Water Filters for Home
Drinking Water Standards
Drinking or potable water is pure enough to be consumed with low risk of immediate or long term effects. Water is an important and life-sustaining drink to humans and is essential to the survival of all organisms.
In several parts of the world, humans have insufficient access to drinking water. Resulting in the use of sources contaminated with disease, bacteria or unacceptable levels of toxins and suspended solids. Consuming such water leads to widespread acute and chronic illnesses and is a major cause of death in many countries.
Specifications for drinking water quality typically fall under two categories: chemical and microbiological. Chemical contaminants include heavy metals, organic compounds, total suspended solids (TSS), and turbidity. Microbiological contaminants include Coliform bacteria, E. coli, specific bacteria viruses, and parasites.
Types of Water Filters for Home
- Refrigerator: this filter is built- in and is probably the easiest type of filtration. However, you have to buy one of the newer model refrigerators to get it. This requires a water line that is hooked directly to the refrigerator. The water comes from your water supply, into the back of the fridge, through filtration, and out the front of the fridge into your glass. Most will also filter the ice maker as well, ensuring that this water source is pure. The cartridges need to be changed regularly.
- Inline: this filter is placed on a water line outside of a refrigerator, coffee machine or ice maker. It is an excellent way to have fresh, clean, filtered water and ice. This filter can be placed in many convenient locations like under the sink or behind the refrigerator. They come in a variety of fitting sizes. You will need to match your water filter tubing size to the inline filter fitting size. Many are disposable and you will have to replace the entire unit each time.
- Faucet Mount: this is a unit that attaches directly to your faucet and filters the water as it comes out of the tap. Most can be installed directly into the faucet with no special tools required. Tap water is filled with chemicals and contaminants that are harmful to you and your family, and many people are turning to some type of filtration for their homes. Some families have switched to bottled water for drinking and not making any efforts to filter the tap water for cooking or cleaning.
- Pitchers: a container with a spout used for storing and pouring liquid contents. Shop for well-known brands to ensure that replacement filters will be readily available. Choose a water pitcher with a digital indicator that alerts you when it’s time to change the filter.
- Dispensers: a device that cools and dispenses water. They are divided in two categories: bottleless and bottled water coolers.
- Countertop: these filters must remain on your counter. Some require connection to your spigot and some require that water be poured through them.
- Under sink: attaches to the plumbing under your sink, filtering the water before it gets to the tap. These systems will filter out more harmful substances like volatile organic chemicals (VOC) and metals. When shopping for an under sink water filter, take cost and size into consideration.
- Reverse Osmosis: works by moving the water through a semi permeable membrane that has microscopic holes small enough for a molecule of water to pass through but too small for anything larger. Since water is a very tiny molecule, much of the contaminants are removed through this process.
- Water Bottles: provide great tasting water on the go, without the cost and waste of bottled water. It filters ordinary tap water to taste great anywhere.