Gone are the days when water used to be clean and healthy. For first world countries, this may not be a problem. But for developing ones, using a water filtering system captures essential nutrients and filter bacteria and other toxic compounds from regular water.
Though you can opt to purchase bottled water, it’s not practical in the long run. A water filtering system is a good investment especially if you’re living in an area where access to clean water is scarce.
The market is teeming with water filtration systems ranging from household use to professional use. Depending on your purpose, usage, and space, a water filtering system is an essential investment for your home.
The basics of a water filtering system
Clean water is essential to human life. If you have no food for weeks, your body can just switch use of protein to stored fat for energy. But for water, there is no substitute. Your body is 75 percent water with your bones composed of 25 percent water.
Humans consume 2.4 liters of water on average every day to keep our body replenished. Though you may feel like it, you get some of that water consumption from the food you eat.
Due to the water’s structure, it has the capacity to dissolve almost anything. Just think how our clothes would’ve been if not for some water and detergent to get it cleaned up? But there’s a downside to this. Water is constantly moving known as the water cycle. The water you took could’ve come from virtually anywhere from rivers, the glass on your table, and even from the toilet. From here, you can create an image of water that looked ‘clean’ may not be so clean after all.
Knowing this, a suitable filter system should provide you with fresh and healthy water
PUR Basic Water Pitcher Replacement Filter
This is a pitcher type of water filter fit for household use. It’s less sophisticated and easy to use than other types.
The container can carry up to 40 gallons of filtered water. This product may need replacement after two months of usage.
This filter is only compatible with PUR pitchers. To replace this, the new filter is soaked for 15 minutes in water then flushed for 10 seconds. Easy to twist and lock feature makes it easy to detach the filter from the pitcher.
If you’re looking for a smaller filtering system for home use, then the PUR Basic Water Pitcher is a good option. It’s easy to carry and portable suited for outdoors especially for camping or long road trips by storing this in a cooler or portable fridge. This product can reduce chlorine taste and odor without taking out fluoride. Its MAXION filter technology takes away contaminants resulting to clean water.
- Portable and easy to carry
- It gives the ‘clean’ water taste without the chemical aftertaste
- Easy to use
- Water needs to be cold to keep carbon from swelling hence slowing water down
- Some may find the product overpriced
- The filter may require repeated soaking and rinsing to get it working properly
Sawyer Mini Water Filtration System
This is a portable mini water filtering system suitable for outdoors. It can also be an essential item to carry where access to clean water is limited.
It can filter up to 100,000 gallons of water. This product can only accommodate small amounts at a time.
To prolong the use of this product, backwash and sanitize every after an outing. The product is easy to backflush and won’t require you to purchase cartridges.
This is the lightest water filtering system weighing only 2 ounces and fits the palm of your hand. If you’re planning to have a trip outdoors or in places where there’s limited clean water available, this mini water filter will clean around 10 million bacteria and protozoa that causes amoebiasis and other harmful gut problems. You can also use this filter directly from any water source and still get clean water.
- Lightweight and portable
- Cleans water even if it’s coming from a murky source
- Good backpacking filter suitable for hiking and other outdoor activities
- Easy to clean
- Great addition to emergency kits especially if you’re traveling in far-flung parts of the world
- Results are immediate
- It can only trap particles with a size of .1 microns and larger until back-flushing
- The system is not up to par with clearing larger particles such as sugar and metal particles
- Freezing the item may destroy the membrane that filters the microbes
- This product comes with a small bag which may not be sufficient for traveling long distances
- Water flow might be slow and will take a while the container
Express Water 50 GPD Reverse Osmosis Water Filtration System
This uses a reverse osmosis filtration process that filters contaminants and chemicals resulting to purified water. This is suitable for household use.
This filtering system can accommodate up to 50 gallons per day. The flow rate is also faster at 0.8 GPM.
Filter changes can be easily done due to filter labels. Pre-filter items are changed twice a year and other parts such as RO membrane and Post Carbon are replaced once a year.
This filtering system features a double sealed filter for optimum results. A leak stop valve automatically shuts off flow when it detects excess water. It has a brass feed adapter and easy to connect adapter that will fit most sink pipes of sizes ½” and 3/8”.
- Easy to install
- Immediately refills your tank with little to no professional assistance
- It makes use of coconut carbon filters
- Suitable for home system filters removing harmful chemical contaminants such as lead, chlorine, heavy metal, and microbes.
- You will only need to change filters twice a year
- RO filter system works well if you’re planning to use it for a private well
- Pre-assembled filter system for easy attachment
- Good price for a filtering system of this type
- It will need a tank to get efficient water output
- It may require space under the sink or some remote place where you can connect it to the content source; it may not be suitable for those with limited spaces
- This system doesn’t have a UV sanitizer feature
APEC WFS – 1000 Under Sink Water Filter System
This uses a 3 stage filtering system to ensure the cleanest possible water output. The first stage uses sediment to filter rust, dust, and dirt. The second filter uses carbon block to take out chlorine and other chemicals. The third stage uses the same carbon block to filter the remaining sediments from the water.
Feed water pressure goes from 20 to 85 psi. It can be used to filter water coming from tap or well sources. It is installed under the sink to filter water hence giving unlimited water output with or without using any water tanks.
Filters usually last up to 12 months or more. These filters are low cost and easy to replace in the system.
Compared with similar products on the market, this 3-stage filtering system is suitable for any space in your office or home. It doesn’t require professional installation as the equipment can stand on its own under the sink. Easy to connect parts can immediately produce clean water out of any water source. The output is assured that you’ll still be getting essential nutrients for your body.
- Easy to install
- It can be mounted on the wall or placed under the sink
- Heavy-duty water filter system
- Good value for your money
- This product comes with a stainless faucet and quality installation parts
- No leaks
- It keeps important minerals compared to other systems that filter out these components
- This water system may require further filters for microbes
- It can only remove sediments and soluble compounds from the water hence users may still expect heavy metals to pass through
- Cartridges may need to be replaced as per manufacturer instruction
iSpring 6-Stage Under Sink Filter System
This product utilizes a 6-stage filtering reverse osmosis process. It is built for heavy-duty use.
Water pressure output is about 45 PSI to 70 PSI with operating water temperature range of about 40 to 100 degree Fahrenheit.
This equipment is made of high-quality hardware and filters so you won’t have to keep changing its filters or parts. It may be recommended to have the filters changed once or twice a year depending on usage.
You may expect an above-average filtering process from this product. The six-stage filter ensures that you’re getting the purest water output plus nutrients. It filters about 1000 contaminants of dirt, microbes, and other chemical particles.
- Optimum filtering process (6-Stage) to provide the cleanest water output
- With alkaline re-mineralization to reintroduce essential nutrients in the water
- High-capacity equipment for heavy-duty use
- Durable for long-lasting use
- Good value for your money
- Fitting for those seeking about 10 gallons per day output
- It also acts as a water softener
- Balanced alkaline output
- Parts are made of plastic so expect some replacements and breakdowns after a few months or years
- Water wastage may go as high as 4 gallons of water
- O-rings from the supply valve is a bit flimsy with some water coming out
- Faucet may feel a bit wobbly
- This filtering system doesn’t come with a pump
Criteria for Evaluation
There are various types of water filters in the market. What you’d want is to choose the type that fits your needs.
Pitcher water filters use smaller containers that can be stored in your fridge. It usually has two compartments where one side contains tap water while the other contains the filtered water. These budget-friendly water systems you can use in your apartment good for one or two people.
The more common types used in most facilities and homes are the under the sink filtration systems. These are usually better options for home use where many people will be drinking water at the same time. These filter systems are attached to the water pipes. Water then goes through a filtering process before it goes out of your faucet as purified water.
The output and flow of water will vary per type. For smaller filtering systems (like Sawyer and Pitcher-types), the outputs are smaller since the anticipated use is fit for one or two persons.
Under-the-sink types are built for higher volume outputs that are usually utilized in populated places like homes with four to seven individuals living under one roof. It could also be used in offices where there are many individuals.
One-step filtering systems will usually require filter replacements once or twice every few months. It might also depend on your usage. Some filters may need sanitization after use to keep microbes from sticking on the filters. These items are usually made of plastic. With proper care, you can lengthen the use of the product for months to years.
Multiple-step filters will usually have varying filters with various replacement periods. Filters like ROs are usually changed once every two years for some manufacturers. Sediment and other filters usually need to be replaced approximately every three to six months.
Smaller water filter systems are usually portable and easy to use. Since it utilizes a one-step process, filtering water out will not require much time. These are commonly used for outdoor activities such as hiking, camping, or cross-country trips. Specialized filtering systems may also be used as part of an emergency item if you happen to travel in areas where there’s limited access to clean water.
Some filters come in two to five-step filters. Some filter systems will only take out dirt, dust, and chlorine contaminants. For more sophisticated filtering systems, it can take out small and larger particles (including heavy metals) out of the water but requires multiple filters to achieve this. Re-introduction of important minerals (or re-alkalinizing) can be done to achieve balanced PH.
Q: How do I know which water filter works best for me?
There are organic and non-organic components carried in water. Organic components such as detergents, insecticides, petroleum, chlorine, and tree debris may be found. As for non-organic components such as ammonia, chemical waste, and fertilizer are some that fall under this category. Other components such as the micro-plastic and food waste are major contributors to water pollution. From here, you can identify the kind of filter suitable for your needs.
Q: Will cheaper water filtering systems mean cheaper replacements?
Not necessarily. Through it may not be costly to purchase these filter systems, the cartridges may be expensive. So it’s best to check out the prices of these cartridges before buying. In the long run, these filter replacements may become costly in the long run.
Q: Are there certifications I need to look to make sure I’m getting quality water filters?
Look for an NSF certification (National Sanitation Foundation) on the product. You can also look into consumer guides and reviews to see if the product is reliable.
Q: I’m not sure what kind of contaminant our water has. How do I solve this dilemma?
You can opt for a water filtering system that removes the most contaminants. If you’re unsure about the condition of the water in your vicinity, this may be your best option.
Q: Do I need a stainless steel type or would a plastic water filter system work the same way?
Though it is not inarguable that a stainless steel type is built for durability, these may come at a higher price. If you’re considering budget, a plastic type may do just as well with proper maintenance and care.
Water is essential to life. With clean water, it keeps your body healthy and hydrated.
In choosing the kind of water filtering system to use, always consider first the purpose. Simple filtering systems may work for those with good access to clean water but needed a few filters to give it a ‘clean’ taste. Multiple filters will work best for vicinities with access to water with some impurities. Drinking clean water is essential to avoid the cumulative effects of these hazardous contaminants in the body.
Consider what others are saying about the product before purchasing. You may also look into the contaminants found in your water source so you can choose the right filtering system for your home, office or any facility.