More than half of Americans feel (and do) that their water source should be filtered or boiled before they consider it to be potable, based on a 2019 Consumer Reports Water Quality survey. Their leading complaint is that the water just smells and tastes bad. So how are they dealing with this inconvenience or potential harm? Most of the responders in the survey rely on water filters included in their refrigerators and water-filtration pitchers. The latter is more popular because it is inexpensive and it’s fairly easy to maintain. So how effective are these devices when it comes to making tap water safe? Here are important considerations about how water filter pitchers improve the quality of Adam’s ale:
How It Works
To know how effective these everyday kitchen items are we must take a look at how it works. No matter what design, capacity, or lifecycle they have, they still do their only function and that is to remove contaminants to improve the water’s quality.
Water filter pitchers have various types of media in their filtration system to reduce impurities. Most of them have activated carbon because each one of those tiny balls (or whatever shape they come in) have enormous surface areas that trap or absorb molecules that shouldn’t be in your glass. These are usually large particles that are easily removed from the water by the activated carbon such as metals like copper and lead, chemical compounds that affect the taste of the water like chlorine or other pesticides. But not all contaminants are not caught by the carbon like bacteria and other viruses because their structure allows them to pass through the media’s surface. Although, your municipal water treatment plant has already eliminated these hazards before they reach your home so it’s practically okay if you get treated water.
In addition to activated carbon, they also use ion exchange resin to remove excess calcium and magnesium in the water. Although they don’t really pose a threat, they make the water hard and it affects its taste.
Generally, the filtration system of these filter pitchers is similar to those fixed filtration devices in your water line. They provide the same benefits such as:
Improved Odor and Taste
Compounds like chlorine, zinc, and hydrogen sulfide can cause your water to stink and taste like metal. Tests have proven that the filter media used in these pitchers can effectively remove the unpleasant odor but only premiere brands can improve the taste significantly. So before you buy one for yourself you might want to look at this page for the best and most-used pitchers out there. The design and capacity of each pitcher is also a factor when choosing one for yourself. It’s important to note that the improved odor and taste are an ex post facto to the removal of contaminants from the water itself.
Ease of Use
Using a water filter pitcher is as simple as putting water from your tap into your personal container. A pitcher may hold around 8 to 18 glasses of water, which is sufficient for individual or family consumption in a day. The annual household cost of maintaining one range from $60 to $90. The small cost for maintenance and the convenience of using one has led a lot of families opting to use these pitchers over installing filters or buying bottled water.
One of its more prominent features is that it has superior portability. Its users are not limiting these pitchers to their homes but use one for traveling as well as having a different piece to use in places where they typically inhabit and where the water has poor quality.
The filtering capacity of a pitcher deteriorates with each use. The trapped debris in the media may cause the water to get clogged up or result in poor filtration. This is why maintenance is important, as the usability of the filter is greatly affected by its maintenance. As there are different designs in every pitcher, the manufacturers will provide the recommended schedule for replacements of the media. The usual recommendation is to change the filter every 40 gallons of water used or every two months – whichever comes first.
Although it’s true that the pitcher’s filter media; the activated carbon and ion exchange resin removes contaminants from the water, they also have a finite amount of space to store those absorbed particles. When left unchecked, the benefits like good taste and odor will cease to be as the contaminants will not be able to bind themselves to the carbon. That is one of the limitations, rather considerations when using a filter pitcher to get clean potable water.
Water pitchers may look the same in style and size, but it’s important to remember that they vary in the time it needs to filter the water. Tests indicate that pitchers may have different durations when filtering water and it doesn’t mean that the model that takes 15 minutes to filter the water is inferior to the one that finishes the job in under 2 minutes. Some pitchers take a long time to filter water because they remove the lead contaminants. Furthermore, a slow flow rate doesn’t really pose a problem if you leave it in the refrigerator. In some cases, a pitcher that takes its time to filter the water may churn out better quality than the filter-as-you-pour model.
It’s rather important to note that not all pitchers can remove lead as some studies state that not all filters are made equal. The makers usually post a separate certification of their model’s ability to take out toxins, volatile compounds, pharmaceuticals, heavy metals, and hormones in their packaging. This is crucial when you go to areas or countries where their tap water is not as safe as the ones that undergo proper treatment.
Untreated water and tap water are not the same, Americans enjoy one of the safest tap water because of the treatment plants that adequately remove harmful bacteria, virus, chemicals, and other contaminants before it reaches your home. But it does, however, leave some unpleasant taste and smell that water filter pitchers can effectively deal with. That is why many families and individuals are investing in these devices to have an added layer of safety in their drinking water.
|1||Brita Standard Everyday Water Filter Pitcher, White, Large 10 Cup, 1 Count||27,853 Reviews||Buy on Amazon|
|2||EveryDrop by Whirlpool 10383251 Refrigerator Water Filter 1, EDR1RXD1 (Pack of 1), Purple||43,303 Reviews||Buy on Amazon|
|3||Brita Standard UltraMax Water Filter Dispenser, Black, Extra Large 18 Cup, 1 Count||32,751 Reviews||Buy on Amazon|