The water you drink and use in your home goes through a long journey to reach your faucet. Along the way it can pick up dirt, particulates and contaminants that can make it taste bad or smell bad.
A home water purifier can help. These systems can filter out contaminants like lead, chlorine, fluoride and arsenic making your drinking water safer and cleaner.
What is a water purifier?
A water purifier sucks raw, contaminated water into a chamber, filters out impurities and then dispenses clean, drinkable water. Some models treat the resulting water with chemicals such as iodine and others use germicidal ultraviolet radiation. Unlike simple filters, most purifiers also combat viruses, which are too small for most filter elements to kill.
The majority of physical purifiers have a filter element with microscopic pores that catch protozoa, bacteria and larger particles of debris. Over time, strained matter gums up the element’s pores and it needs to be cleaned or replaced. Some models have a second, smaller filter that removes the same contaminants as the original, but is easier to clean and less likely to be affected by strained material.
UV treatment exposes living organisms (bacteria, viruses, protozoa and cysts like Giardia and Cryptosporidia) to a germicidal wavelength of ultraviolet radiation that scrambles their DNA. This renders them unable to reproduce, which prevents them from making you sick. Most UV systems have a prefilter to suck out any loose particles that could interfere with the light’s effectiveness.
Chemical treatments are available in liquid or tablet form and work by adding elements to your water that disable other, undesirable components. However, it’s a good idea to pair any chemical approaches with filtration or boiling, as they don’t completely remove all the impurities.
How does a water purifier work?
Many different water-treatment methods exist, and deciding which one is right for you depends on your goals. Every filter and purifier contains an element, which is a cartridge filled with microscopic pores that catch debris, protozoa and bacteria. Most products also include activated carbon, which removes odors and flavors caused by glacial sediment or leaf tannins. Over time, strained matter gums up an element’s pores, so periodic field cleaning and replacement is necessary. Some filters and purifiers use chemicals such as iodine to combat viruses, which are too tiny for most filter elements to target.
A UV water purifier works by exposing micro-biologically unsafe water to germicidal ultraviolet radiation. This wavelength scrambles the DNA of living organisms in the water, rendering them unable to reproduce and make you sick. UV systems are most effective against bacteria, viruses and cysts (like cryptosporidium) that chlorine can’t kill.
Other purification methods like reverse osmosis and distillation separate clean water from contaminants by using semi-permeable membranes or boiling the water. These processes remove many contaminants from the water, but can be costly and require regular filter replacement. If you are looking for a simpler solution, consider a countertop water filtration system like the iSpring CKC1C Countertop Drinking Water Filtration System. It fits compactly on your kitchen counter and doesn’t require any plumbing or drilling.
What are the benefits of a water purifier?
Water purifiers ensure that you have access to clean, safe water at all times. They can help protect you from waterborne diseases such as diarrhea, vomiting and fever. They can also reduce the risk of kidney stones and gastrointestinal infections. They can also improve the quality of your drinking water by removing chemicals and heavy metals from it.
If you want to know the exact level of contaminants in your water, you can test it yourself using a home testing kit. However, these kits are only capable of testing for certain contaminants and can be inaccurate. A water purifier can provide more accurate and comprehensive tests since it removes all types of contaminants from the water.
A water purifier can also be used to treat your whole house’s drinking water. These systems are usually called whole house water filtration systems and work by forcing water through a semi-permeable membrane that filters out most of the impurities in it. A reverse osmosis system, for example, can remove up to 98% of the contaminants found in water.
Another benefit of a water purifier is that it can save you money by allowing you to purchase less bottled water. This is a great option for people who are environmentally conscious as it will cut down on the number of plastic bottles that end up in landfills. A water purifier can also make your bottled water taste much better by reducing the amount of chlorine and other chemicals that are added to it. This can also help if you have a condition like eczema or psoriasis that are aggravated by the presence of these chemicals.
What are the disadvantages of a water purifier?
There are many different ways to purify water, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. Some techniques are more environmentally friendly than others. Distillation, for example, uses boiling to remove bacteria and metal ions from the water. However, this also leaves behind other pollutants such as volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and dissolved substances such as fluoride, arsenic, rust and pesticides. Other methods of water purification, such as reverse osmosis and deionization, use electricity to filter out impurities. Unfortunately, these systems produce large amounts of waste that must be disposed of in landfills. Water ionizers, which attempt to raise the pH level of water, also create large amounts of plastic and resin waste that can be difficult to recycle or dispose of properly.
Another drawback of water purifiers is that they usually require a lot of energy to operate. This energy is often produced from fossil fuels, which contributes to global warming. Also, water jugs and tap filters are disposable, meaning that they add to the amount of plastic and other waste in landfills.
If you want to reduce your environmental impact, consider installing a whole-home water filtration system instead of using single-use devices such as bottled water or water ionizers. With a whole-house filtration system, you can get clean, safe drinking water at any faucet in your home.