Why choose a Drinking Water Fountain?
This article examines the pros and cons of drinking water fountains, should you own a water fountain or should you select a plumbed in or bottle fed water cooler instead? This article will help you to make an informed decision on your water provision.
What is a Drinking Water Fountain?
Water Fountains also known as Drinking Water Fountains are designed to provide drinking water in much the same way as the more familiar water cooler. Connected to the mains water supply Water Fountains have a basin arrangement with a Tap or Bubbler that dispenses either continuously running water or water on demand.
Popular in areas of high usage such as sports centres, colleges and schools the fountains are typically made from stainless steel and may incorporate carbon filters to remove taste and bad odours from the mains water, they may also include a chilling system to reduce the water temperature.
All water fountains are fitted with some type of waste system which either allows gravity to get rid of the superfluous water, or a pumped waste system which may be used when the fountain is situated some way from adequate drainage.
What are the Benefits of a Water Fountain over a Bottled Water Cooler?
With their basins, waste systems and robust stainless steel bodywork Water Fountains are ideal for high usage areas such as corridors in schools and sports centres.
Although the systems can be perceived as being unattractive when compared to some bottled water coolers or plumbed in machines the systems themselves are very functional, they do not require bottled delivery or even much maintenance and may be left unsupervised as they are robust enough to handle some misuse.
Most Drinking Fountains today are fitted with a carbon based filter and a coil on coil chilling system allowing the system to dispense a continuous supply of fresh tasting chilled water, something that most water coolers are unable to achieve as these machines tend to be fed from a tank.
Most fountains can dispense up to 25 litres of chilled water per hour those systems with a pumped waste system can (because of the higher disposal capacity) dispenses up to 50 litres of chilled water per hour.
Why Drinking Water Fountains are the best choice for Schools
Recent research has shown that children aren’t drinking enough water at school as access to water in schools is often quite poor. Water can help prevent the tiredness and irritability often associated with dehydration and can improve a pupils concentration levels. The answer in many cases is to provide your school with water fountains or some type of water cooler.
Bottled water coolers are not the best choice for schools as the cost of the bottled delivery is prohibitive, in addition to this it isn’t desirable for delivery people to be regularly dropping off bottles within the school grounds. The bottles also tend to take up room and use up valuable storage space which is at a premium in any school. The benefits of plumbed in water systems to schools include:
- A constant supply of water when and where your pupils and staff need it
- No need to change heavy bottles
- No bottle delivery
- No need to store the bottles
- Substantial savings on the cost of running a bottle fed system
All water systems including bottled systems require some maintenance in terms of regular sanitisation and filter changes. Plumbed in units such as fountains also require installation but this is relatively simple for anyone with good DIY skills, and as all schools have a Caretaker on staff to install and maintain the machine it would seem sensible to opt for this type of system over a bottled cooler where possible.
There are a growing number of websites that offer water fountains for sale rather than as a rental only option. Direct purchase is preferable to those schools who don’t want to be tied into an onerous rental contract that require continual monthly payments.
Should I choose a Freestanding Fountain a Wall Mounted Fountain or a Sink?
Most fountains today are available as either freestanding or wall mounted units, they both work in the same way as each other but capacities may vary between the two types of system. Some websites also stock stainless steel bubbler sinks which are ideal if you are on a limited budget as they have no chilling system, they also require no maintenance other than an occasional clean.
Some schools may require a shorter wall mounted unit but site it on the floor to ensure that small children can access the water.
If you want the cheapest possible fountain that requires no maintenance other than an occasional clean you can opt for a wall mounted stainless steel sink.
Can I Install a Water Fountain Outside?
Lots of people ask about fitting a drinking water fountain outside and while this can be possible we would never recommend that you do this with a normal fountain fitted with a chilling system. Many manufacturers are now constructing machines that don’t chill the water and also there are a range of wall mounted sinks which are ideal for outdoor use.