At Water Coolers Direct we provide a free phone technical helpdesk as part of our service and we have taken some time out to list our most common questions on water filters and the simple solutions. Any plumbed in water cooler requires a water filter in order to transform the standard water from your mains into a constant supply of great tasting, chilled drinking water. We often get asked the same questions that have straightforward solutions and thought it would be useful to put them here: 1. What do water filters actually do? They filter the impurities, bacteria and odour out of the tap water in order to dispense instant, great tasting water. 2. Why does my water cooler need a filter? The cooler is plumbed into the mains and is fed by the building's main water system so filtering the tap water ensures that your drinking water is purified to the same standards as bottled water. 3. Can I change the filter myself? Yes it's easy to change the filter yourself and should take you around an hour including sanitisation. We recommend sanitising the cooler at the same time as changing the filter to keep the inside of the cooler in top condition. This requires you to run a sanitising fluid through the system to flush out any build up of bacteria. If in doubt we can always send one of our engineers to do it for you or someone can talk you through it over the phone! 4. How much do the filters cost? It depends on which water filter solution you are using. For example, a Brita filter for a jug would only cost you around £5 and will last you approximately 1 month. Water cooler filters that can efficiently filter water for 6 months range from £29.99 to £39.99. The sanitisation kits also cost around £44.99 and they last around 2 years for one cooler (a total of 4 sanitisations). You only have to buy one of these kits though and just top it up with more fluid when necessary. 5. How long do filters last? How will I remember to change the filter? Water filters usually last around 6 months but this obviously varies depending on the amount you use your cooler. A friendly member from our team will call you when your filter change is due to remind you to do it. Every filter also comes with a sticker that you can write the date on and stick on the unit so you know when the next one is due! 6. Can you reuse filters? No, water filters are designed for one use only – for health and safety reasons it is a completely sealed unit and cannot be opened. 7. Can I recycle my water filters? Water filters can be recycled. The plastic is separated from the carbon element and ground down before being supplied to the plastic industry for renewed processing for various processes. The activated carbon is then returned to the manufacturer where it is reactivated in special installations and made available for other uses such as waste water treatment. 8. Have filters got a shelf life? No, they last years and so you can buy your filters in bulk and buy them even cheaper! 9. Does having a water cooler make the water run more slowly? No. The only time you might notice a slightly slower water stream is if the cooler is in a place of exceptionally high usage, such as a gym, and the filter needs changing. If this is the case you may need to change the filter more regularly than 6 monthly. 10. How will a plumbed in water cooler save me money? Well, the total cost of running one plumbed in water cooler is £1368 (including purchasing, installation and maintenance) and to run a bottled cooler (based on 2 bottles per week, purchase of the cooler) is £1130.82, saving you £255.18 per year.