If you are in the market for a countertop water cooler, there are a couple of factors that may influence your decision. The number of people who will use the water cooler should be considered first, since you should try to obtain a unit that has a large enough capacity to meet your needs. If you are looking for a countertop water cooler for a large office, you may also want to think about choosing a point of service unit that will purify water on demand. There are a number of other options to consider as well, since some countertop water coolers can also heat water, provide ice, and perform other useful functions.
Countertop water coolers are convenient, and typically take up less space than free standing units, but they often come with smaller capacities as well. When you start looking for a new cooler, it is important to first think about how many people will be using it. You may want to estimate the amount of water each person is likely to use, so that you can select a unit that will not need to be refilled every single day. If you need a countertop water cooler for your own personal use, then a 1 gallon (about 3.7 lt) unit may work out just fine. A small family may need a somewhat larger unit, and a medium sized office will typically do well with one or more units that have 5 gallon (about 20 lt) capacities.
Most countertop water coolers use water jugs, though point of service units offer an alternative. Point of service units are an especially good choice if you expect to use a large volume of water, but lack the counter space for a big cooler. This type of unit will typically take up much less space than a countertop water cooler that uses jugs, especially since there is no need to store additional water on the premises. In many cases, a unit that has a 1 gallon (about 3.7 lt) internal reservoir will serve about 40 people in a typical office environment.
In addition to capacity, there are a number of other features and options that you may want to look for when selecting a countertop water cooler. Some water coolers can also provide hot water, which can allow you to prepare tea, instant soups, and other similar products. Another useful option is an ice maker, and some countertop water coolers are capable of freezing new ice cubes in under ten minutes. If your office break room lacks a microwave and freezer, options like hot water and ice cubes may really come in handy.