Cleaning a Bottled Water Dispenser to Keep Harmful Molds and Bacteria From Contaminating Your Water
You get a bottled water dispenser for both health and convenience. While they are quite easy to just set and forget, it’s not safe to just leave them alone without maintenance and cleaning. Even though you may be putting clean water into the system each time you change a bottle, bacteria and molds can still get into the system through the air. So it’s important to follow a series of steps periodically to keep your drinking water safe and your people healthy.
It’s recommended that you follow a cleaning procedure each time you change the bottle. But if you don’t change the bottle very often then you should clean the dispenser at least every six weeks. This may seem too frequent, but it’s easy for biological contaminants to grow in moist, dark places during that time. Since the reservoir of a bottled water dispenser is a cool dark place, it turns out to be a perfect breeding ground.
Some sources recommend using bleach water as your cleaning agent. This is usually from government sources, which tend not to be in touch with the reservations people have about using bleach in their drinking system. A good alternative is to use white vinegar. The main difference between the procedures will be that you only leave the bleach in contact with the cooler for a couple of minutes, and not more than five minutes. With the vinegar you should leave it in contact and cleaning for at least ten minutes. In economic terms though, bleach is much cheaper to use than vinegar.
After removing the bottle from the cooler, you want to drain the reservoir. Then fill the reservoir with your cleaning solution and let it sit for the recommended time. After that drain the cleaning solution through each of spigots your dispenser has. When its all drained. flush the system with clean water through at least four cycles. Try tasting or smelling the water coming out after that to make sure all of the cleaning solution is removed.