Cleaning Tips for your Water Cooler Dispenser

Staff from Elkay team providing cleaning methods on how to clean indoor water cooler dispenser

Water cooler dispensers are one of the most widely used alternatives around the world for offering safe and cool drinking water in gyms, offices, schools, universities, and other public places. However, over a period of time, these units may accumulate different types of impurities.

To ensure that safe drinking water is being dispensed, your water cooler dispenser must be cleaned from time to time.  If performed on a regular basis, this cleaning process can be completed easily without spending much time.

The items required for cleaning a water dispenser include:

      • plastic gloves
      • bucket
      • dish soaps
      • plastic bottle sprayer
      • white vinegar
      • screwdriver
      • garden hose
      • sponge
      • water
      • bleach

Once you have gathered all these items, follow these simple steps to clean your water cooler.


  1. The very first step is the dismantling of the system. Wear the plastic gloves and start by unplugging your water dispenser. If the unit is lightweight and is secured on a portable trolley, it is a good idea to take it outside the room. A cooler comprises different parts assembled with screws. Use your screwdriver to remove all such parts. While removing the panels, be sure to set aside all the screws carefully. Some parts such as the drip tray can easily be dismantled from their respective slots without using any tool. Now, remove the small quantities of water that you will find within the dispenser.

  2. The next step is to wet the dispenser for basic cleaning with the help of a low-pressure hose. Apply dish soap to the dispenser surface and spray water thoroughly on all sides. Lukewarm water can also be used instead of dish soap. After rinsing the surface repeatedly, examine the water dispenser body to find out if there are any tough stains.

  3. Take a litre of water and prepare a cleaning solution by adding two tablespoons of bleach to it. After mixing thoroughly, pour the solution over the water dispenser’s spotted or stained areas with the help of a tumbler. This solution will also help you eliminate the odor created by stagnation and internal leakage of water. Instead of immediately rinsing the bleached dispenser, allow the solution to function for a few minutes. After waiting for a while, scrub the bleached surfaces slightly and rinse the dispenser repeatedly with water.

  4. The next important part of the process is cleaning the dispenser using vinegar. Before this step, the dispenser must be dried for a minimum of twenty-four hours. The cleaning solution should contain equal parts of water and white or all-purpose vinegar. Use a sprayer to spray this solution to areas that have hard strains such as those created by corrosion. To eliminate the probability of infections in the internal chambers, fill the water cooler dispenser tank with this vinegar solution. Now, allow the solution to pass through each component of the unit by opening the water filter’s spout. This step will ensure that all parts of the cooler dispenser are properly disinfected. Finally, rinse all spots covered by the vinegar solution with water.

  5. Your last step is to put back all the screws and panels that you had removed. Instead of consuming water immediately from a just-cleaned cooler, allow it to drain for at least ten minutes.
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