Best Water Filters: Reviews and Updated Consumer Buying Guide
Want to learn about the best home water filters? You have landed on the right page!
Maybe, you are still wondering why you need a home water filter. If you already know that you have to take matters in your own hands to have pure water in your home, you can skip down to the section on choosing water filters. If not…
Why You Need a Water Filter
Thousands of different chemicals have been found in samples taken from publicly treated water supplies around the world. The EPA admits that certain contaminants (cysts for example) can only be removed at the home front.
Many of those chemicals seen in the samples are known or suspected cancer-causing agents. Cancer does not just happen all at once. It develops over time as a result of exposure to free radicals, mutagens, inflammatory compounds and other toxins in the environment.
The body is capable of cleansing itself of toxins, which is why you need to drink plenty of water in the first place. The systems that wash toxins out of the body rely on plain H20.
But when toxins come from so many different sources, they start to create a burden on the body’s organs. The cleansing system can handle only so much. It was never designed to be constantly exposed to all of these man-made toxins in our current environment.
The body burden, as it is called, increases a person’s risk of various kinds of cancer. It increases the risk of heart disease and age-related mental decline. It even increases your “real age”. The cells and organs of your body may actually be older than the calendar indicates.
One of the chemicals that are in practically everyone’s drinking water is chlorine. While exposure to chlorine itself does not cause cancer, chlorination byproducts do. If you let that chemical into your house, you are letting in the byproducts. As a result, you are increasing the risk of cancer for everyone in your household.
Many people buy home filters just because chlorine smells bad, tastes bad, causes their hair to change color and dries out their skin. Those are good reasons. But some filters remove the taste and smell of the chemical without actually removing the chlorine.
Millions of people are buying bottled water on a regular basis because their tap water tastes bad or because they are worried about toxic contaminants in the public water supply in their area. Personally, if I could not afford a home purifier, I would still drink tap water for a number of reasons.
What you might not realize is that the water in those bottles is often just like your tap water. Most companies use the publicly treated supply. Believe it or not, Dasani and Aquafina are examples.
Some companies take no additional purification measures when they pull the water out of the public supply. Believe me on this, I have done the research. Unless your store brand is labeled “spring water” and the back of the bottle shows the name and location of the spring, you are drinking your own tap water out of a plastic bottle. That is the truth.
The plastic bottles are stored on warehouse shelves. They are transported in non-refrigerated trucks. They often sit outside on the loading dock or even in the store window where they are exposed to sunlight.
Although plastic is basically non-biodegradable, it does break down. The breakdown is faster when it is exposed to heat or sunlight. As it breaks down, even slightly, toxic chemicals used to make the plastic are released into the water. That has been proven scientifically.
BPA and phthalates are two examples of the chemicals that have been found in samples of bottled water. They are plasticizing agents. They are also human endocrine disruptors.
They interfere with the body’s natural production of hormones leading to all kinds of health problems and even cosmetic issues like the growth of breast tissue in men. Not particularly dangerous. It is greatly troublesome to men who have the problem.
BPA and phthalates are in many other containers used to package foods. You might not be able to avoid every source. But you can certainly avoid buying bottled water, because you have another source…your own tap water.
Hopefully, you are convinced that you need a home purifier. So, let’s talk about choosing the right one.
How to Choose a Water Filter
There are many different brands on the market. Some include a step called reverse osmosis. That’s one you don’t need.
Reverse osmosis adds expense, adds to your electricity bill and adds to your use of tap water, because the process wastes a lot of water. Yet, it does nothing to remove the chemicals that are the true plague of modern society.
So, why is reverse osmosis on the market? Not too long ago, it was the best choice for home purification. It addressed the issues that we knew about decades ago. Things like minerals and heavy metals.
Unless you have a private well contaminated with arsenic, reverse osmosis will do nothing for you. Even a person who did need reverse osmosis for arsenic removal would still need another filtration step. It is called…
Granular Activated Carbon
Granular activated carbon has been hailed as the most effective method for removing chemicals from tap water. Why don’t public treatment facilities use it?
Actually, some of them do. It is just that they run so much water through their plants; the effectiveness of the activated carbon is reduced.
Nearly every drop of your own tap water can be cleansed of toxic chemicals without even reducing your water pressure.
When it comes to types of filter, there are three basic types that include granular activated carbon.
Kitchen faucet filters are the most popular choice, probably because they are the least expensive. That might be better than nothing. It could certainly reduce your dependence on bottled water and give your family something safe to drink.
It does not, however, greatly reduce the risk of cancer caused by exposure to the chemicals in tap water.
Whether or not you read the section above, you are probably interested in protecting your family’s health. Dozens of studies have now proven that people who drink, shower in and are exposed to chlorinated water in other ways have a significantly higher lifetime risk of cancer than people who are not exposed.
The cancer-causing chlorination byproducts are released into the air when water is heated. The cold water coming out of your tap is not highly contaminated with the toxins.
In fact, drinking water containing the toxins would be less dangerous than inhaling them or allowing them to be absorbed through your skin. As the water passed through your digestive system, many of the chemicals would be discarded as waste products.
At least one study has proven this by showing that the concentration of chlorination byproducts is actually higher in a person’s bloodstream after taking a 10 minute shower than it is after drinking a liter of unfiltered water.
Not many of us drink a liter at a time. So, the difference is even greater than what was reported in the study.
Many homeowners address this issue by purchasing a kitchen faucet filter and a showerhead filter. According to Aquasana, the leading manufacturer of home filtration products, that is the most popular combination. But even that does not really go far enough.
There are other faucets in the house. You might take a drink of water out of the bathroom faucet. You most certainly brush your teeth in there.
When the EPA recommends home filtration to people who are at risk of cyst consumption due to a weakened immune system, they say that the person should not only filter what they drink. They should filter what they use for cooking, what they use to wash fresh fruits or vegetables and what they use to brush their teeth.
What I’m trying to say is that the toxins are not just in what you drink and shower in. They are actually everywhere in your house.
Installing faucet filters and showerhead filters on every faucet and every shower in your home could easily get expensive. The replacement cartridges alone would be quite costly.
Even if you did that, you would still have chlorinated water coming into your washing machine. It would still be going into your icemaker. Those chemicals would still be entering the air every time you washed a load of laundry or even flushed the toilet.
The best solution is a whole house filter. In the long run, it is the most affordable choice and it is the only way to fully protect your loved ones from the toxins in your tap water.
Aquasana offers a whole house filter for an affordable price. The filters last much longer than a replacement cartridge meant for a faucet or showerhead filter.
I don’t want to discourage you from investing in filters of other kinds. If you live in an apartment or rental home, installing a whole house filter might not be feasible. Just do what you need to do to protect your family.
Visit the Aquasana website today to learn more about the effectiveness of their home purifiers. I have done the research. No other brand comes close in terms of quality, effectiveness and price.