Introduction: Lysol No-Touch Soap Dispenser Refills
A couple of years ago, my wife and I first saw these "no-touch" soap dispensers at Walmart and thought we'd try one out. Originally, they cost $6 for the dispenser, 2 soap containers, and cheap batteries - now, they are almost double that for just the dispenser! Soap refills are also pretty expensive, running between $3 and $5. For that price, you could get a huge bottle of soap. I love using this thing when I am cooking and my hands are covered in bacteria awesomness, but I hate having to buy new soap refills. Although they aren't meant to be reusable, I realized that with a bit of effort, one could easily open these things up to refill them with pretty much whatever you want.
Step 1: Getting Started
The only tool I used for this was a flat head screwdriver, so you might want to go find one of those first.
To start, turn off the dispenser (switch located on the back) and eject the soap container. The original dispensers had an actual eject button on the back that you could push to release the soap. The newer models don't for some reason - I'd assume to reduce manufacturing cost and increase the need to buy new units when the old ones break. In that case, you just have to yank it out and hope you don't break the soap container lid.
Step 2: Drain the Remaining Soap
Chances are, the soap container is not 100% empty, only adding to the wastefulness of not reusing these things. Once you have removed it from the dispenser, flip it over so the left over soap all runs to the other other side. This will prevent it from spewing out when you open the lid. Let it sit until all of the soap has drained to the opposite end from the lid. I'm sure you can find something productive to do in the mean time... maybe vacuum the carpet or clean a few windows.
Step 3: Breaking In
Holding the container in one hand, carefully wedge the tip of the screwdriver between the container and the lid. Keep wiggling it up into the gap until you have something to pry against. Then, slowly, pry the lid off of the container. Be careful not to cut the plastic lid or puncture the container.
Step 4: Refill the Container
You should be able to add any liquid soap to the container, although, I would stay away from anything too thick or the kinds that become foamy. Although the electric pump in the dispenser is not that different from the manual pump found in normal soap dispensers, so whatever works in one just might work in the other.
In the image, I am using Dawn dish soap; however, I have also used Equate hand soap among other things.
When the container is full, put the lid back on. First place it over the opening and then firmly push down. It will take a bit of force to ensure it is locked in place.
Step 5: Install the Container
With the soap container full, you can re-install it on the dispenser. Just place it in the bay and push down until you hear it latch into place. After turning the dispenser on, it may take a few primers before anything comes out of the pump. Just keep activating the sensor until you get a stream of soap.
Step 6: Stay Sane
Since I had two of these dispensers, I decided to put dish soap in one and hand soap in the other. To keep them straight, I wrote on the soap containers with a Sharpie. The next step is to install a no-touch water faucet. Without it, you need to keep one hand clean to operate the faucet or you are just moving bacteria around anyway.