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For Carbonated Water Drinkers...a review of SPARKEL water carbonator

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First, I know there is a large population of WLS folks who don't drink carbonated beverages, so if you are one of those, this will not interest you. Look Away!

Soooo....I am big carbonated Water drinker, drank the stuff pre-wls, and continued to do so after surgery (starting around 2-3 months post op). The literature my team provided advised against it, but when I brought it up with my surgeon & nutritionist, both had no real objection.

Our household probably goes through 10 or so 1.5 litre bottles of carbonated water a week (of which I probably drink 6 or 7 of them myself).

I have long been considering a Soda Stream but the idea of having to keep buying C02 tanks put me off. I had also considered setting up a DIY carbonation system but laziness kept getting the better of me.

Enter Sparkel.

I got this as an Xmas present this year, and after using it for a week, I am a True Believer. It doesn't use CO2 tanks, but instead uses "carbonators" that interact with water and through some chemical process produces C02 that is injected into liquid.

Broken down, these carbonators cost .65 cents (Canadian) to produce 750ml of carbonated water. Which by itself, is already a savings vs. store bought carbonated water (after the initial cost of the unit is recouped). HOWEVER, being an avid Reddit reader, I discovered that these "carbonators" are basically citric acid and sodium bicarbonate (i.e., baking soda), which, when bought in bulk, reduces the cost of making each 750ml bottle of water to just .14 cents (Canadian)!! The initial cost of the unit is $129 CAD, so these savings would be realized at around the 8 month mark.

In short, this thing is a hit at my place. We have tried carbonating everything we could get our hands on. Water (of course), Juices/Ciders, Wine, Vodka, all good. Milk, coffee, Tea, um...probably an acquired taste, lol. My fave is Mint & Cucumber infused water. The fam loves our version of Ginger Beer (water, ginger Syrup & ginger slices).

While I totally love this thing and plan on continue using it multiple times a day for days on end, there are a couple things that could be improved upon:

  • Speed of carbonation. I've seen the traditional CO2 tank-based units carbonate a bottle in about 30 seconds or less. This one takes about 3-5 minutes, depending on your desired level of carbonation.
  • Cost of the proprietary "carbonator" powders...but this can be circumvented by buying the ingredients in third-party bulk.
  • Handle seems flimsy...I feel like I need to be careful pulling the handle down lest I snap it in two...I feel like it should be made out of stainless steel instead of moulded plastic.
  • The unit needs some "feet" underneath. I often drip water everywhere, and since the bottom of unit basically sits flush to the counter, I feel like this is a electrocution accident waiting to happen.
  • The bottle size is could be larger. 750ml is basically a single serving in my house, so having to make a bottle for everyone at 5 mins a pop can get time consuming.

So.....if you are a carbonated water person, I wholly recommend this product (so far...we'll see how it holds up to daily use in a few months from now..). The few Cons with it are well worth the Pros.

I am not affiliated with Sparkel in any way 😁 lol


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I've got one of these too and while I don't use it as often as you do I think it's great. Quite often I put a sugar free Water Enhancer in and carbonate it. And I definitely like not having to get the CO2 like a soda stream.

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