If you're concerned about your family's drinking water, but don't want the expense and inconvenience of buying bottled water, you may be considering adding a water filtration system to you home. However, as you've likely discovered, not all filtration systems are alike. The one you choose depends largely on your budget, the amount of water your family consumes and your lifestyle.
Types of home water filtration systems
1. Deionization system. This type of water treatment system exposes the water to a mild electrical charge that causes particles in the water to adhere to a filter before continuing on to your water tap. A deionization system is effective at removing metals from the water as well as calcium and magnesium, similar to a water softening system.
2. Reverse osmosis system. A reverse osmosis system removes particles from the water by passing the water back and forth through a thin membrane filter before delivering it to the tap. These types of water filtration systems remove chemicals like arsenic, fluoride and nitrates from the water. The downside to a reverse osmosis system is that it uses a lot more water than it delivers, which will likely increase your monthly water bill.
3. Carbon filter system. Carbon filters are another effective way of removing contaminants from drinking water. These systems work by attracting contaminants and helping your water to taste better. Carbon filters come in a variety of styles and effectiveness ratings.
4. Distillation system. A distillation system works by bringing water to a boil so that it vaporizes and then collects it again. Like boiling your water on a stove, this system removes bacteria, minerals and chemicals and viruses that have a higher boiling point than water.
5. Ceramic filter system. Ceramic filters are designed with very tiny holes to filter out contaminants in the water, such as sediment. These types of filters, however, do not remove chemical contaminants.
6. Water softener. Water softening systems remove specific minerals from the water, such as calcium, that can build up in your plumbing pipes and cause your water to have an off taste. Such systems are often used in rural areas where wells are used for household water supplies.
7. UV filters. UV filters work by exposing water to ultra violet rays. These filters are effective at killing bacteria in the water, but do not filter the water for chemicals or sediment.
Choosing the water filtration system that's best for your family can be a challenge. Make it easier for yourself by considering your budget, how your family uses water and what type of particles you're most concerned about removing from your water before you go shopping.