Whole House Reverse Osmosis Water Filters

Our water supply comes from the ground and rivers, lakes, and streams. Unfortunately, many harmful contaminants are found in these water sources. Dangerous living contaminants that cause diseases (viruses and bacteria) such as Cholera, Giardia and cryptosporidium thrive in our water sources.

Erosion of the ground also introduces many harmful deposits into our water supply, of both natural and man-made chemicals. Commonly used chemicals such as fertilizers, herbicides, pesticides, road salt run off into our water supplies. Industrial processes further introduce other harmful chemicals. Simply said, our water supply is often tainted by chemicals and contaminants.

Chemicals In Our Water Supply

Of course, municipalities treat all water supplies to remove and reduce all of the harmful contaminants. However, the introduction of some disinfecting or filtering chemicals create new toxic chemicals. For example, Chlorine is used as a disinfectant in the treatment process by municipalities. However, Chlorinated water produces by products such as trihalomethanes (THMs), which can cause cancer, birth defects and other health problems. There are other potentially dangerous by products that form during water treatment process.

Well owners and municipalities must treat their water sources properly. Our household water is safe to use, but if we want the purest water we should filter it even further. That’s where residential filters come into play. Residential water filters remove hundreds of contaminants, to provide pure and safe drinking water.

What Is Reverse Osmosis Water Filtering?

There are several technologies applied in water filters including activated carbon, Kinetic Degradation Fluxion (KDF), Ultraviolet filtration, and Reverse Osmosis (RO) Each of these technologies are effective in removing certain contaminants, but not all. Therefore, the purifying technologies are usually combined.

Reverse osmosis water filters are considered to be the most effective on the market. Compared to other technologies, these systems remove the most contaminants from water. For example, they effectively filter out contaminants such as Arsenic, bacteria & viruses, unpleasant smells & tastes, Chlorine, heavy metals, nitrates, sediment, and iron. Other technologies remove some of these contaminants, but not nearly as many as reverse osmosis water filters.

When it comes to the removal of Hydrogen Sulfide (causes bad odors) and Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs), which can cause cancer, reverse osmosis water treatment also works well. Other technologies work just as well, and some even better for removing these specific chemicals. But a reverse osmosis water filter can remove the tiniest harmful particles that are less than.0001 microns. To put that in perspective, common bacteria and viruses are between 0.1 to 1 micron in size.

Residential reverse osmosis water filters use two types of filtering media known as Thin Film Composite (TFC) and Cellulose Triacetate (CTA). Additionally, when combined with other technologies such as activated carbon water filters they offer the most complete purification. This combination of technologies in RO systems creates an effective product.

Whole House Reverse Osmosis Water Filters

When it comes to maintenance, reverse osmosis water filters require replacement of filters, specifically the membrane, just like any other technologies. Typically, the filtering membranes last for several years (1-4), while the pre-filters such as carbon activated filters and sediment filters need to be replaced more frequently.

When it comes to pricing, RO filters vary greatly. Whole house RO systems are very expensive and can cost several thousands dollars. These are sophisticated systems which may be excessive for the average home owner. They are also quite large in size as they feature multiple tanks and extensive plumbing parts. Whole house reverse osmosis water filters can provide several thousand gallons of purified water a day. That’s a bit too much for an average household, and something to be used for commercial applications. Generally these whole house systems are recommended for large households that use their own well water.

A viable alternative to whole house reverse osmosis water filters is to use an under the sink RO filter. They are small, compact, and provide sufficient output of filtered water for many households. The filter is easily installed under the sink and closed behind the cabinet doors. Some good brands to consider are GE, Crystal Quest, Aquasana, and EcoWater.

The Drinking Water Filters Puzzle – How to Find the Best Drinking Water Filter For You

Faced with the vast array of home drinking water filters, it seems like an overwhelming task to decide which one filter is best for “me and my family”. Not only are there many different approaches to filtering, each with it’s pros and cons, but there are also so many different models within each category. If we take just the category of carbon filters, for example, there are some 2,500 models of filters manufactured by more than 500 companies.

My purpose in this article is to begin to solve the puzzle for you and suggest a way to proceed in finding the one filter that will best serve you and your family. By reading this article you will begin to clarify your philosophy of drinking water. You will understand the major approaches to filtering drinking water. Finally, you will have a clearer idea of what your particular needs are in filtered water.

What Is Your Philosophy of Drinking Water?

There are three basic philosophies that people have when they approach the question of drinking water, drinking water filters, and the level of purity they desire.

The first approach says, “Our tap water is basically safe. All I want in a filter is something that will improve the taste, odor, and color of my drinking water.” If this is your approach, you will likely need a pitcher filter, if there are one or two people in your household or a faucet filter for a larger household. Both of these solutions are relatively inexpensive.

A second class of people will say, “I want to know specifically what are the contaminants I need to be concerned about, or I already know I am concerned about this, this, and this contaminant.” If this is your approach to drinking water pollution, you will do research to identify the contaminants which exceed the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) standard or you might run water tests of your own and identify other pollutants of concern. Then you will look for a filter that removes these specific contaminants.

A third group of people will say, “I want a filter that removes 99.9% of as many contaminants as possible. In this way I know that I am covered for anything that comes down the pipe!” If this is your approach, you are looking for a filter that will filter down to 0.5 microns and are certified to remove the widest range of all contaminants possible. For you, cost is secondary; safety and “peace of mind” are primary.

What Kind of Filter Do You Prefer?

A second way to narrow down your search of drinking water filters is to understand the major approaches to filtration as well as the advantages and disadvantages of each. There are four major approaches that I will highlight.

  • Distillers operate on the principle of turning water to steam and then condensing that steam to water once again. It leaves behind all the impurities, except VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds). In this process of removing all impurities it gives you perhaps the purest water. However, it also removes healthy minerals and is a slow process. It’s also somewhat costly depending on the cost of your electricity.
  • Reverse Osmosis involves forcing water under pressure through a membrane whose pours are large enough for water to pass through but too small to allow other contaminants to pass through. It removes impurities almost as completely as distilling water, and removes the healthy minerals as well. Disadvantages include the slowness of the process and a typical use of 3 to 10 gallons of water for every gallon filtered.
  • Carbon Filters use activated carbon to filter out a wide range of contaminants. There are small and inexpensive carbon filters which simply remove bad tastes, odors and colors and not a lot more. On the other end of the spectrum, there are larger countertop or under counter sophisticated carbon block drinking water filters that give incredibly pure drinking water.
  • Ultraviolet Filters use ultraviolet light to destroy all microorganisms or waterborne disease from your drinking water. It is particularly valuable in killing chlorine resistant cysts. It’s limitation is that it doesn’t remove other contaminants and therefore is the kind of purifier that is combined with other kinds of drinking water filters.

I realize that this is a very brief and superficial treatment of these different approaches to purifying your drinking water and recommend you read more detailed explanations of the different kinds of drinking water filters along with the pros and the cons of each to determine which approach suites your needs best.

What Are Your Unique Needs?

The third way of narrowing down your choice of filters is to have a clear idea of your needs. This is why there is no one filter that fits all needs. There are no perfect filters. All filters have advantages and disadvantages. It’s only as you know what you need that you can then decide on which filter is best for you.

Here are some of the things that affect need and some of the questions you need to ask yourself:

  • Your current source of water, is it already treated water coming to your tap or is it well water?
  • What are the particular contaminants that are of concern to you? What contaminants are a problem in your geographic area?
  • What is the size of your family? Are there infants or elderly who will be drinking the water?
  • What is your personal philosophy of what constitutes drinkable water?
  • What are your personal preferences when it comes to the kind of filter you want and the brands of filters you prefer?

We started with the realization of how complex this puzzle of drinking water filters is. I’ve suggested ways of narrowing down your choice. If you know what level of water purity you are comfortable with, you can better decide on the kind of approach to filtering you would like. And finally, with a clear idea of your personal needs, you know what you are looking for.

Where do you go from here. You may need to go deeper into one of the above areas. Other than that, look for one of the best filters in the category you have identified. Take advantage of the Free Report I offer in the reference box.

Are Water Filters Really that Important?

A very good question, “are water filters important?” In today’s society, life is very fast passed, so much to do and so little time to do it. Between work, family and all the things in between, we sometimes overlook the simple things that can make a big difference in our lives. Most people are health conscious these days, we try to eat right and exercise and drink a lot of water, which is good. But most of the time, people end up buying very expensive bottled water and don’t realize how much they are really spending, a bottle here, a bottle there, it adds up quick! There have been reports that bottled water isn’t even all that good for you, having impurities and even toxins from being stored in plastic. There is an alternative to this highly expensive way of getting our drinking water and that is finding a good water filtering system.

When you take the time to look at what options exist for filtered water, you will see that it isn’t all that complicated to figure out and you will save a lot of money compared to what you spend on bottled water. Some people get scared when thinking of purchasing a water filter system. Maybe the price of the unit seems too high or the thought of having to install the unit and then do the maintenance turns people back to the easy way of just throwing their money away on bottled water. Let us examine this further and see if that way of thinking really makes sense or if purchasing a good water filter system is the way to go. We will ask the questions: How do I know what unit is the best for my situation? What are the costs of owning a filtration unit and how will it save me money? What are the benefits I will receive from using water filtration over tap or bottled water? Are there different types of water filtration? We will look at these questions and see that the difference is great and filtering your water is the way to go.

First, there are many different water filter manufacturers out there and it is important to find an established company that has a good reputation. Since there is such a great push to being healthy and drinking plenty of water, there are many companies getting into the market and copying what good manufacturers have already put out there. A little research will help you to know the difference. Once you have found a good water filter company, it’s just a matter of deciding what you want out of your filtering system. Do you want to filter all the water coming into your house with a whole house unit, or just filter at point of use, such as the kitchen sink using a counter top unit or faucet filter, maybe a shower filter or a combination of filters. Regardless of what you want to filter, a good water filter manufacturer will have what you need and be able to walk you through the process.

The cost of owning a water filter system can vary quiet a bit depending on the type of set up you want. Some people just want filtered water for drinking and cooking, in that case going with a counter top or under sink unit is a good way to go and there are many variations to choose from ranging from around fifty to a couple of hundred dollars. If you are just looking to filter your shower water, there are very good shower filters at very reasonable prices, most around thirty to fifty dollars. A lot of people are looking to filter all the water coming into their house; this is called point of entry. There are many types of units for this purpose and a lot depends on the home you are putting the unit in, such as what type of water comes into the house, well or city water. Also, how big the house is, number of bathrooms and so on. These units can range from as little as a couple of hundred dollars to a few thousand. The money you will save by purchasing a water filter system is great! You will have an endless supply of clean filtered water for only pennies a gallon, the water filter will pay for itself in no time when you add up all the wasted money on bottled water. A whole house unit can save you an untold amount of money by protecting your water pipes and all the appliances that use water by keeping sediment, lime and calcium build up and rust out of the system.

Other benefits of filtered water over tap are many. Of course your water will taste better and be healthier for you by taking out the chlorine, fluoride and other chemicals that are added to city water, but there are even more benefits to talk of. A good shower filter will make your skin and hair softer and smoother, good for people with sensitive skin or allergies. The human body is made up of over 70 percent water and showering in unfiltered water allows the body to absorb harsh chemicals like chlorine and THMs that are harmful and the steam from using hot water causes chlorine to be inhaled if no filter is used. Also, your clothes will be brighter and softer especially if used with a water softener.

There are different kinds of water filtration, the most popular are a system that uses filters or a reverse osmosis unit. A traditional water filter system has the most options of filtration as there are sediment, carbon, fluoride and media packed cartridges. It is important to use a filter that has GAC (Granulated Activated Carbon), KDF-85 and KDF-55. It is easier to develop a system that will best suit your needs. Reverse Osmosis usually will cost more and does have some limitations. It requires more maintenance and is limited to a certain amount of water it can produce per day and may end up wasting more water than it produces. Although, many people say that the water has a better taste and this is because reverse osmosis water filter system also removes dissolved mineral contents which can cause a bitter taste in some water.

A water filter system can greatly affect your life in many positive ways, most importantly by giving you better health, it will also save you lots of money from purchasing bottled water and keeping your pipes and appliances in good working order.