When it comes to water filtration systems, one size seldom fits all. Many variances lead people to seek filtration, so the cause is the key indicator for the remedy you seek. The good news is that the process of identifying your solution is pretty standard regardless of your specific water needs.
Know what contaminants you need to filter out of your water
Okay, so this step is an easy one – conceptually. Before you can fix your water, you must first know what you’re fixing. It doesn’t matter if you have specific contaminants in mind or if you’re just curious about a funny smell or odd flavor. The process of discovery starts with testing your water, and the methods of testing vary.
Water testing kits – DIY at home
You can purchase home testing kits at your local hardware store, or many are available online. As you compare your kits, you will find that different kits test for different items. Make sure to check reviews about the accuracy, as well. Whichever you select, always make sure you choose one that checks for lead in your water.
Well water – get laboratory testing
If you have a well supplying your home water, you can have your water tested at a lab for purity, minerals, and possible contaminants. The EPA has a list of certified labs to find one close to your location. The EPA also reports on known information about your area’s water quality.
Public water – check quality online
The EPA also has a page where it keeps reports on the quality of public utility water systems. The Consumer Confidence Reports are available nationwide for all municipal water suppliers. If you don’t find your community water supplier or if you continue to find yourself skeptical, you can always send your water to one of the certified labs for testing. After the Flint, MI fiasco, nobody will fault you for submitting your water for extra screening, if only for your peace of mind.
We will test your water for you at The Science of Water
Here at The Science of Water, we have the equipment to complete water testing for you. Contact us for a free water test and see exactly what you have to work with. Our tests are comprehensive, extremely accurate, and complimentary with no obligation.
Know how much filtered water you will use daily
The next step is knowing how much water needs filtering each day. Filters last longer when less water passes through them. If your home or business goes through a massive amount of water, then you want to make sure your water filtration system can handle the load. In a family home, the size of a family will affect the amount of water needed. Showers use many more gallons of water each day than drinking water, for example.
Extended water filtering not only requires different equipment and installation but may also require additional maintenance than a single faucet unit, for example. Some filters may require monthly replacement, while others are designed to be cleaned and reused. For most, it is dependent on the amount of use.
Consider the different filtration types
Some of you may be thinking “all of it,” while others may only want certain access faucets to be filtered. If you are only interested in filtering drinking water, you could select a system that addresses a single faucet instead of filtering your entire house. The significant variance is the cost between the two systems.
As you embark on your journey of comparing water filtration systems, you will hear a couple of terms being thrown around. These terms are POE and POU.
Point of Entry (POE) systems filter water for the entire house or building from the source. This filtered water is then distributed to all of the faucets. When we say “all,” we mean all of the sinks, showers, washing machines, ice makers, and exterior faucets. A POE system filters water for all faucets that dispense water throughout the house, inside and outside.
Many POE systems also operate with a water softening system. Those with heavy minerals in their water will notice that softer water extends the life of appliances along with feeling nicer on the skin.
The Point of Use (POU) systems refer to the spigot the water comes from. The rest of the house is unchanged, but a faucet may be augmented or another added to provide filtered water to that one location.
A perfect example is when people have a desire for purified drinking water. A reverse osmosis system may reside as a separate faucet at the sink. The unit separates water into hydrogen and oxygen, flushes out trace minerals and additives, then rejoins the hydrogen and oxygen to provide the purest form of water. Distillers heat the water into vapor as it separates from impurities and floats to another chamber to be cooled down back to liquid form. Some filters mount right on the end of the faucet for a simpler type of filtration.
Other examples of POU water filters are countertop varieties, such as water pitchers that are filled into a reservoir, and then gravity pulls the water through a filter into the pitcher.
Compare options to your budget
Once you know what you wish to remove from your water (contaminant reduction) and how much water you need filtering each day (capacity), it’s time to start comparing water filtration systems that meet your requirements.
Prices are all over the board, especially when shopping for a POE over a POU, which can get you by for only $20 for a gravity filtered water pitcher. A POE, on the other hand, can run several thousand dollars, depending on your needs and desires (like softening features).
How effective do you need your filtration to be?
Different filters operate at varying percentages of reduction. You can spend less to remove that funky smell due to sulfur than you would to remove every virtual contaminant in your water supply. Be sure to make thorough comparisons with the specific contaminants that you have the most concern about.
How easy is it to install or maintain?
If costs are a concern, the ability to do your own installation is an attractive way to save costs without the need for hiring a plumber. Some systems are much easier to install than others.
Ease of use is another concern, especially for residential use. Some excellent questions to ask are how frequently the filters need replacing, where to purchase replacements, and whether you can complete these maintenance tasks yourself.
Puronics – tried, true, and trusted
Puronics has been providing clean water solutions since 1947 with whole house systems that filter and soften the water throughout the home as well as under-counter drinking water solutions. Enjoy better-tasting water and food, cleaner and smoother skin, and cleaner clothes and dishes with the Puronics water solutions. Toss the water bottle, and let’s get started with that free water test.