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Step 2 – Making water taste great starts with removing the contaminants that nature didn’t put there. Filtering not only improves the taste but is also part of making it healthier for you.
Today, there are literally thousands pollutants in your water supply and many of these are not tested for. Herbicide, Pesticides, Pharmaceuticals, Heavy Metals, Fluoride, Chlorine are but a few to name.
Making water taste ok is not that difficult, carbon filters address chlorine and sometimes chloramines (when chlorine is mixed with ammonia) but it doesn’t really address the really hard to remove contaminants like fluoride.
Physically removing the contaminants from water is done by a range of different media – carbon, ceramic, KDF, Nano fibres and Reverse Osmosis membranes to mention just a few.
Whatever you form of filtration you choose there are three principles to how they work.
Physical size – Absorption – Exchange
The particles in water make up something called Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) and obviously come in different sizes.
In the water industry these are measured in something call Mircon’s. To give you a little context to understand what sizes we are talking about 1 human hair is about 40-90 mircons.
1 Micron = 1 Thousandth of a Millimeter.
1 Micron = 39 Millionth of an Inch (0.000039)
So when a product is rated 1 mircon it will catch any contaminant that is larger that 1 mircon. If it is smaller then it will pass on through.
Ratings usually start at 20 micron for whole home systems all the way down to .0001 mircon for Reverse osmosis membranes. Most standard water systems that use a carbon block are 0.5 to 5 mircons.
Filters – The major benefit of filtering is it greatly improves the taste of the water and it leaves the beneficial minerals intact, however it often doesn’t address some of the very small and difficult to remove nasties.
Reverse osmosis – Long recognized best way to get cleanest drinking water, it works by pushing water through a membrane under pressure so very few of the physical contaminants can make it through. There are a couple of down sides -first off most of the beneficial minerals are also washed away. Second it wastes a lot of water. Around 4 litres or one gallon for every litre or quart made.
Fortunately there is so newish technology around that will dramatically reduces the amount of wastage by about 80% we now have this is technology in the Easy Elite System.
Pollutants in water are trapped in a chemical by the structure of the media.
When it comes to removing contaminants through absorption, carbon is the first port of call. One pound (450g) has approx 100 acres or 40 hectares of surface a area making it very efficient and effective at trapping things like Chlorine.
You will find that there is always a carbon filter before a membrane to neutralize the chlorine and chloramine as they will damage membrane if not removed.
There are other ways of cleaning water as well, these include such thing ion exchange, reduction and oxidation which are more applicable to commercial applications.
As an easy guide look for how many dark grey dots are on the product you are looking at, this is quickest way to assess of the level of filtration.