When and Why Should You Invest in a Whole House Water Filter?
In the US, most people don’t give too much thought to the quality of the water they use. As long as the water does not taste funny or has a bad odor, we assume that it is safe to use the water unfiltered. Of course, foul odor and bad taste are some of the telltale signs that something is wrong with your water.
However, you can recognize poor water quality by more subtle clues as well. For example, do you see scale buildup or rust stains on your bathroom and kitchen fixtures? Are you regularly having a difficult time developing lather with cream or soap, for example, during shaving or showering? These are some of the indications that there are impurities in the water.
In fact, your water may still carry contaminants even if there are no recognizable signs. One troublesome fact in this regard is that although there are 80 contaminants listed in EPA safety standards, there is a rising list of new contaminants that are yet to be addressed.
POE vs. POU
In light of these facts, it seems a wise choice to invest in a water filtration system for your home. Now, when it comes to water filters, you can either use one or more point-of-use (POU) water filters or install a whole house or point-of-entry (POE) water filter. In the latter case, the water gets filtered right at the point where the water enters your home.
Now, while POU systems provide a good degree of protection (depending on what type of system you are using and for what purposes), if you are looking for the most comprehensive solution, a POE or Whole House Water filter is the way to go. This way you ensure that all the water you use during the course of day (for cooking, cleaning, bathing, drinking) is filtered. Also, with a POE system, you won’t need to deal with the (often difficult) task of managing multiple filtration systems.
What is more, POE systems also do a great job of protecting plumbing within your home. Because water is intercepted and purified before it reaches the home plumbing, pipelines within your home won’t suffer any damaging effects from miscellaneous chemicals and compounds, scale, hard water and the like.
Things to Consider When Buying a Whole House Filter
If you want to buy the best whole house water filter for your requirements, you need to carry out certain tasks to make sure that you do indeed pick the one that is ideal for your home.
- Know Your Water
In order to learn what impurities (if any) are there in your water, begin with getting a copy of the Annual Quality Report of your municipal water service.
However, we also recommend that you get your water tested by a state certified laboratory or you may also test it yourself using at-home water test kits.
This is important since the water can also get contaminated by different chemicals and organisms residing in the pipelines leading water to your home.
If you are using a private well, you must get your water tested at least once a year. If there are non-organic farms near your home, we suggest that you test your well water twice or more in a year and make sure to test for LEAD and if there’s LEAD present in your water supply, we recommend this LEAD & Cyst water filter system as it removes 99.95% of LEAD and other harmful containments.
Note: Sometimes, county health departments offer free tastes for nitrates and bacteria. So, keep an eye out for that.
https://www.epa.gov/waterlabnetwork: This is EPA’s website for Safe Drinking Water. You can get the water quality report of your water supply as well as find a list of certified water labs from your area at this website. For the latter purpose, you may also call EPA safe water hotline at 800-426-4791.
- What Type of POE Filter You Should Use
Different water filtration systems remove or reduce contaminants from water using different filters or media. Also, these different methods are meant to treat different types of water issues.
For example, reverse osmosis or RO systems use a semipermeable membrane which is most effective in removing microorganisms and minerals. Ion-exchange softeners, on the other hand, are used to treat hard water. Or, if your goal is to remove or reduce viruses and bacteria, chlorination or ultraviolet (UV) filters happen to be the best answers to them. Of course, the ideal option for any homeowner is to use a multistage filtration system that combines several technologies in a single device.
However, this also happens to be the most expensive option. So, unless you really need it, it is best to settle for a specific system.
https://www.nsf.org/knowledge-library/contaminant-reduction-claims-guide: Please visit this page at NSF International website (NSF is an accredited, independent organization that develops and manages standards, tests systems and products and offer certifications) for more information on which filtering methods treat which contaminants.
Now, you can combine this knowledge with the knowledge of what’s there in your water and this will help you pick up the right water filter for your home.
- Determine the Proper Flow Rate and Size of Your Water Filter
It is important that your whole house water filter is of the right size and has the right flow rate for your requirements. This you can determine by calculating the flow rate (given in GPM or gallons per minute) of all the different water dispensers in your home, how many water dispensers there are in your home and the number of heads in your family.
You can also engage a water specialist for this service or confer with the company whom you are going to buy the system from.
Finally, once your system is installed, make sure to employ proper maintenance on it. Always stay current with your filter changing requirements and also make sure to closely follow all the manufacturer recommendations listed on your user’s manual.