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Water filters: An overview

Stay hydrated with safe drinking water

It’s common knowledge that staying hydrated is important to the wellbeing of the human body. And with the Mayo Clinic recommending we drink eight 8-ounce glasses of fluid daily to stay healthy, from the time we wake up to when we go to sleep, we need to be drinking water and other fluids. The invention of the portable water bottle has made it easy for us to take water with us when we’re away from sinks or taps -- but what if the water we’re drinking all day isn’t safe?

From lead to giardia, e. Coli to TTHMs, unsafe drinking water is becoming increasingly common, and more and more cases of water-related illness are being reported. As a the importance of clean, safe drinking water is becoming clear. The good news: A quality water filter will reduce the harmful contaminants that can cause severe illnesses and produce a great-tasting beverage that is critical to our health and wellness. By purifying water ourselves with filters, reverse osmosis or UV treatment, we can protect ourselves and our loved ones from unsafe drinking water.

With the variety of filtration systems available today, there’s a way to make sure your water is clean and safe whether you’re home, at work, or on the run. Each with its own benefits and features, there’s a water filtration system to meet all your hydration needs.

TYPES OF WATER FILTERS

Bag filters
Designed especially to filter out sediment, a bag filter is a small bag made of a filtering material that attaches to a sturdy ring at the opening. As the bag fills with water, it seeps through the filter’s tiny holes, leaving behind unwanted contaminants.
Camping and backpacking water filters
Avoid getting sick from contaminants like e. Coli, giardia, and shigella by transforming lake, river, or stream water into a high quality beverage with a camping water filter system. From handheld pump-style filter to gravity-fed, there is a system that will fit your needs — and backpack
Pitchers and dispensers
While it’s long been known that filtering water is important when backpacking or camping, home water filtration systems are increasingly important. Among the easiest to use and most affordable of filtration systems, a pitcher or dispenser filter can remove a variety of contaminants ranging from sediment to chlorine, lead to mercury.
Refrigerator water filters
More than just making your water look and taste good, fridge filters can remove a variety of contaminants that can cause illness. Some can filter out as many as 66 different contaminants including pharmaceuticals, waterborne parasites, lead and mercury, pesticides, asbestos and industrial chemicals.
Reverse osmosis water filters
A water purification technology that utilizes a semi-permeable membrane to remove 99% of contaminants from drinking water, reverse osmosis water filters are the only water filter systems certified to remove arsenic.
Shower filters
Protect your skin and hair from the harsh effects of hard water and chlorine, and experience soft skin and smooth, manageable hair.
UV light water filters
Ultraviolet light is an effective, environmentally friendly disinfection process that kills bacteria, viruses, molds, algae and other microorganisms that can contaminate your water supply.
Water bottle filters
Water bottle filters feature the power to trap unsafe contaminants like a home filtration system, but with the convenience and portability of a regular water bottle. While other bottles offer convenience, filtering water bottles offer unmatched performance with the power to remove harmful impurities like lead and giardia.
Water coolers
An economical and convenient source of clean, healthy drinking water, water coolers are a freestanding filtration system that provides a constant supply of purified water to your home or work.
Whole house water filters
A point-of-entry system that prevent unwanted materials from entering a home’s water system, whole house filters create clean, crisp, pure water that’s available at every sink, tub, and appliance.

TYPES OF WATER FILTER MEDIA

  • Carbon
  • Polypropylene
  • Cellulose
  • RO Membrane
  • Ceramic

WHAT WATER FILTERS REMOVE

Filtration systems remove contaminants from water, making it safe and clean for use and consumption. Contaminants are defined by the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) as “any physical, chemical, biological, or radiological substance or matter in water.” The EPA says, “Drinking water may reasonably be expected to contain at least small amounts of some contaminants.” It’s an important to look at the precise level of the contaminant because according to the EPA, “the presence of contaminants does not necessarily mean that the water poses a health risk.”

Alkalinity
By acting like a buffer, alkalinity protects water and its life forms from sudden changes that would make water acidic.
Ammonia
A colorless, pungent-smelling gaseous chemical, ammonia is occurs naturally in groundwater and the human body. It’s commonly used in fertilizer, animal feed, and fiber manufacturing, as well as in cleaners and as a food additive.
Arsenic
A chemical element that occurs in different minerals, the inorganic type of arsenic is toxic and has been linked to cancer.
Chloramines
A chemical compound used as disinfectants and formed when ammonia is added to chlorine to treat drinking water.
Chlorine Taste & Odor
A chemical element and a powerful disinfectant that is commonly used in municipal water treatment plants and swimming pools to kill bacteria and other harmful microorganisms, chlorine has a noticeable taste and odor.
Parasitic cysts
Most commonly found in the form of cryptosporidium and giardia, they burrow into the walls of their host’s intestinal tract and cause flu-like illnesses.
e. Coli
Escherichia coli (E. coli) are bacteria found in the environment, foods, and intestines of people and animals.” Some kinds of e. Coli can cause diarrhea and other symptoms, and can be transmitted through contaminated water or food, or through contact with animals or persons.
Fluoride
A naturally occurring mineral, fluoride is commonly used for preventing tooth decay.
Iron, Rust and Corrosion
Iron is a natural element that is critical to the healthy and wellbeing of humans, plants and animals. It’s used to create one of the most important types of metal. Rust is a type of corrosion and it’s the result of iron coming into contact with moisture or air.
Lead
A naturally occurring element, lead was once a commonly used in a wide variety of products found in and around our homes. It’s now known as a highly toxic metal can cause a variety of health issues in humans and animals — including death.
Sediment
Made up of tiny grains of organic materials like silt, sand, rust or clay, sediment is the mysterious “stuff” that can be seen floating in your water glass. It’s generally harmless to humans but can cause issues with pipes and plumbing systems.