The COVID-19 pandemic certainly rocked the world, but the light at the end of the tunnel is near. Many offices are officially up and running once again, with the highest safety protocols in place.
In addition to things like hand sanitizers and routine cleanings, what else is a safety must-have for an office post-COVID?
A touchless water dispenser.
In this article, we will discuss the different types of touchless water coolers, explain how they work and, most importantly, explain how they benefit your company, in addition to keeping your employees healthy.
What Is A Touchless Water Dispenser?
A touchless water dispenser is a hands-free water filling station, typically applicable to bottleless water systems.
They enable office employees to refill their water cups and hydrate during work hours without making physical contact with the water station.
This hygienical method of dispensing water eliminates the need to clean and disinfect the device after every use in order to prevent germs and potential contamination.
This makes it highly effective in preserving the health of employees, especially in the time of a pandemic like the COVID-19 outbreak.
A touchless water dispenser is especially invaluable in open-space offices, breakrooms, schools, campuses or any other place frequented by a lot of people.
Types Of Hands-Free Water Dispensers
Although sensor and foot pedal-operated water dispensers are the most common types, there are several other hands-free dispensers also gaining momentum. Here is the breakdown of them all.
Foot Pedal-Controlled Water Dispensers
A foot pedal water dispenser comes in two forms: a single pedal or dual pedal device.
A single pedal water dispenser contains a one-foot pedal that activates the water flow on a touchless device. This hands-free setup produces only one preset water temperature that can be adjusted on the machine.
A dual pedal water dispenser uses two pedals: one activates hot water and the other activates cold water.
Both single pedal and a dual pedal system can be integrated with any existing water dispenser.
Document Solutions’ plug and play dual pedal allows a quick and professional retrofit with no cutting or splicing necessary. It has a built-in three-second hold-time safety feature for hot water and plug-and-play integration with existing water coolers.
Check it out below:
Position Sensitive Detector (PSD) Water Dispensers
PSD water dispensers allow touch-free delivery of hot and cold water via their sensors.
A user only needs to hover their finger over the hot or cold water sensor on the device to dispense the water into the cup. The sensors activate when they recognize the physical presence of a finger.
This is another simple, retrofit solution that can be installed with your office’s existing bottleless dispensers. The plug-and-play installation of PSD dispensers can be finished in a matter of minutes.
Pure Water Technology’s PSD sensors use big and user-friendly pads to dispense the water without touching the water machine.
Touchless Water Dispensers
This type of hands-free water dispenser works similarly to the PSD, in that it also uses sensors. The difference is that its sensors are located inside the refill zone instead on the face or the top of the machine.
When a user places their hand holding a cup inside the refill zone, the sensors inside this hollow part of the device activate and the water starts to flow.
Some of the standard features in our offering’s flagship touchless water dispenser, Pure Water Technology’s PW90 Series, include an anti-microbial surface, activated oxygen self-cleaning, diagnostic center with 24/7 monitoring, high-capacity drip tray and a large dispense area for bottles.
Check it out below:
Phone App/QR Code Water Dispensers
Certain next-generation water dispensers can be activated via QR code or a smartphone app.
They dispense water when a user scans a QR code that appears on the user interface screen of the water machine. This revolutionary method for dispensing water via touchless technology only requires a stable internet connection.
Paddle Water Dispensers
This convenient type of touchless water dispenser contains a paddle just below the water tap. The user can just press the paddle (or paddles, if the device has two for cold and hot water) with the side of their cup to release the flow of water.
This type of dispenser also doesn’t require any pressing with fingers or hands to work. However, this is not the most sanitary option of all, because a cup that presses the paddle may not necessarily be germ-free.
How Does A Touchless Water Cooler Work?
What all of the above touchless water dispenser types have in common is that they do not require hand contact with the machine in order to release water.
Contactless water coolers use sensors or pedals to operate. Sensor-operated machines detect when a drinking cup is in the refill zone and release water with the maximum flow to prevent potential overflow.
Sensor dispensers detect when a user places a drinking cup in the refill zone or places their finger above the filling sensor.
The sensors have infrared detectors that operate using infrared light. When a user places their finger or a hand in front of a sensor, the light bounces of their finger or hand onto the detector that turns the tap on and off. The sensor signals are sent to the valve and trigger it to open and produce water.
At Document Solutions, these types of dispensers come with a quick plug-and-play installation that includes a factory wiring harness. Our PWT dispenser requires a hole to be drilled in the plastic panel so that the wiring can pass through and enable a professional retrofit to existing machines in a matter of minutes.
Pedal-operated touchless water dispensers come with several types of water available: hot, chilled, sparkling and ambient. Foot pedals can also be retrofitted to some of the newer dispenser models or supplied as a new kit with new machines.
This particular dispenser system consists of a foot pedal with a loaded spring that connects to one of the valves. The user needs to put their foot on a pedal base and press it for the water to flow. The base is connected to a rod, a spring and valve in this very sequence.
The spring has elasticity that allows the valve to return to the original position when force is released. The water stops flowing when the user takes their foot off the pedal, which causes the spring to return to its original position.
What Are The Advantages Of Touchless Water Coolers?
Touchless water dispensers are a cost-effective and eco-friendly way to prioritize the health of your employees.
There are three benefits right there already, but we’ll elaborate on them — and give you even more.
Unlike classical water dispensers that need to be disinfected and cleaned — more thoroughly and frequently than usual in the COVID-19 era — touchless water coolers don’t require the same level of maintenance.
Introducing this hygienic option to your office saves time and money you’d spend on cleaning equipment and gives your employees peace of mind that they’re using a safe water station solution.
Touchless water dispensers also:
- Eliminate the need for bottle storage: This not only softens the harsh environmental effect of plastic water bottles, but also eliminates the human contact from repeated bottle delivery, which is a health hazard in pandemic and post-pandemic times.
- Minimize the potential spread of a virus: As we’ve pointed out before, contactless water coolers don’t require a physical touch and eliminate the spread of germs via contact to make for a healthier environment. Also, some of them come with built-in protection features such as UV sanitation and anti-microbial protection.
- Make cleaning and maintenance safer and easier: Because this system’s technology offers self-cleaning options, its management requires less manpower. Also, most of the surface area is flat and easy to reach with a cleaning device.
- Save money by lasting longer: On average, touchless water dispensers last longer than ordinary ones because there is no wear and tear associated with the use of the tap valve. As such, they are often a more cost-effective solution than their traditional dispenser counterparts.
- Reduce carbon footprint: Because they don’t use bottles, touchless water dispensers reduce your office’s plastic waste and contribute to less pollution and carbon emission.
- Don’t get damaged easily: A touchless water dispenser is less likely to get broken because they consist of fewer external moving parts.
- Make access to water easier to users with disabilities: Since they do not require pushing or pulling of a lever, contactless water dispensers are accessible to users with physical disabilities.
Touchless Water Dispensers: Key Takeaways
A touchless water dispenser is one of primary safety measures you should provide to your employees that are returning to the office as the COVID-19 pandemic subsides.
Sensor and foot pedal-operated water dispensers provide healthy drinking water during work hours and reduce the risk of virus spread.
They are also quick to install, easy to use, require little maintenance and are cost-effective.
At Document Solutions, we provide a wide range of touchless water dispensers fit for any working space and teams of any size.
Supplied by the most eminent brands in the industry, our touchless water cooler solutions will eliminate the need for bottle storage and keep your staff safe from health hazards.
Best of all — we provide free installation and unlimited filter changes and maintenance!