Over the past few months we’ve received several requests to review the Bibo water heater/cooler/filter/dispenser. They call it a multi-stage water filtration system which boils and chills water, which is much more descriptive ;-).
We’ve now got a Bibo water appliance of our very own and after several weeks have prepared the below review. The review includes installation, usage, comparison with the T6 water Dispenser and any other questions at the end.
Bibo will come and do an installation anywhere in the UK for £72 (currently £36) or you can decide to install the system yourself. We opted for the install as we are not DIY minded.
Jonathan arrived with all the tools needed for the job in one neat kit. This included his own kitchen towel to mop up any spills or mess which is inevitable when installing a device of this kind. Talk about being well prepared!
Initially he took time to place the Bibo in different areas of our kitchen so we could decide the best place for our needs. The next stage involved drilling a small hole in our worktop in order to feed through the water pipe.
The pipework under our kitchen sink is maze like but this didn’t cause an issue and everything was up and running in about 50 minutes. Unlike other installers Bibo use a push fitting which comes complete with an isolator valve which allows you to switch the water off at source. This is particularly handy should you ever need to remove or move the Bibo in the future.
Once the installation process had finished Jonathan ran us through the various functions. He did not leave until we were happy with the operating instructions. He also left an instruction manual which would come in handy should you forget how anything works down the line.
Basically, the installation process was faultless. No bad points to mention.
Bibo comes in eight different colours, ranging from standard tones to those which are much more wacky and vibrant. That said they aren’t as bright as what the T6 offers, so if you prefer psychedelic colours you may prefer their range instead.
Bibo has designed their machine to fit underneath cupboards and opted for a 30cmx35cm base. This ensures the footprint is reasonable for a machine which is capable of heating 15 liters of hot water and 7 liters of chilled water per hour. Granted it’s bigger than a kettle but does provide an awesome centre piece for any kitchen.
The most gadgety feature is the 2.8 inch touchscreen which allows you to select hot water, cold water or tepid water. These can all be set to your own personal preference, you can even tell the Bibo when to wake up and when to go to sleep which is particularly handy in an office environment (more on auto sleep later).
The interior includes a fan, CPU and the various tech to make the water taste great. The water is mechanically filtered through a large carbon filter, which is like an industrial version of what you’d find in a filter jug. The water then passes under a UV light which kills any bacteria in the water. This filtration works out any impurities in the water to deliver water which tastes like the expensive bottled variety – basically how nature intended it to without the taste of chlorine, copper pipes or anything else picked up along the way.
Living with the Bibo
We have two main uses for our Bibo as I drink lots of tea/coffee and Kelly drinks lots of cold water. We have found to be indispensable since its installation as it has quickly become part of day-to-day life.
The void left by the removable drip tray is large enough for a teapot, water jug or even a saucepan due to the angular delivery of the water. This has sped up cooking time as boiling water can be instantly introduced to vegetables etc.
We’ve also been using the Bibo to fill our flasks and hot water bottles, granted you don’t need a UV and carbon filter for the latter but it saves a lot of hassle (see target market section).
A really neat inclusion is sleep mode which can be programmed to kick in after 1 to 4 hours depending on your preferences. You’ll know when this has happened because a cool graphic pops up saying ‘Your BIBO is sleeping’ – “Aw” Kelly said :-). This isn’t the only energy-saving tech built-in either as the Bibo operates at 100 watts less than the T6 – both are efficient at what they do.
From time to time Bibo will create a loud whirring sound, similar to that of a laptop computer(but louder). This could be troublesome if you live in a small apartment or open plan living area but we could only hear it when in the kitchen. When we inquired about the noise we discovered is was a fan cooling the CPU, necessary to stop burnout.
Maintenance and Service
Obviously we can only comment on the service so far which has been brilliant. We are confident that any future problems would be dealt with in the same professional way.
Bibo give a 30 day money back guarantee and a 1 year warranty included in the price. You can opt to extend this warranty for £59 which includes telephone support and breakdown call outs.
The mechanical MAXI filter needs to be replaced every six months, it’ll even remind you with enough time to spare to order a filter pack – how geeky is that! The pack costs £66 (£54 for subscription) which includes two Maxi filters and one UV lamp which keeps you covered for another year.
During the installation I talked briefly with Jonathan about their target market. He explained that a wide range of people are buying their product for a variety of reasons. The obvious target consumer would be people wanting to banish bottled water from their lives or those living in areas where tap water has an unpleasant taste or is unsafe to drink (the Bibo is huge in Israel).
Elderly people or people with poor motor skills can also benefit because they would no longer have the need to lift a heavy kettle filled with boiling water. We found this particularly apparent when filling our hot water bottle, no longer need we fumble around with the bottle in one hand and kettle in the other!
The fact of the matter is that everyone could find a use for a device like this. Parents with small children would love it, tea drinkers would love it, people who like water would love it and people who love gadgets would adore it.
Main Differences to T6
|Interface||2.8” full colour TFT screen with pictorial feedback and on screen menu systemTouch screen keys||Mono screen interface and menu systemPush buttons|
|Power saving features||Two types:
|Cup fill||Pre-set to fill specific cup for hot and glass for cold||Pre-set to fill specific cup for hot and glass for cold|
|Power consumption||Voltage: 230 voltsHeating consumption: 1,500 wattsCooling consumption: 138 watts||Voltage: 230 voltsHeating consumption: 1,800 wattsCooling consumption: 100 watts|
Depth: 35cmWidth: 30cm
Depth: 35cmWidth: 29cm
|Cup stand/drip tray||Completely removable||Flips up|
|Cooling system||Cold Water Tank Volume: 1.5 litres
Cold Water Output: 7 litres, or 30 x 250ml cups per hour
|Cold Water Tank Volume: 1.6 litres
Cold Water Output: 40 Cups Per Hour
|Heating system||Hot Water Tank Volume: 1.5 Litres
Hot Water Output: 15 litres or 60 x 250ml cups per hour
|Hot Water Tank Volume: 1.4 Litres
Hot Water Output: 80 Cups Per Hour
|Filtration||Sub 0.5 micron silver impregnated carbon block micro-filterUV light treatment||Sub 0.6 micron silver impregnated carbon filterUV light treatment|
|Filtration replacement||Carbon block filter every 6 months UV lamp annually||Carbon block filter every 6 monthsUV lamp annually|
|Colour options||Silver, cream, black, orange, yellow, red, green, black||Dark blue, red, yellow, cream, green, black, white, orange, purple, silver, grey, sky blue|
|Pricing||BIBO: £363.00Installation £36.00Self-installation options
Warranty & filters from £74 annually.
|T6: £350.00Installation £56.00Warranty & filters: from £128.00 annually
|*Comparison information taken from BIBO and T6 websites in November 2011 by gadgetsandgizmos.org|
The Bibo is at home in our kitchen from now and forever forward. It’s killed the kettle and joined the fridge, freezer, washing machine, tumble dryer and dishwasher as the sixth major appliance in our household. It’s a similar device to the T6, much like an Apple iPhone is similar to an Android phone.
At the end of the day the simpler interface, cheaper consumables and extra toys tip our favor toward the Bibo but we think every consumer will buy based on personal preference as they are both great machines. What do you think?
P.S if you have any questions please ask.
Long-term test and living with Bibo:
July 2013 saw Bibo starting to leak water and splutter after using the hot water outlet. A quick email to their support team identified the problem as limescale buildup. I ordered the kit, it arrived within 2 working days, followed the instructions and hey presto the machine works like a dream again. To cut a long story short, if you are experiencing leaking hot water or the flow continues for a little while after you’ve pressed the stop button, you have limescale – get the kit and it’ll be fixed in a jiffy.
We make tea using tea-bags in individual mugs and use in-line filtered water and an electric kettle. I find
it essential to heat the mug the same way one would heat the teapot when brewing leaf tea in order to make a decent "cuppa". With a Bibo or a T6 this would mean throwing hot water away whereas I simply return it to the kettle and bring it back to the boil. Sorry – no sale.
What a retard, ordering mine today…
Does Bibo boils each cup when u need it or it boils all the 1.5 L tank capacity?
It keeps the water at a certain level. Then cools down to below boiling when not in use. A quick press boils the tank which is fairly efficient.
This sounds very good & I've looked at other models but I'm going for the Tap which does the same thing only the unit is under the work top & not on it as this saves space, It also is around the same price. I wonder with these things if you 'HAVE TOO' get 'THEIR' filter/UV light or can you buy from somewhere else for a cheaper option? I assume it will have to be theirs.
You're correct, you have to use the ones from Bibo. Others wouldn't fit. What of you mean by the tap version?
I was shown an option at a bathroom store in Angel, London, where you could have an additional tap built into your sink, which provides constant hot water (much like Bibo – but no need for a bulky machine, althouh u don't get the cold water)
Ah I've seen those. I think Smeg make one. Is there much of a price difference?
I found the INSINKERATOR HC3300 a better choice, supply hot & cold water on demand. The best price I found for this is £399.99 inc delivery. from VIEWCLICK BUY.
Thanks for the update. What's better about it exactly?
I have had my Bibo for eighteen months now and to be honest I think I have wasted a lot of money. First, it does not provide hot water instantly. You have to press the boil button if you leave the machine for anything more than ten minutes ( As per an electric kettle ) plus you have to purchase very expensive filters and U.V. lamps . It is also very noisy both boiling water an when the cooler operates.
We’ve sent this on to Bibo, hope that’s okay.
We are sad that you feel you’ve wasted money buying your BIBO and hope we can change your opinion.
If the temperature settings are correct then the hot water in the hot tank is normally stored at 96C, touching the extra hot key takes the temperature up to 98C in just 20 seconds, much faster than any kettle so may we suggest that you adjust your temperature settings in the BIBO menu options.
The BIBO MAXI filter cartridge only needs to be changed every 6 months, the UV lamp every 12 months. A years’ supply of filters costs £74.50, equivalent to just 20p per day, less than a bottle of spring water!
The BIBO has a compressor similar to that in your fridge which chills the water, this runs occasionally depending on the ambient temperature in your kitchen and the amount of cold water you are dispensing. It’s comparatively quiet when running. The hot tank is insulated which increases its efficiency as well as making it much quieter than a kettle when it’s heating. Both the chilling and heating processes happen only occasionally and not often at the same time.
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