Alhambra® delivers in the ZIP area Change

Frequently Asked Questions

Updated July 6, 2020

At DS Services®, there is no higher priority than the safety and well-being of our customers, associates and suppliers. As the COVID-19 pandemic has evolved, we have taken multiple steps to prevent the potential spread of the virus, to equip our associates to provide an essential service in our communities, and to ensure the ongoing, safe manufacturing and delivery of our products.

We appreciate your business and welcome your questions. Please reach out to us via your online account at water.com, at customerservice@dsservices.com or 877-450-6809, and we will do our best to assist you.

Due to increased demand for our products and service, our call volume has increased and long wait times have occurred. Please take advantage of your online account to browse products, view your current order, check delivery status or add products to your next delivery.

Restarting Your Service at a Business

As businesses across the country begin to reopen, we want to remind you that we are ready to reactivate your service whenever you are. Just let us know and we'll resume your deliveries providing the products you know and love.

Q: What precautions will your delivery associates take as service restarts?
A: The safety of our customers and associates remains our number one priority, so when we restart deliveries, we'll be maintaining the already rigorous standards that has been keeping our customers and associates safe during this time. Our continued protocols are:

  • Continuing with a no-contact delivery service. If you have any special instructions, feel free to communicate with us via email, phone or leave a note for your delivery person.
  • Our Route Sales Representatives (RSRs) are empowered to wear protective face masks, use hand sanitizer and frequently wash their hands.
  • Mandating social distancing protocols in all of our bottling plants and sales branches, including all common areas, offices and vehicles, in alignment with health agency guidance.
  • Our associates in manufacturing and delivery will continue to practice frequent, effective handwashing and wearing of masks.
  • We have increased hard surface sanitation with an extensive checklist; and mandated that all meetings start with reminders and guidance on these topics.

Q: What should I do with the water that's been in the cooler for so many weeks without use? Is the water still safe to drink?
A: Yes; however, for great tasting drinking water, we recommend that you remove the bottle currently on the cooler, replace it with a fresh bottle and then flush the system. Click here to find our Flushing Dispensers After Extended Interruption instructions and steps.

Q: What if my bottled water or filtration cooler was powered down for an extended period of time?
A: To ensure great taste after a period of inactivity, it may be necessary to flush the system following the proper steps. Click here to find our Flushing Dispensers After Extended Interruption instructions and steps.

Q: Do I need to clean my equipment from DS Services? How?
A: The equipment from DS Services is safe to use. Each piece of equipment comes with a manual that highlights how to clean the unit. Coronaviruses are generally thought to be spread from person-to-person through respiratory droplets. Currently there is no evidence to support transmission of COVID-19 associated with food. In general, because of poor survivability of these coronaviruses on surfaces, there is likely very low risk of spread from food products or packaging.

Three (3) and Five (5) Gallon bottle water coolers
Equipment can be wiped down using 70% rubbing alcohol around the water dispensing hot and cold spigots, levers or faucets.
Remove the drip tray and wash with mild dishwashing soap.
Gently wipe down the surface area of the equipment using 70% rubbing alcohol.
Filtration
Equipment can be wiped down using 70% rubbing alcohol around the water dispensing hot and cold spigots, levers or faucets.
Remove the drip tray and wash with mild dishwashing soap.
Gently wipe down the surface area of the equipment using 70% rubbing alcohol.
Coffee brewers
Although, cleaning of the coffee brewer is not necessary, cleaning of auxiliary items should be practiced.
Items to clean daily include: airpots, brew baskets, water pitchers, glass decanters, iced tea urns and any dispensing carafe that individuals may contact.
Use hot water with dish washing detergent, a clean sponge or bottle brush.
Wash the inside and outside of items making sure all handles and faucets are cleaned.
Once cleaned, rinse thoroughly and allow units to dry

Q: According to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control) "Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers Responding to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)," it discusses the use of water coolers and water fountains in the workplace as businesses reopen. How should I handle my water cooler?
A: Bottled water is comprehensively regulated as a packaged food product by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This includes small packages sold at retail locations and larger 3- to 5-gallon bottles delivered to homes and businesses that use water coolers. By federal law, FDA regulations governing the safety and quality of bottled water must be as protective of the public health as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations that govern tap water. And, in some cases, such as lead, bottled water regulations are more stringent.

Like other frequently touched surfaces (e.g., doorknobs, light switches, sink faucets), routine cleaning and disinfecting of water coolers can reduce the risk of people's exposure to the virus that causes COVID-19. Therefore, we have several cooler cleaning, flushing and sanitization options for customers whose coolers have not been used for several weeks:

  • Do-it-yourself cooler flushing instructions can be found HERE and cleaning instructions can be found HERE for individual coolers.
  • We recommend regular cleaning and sanitizing of your cooler at least twice a year.*
  • Professional cleaning by one of our own technicians can be scheduled HERE, or by calling 800-628-1724. In as little as 30 minutes, we will expertly disinfect your water dispenser using an EPA-registered sanitizer effective against many viral pathogens, including the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19**. Additionally, a routine cleaning and wiping down of equipment will further allow health and safety of your employees.

Coronaviruses are generally thought to be spread from person-to-person through respiratory droplets. Currently there is no evidence to support transmission of COVID-19 associated with food. In general, because of poor survivability of these coronaviruses on surfaces, there is likely very low risk of spread from food products or packaging.

Q: Should I remove the drain plug on the back to drain the tank?
A: No. Please do NOT loosen or remove the drain plug on the unit at any time. Instead, use the spigots on the front of the unit to dispense water into a heat resistant container.

Q: Are there any protocols I should follow to further ensure your products and equipment are safe for use?
A: Before placing a new bottle in your water cooler, we recommend that you clean the bottle surface with a disinfecting wipe, wiping down the bottle handle, shoulder, neck and cap. And before wiping down the bottle, wash your hands thoroughly for at least 20 seconds with soap and water.

For our water cooler equipment, it may be necessary to flush the system following the proper steps. Click here to find our Flushing Dispensers After Extended Interruption instructions and steps.

Q: An employee at our business was diagnosed with COVID-19 and may have been in contact with the bottled water cooler. What should we do?
A: As the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) has stated, "there is no evidence to support the transmission of COVID-19 in food packaging." The World Health Organization (WHO) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have reinforced that, though it may be possible to catch the virus by touching a surface that has the virus on it and then touching your face, it is not thought to be the primary means of transmission.

You may wish to take additional steps to clean your equipment out of an abundance of caution. Please see our cleaning program we have in place here.

Q: Whom should I contact if I have questions or concerns about my bottled water or filtration dispenser or coffee brewer?
A: Please reach out to us at customerservice@dsservices.com or 877-450-6809, and we will do our best to assist you. Due to increased demand for our products and service, please note our call volume has increased and long wait times have occurred; therefore, we appreciate your patience.

Q: Are there any options that I can control and manage my service?
A: The easiest way to manage your account is online. Go to www.water.com/selfserve, click Register Now and sign up! Please reference your customer account number found on your invoice when setting up your online account.

We now have a NEW mobile app, My Water+, available for iOS and Android. You can view and change your upcoming deliveries as well as search and shop for new products or previously ordered products with ease. Download the My Water+ app today.

Q: How do I get product to restart my business?
A: Businesses in your area are beginning to reopen, so now is the time to go onto your online account and add from our wide selection of products including sparkling water, both flavored and unflavored, coffee K-Cup® pods, and much more. Check your order, review our current promotions and add what is needed before your next delivery.

If you want to simplify your delivery service and have more control of your service, we now have a NEW mobile app, My Water+, available for iOS and Android. View and change your upcoming deliveries as well as search and shop for new products or previously ordered products with ease. Download the My Water+ app today!

*Recommended cooler cleaning frequency varies by cooler model.
**Our EPA-registered sanitizer and disinfectant is effective against emerging viral pathogens, including the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19, as well as many pathogenic and environmental microorganisms, including E. coli.

No-Contact Delivery

Q: How can I enable a no-contact delivery?
A: If you want no-contact delivery, simply leave out your empty bottles for pickup by our delivery associates. We will replace the empty bottles and deliver any other products you ordered during your next delivery.

In some cases, we may choose a no-contact delivery method if we deem it is in the safety interests of our associates and customers.

Q: What if I have special circumstances that require a specific delivery protocol?
A: As always, there is no priority higher than the safety and well-being of our customers and associates.

If you have any special instructions, feel free to communicate with us via email or by updating your account online. Or, you can leave a note on the empty bottles left outside for pickup by your delivery personnel.

Also, please let us know if you or someone in your household is ill so that we can ensure safe delivery.

Equipment Installation

Q: How will you be installing the water dispenser in my home or office?
A: As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to evolve, we want to continue to do our part in preventing the spread of the virus. Therefore, during this time, we will not be installing coolers. Quick setup guides can be found here for you to install on your own. If you have special circumstances that require installation assistance, please contact us at 800-4-WATERS.

The Safety of Our Products and Processes

Q: Are your bottled water products safe?
A: Yes, our products are safe – and the safety of our products and services has always been our top priority.

As the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has emphasized, there is "no evidence to support the transmission of COVID-19 in food packaging." What's more, our bottled water products go through a well-designed, end-to-end disinfection process with multiple barriers and stringent checks and balances. Similarly, the water in our refill machines is treated and disinfected over multiple steps. Our dispensers, too, go through a multiple-step disassembly, cleaning and sanitation process. Finally, both the World Health Organization (WHO) and Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have stated that the risk of transmission through anything other than person-to-person contact is very low.

Q: What processes do you follow to ensure product safety?
A: Above and beyond the already rigorous standards we maintain across our branches, plants and vehicles, we have implemented safety, sanitation and quality protocols to keep our associates and customers safe. We have reinforced handwashing and respiratory standards, signage and training; added cleaning and handwashing supplies in all locations; increased hard surface sanitation to once shift per shift with an extensive checklist; and mandated that all meetings start with reminders and guidance on these topics.

Cleaning Bottles & Equipment

Q: Should I wipe down my water bottles?
A: Both the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) state that the risk of transmitting COVID-19 virus by touching a surface or object is low.

However, as a standard practice, before placing a bottle in your water cooler, we recommend that you clean the bottle surface with a disinfecting wipe, wiping down the bottle handle, shoulder, neck and cap.

Q: Do I need to clean my water cooler? Filtration equipment? Coffee brewers?
A: Each water cooler comes with specific cleaning recommendations for interior and exterior cleaning. Given the current situation, If you would like to quickly clean your equipment's exterior, follow the instructions below.

You should wash your hands thoroughly for at least 20 seconds with soap and water before and after the cleaning process.

Water coolers & filtration equipment: Using 70% rubbing alcohol, gently wipe down the surface area of the equipment, plus the area around the water dispensing hot and cold spigots, levers or faucets. Remove the drip tray and wash with mild dishwashing soap.

Coffee brewers: Items to clean daily include airpots, brew baskets, water pitchers, glass decanters, iced tea urns, hot water levers and any dispensing carafes that individuals may contact. Use hot water with dishwashing detergent and a clean sponge or bottle brush. Wash the inside and outside of the items, making sure all handles and faucets are cleaned. Once cleaned, rinse thoroughly and allow the units to dry.

Customer Service

Q: I've been trying to reach you. Why are you taking so long to get back to me?
A: We appreciate your patience as we adapt to this very fluid situation. We are working hard to fulfill your requests and serve you the best we can.

We are an essential service, so demand is higher than usual. We have extremely high call volume and long wait times and ask for your support as we try to safely deliver the products and services you need. We encourage you to take advantage of your online account at water.com, where you can to add additional products to your next delivery, view your current order and check delivery status.

Ordering

Q: How can I add to or change my order?
A: With an increase in demand, our call volume is very high. We encourage you to take advantage of your online account at water.com, where you can add additional products to your next delivery, view your current order and check delivery status.

Q: Can I order extra water to ensure an adequate emergency supply?
A. Yes. To ensure continued supply of 5-gallon bottles for all of our customers, please supplement your emergency water needs with our 1-gallon and 2.5-gallon bottles and .5 L case packs. We have plenty of water to deliver, so excessive ordering and stockpiling aren't necessary.

Associate Safety

Our frontline associates have gone above and beyond to perform an essential service for customers and communities during this global crisis, and our priority is to support them and keep them safe. That's why we are reinforcing the availability of "no contact" delivery with our customers – reminding them to communicate any updates to their delivery and that if they leave their empty bottles outside, we will replace them accordingly. We are also encouraging associates to follow our safety principles and stop unsafe work if there is an identified or perceived risk at any delivery location.

Q: What are you doing to keep your associates safe?
A: Our manufacturing and delivery personnel practice frequent, effective handwashing and respiratory hygiene. We are reinforcing these handwashing and respiratory protocols with special reminder signage in all of our facilities, and we begin every meeting with reminders and guidance on these topics.

We have also implemented increased sanitation of hard work surfaces across all of our facilities, delivery trucks, forklifts and associate common areas – including the use of sanitizer wipes for common touchpoints such as time clocks, door handles, light switches, countertops, radios, lunchrooms, restrooms, vending machines, cooler handles and more – in accordance with current, required documented training.

Our associates also maintain social distancing of at least 6 feet, and as before the pandemic, associates in key areas continue to wear disposable gloves, with frequent glove changes, as a common practice in key manufacturing areas.

Q: Are you doing anything extra to ensure your associates' well-being during this time?
A: Our frontline field associates are working every day to ensure that customers receive essential service during this pandemic. We are grateful for their commitment and dedication.

To honor and recognize their continuing hard work, we are paying eligible frontline field associates an appreciation bonus to thank them for delivering above and beyond for our customers and our communities.

Q: What happens if one of your associates becomes ill?
A: As an FDA-regulated manufacturing business, we do not permit associates who exhibit symptoms or are ill to be in the workplace or have contact with other associates, equipment or product surfaces.

In the event that an associate exhibits symptoms or is diagnosed with COVID-19, in accordance with health agency guidance, we will take immediate steps first to isolate the associate by sending him or her home for 14 days and requesting that he or she receive medical attention.

Then, we will sanitize the facility and all common areas – including all hard work surfaces, forklifts, delivery trucks, common areas and touchpoints. Quarantined associates may return to work only with a doctor's release confirming they are not contagious.

Q: Are you still paying your associates if they become quarantined?
A: All associates diagnosed with COVID-19, isolated or placed in quarantine by a doctor will be provided with two weeks of paid sick leave. For these associates, we established a continual check-in and follow-up process to discuss benefits, return-to-work information and general physical and mental well-being. We also are providing all associates with access to the Employee Assistance Program, a no-cost 24/7 service providing counseling, legal and financial consultations, a health resource library and referrals for tasks such as childcare, household help and more.

Community Involvement

Q: Are you doing anything to help the community or those on the frontlines of the pandemic?
A: As COVID-19 reduces access to food and other essential services, we are donating bottled water to local hospitals and food banks in hot zones and contributing to the United Way's efforts to help families and people in need with food, shelter and critical services.

Through this crisis and beyond, food and beverage companies hold a special role as a part of the critical infrastructure to deliver essential products and services such as fresh water to our communities. We take this responsibility with the utmost seriousness and pride and view it as our commitment to our customers and communities across North America.

We take our responsibility as an essential service provider very seriously. Thank you for your patience during this challenging time. We value and appreciate the trust you place in us as your provider of safe, high-quality water. Our service to you is our highest priority.

We will continue to monitor this situation and update you if any changes occur. If you have questions or feedback related to the safety of our products or about our service in general, please email us at customerservice@dsservices.com or call 877-450-6809.

Due to increased demand for our products and service, our call volume has increased and long wait times have occurred. We ask for your patience as we address your requests or additional questions.

To view the latest correspondence from Dave Muscato, President, DS Services, North America, please click here.