How do I buy water from RO dispenser at Walmart

HomeBrewTalk.com - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Community.

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

dsaavedra

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2014
Messages
635
Reaction score
122
Dumb question I know but please help me not look like a goon!

I've never bought RO water from a dispenser before but I finally found a Walmart that has one for 37 cents a gallon. Do I just bring my Better Bottle(s) in, fill them up, and then take them to the cashier and tell them how many gallons I got and they will charge me accordingly?
 

tmendick

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Jun 9, 2013
Messages
843
Reaction score
274
Location
Omaha
I "rent" 2 of the blue five gallon plastic "carboys" they are about $10-$12 a piece filled and reuse those for a few months and then restart the cycle. Just make sure you tell them it is a refill so they only charge you the $.30-ish per gallon price
 

Homercidal

Licensed Sensual Massage Therapist.
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Feb 10, 2008
Messages
33,312
Reaction score
5,711
Location
Reed City, MI
I get plastic carboys from work (we have water dispensers) and take them to the grocery. I fill them up and tell them I have 10 gallons of water.

I assume Walmart is similar. I think you could bring in whatever container you want.

If not, buy a big jug or two form them, fill it with water, and check out, then bring back the jugs for a discount the next time. I find plenty of uses for my jugs between brews.
 

z-bob

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Oct 2, 2014
Messages
3,385
Reaction score
1,148
Location
Rochester, MN
Buy a few 65¢ gallon jugs of water. Save the jugs and the caps when you use them, and take them back to the store and you can refill them for 30¢. Milk jugs would work.

Menard's sells bottled water in thin disposable (recyclable) PET 4-gallon plastic carboys for about $5.50 I have several; I use the water and take them back to Walmart to refill them. They also make good fermenters.
 
OP
dsaavedra

dsaavedra

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2014
Messages
635
Reaction score
122
I looked all over the machine for a coin/bill/card slot and did not see one (I probably looked like an idiot staring at this machine for 5 minutes) so I guess you just fill up and then pay at the register. There was a rack next to the machine that had one empty 5 gallon Deer Park jug and one empty 1 gallon water jug, neither of which had caps and neither of which looked remotely clean... yuck! I'll bring my Better Bottles in and fill them up... they have gallon and half gallon markings on them so it will be easy to see how much water I get.
 

jrcrilly

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Apr 5, 2015
Messages
542
Reaction score
119
Location
Wadsworth
At least you can get whatever volume you want. The cheapest RO water around here is outside a Riteaid store. $.25 pergallon but you put in a quarter and a gallon comes out. I wanted to refill several 2.5 gallon containers but could only put 2 gallons in each (or pay for 3 gallons and let the last half gallon run onto the sidewalk). Some of the local grocery stores have setups inside and they probably work as you describe. I'm done anyway, as I just ordered a charcoal filter to cleran up my tap water for brewing. At $.25/gallon it wlil take a long time to pay for itself, but it should be much more convenient.
 
OP
dsaavedra

dsaavedra

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2014
Messages
635
Reaction score
122
At least you can get whatever volume you want. The cheapest RO water around here is outside a Riteaid store. $.25 pergallon but you put in a quarter and a gallon comes out. I wanted to refill several 2.5 gallon containers but could only put 2 gallons in each (or pay for 3 gallons and let the last half gallon run onto the sidewalk). Some of the local grocery stores have setups inside and they probably work as you describe. I'm done anyway, as I just ordered a charcoal filter to cleran up my tap water for brewing. At $.25/gallon it wlil take a long time to pay for itself, but it should be much more convenient.
Yeah the only reason I'm buying RO water is because I have pretty high alkalinity to deal with that causes problems with my lighter colored beers. Before I found this RO dispenser I was buying gallon jugs of distilled water from the grocery or dollar store for like 88 cents to a dollar a piece, so I'm pretty happy to find RO water at 37 cents a gallon. I have thought about getting a small RO unit (found one with good reviews for about $60 on Amazon) but at this point I don't feel like I brew often enough to justify it... although we'll see how lugging 8 gallons of RO water around sways my opinion ;)
 

Homercidal

Licensed Sensual Massage Therapist.
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Feb 10, 2008
Messages
33,312
Reaction score
5,711
Location
Reed City, MI
Buy a few 65¢ gallon jugs of water. Save the jugs and the caps when you use them, and take them back to the store and you can refill them for 30¢. Milk jugs would work.

Menard's sells bottled water in thin disposable (recyclable) PET 4-gallon plastic carboys for about $5.50 I have several; I use the water and take them back to Walmart to refill them. They also make good fermenters.
I saw those walking out of Menards a couple of weeks ago. My mouth said, ""Look at that!"

And my wife looks, rolls her eyes, and says, "Go buy your fermentor!"

It's been working well for half batches. I got a BOMM in primary that needs to get racked. It should transfer nicely to a 2.5 or 3 gallon glass carboy for settling.
 

brettwasbtd

Awesomeness Award Winnner
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Apr 20, 2010
Messages
1,796
Reaction score
165
Location
Damascus, MD
At least you can get whatever volume you want. The cheapest RO water around here is outside a Riteaid store. $.25 pergallon but you put in a quarter and a gallon comes out. I wanted to refill several 2.5 gallon containers but could only put 2 gallons in each (or pay for 3 gallons and let the last half gallon run onto the sidewalk). Some of the local grocery stores have setups inside and they probably work as you describe. I'm done anyway, as I just ordered a charcoal filter to cleran up my tap water for brewing. At $.25/gallon it wlil take a long time to pay for itself, but it should be much more convenient.
This is like one of those math word problems in school. Next time fill container A with 2 gallons and container B with 1. Then pour a half gallon from container B into container A (filling container A to capacity). Now container B has a half gallon. Fill container B with 2 gallons to fill it to capacity. Last step mail me a six pack for my ingenuity :)
 
Joined
Jun 7, 2011
Messages
4,852
Reaction score
1,476
Location
The Frozen Tundra
Does anyone know why you can't get RO water here in Western NY? It seems to be everywhere else in the country but here.

I have to pay over $1 a gallon for distilled water at Walmart.
 

z-bob

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Oct 2, 2014
Messages
3,385
Reaction score
1,148
Location
Rochester, MN
At the Walmart near me they sell nice 5 gal plastic carboys with built-in handles for ~$8. They sell replacement caps for them as well. They usually have them over in the hardware area where they sell water filters and dispensers, etc.
They sell those here too, and the price isn't bad. But I wouldn't want to ferment in them because that handle looks hard to clean.
 

The_Bishop

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Dec 8, 2013
Messages
2,099
Reaction score
672
Do yourself a favor, and buy a TDS meter. You'll be able to get an idea of how 'r.o.' the water really is. A lot of those machines are not maintained very well.
 

Natdavis777

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2012
Messages
2,871
Reaction score
565
Location
Brownsburg
I used to use Primo water, so I kept my jugs and use those to fill my water up. I fill mine up @ Kroger. 15gal usually costs ~5$.
 
OP
dsaavedra

dsaavedra

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2014
Messages
635
Reaction score
122
Does anyone know why you can't get RO water here in Western NY? It seems to be everywhere else in the country but here.

I have to pay over $1 a gallon for distilled water at Walmart.
Believe me its not much different here in MD. I had to look high and low to find a source for RO water.
 

jmcquesten

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 3, 2012
Messages
1,117
Reaction score
301
Location
VA
Dumb question I know but please help me not look like a goon!

I've never bought RO water from a dispenser before but I finally found a Walmart that has one for 37 cents a gallon. Do I just bring my Better Bottle(s) in, fill them up, and then take them to the cashier and tell them how many gallons I got and they will charge me accordingly?
I just bought water from Walmart this weekend for the first time. I found the empty 5 gal bottles with reusable caps in hardware near the Pur filters and water dispensers. They were about $7 each. Then I took them to the filling machine and filled all 3. Paid for everything at the register. $0.37 per gallon (RO) totaling $1.85 per 5 gal jug. They do have a machine maintenance card right on the machine. The one I was at had been serviced within the last 2 weeks. Of course that doesn't mean anything other than someone initialed a piece of paper. We'll see if my beer is any better.
 
Top