I recently bought a hot and cold water cooler for our house. I thought it was a simple gift. I bought one with a stainless steel water basin to help avoid possible health issues with plastic (and also taste)
However, after it arrived, I realized that this stainless steel basin might need to be toiveled. I tried to take it out, and see that it's attached to wires, that are probably soldered. In addition, there is another metal basin (and I believe heating coils) to hold the hot water= Same problem. The steel makes it a possible shailah on a d'oraisa. I did some research (personal research please don't rely on in practice) and found the following options - in order of personal preference::
- (A) Take it apart and rebuild it- thus making it a utensil made by a Jew. I'm not clear on how much I can take apart that would satisfy this requirement and not break it. i.e. I can unscrew things, but would that suffice to make it "rebuilt"?
- (B) Sell it to a non-Jew, and then pay him a nominal amount to use it. Though a concern is that years later if/when I dispose or sell it - it's not mine, and that would be stealing. I can ask my shul's Rabbi to broker the deal with the person that he sells the chometz to. My LOR advised this.
- (C) Buy one with a removable reservoir - I found that crystal mountains glacier and storm have removable cold water steel basin (great feature for cleaning). And the hot water basin is also metal, but I called their tech support and he said that it could be removed (approx 10-15 minute job).
- (D) Buy one with a plastic reservoir - not the best for health and taste, also doesn't solve the heating basin issue. Also difficult to find as it seems that stainless steel is the norm (for good reason I suppose)
- (E) Do nothing - Rely on opinions that it doesn't need to be toiveled if it's plugged in - considered מחובר לקרקע. However, I was planning to keep it unplugged for Shabbos to avoid ny refrigerations Q's. I am lenient to use a refrigerator. However, I was hoping to avoid that with the water cooler as it's much less critical and simply unplug it. However, doing so would break the chain to the ground.
- (F) Toivel it - too big for standard store כלים mikvah. (*edit - though could go into a person mikvah (e.g. men's mikvah)
- (G) Rent - I'm guessing this is like (B) and what most people do(?)
Bottom Line Q I'm leaning towards (C), but wondering what everyone does as it seems far from simple and a Q of a d'oraisa. Can anyone provide guidance on what's needed to "rebuild" (re: option (A))