Installing a hot and cold-water dispenser at home in Singapore is gaining popularity these days. So, what do you look for if you are planning to buy one in 2021? To help you make that decision, let’s focus on the factors that matter to most Singaporeans. They are the prices of the dispenser which is the startup cost, prices of the filter which is the recurring cost, and lastly the reputation of the brand and support.
What we gather below is a list of popular models in Singapore. We have also included the price of the water dispenser, the filters, and the history of this company
- 3M HCD2 – $1599 and filter price is $120 for 1 filter. 3M, a reputable brand with 80 years of proven water filtration technology. Readily available in terms of sales and support in Singapore, from Jestac – their sole authorized distributor .
- Novita W29 – $1399 and filter price is $360 for 2 filters. A home-grown Singapore brand with over 16 years of history. Other than the water distiller, it does many other appliances like the air filter, massage chair. Sales and support are readily available.
- FreshDew®+ Hot & Cool Dispenser + 3 Filters + NSF Tap – $2,199 and Filter Price: $1,199. When you search for this brand “FreshDew” online, it will lead into this company Tomal Globe. When we probe further, we found out that Tomal Global Pte Ltd (Tomal) is an affiliate company of a company by the name of Seaward Group that claimed they have over 37 years of experience in the filtration industry. When we find out more about Seaward group, it shows Seaward manufactured premium electrical safety test equipment to customers across the world, nothing mentioned about water filtration.
- Ruhens Nano-Direct Plus Hot & Cold Water Purifier WHP-760 – $2,459.00. This is a Korean brand with limited information online. They only have one showroom in Ubi which is by appointment only. It claimed it has over 29 years of water filtration manufacturing technology.
- Hydroflux H2300 Water Dispenser. $2,662.16. Online reviews have not very pleasant. Some claiming it has a leaking issue with poor support.
- Cuckoo Fusion Top – $1,699.00. Cuckoo is a Korean brand that was found in 1978. We know for a fact that they are famous for their rice cooker. Along with it, they do many other appliances like multifunctional electric pressure cookers, blender, humidifier as well as a water purifier. In 2016, Cuckoo became a target for criticism in South Korea for false and exaggerated promotion of its water purifiers. In this TV promotional advertisement that is run on two major TV shopping channels, Cuckoo water purifier claimed that its filter makes mineral-rich water that is good for health, effective in skincare, and curing damaged skin. As a result of these aggressive claims, the two major TV Shopping channel, Home and Shopping and CJO Shopping were heavily disciplined for airing misleading information on Cuckoo’s water purifier. Korea Communications Standard Commission (KCSC) official said. “These claims were proven to be groundless scientifically.”
Moving on, now let talk about the features of the water dispenser listed above.
All the water dispensers above bear common features like they are all direct piping. They are able to provide instant hot and cold water and can be placed on a tabletop.
The two most expensive water dispensers are Hydroflux and FreshDew. Both are priced above $2,000 with their filter costing over $1,000. In our opinion, these are simply too expensive unless one has a deep pocket and like their aesthetic designs.
For Cuckoo Fusion Top even though it is priced quite competitively, it lacks brand recognition among Singaporeans, thus making it hard to compete against a more established brand like 3M and Novita that has a strong presence here in Singapore. The filter change for the Cuckoo Fusion Top is also a complicated process as it requires users to change different filter changes at a different interval. For example, the sediment filter is changed every 4 months, the pre-carbon filter every 8 months, and the Natural and Nao Positive filter every 12 months. The pain of remembering when to change what is too bothersome for a user.
If we must pick our favorite choices, in our opinion, 3M HCD2 and Novita W29 are probably the two most popular models among Singaporean here. The reason being their price gap is closer and their features are similar.
However, we are a non-believer when it comes to alkaline water as it is not scientifically proven. Many misleading marketing benefits will tell you that drinking alkaline water can help you to slim down or even treat cancer. Others will tell you that drinking water with a higher pH can provide beneficial benefits like changing the pH level of your body. Not forgetting, this is what got Cuckoo in trouble in 2016 in South Korea for overmarketing on those some of these claims which are not scientifically proven.
Our opinion may be strong but any brand that promotes and sell such non-scientifically proven benefits remains questionable. In fact, The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has denied the use of claims for health benefits of alkaline water relating to bone health due to insufficient evidence.
We might be old school but our purpose of getting a water dispenser is to get clean hot and cold water so we prefer a brand that has a miniaturized filter based on proven filtration technology, with more that have over 80 years of history. Hence, our preferred choice is still the 3M water dispenser. Another reason we were informed that having a tank dispenser from 3M is better than a tankless one like Novita W29 is that the electrical consumption will be reduced since the machine does not have to heat up a fresh batch of water at every use.