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The phrase “water cooler chat” is not a new one, and in this era of texting and inter-office instant messaging, we might be at risk for losing the subtle art of office cooler chat. That is a shame because studies have revealed that office cooler conversations can be beneficial. Fortunately, investing in some of the best water coolers can nudge employees to restore this tradition.

Are there benefits to buying the best water cooler for home use? Absolutely, and below we review ten of the best options for home or office use.

Top 10 Best Water Coolers: Product Roundup

Whether you’re eager to reinstitute a bit of water cooler conversation in the office or you just want fresh, clean water from a reliable source at home, these 10 best water coolers are great options.

brio bottom loading water cooler

Best Bottleless Water Cooler

Capable of accommodating up to 35 daily users, this hot/cold bottleless water cooler features a two-stage system and amazingly easy filter change function.

The innovative system uses a carbon filter to grab sediment, a coconut filter to grab any liquid chemicals in the water, and a carbon block to absorb particles that might alter the taste of the water.

With a ten-year warranty and stainless-steel interior, lines, and components, it is easy to keep clean and sanitary, including the quick pour hot/cold faucets.

Best for a home or office kitchen, it has a long life and low upkeep, making it suitable to most settings.

costway 2 in 1 water cooler dispenser

Features a Built-in Ice Maker  

This is an all-purpose system that uses the classic top-loading design, but enhances it with multiple features and functions beyond the norm.

There is the built-in ice maker that makes up to four pounds of ice at a time (up to 27 pounds daily). It features a user-friendly LED and tri-temp functions for hot, cold and room temperature dispensing.

Child safety locks make it impossible for children to scald themselves with the near-boiling tap. Attractively designed it fits well at home or the office.

primo white bottom loading cooler

Hot and Cold Water Dispenser

Bottom loading for ease and convenience, this sleekly designed system uses push-button controls to enable nearly instant water supplies. Works with three or five-gallon jugs and features a handy drip tray to prevent spills and slips.

Works with all water bottles, but the Primo brand is popular for its added minerals and self-service stations in different areas.

This good looking, stylish model sets up in moments and does not require any tools. It is literally a plug and play option that dispenses near boiling and nicely chilled water in a compact system.

Brio CL520 Commercial Grade Top-load Water Dispenser

Best Water Cooler for the Office

Innovative design makes this modern system the best water cooler dispenser for a contemporary space. It is sturdy, sleek and packed with features for a simple water cooling solution.

It provides child safety locks to eliminate any risk of scalds, and the hot water function can be disabled entirely when not in use. With a drip tray, it also eliminates any spills, stains or problems on the floors around the water cooler.

An enhanced mount ensures that there is always a secure fit, which only makes the top-loading design more appealing than ever.

Avalon Premium Countertop Water Cooler

Best Countertop Water Cooler

If a countertop model is important, this nicely sized unit features a long list of benefits. It is an energy star approved option that comes in a stylish, sleek black design. Color-coded taps identify hot and cold dispensers, and a child safety lock eliminates any risk for scalding.

Sitting compactly on the countertop, this classic top-loading unit is the best water cooler for home or office use. It is only 12x12x19 inches in size.

The easy to use paddle spouts and simple design make this one the best A10 water cooler for any setting.

primo white 2 spout bottom load

This is one of the best water coolers in general and is a high-quality option that is ideal for the home or office. It features basic hot and cold dispensing functions and prevents children from scalding with its hot water safety feature.

Loading from the bottom makes it easy on the back and safer than most. It eliminates the clunky looks of a top-mounted system and the stainless steel reservoirs keep maintenance to a minimal level.

What’s the best part about this water cooler? Well the built in single-serve coffee dispenser in the middle that is compatible with k-cups of all varieties. A reusable k-cup is also included.

The drip tray is dishwasher friendly and this unit is an energy star ranked option that fits well in many spaces and settings.

Primo Water Cooler Dispenser + Pet Station

Best Water Cooler for Families

We love this concept of a combination water cooler and pet station and think this makes it one of the best water coolers for offices with pet-friendly policies as well as for homes. The design is also quite contemporary and compact to enable it to fit into even a smaller space.

The pet dispenser is built into the base and will only refill the dish once it is seated correctly and in need of additional water. The bowl also turns to the orientation needed, further enhancing the design’s function.

Black with chrome accents, an easy to use top mount bottle fitting, and an LED night light make this water cooler a unique and highly recommended find.

avalon a5 bottleless cooler

Best Self Cleaning Unit

With three temperature settings (cold, room temp, near-boiling) this rates as one of the best water coolers for BOTH office and home settings.

Without bottles, it will require connection to a water line, but uses separate tanks for hot and cold to keep supplies at optimal levels.

Installation is simple, and the included charcoal filters purify water supplies for months at a time. The notification light signals when it is a time for a change.

whirlpool self cleaning stainless steel bottom load cooler

Best Water Cooler for Busy Offices and Homes

This is one of the best water coolers for the busy office or home in which maintenance on the water cooler can be easily overlooked or neglected. This is a commercial-grade unit that loads at the bottom and uses easy to read LEDs to indicate hot or cold dispensing.

The unit enters self-cleaning mode on its own and comes with a full year’s warranty. It relies on oxygenation to destroy viruses or bacteria and cleanse the system.

The easy to use water cooler stands only 41″ high and can work in a modern style home design or almost any office setting, dispensing near boiling and icy cold water around the clock.

Avalon Bottom Loading Water Cooler Dispenser

Best Modern Water Cooler

This is one of the best water coolers for any setting thanks to its modern design and use of stainless steel to give it a kitchen and office-friendly look.

Offering hot, cold and room temperature water, it features sleek touch screen buttons to ensure ease of use and keep drips to a minimum.

It has a handy LED nightlight, and many appreciate the ease of use when loading the five-gallon bottles into the ground level housing rather than wrestling with a bulkier bottle flipped upside-down.

3 Things to Know Before Buying a Water Cooler

As you take a look at our recommendations for the best water coolers, we advise you to take three very important factors into consideration before making the choice:

Dispensers are NOT Necessarily Coolers  

We did not explain this earlier, but it is hugely significant. A dispenser does not offer heating, cooling, cleaning, or even many options in terms of how it is loaded. Both use the classic five-gallon bottles, but the dispenser is a very basic option.

Take the Costs of Filters and Other Components Into Consideration  

We recommended bottleless and filter-using systems. They are some of the best water coolers, but their use of filters means that you end up paying more for operating those units than those without.

Does that me we recommend against them? NO, not at all. What it means is that you must consider the added costs into any of the factors you use in the decision-making process.

The Best Water Coolers Always Use Electricity  

This is important for several reasons. The first is that you’ll need to have access to an outlet that is installed to code if you want to enjoy heating, cooling, filtration, and other factors. You may also need to be close to water lines if you are going bottleless.

There will also be the costs of using energy to heat and cool, and if this is an issue, you’ll want to consider the best water coolers with on/off functions for heating the water.

What Else?

Other factors we suggest you consider before buying even the best water coolers include their capacity (not all take a variety of bottle sizes), their overall size, whether they have any anti-tipping and child safety features, and how easy they are to use and clean.

The Best Way to Clean a Water Cooler

In looking at the best water coolers available, we found only a few with self-cleaning or low maintenance designs. Many of the best options will use stainless steel components to help cut down on issues where maintenance and cleaning are concerned.

Cleaning, according to the experts involves the use of property cleaning solutions and disinfectants. A simple approach is to run white vinegar through the system adding one quart of vinegar to three quarts of warm water and running that through the unit.

The top loaders are cleaned by removing an empty and the guard, cleaning the drip area, disinfecting and rinsing the reservoir, and then reassembling.

Bottom loaders are similar except that cleaning solutions are pre-mixed and hooked up to the bottle connect. The reservoirs are drained and rinsed with the solution and the unit is reassembled.

How the Best Water Coolers Work

best water coolers

Whether you use a top-loading water cooler that relies on gravity to feed the water into the system (where different components will heat or cool it). Or you may choose a bottom loading system that uses “an electric pump to overcome gravity and bring water from the bottle up into the holding tank to make either hot water or cold water,”. Still yet, you might get a bottle-free system that ties directly to the water lines in the home and uses reservoirs or tanks for heating and cooling.

They all have the same basic function.

They all deliver near boiling or icy cold water.

The reason we recommended any of the units above is simple – they all do this job seamlessly and deliver the cleanest water supplies safely.

The best coolers will feature safety features, easy maintenance features, good looks, and more. The goal is for you to choose the style that works best for your home or office setting, and ensure it provides the quantity and quality of drinking water (or cooking water) required each day.

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