December 11, 2020 4 min read

Want to replace your existing drinking fountain with a Bottle Filling Station, but the budget is limited and you don't want to completely replace a newer/well running fountain??  The solution for you may be a Retro-Fit kit.

Elkay retro-fit kits like the EZWSRK or LZWSRK pictured above, as well as Halsey Taylor retro-fit kits, are made to turn recently installed drinking fountains into combo units complete with hands-free water bottle filling stations.

These retro-fit kits run off the existing water supply of the fountain, and also utilize the existing filtration and refrigeration if it's already on board.  Each kit has been made to fit specific fountain models so it's imperative that you check compatibility of your existing fountain(s) before purchasing one.

To make the process easier, we've put together this handy guide...


Step #1: Model Compatibility

The first thing you’ll need to do is locate your unit’s model number, which is usually available on a white/greyish tag on the bottom of the fountain.  The tag should look like this (notice the location of the model number ):

To assess compatibility, you’ll need to pay attention to the first few letters of the model number, which essentially indicates the fountain's product line. The table below details which kit will be suited for each retrofittable model:


Mounting type

Fountain model (first few letters)

Filtered retrofit kit

Filterless retrofit kit

Wall-mount

EZ

LZWSRK

EZWSRK

Wall-mounted

LZ

Filtration not needed*

EZWSRK

Wall-mounted

EMA

LMABFWS-RF

EMABFWS-RF

Wall-mounted

LMA

Filtration not needed*

EMABFWS-RF

Wall-mounted

HAC (-NF)

HTHB-HAC-RF

HTHB-HAC-RF-NF

Wall-mounted

HAC (-WF)

Filtration not needed*

HTHB-HAC-RF-NF

In-wall

ERPB28

LZWS-ERPB8-RF

EZWS-ERPB8-RF

In-wall

LRPB28

Filtration not needed*

EZWS-ERPB8-RF

In-wall

ERFP28

LZWS-ERFP8-RF

EZWS-ERFP8-RF

In-wall

LNTE8RAK

Filtration not needed*

EZWS-ERFP8-RF

In-wall

OVL-II (NF) (chilled and bi-level) 

HTHBWF-OVL-RF

HTHB-OVL-RF

In-wall

OVL-II (WF) (chilled and bi-level)

Filtration not needed*

HTHB-OVL-RF

In-wall

HRF (NF) (chilled and bi-level) 

HTHBWF-HRF-RF

HTHB-HRF-RF

In-wall

HRF (WF)(chilled and bi-level) 

Filtration not needed*

HTHB-HRF-RF


Filtered vs. Filterless: 

All those retrofit kits are available both filtered and filterless. If the fountain you are looking to retrofit is already filtered, you do not need to pair it with a filtered retrofit kit. The existing filtration system will carry over to the newly added bottle filler. Please note, however, that the filterless kits don't have a filter status light. On the contrary, if your fountain is not filtered and you would like to turn it into a filtered bottle filling station, the filtered retrofit kit will do just that and once installed, both the bottle filler and the fountain will be dispensing filtered water. 


How about refrigeration? 

You may have noticed that all of those retrofit kits are categorized as non-refrigerated. Very much like filtration, refrigeration will also be carried over to the bottle filler if you are retrofitting a chilled fountain. If the fountain isn’t chilled, it can always be paired with a remote chiller (again, this would make both the fountain and the bottle filler dispense chilled water). There are no existing retrofit-chiller bundles so the chiller would have to be purchased separately. 

 

In-wall retrofits:

Because of their design, in-wall retrofit kits are currently limited to existing in-wall fountains that are bi-level, refrigerated and with the lower fountain on the right hand-side (no reverse configuration). 



Step #2: Checking the age

The second thing you’ll need to do before moving forward with your retrofit project is to double-check on the age of your to-be-retrofitted fountain(s). Even if a specific model is technically suited for retrofit (as per the table above), the manufacturer only recommends retrofitting chilled units installed within the last 5 years and non-chilled units installed within the last 10. 

Important note regarding retrofitting older fountains:

Retrofitting an older fountain, paired with the usual increase in usage that follows, can take a toll on some of its more fragile pieces and eventually lead to breakdowns. While these issues aren’t common and you could very well never experience them, they remain a possibility and can happen after just the first few days of use. If the fountain isn’t under warranty anymore, the replacement parts, especially in the case of chiller issues, would have to be purchased thus making the total cost of the project close to if not more important than what it would have been had the fountain been replaced with a new bottle filler and fountain combo to begin with. 

Unsure of the age of your fountain?

All you’ll need to determine the age is to locate the unit’s serial number, which is located on the same tag as the model number, below the machine.

The first two digits of the serial number will indicate the year of manufacture(ie. serial #:128990472049 = manufactured in 2012).

 

My fountain can't be retrofitted. What’s next? 

In the case that none of Elkay/Halsey Taylor retrofit kits are able to work with your existing fountains, here are a couple of possible alternatives to consider: 

  1. If you’d like to keep your fountains as they are, you may be interested in installing a surface mount (bottle-filler-only) unit either just above or in the general vicinity of the existing fountains. The newly installed bottle filler won’t be directly connected to a fountain but you’ll effectively have access to both a bottle filler and a fountain in the same area, just like it would have been had retrofitting been a suitable option. The most popular such model is the Elkay LZWSSM, which is filtered and hands-free. While surface mount bottle fillers are too small to house a refrigeration system, they can also be paired with on of our remote chillers. 
  2. If you’d rather just replace the fountain entirely, we have a ton of bottle filling station combo units available to choose from. Shoot us an email with the model number or a picture of your existing fountain and our team will gladly follow up with several popular options that’ll easily be installed over your current set up. 
Still have questions??  Just contact us to find out how we can help.