The majority of us use communal sources of water in our homes. The water is channeled to your house’s faucets by a service provider who may be the municipality or a private contractor operating a well. There is, therefore, some uncomfortable level of uncertainty when it comes to the water we use in our households. Thus the need to invest in a process to treat your water, freeing it from harmful contaminants.
What is water filtration?
Since childhood, we all have encountered one form or another of cleaning and treating the water we drink; whether it is the rudimentary boiling over high heat or the infamous sand filter. Simply put, water filtration is any process that involves the treatment of water to free it from contaminants, thus rendering it safe for human consumption.
When it comes to water treatment techniques, you will encounter processes and jargons that may leave you confused. What is a water filter, or how does reverse osmosis works are some questions you might be asking.
The water company probably cleans your water using a variety of chemicals that comprise of chlorine or chloramines. This is sufficient to protect you and your family against most waterborne diseases like dysentery and cholera. Some people simply detest the odor and taste of residual chlorine in their drinking water or have health concerns about the impact of these chemicals on the human body. Most people, however, are lured by the guarantee of safe drinking water.
Popular types of drinking water filtration systems
Gone are days when we treated our water using the three-pot method, by sieving through pieces of cloth, or boiling. With technological progress comes advancements in water purification media, and we can say goodbye to the time consuming slow sand filtration system. In an attempt to produce cleaner and safer water for your family, you should consider having a viable water filtration system installed in your home.
There are a myriad of options to pick from but, which is the best water filtration system for your home? Let us look at the most popular methods.
- Activated carbon
Sometimes referred to as activated charcoal filtration. This method utilizes the adsorption capability of charcoal. As the water passes through the filtration system with activated carbon, the harmful molecules adhere to the charcoal’s pores. It is thus effective for getting rid of contaminants like residual chlorine and organic compounds with high volatility. The up-side is its cost-effectiveness; an activated carbon filter does not require an external power source to function, and the initial installation cost is relatively lower compared to some other methods.
- Reverse osmosis method
In reverse osmosis, water is passed through a membrane that is partially permeable. This effectively stops the larger molecules from going through the membrane. Due to its ability to filter out more pollutants and harmful biological organisms, this method is more effective compared to other filtration methods such as activated carbon. It also runs without electricity so it can be used in virtually any kind of household.
- UV light
These ozone systems are effective for killing a wide array of micro-organisms in water. Therefore, they are the best option if you are adept at eliminating waterborne diseases. The downside is that the system is very expensive and runs on electricity. The biggest con is that it does not get rid of chemical components.
- Other alternatives
The list is endless with water filtration systems for the home. From simple devices like water filter pitchers and water softeners to more complex systems like deionization. There are also other ingenious inventions like the backpacking filter for your camping and outdoor adventures.
- Saves costs
In the long run, we all concur, installing a well-functioning home water filter is cheaper compared to purchasing bottled drinking water. The initial set-up cost may call for a significant financial investment that may dent your bank account. However, the long-term benefit will be evident in a couple of months.
- Environmental friendly
Remember the bottled drinking water we talked about earlier? Well, when you stop buying bottled water, you have less garbage to dispose off. There is an ongoing global crisis brought about by the haphazard disposal of plastic water bottles. Other than protecting our planet against the detrimental effects of pollution, you get to save ample resources you may have otherwise utilized in recycling.
Before you buy a water filter
Refrain from rushing to the store and purchasing the first filtration system you heard about. Not all water filters are the same. They differ in functionality, capability, and cost. The first thing you should do before you consider a water filter is to get your water tested. Assess if there are any biological contaminants and the pH of the water. You can do this quality check using a home water quality test kit that you can buy from a retail shop or online. If you are unsatisfied with the results you obtain, you can get a second opinion from a professional such as an accredited lab.
Other aspects about the water you should take into consideration are its chemical properties and the water pressure. Your preferences also play a major role. After all, you are purchasing the filtration system for personal use in your home, so ensure you settle on what caters to your needs.
Installing a home filtration system is a costly affair. It often calls for months of saving. Compare the different systems. Choose the one that serves its purpose and if affordable. Keep in mind, for a home system to properly function, it requires constant maintenance. Importantly, make sure you install a system that can withstand enormous water pressure and inconsistent weather conditions. It is a costly investment after all, so protect yourself from unnecessary loss.
Thanks to widespread advertising via mainstream media, there is varied information in the market about water filtration systems. Carefully assess each method’s pros and cons before you settle on one for your home. Pick a service provider who is reputable. If you purchase a filtration system from an online store, ensure they are accredited. The main purpose is to provide your family with clean water that is safe for drinking and free from diseases and contaminants.
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