Learn about the different types of water filters
Water filters come in a wide variety, which can be perplexing and overwhelming. The technical terms used may add to the confusion. However, it’s crucial to ensure that the water filter you choose has the capacity to meet your drinking water needs.
Home water filters range from simple jug filters with charcoal filters to advanced filtration systems that produce crystal-clear, high-quality water. While cost plays a significant role, there are some great deals available for home water filters.
Consider your budget and calculate how much you spend on bottled water each week. Bottled water, usually in 2 or 5-liter plastic bottles, can sometimes have a plastic taste depending on the type of plastic used. Many bottled water brands are simply tap water in disguise. Municipal tap water often contains chemicals and potentially harmful microorganisms.
On average, a family consumes 30 to 40 liters of water per week, which adds up to over $1500 a year on basic supermarket bottled water! Fancy imported water would double or even triple that cost, which could buy you a top-notch tap water filter.
Let’s break down the different types of water filters available:
- Jug Filters: The popular Brita brand falls into this category, offering a good filter cartridge. While you can opt for cheaper supermarket cartridges, they may leave an aftertaste and don’t last as long. There’s also a countertop model with a larger filtered water reservoir. The filters usually last around 2 months, and most jug filters fit into refrigerator doors. However, be cautious with the lids as they can be fragile. Cartridges for jug filters are widely available.
- Refrigerator Filters: These filters are connected to your refrigerator and provide easy access to cold drinking water. They typically need to be replaced every 6 months.
- Under Sink Water Filters: These filters are installed under your kitchen faucet, providing clean water on demand. However, they don’t remove microorganisms. The cartridges should be changed every 2 or 3 months, costing around $30 for a new one. Some units have both charcoal and ceramic cartridges, requiring regular replacement for the charcoal and occasional cleaning for the ceramic.
- Multi-Stage Filters: This type of filter system often consists of three different filters. It may include a sand or gravel filter to remove organic matter, followed by a charcoal filter to eliminate larger particles, and a ceramic filter to filter out microorganisms. Some advanced multi-stage filters may also incorporate a UV filter to kill harmful organisms like Giardia and Cryptosporidium, which can cause stomach upsets. These filters are typically larger and require electricity. They can be installed under the counter or as a pumped system.
- Reverse Osmosis Filters: These filters produce excellent quality water, but the process is relatively slow and may not be ideal for large families due to the time it takes to filter a sufficient amount of water.
- Whole House Water Filters: These larger filters operate similarly to multi-stage filters but are designed to filter water for the entire house. They tend to be more expensive and come in different sizes based on the number of bathrooms, toilets, and water-dependent appliances you have. Some whole house systems can also be combined with rainwater collection systems to reduce water costs.
Remember that water filtration technology is continuously advancing, but these are the basic categories of water filters available today.
Here is a video of one of the water filters that we recommend