, so the easiest thing to do is to run the heater all day and night. That sure is convenient, but keeping that water hot all the time wastes about 96% of the energy.
Smart alternatives like the Nano actually use 7 x less energy than most other water coolers because of its smart energy saver mode and Nano has the most advanced flow-through water heater technology. It only uses energy while dispensing water, plus it does this with about 98% energy efficiency.
Opting for a next-gen water cooler, could save you a lot in energy costs too - about 77 USD a year (about 650 kWh annually).
3. How Hygienic Is Your Water Dispenser?
In most old fashioned water dispensers the cold tank is open, which means air can get in. The reason is simple. Gravity is used to pull water down and out, if air isn't let in, the vacuum formed inside the tank would prevent water from flowing. Of course, if somebody is ill and sneezes, there's a good chance some bugs may end up in the water. These bottles and tanks are good places for bacteria to grow, and can even form a bio-film layer.
Some bottle-less water dispenser offer UV lamp protection, but the UV lamp is usually positioned before the cold water tank, not after it. Yes, the UV will disinfect the tap water, but once it flows into the tank it may meet big bio-film layers, contaminating the water.
Nano filters the water before it ends up in the cold water tank, but it's one of the few dispensers on that market that then stores water in a sealed compartment - so no outside air can get it. This protects against bacteria, so you can be confident that you and your family are drinking pure, clean water.
4. How Easy Is it to Clean?
If you've ever tried to clean a water dispenser, you'll know it can be quite a messy headache. It includes taking apart the unit (and putting it back together). Plus, you have to be careful with what cleaning detergents you use - some like acetic acid can be very smelly, others like hypo you definitely don't want to remain in your drinking water.
Alternatively, of course, you can call the brand's maintenance person to do it for you but this can be quite a hassle - not to mention expensive. It can really add up, especially as dispensers need to be cleaned about every three months.
That's why you should always find out how easy it is to clean any water dispenser you're thinking of buying.
Smart water dispensers like Nano have WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity. That means Nano can inform you by email or via the app when the device needs maintenance or a simple filter change. Simply order a replacement filter and the right cleaning materials. Nano's semi-automatic cleaning process also makes it even easier to clean. There's no need to take apart the machine. Just use the supplied cleaning cartridge and start the cleaning program from the mobile app. Even better, Nano only needs to be cleaned about once a year because the closed hyginic system.
What Else Should You Consider
Here's a full list of the benefits when you compare a smart water dispenser like Nano to traditional water coolers: