My Review of the Primo Water Dispenser
The Quest for Safe Drinking Water
Soon after my husband and I moved to the country, I realized country living is the life for me. We live among peach orchards, walnut orchards, and rice fields to name the type of farmlands surrounding our modest home. I absolutely love it. But, country living comes with some challenges. One challenge is our water supply. We receive our water from a well, which is great, because our water supply is endless. The challenge is that well water is not necessarily the purest water to use for drinking.
Our well water is tested regularly, and each time I view the report, I see chemicals like arsenic and such. The report also rates the amount of chemicals in the water, determining whether or not the level is at an acceptable level for human consumption. I don't know about you, but I am not comfortable allowing other people to decide how much arsenic is safe for me to consume. I understand that farmers use fertilizers and other chemicals in farming and that some of these chemicals are leached into the ground and into the water table. That is one of the expectations that come with living on or near farms. I get that, but also I’m not one to knowingly ingest something that is harmful to my body, which is why I have a whole house purification system for bathing and such, but I purchased a water dispenser to assure further that the water I drink is safe.
I chose the Primo Water Dispenser for the low cost and for features such as instant hot water and instant cold water.
The Primo Water Dispenser: Door Open
Inside the Primo Water Dispenser
One of the greatest things about the Primo water dispenser is that I don’t have to lift the water bottles to place them on top of the unit. I’m retired, and that is just too much work. The unit uses a generic 3-gallon or 5-gallon water bottle which sits in the bottom of the unit. A tube is placed inside the water bottle and then siphoned up into a reservoir where the water is held until it is needed. I purchased the first couple of water bottles from Primo, but I have discovered that I can refill the water bottles at my local grocery store for a little bit less of the cost of Primo water. The generic water tastes great. I have had the generic water tested by the local home improvement store, and I have found that there is no arsenic in the water dispensed from the local refill station at the supermarket. That is good news since it provides me with safe and affordable drinking water.
The bottom loading door swings open easily. All I have to do is remove the tube from the emptied water bottle and push the bottle away before scooting the full water bottle in position to put the tube inside of it. I push the prepared water bottle into the lower chamber, close the door, and now I am ready to dispense more water.
The Primo Water Dispenser ControlsClick thumbnail to view full-size
Outside the Primo Water Dispenser
The controls are easy to operate. The symbols are easily recognizable for hot, room temperature, and cold water. There is a safety feature on the hot water button, which I like because it keeps small children safe. Instead of just pushing down on the button to dispense hot water, you have to push the red button up first and simultaneously push down on the dispenser button to get hot water.
The dynamics of the hot, room temperature, and cold water is amazing. When the water is siphoned up from the water bottle, the water goes inside the holding chambers. Inside the holding chambers, the water is kept hot for hot water dispensing and cold for cold water dispensing.
Maintenance of the Primo Water Dispenser
If you start to notice a bad taste, then it is probably time to drain the dispenser completely, clean it with a weak bleach solution, and then rinse the system three to four times to make sure you don’t leave a bleach residue. The maintenance guide suggests doing this every three months so that you don’t develop a build-up of minerals in the water reservoirs and water lines.
The spill tray is very easy to clean. You can clean it by hand or place it in the top rack of your dishwasher.
Cost Comparison of Primo Water and Other Brands
My average consumption of 5-gallon water bottles is 12 bottles per month. The minimum quantity that can be ordered from a delivery service is three 5-gallon water bottles per month. As you can see by the chart, bottled water can be quite costly with a delivery service.
You can reuse the bottled water containers by going to a store location that has self-serve water refill stations. Usually, the refill stations are found outside or directly inside the front of the store.
Primo Water and Other Brands
Type of Service
Type of Water
Cost of Dispenser Unit
$179.00 Stainless Steel Bottom Loading
$17.99 Stainless Steel Overhead Dispenser
$4.00 White Overhead Dispenser
Cost Per 5-Gallon Bottle
- You don’t have to maintain any filters. I like not having to worry about replacing or maintaining filters.
- The dispenser unit can use both the 3-gallon and 5-gallon water bottles, so, I have a choice.
- The dispenser unit has been given an ENERGY STAR rating, so it saves on utility usage.
- It is a beautiful, modern looking style, probably the best looking appliance in my kitchen.
The only negative thing I found about the Primo water dispenser is that when the compressor is on, the unit can be a little noisy. But, I usually don’t notice it except when someone goes to get a glass of water at night. When the water reservoir is being replenished, the compressor comes on, which isn’t overly annoying, but I can hear it working for about thirty seconds or so.
How to Load the Primo Bottom Loading Water Dispenser
Final Thoughts About the Primo Water Dispenser
I'm enjoying my Primo Water Dispenser a lot. Probably, the most enjoyable thing about having a water dispenser is that I know I am drinking water that is a little less harmful because it has fewer chemicals than the well water I would be otherwise drinking.
The second most enjoyable thing about having a water dispenser is the hot water feature so I can make a hot cup of tea in an instant.
I think, for the cost and for the fact that it loads from the bottom, saving you from possible back pain, you would find considerable value in the Primo Water Dispenser.
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
Questions & Answers
The water from my Primo water dispenser has started tasting funny. How do I get rid of that taste?
It might be time to clean the tank. Here is what the Primo manual states: "For best taste, performance and hygiene, clean the cold tank at least every three months and your cabinet, controls, probe and spout each time you change your water bottle. Empty and clean drip tray as needed. To minimize mineral deposits, use only high quality purified bottled water such as Primo."Helpful 37
The plastic insert that connects to the Primo water bottle is broken. How do I get a replacement?
The part that you are looking for is called a probe. You can order the part directly from Primo. Call them at 866-429-7566. They are open from 10:00 A.M. to 6:00 P.M (ET). Give them the model number for your water dispenser, and they can ship it to you. The price for the probe ranges from $2.99 to $4.99, depending on which model you have.Helpful 2
Can you use other brands of 5-gallon water bottles with the Primo water dispenser, or does the system only work with bottles provided by Primo?
Yes. You can use other brands of 5-gallon water bottles with the Primo Water Dispenser. I actually use a generic 5-gallon water bottle that I purchased from a grocery store.Helpful 19
Have you discovered that your Primo water dispenser is costing you over $2.00 per day in electricity? I can send you a screenshot of my hydro consumption on a day with the dispenser on with cold and hot activated and a day when only room temperature water is being dispensed. It will shock you as it consumes a lot of electricity.
If I calculate correctly, then at $2.00 per day, what you are saying is that your electricity consumption for using the Primo water dispenser costs approximately $60.00 per month.
My total electric bill for the month costs between $80.00 to $90.00 and I have other electrical devices operating in my house. When I purchased my Primo water dispenser I did not see an increase in my electric bill. I cannot say why your electric bill is so high for using the water dispenser. It is certainly something worth exploring.Helpful 13
My dispenser is not giving cold water. How do you fix this issue?
The cold water switch must be activated before the unit will dispense cold water. To activate, push the top side of the green switch in - to start cooling water.Helpful 10
© 2012 Marlene Bertrand