Water filters are a great way of providing clean and safe drinking water for your family. Not only do they help to protect you from contaminants, but they also help to improve the taste of the water. Installing a filter can be an essential part of healthy living.
Do We Need To Install A Water Filter?
It depends on the water quality in your area. If you live in an area with hard or contaminated water, a filter is essential for providing filtered and safe drinking water. On the other hand, if your tap water is relatively pure, you don’t need a filter. However, installing a water filter can still be beneficial if you want to improve the taste and odor of your drinking water.
When deciding whether or not to install a water filter, it’s essential to consider your source of water, its quality, and what kind of contaminants may be present in your area.
Why Install Water Filters?
Clean water is your fundamental human right: It is essential to drink and use for cooking and hygiene. But if your water supply is contaminated with chemicals, metals, or other impurities, you need a water filter to ensure the water you’re using is safe. Water filters effectively remove contaminants from the water that can lead to health problems if ingested or used for cooking.
Removing chlorine: Installing a water filter is one of the most effective ways to remove chlorine from your drinking and cooking water. In addition, chlorine can be removed by boiling or distillation processes, but these methods are more time-consuming and expensive than installing a filter.
No need to invest in bottled water: Installing a water filter can make your tap water safe and better tasting. You have no more need to buy filtered water bottles. Buying and discarding bottled water can be time-consuming, costly, and damaging to the environment.
Saving the planet: Installing a water filter is not just good for your health; it can also be a great way to help the planet. Water filters reduce the amount of plastic used for single-use bottles, which helps conserve resources and keep our oceans clean.
Increasing the life of your home’s plumbing system: Installing a water filter can benefit your home’s plumbing system. It helps to reduce the number of minerals in the water, which can lead to corrosion and clogging of pipes over time. By filtering out these minerals, it’s less likely that you’ll run into these problems down the road.
Help you save maintenance costs: Installing a water filter in your home can help reduce the need for regular maintenance. Water filters trap contaminants that can damage plumbing and other home appliances, such as dishwashers and washing machines. By filtering out these particles before they enter your home, you’ll save money on repairs over time.
Better smell and taste: Installing a water filter can help improve the taste and smell of your tap water. This is because it filters out unpleasant odors and flavors, making your water more pleasant to drink. Some filters also remove sediment that may be found in your tap water, making it more transparent and better tasting.
Cost-effective: Installing a water filter is much less costly than purchasing bottled water. It’s also more convenient since filtered water will be available on demand.
Reduces limescale and other mineral deposits: Installing a water filter can reduce limescale and other mineral deposits in your plumbing, fixtures, and appliances. This buildup can cause significant damage to the life of pipes and other components and an unpleasant taste in the water.
Things To Consider Before Installing The Water Filter System
Water quality: Before installing a water filter, you should first determine your water quality. If there are no significant contaminants or impurities in your tap water, you may not need to install a filter.
Source of water and TDS levels: Water sources can vary greatly depending on location. It is essential to understand the source of your water and its Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) levels, as this will determine whether a water filter is needed. TDS levels measure the number of minerals, salts, metals, cations, or anions dissolved in a given volume of water.
Generally, TDS levels measure between 0-500 parts per million (ppm), with anything above 500 ppm indicating the need for a water filter. While some areas may have naturally higher TDS levels due to their environment.
Water pressure /Flow rate: When considering a water filter, it is essential to look at the flow rate of your tap water and the pressure of your water supply. The low flow rate or low-pressure taps can result in reduced effectiveness of filtration as well as a lack of sufficient water flow.
The flow rate is usually measured in gallons per minute (GPM). Typically, a standard sink should have a minimum GPM of three. Low-flow fixtures usually have fewer than three GPM ratings, meaning the water does not flow sufficiently to be effectively filtered. Pressure should also be considered, as lower pressure will reduce the effectiveness of the filtration process.
Different Types Of Water Filtration Systems
Reverse osmosis water filter systems: Reverse osmosis water filtration systems use a membrane to filter out dirt and other particles like bacteria, chlorine, lead, and sediment. A special pressure pump forces the water through the reverse osmosis membrane, trapping contaminants on one side while allowing clean water to pass through to the other.
Cation exchange water filter systems: Cation exchange water filter systems effectively reduce contaminants and impurities in your home’s tap water. These systems use an ion exchange resin filtering media, which exchanges positively charged ions with the incoming water supply.
Activated carbon: For households that want to reduce chlorine and other contaminants from their drinking water, activated carbon filters can be an effective solution. These filters use a unique combination of charcoal and other materials to help trap pollutants like chlorine, lead, agricultural runoff, and pharmaceuticals.
What Kind Of System Do You Need, And How Does It Fit Into Your Home?
Water filter pitchers: These solutions are portable and require no installation. All you need to do is fill the pitcher with tap water, let it sit for a few minutes, and then pour the filtered water into glasses or bottles. Water filter pitchers are great if you want a quick and easy solution that doesn’t take up much space in your home.
Refrigerator filters: Refrigerator filters are essential to the water filtration system. They remove contaminants from water that passes into the refrigerator’s ice maker, drinking water spouts, and other water sources. It is essential to replace these filters regularly to ensure that you have safe, clean drinking water from your fridge.
Faucet-mounted filters: Faucet-mounted water filters are an excellent option for homes that don’t have an existing filtration system. These can be installed quickly and easily onto the kitchen sink and provide a point-of-use filter that will remove many contaminants from your water supply.
Faucet-integrated (built-in) filters: Installing a faucet-integrated (built-in) filter is the most effective way to ensure that your drinking water is free of contaminants. Such filters are installed directly on your kitchen sink and use activated carbon, ion exchange media, or reverse osmosis technology to remove impurities from the water.
On-counter filters: One of the most popular water filters is on-counter filters. As the name implies, these can be installed directly onto your kitchen counter and do not require any plumbing expertise or additional space for installation. These systems take up very little space and are an excellent option for those looking to improve their tap water quality without taking up much room.
Under-sink filters: If you’re looking for an effective way to filter your drinking water, consider installing an under-sink filter. Under-sink filters are ideal for those that want a more permanent solution than countertop or pitcher filters.
Whole-house water treatment: Installing a whole-house water filter is an excellent way to protect your home, family, and appliances from the harmful effects of hard water. A whole-house filter will provide your household with clean, safe drinking water. It can also reduce unpleasant tastes and odors that may be present in your tap water.
How Do Different Water Filters Work?
There are a variety of water filtration systems available on the market. Many use physical filters to remove particulates from water, while others use chemical treatments to purify it.
- Physical filters such as sediment or activated carbon filters trap contaminants in the filter media and keep them from passing through into the clean water. These filters can be made from various materials, including cloth, paper, or synthetic fibers.
- Chemical treatments such as reverse osmosis and ultraviolet light treatment are designed to remove bacteria, viruses, and other contaminants through chemical reactions. Reverse osmosis is a process where water is forced through a semi-permeable membrane that blocks most contaminants while allowing clean water to pass through. The ultraviolet light treatment destroys bacteria and other microorganisms using ultraviolet radiation.
What is the pore size of a filter?
The pore size of a filter can vary depending on the type but typically range from 0.5 to 5 microns. The smaller the micron rating, the finer the filtration capability of the filter and, therefore, the better it can remove contaminants from water.
Should pre-filters be used in a water filter?
Pre-filters are excellent for extending the life of a water filter, removing larger particles that can clog the filter and reduce its efficiency.
Can I install an RO purifier for tap water?
Yes, you can install an RO purifier for tap water. RO stands for Reverse Osmosis and is a method of filtration that removes impurities from the water by forcing them through a semi-permeable membrane. The pressure forces water molecules through the membrane and traps solid particles, bacteria, and other dissolved solids.
Should I hire a professional to install a water filter system?
It’s best to hire a professional plumber to install a water filter system to ensure it is done correctly and safely. This approach also gives you peace of mind knowing that the job has been completed by an experienced professional who can advise you further on maintenance and repairs if needed.
Ultimately, whether you need to install a water filter depends on your needs and preferences. If you’re concerned about the quality of your tap water or if it contains impurities that could affect taste, smell, or health, then installing one is probably a good idea. Otherwise, if the tap water in your area is regulated and meets the standards recommended by health authorities, you might not need one. However, if you want to be sure about your water’s quality, a water filter may be worth considering. Ultimately, it’s up to you to decide what is best for you and your household.
Meet Jeffrey B Roberts, your dedicated guide into the realm of water science and technology. As a hydro biologist with an insatiable curiosity, Jeffrey’s journey has been one of unraveling the mysteries of water systems and advocating for clean, safe water for all.
With an academic background steeped in the sciences, Jeffrey’s passion lies at the crossroads of science, technology, and nature. A deep fascination with plants and genetics has not only enriched their understanding of aquatic ecosystems but has also propelled them into the world of water softening solutions.
Believing that clean water is a basic human right, Jeffrey’s writing transcends the technicalities, making the intricate world of water softening accessible to all. Through their blog, they ardently share insights, tips, and breakthroughs, empowering readers to make informed decisions about their water quality.
Beyond his role as a prolific writer, Jeffrey is a respected figure in the hydronics industry education. With years of hands-on experience, they serve as an adjunct professor, nurturing the next generation of experts at the Thaddeus Stevens College of Technology. His involvement on the Technical Advisory Board further cements their dedication to pushing the boundaries of innovation in water technology.