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How to clean a drinking water fountain

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How to clean a drinking water fountain
Drinking water fountainsDrinking water fountains
Servicing and repairs
The Water People
The Water People
November 21, 2019
minute read

Drinking water fountain maintenance: 101

Ready to learn how to clean a drinking water fountain?

As filtered water experts with decades of experience, organisations across Australia use our specialist technicians for a major water fountain servicing. But there are regular maintenance tasks you can handle yourself.

This guide covers replacing filters, daily cleaning, and how to troubleshoot problems. Let’s dive right in.

Get in touch with The Water People for more information on professional drinking fountain maintenance and servicing.

DIY drinking fountain maintenance checklist:

Here are some quick-fire things you can do regularly to keep your drinking fountain running smoothly:

  1. Clean the system. The bubbler orifice and basin should be washed with disinfectant every few days — making sure that it’s not scaly. Adequate air flow is required for optimal operation. Always ensure that the condenser fins and exhaust louvres at the rear of the unit are kept clear and free of dust and dirt.
  2. A regular vacuuming is all that is required.
  3. Replace the filter. Keep reading for more details in the following section.
  4. Check the stream. Evaluate height, temperature, and that the stream looks clean. Replace the nozzle if necessary.
  5. Inspect the unit. Firstly, check for leaks and that the piping and connections are in good condition, and there are no visible traces of water or leaks. Replace any suspect fittings accordingly. Next, if you have a refrigerated system, ensure that the fan spins freely.
  6. Make sure the refrigeration system cycles correctly. Both the compressor and fan should turn on and turn off.
  7. Test the bottle filler activation. Check that it times out after 20 seconds.
  8. Stay on schedule. Repeat the basic cleaning weekly and the other steps every six months.

Now, let’s go into detail on two key steps featured in the drinking fountain maintenance checklist.

What you need to know about regular maintenance tasks

Drinking water fountain maintenance has two key tasks: changing the filter and cleaning the unit. And you and your team can perform them (at least partially) yourself.

1. Replacing the filter

Changing filters regularly will keep your drinking water crystal clean, reduce build up of residue inside your unit, and increase the longevity of your water fountain. Now, here’s the best part: most models are pretty easy to change.

Can you change the filters yourself? Absolutely. For example, the filter in the Aquakleen Ezi Twist filter system clicks in and out like a light bulb. Our team notifies you when your cartridges are due to be changed and offers to send new ones for you to change yourself, or book in a service call for our maintenance team to do this for you. Quick and easy.

So how often should you change them? Filter cartridges should be changed at least every six months. However, bubblers that are used by many people require more frequent replacements. If your bubbler undergoes heavy use, our team can help you determine the exact date your filter needs replacing, and a regular routine filter change schedule.

2. Daily cleaning and the six-month wash

The mouthpiece and protective guard on your bubbler should be cleaned every single day. And it’s important to clean it with a disinfectant.

Like any mechanical system, a water fountain requires scheduled service and cleaning to prevent downtime and increase its longevity. For example, loose particles can build up from residue over time. The entire unit must be cleaned every 6 months.

To keep you unit operating at full capacity, you can engage a specialised drinking fountain service technician from The Water People, who will also ensure that your water fountain is defect-free and operating safely.

Troubleshooting: Solving 5 common water fountain problems

Water fountains may seem complex when there’s an issue. But there are surprisingly simple solutions for common problems. Let’s cover them now.

1. It’s leaking. Help!

The first thing to do is find the source of the leak. The best places to check are the cooling tank, drain gasket, and quick connect fittings. If the water is dribbling out after you stop pushing the button — the leak is in your valve.

If it’s a large leak, then immediately turn off the water at the source and contact our team of technicians. By identifying the leak yourself, our technician will know exactly which spare part to bring, or if your drinking water fountain is beyond repair, bring a replacement.

2. It’s making loud banging (or grinding) noises.

In most cases, the noise is caused by a faulty or damaged compressor. Immediately unplug the unit, mark it as out of order, and call a water fountain technician.

3. The water tastes funny.

For new units, the most common cause of a bad taste or odour in the water is certain sealants used in the installation. The funny taste or smell will disappear shortly.

For units that haven’t been installed recently, the water source may be the cause. In this case, professional flushing and sanitising are required before installing a source water filter to the unit.

4. The water flow is very low. Why?

If the flow coming from the mouthpiece of the bubbler is very low, then the strainer screen is probably blocked with debris. Clean or replace the screen. It could also mean the water filters have blocked up and in need of changing.

5. There's a lime build up. Can I get rid of it?

It depends. If it’s a small amount of lime you may be able to remove it using over-the-counter lime removal products. Larger buildup may require a professional cleaning. Then once the initial lime buildup is removed, you can prevent the problem from recurring with regular cleaning.

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