Category Archives for "Water Filters"
Your water is full of impurities. Some are put there on purpose. While others are there because of inefficient filtering. How do you protect your family from these additives? And what’s the best whole house water filter to remove fluoride and chlorine?
Investing in a whole house water filter system would be your best bet. But there are so many to choose from. How do you know which is right for you?
Keep reading to find out your options to remove fluoride and chlorine from your water. And get you one step closer to healthier and cleaner drinking water from your tap.
Does your city add fluoride to the drinking water? Don’t be surprised because many cities do it.
What started out as good intentions has turned into a debate mired in controversy. Why?
At first, municipalities wanted to help promote dental health and prevent tooth decay. So they fluoridated the water. The problem lies in the fact that fluoride is a toxin and may cause different health problems after long-term exposure.
You do have some options to remove fluoride from your drinking water. Even if you can’t control the water that’s pumped into your home.
Using a special resin, this deionization process traps fluoride ions. During this process, other ions are released or exchanged into the water. Deionization is commonly used to soften hard water. However, making sure it has an Ion Exchange Resin may also remove fluoride from your home’s water supply.
This process uses activated alumina oxide. It’s made from a natural mineral called corundum. Because it attracts fluoride, activated alumina can capture and absorb it out of your drinking water. This type is relatively popular for households that want to remove fluoride from their water for their entire home.
Bone char is what it sounds like. It’s a form of carbon derived from charring animal bones. Usually, cattle bones are used for this media. This type of carbon filter works by attracting and exchanging ions with heavy metals and fluoride.
Though it can be used for whole house filters, you may want to take precautions when using this type of media. Be careful that the bone char source is medical grade. And it is not derived from the bones of infected or sick animals.
Water chlorination began as a way to free drinking water from dangerous pathogens. When used correctly, it can prevent the transmission of diseases caused by bacteria, viruses, and worms.
However, too much chlorination can lead to health problems. And it’s also widely debated that exposure to chlorinated water may lead to serious long-term illnesses, including cancer.
Whole house water filters can remove chlorine from your drinking water and help keep your family safe.
One of the most common filter types available is carbon. It removes many types of chemicals from water, including chlorine. It’s also popular because it removes bad taste and smell that may be present in tap water.
They are typically available in 2 forms: carbon block and granular activated carbon. You may also see catalytic carbon mentioned, but it’s just an enhanced form of activated carbon. Unfortunately, this filter type is not effective in removing fluoride by itself.
This option may seem high-tech, and in some ways it is. Using a specific wavelength range can remove chlorine from water. Many point-of-entry, or whole house, water systems incorporate UV as one of their many stages of purification.
One of the most important things to look out for when choosing a whole house water system is finding one that filters out both fluoride and chlorine. Unfortunately, there isn’t a magic filter that takes out all contaminants.
A more likely scenario will have you look for systems that use a combination of purification techniques that coincide with your filtration needs.
The best whole house water filter to remove fluoride and chlorine is a multi-tier, and multi-media, water system. Point-of-entry systems are a big deal, and you will have to tap into your home’s water supply line, so you may not find your solution at a big box store.
Consider consulting with a water system specialist to have your water system custom tailored for your needs. This way you can also ensure that it has the correct filters to remove both fluoride and chlorine.
If you do decide to go with a store-bought system, make sure to read the claims carefully. Some systems don’t remove both fluoride and chlorine. Having a carbon filtration stage is a good indicator that both will be removed from your water, but it depends on the type of carbon filter that is included.
Furthermore, keep in mind that a whole house water system may be pricey. So expect to pay more than you would your typical point-of-use, or under sink, unit. Especially if you decide to have your water system custom made. Both the initial system, installation, and the upkeep of filter replacements is an ongoing expense that you may need to factor into your budget.
If you are having trouble deciding between manufacturers or models, go with the one that is certified. There are 3 different certifications to look for when checking out water filtration systems: ANSI, NSF, and EPA.
Systems that are certified by one or all of these organizations go through rigorous testing to make sure the units do what they claim.
Firstly, fluoride and chlorine can lead to a variety of diseases as a result of harmful pathogens. Secondly, water just tastes horrible when filled with fluoride and chlorine.
Here are some of the best water filters on the market that can get rid of up to 99% of these harmful pathogens
1. Aquasana 10-Year, 1,000,000 Gallon Whole House Water Filter with Professional Installation Kit
2. iSpring WKB32B 3-Stage Whole House Water Filtration System
3. Home Master HMF2SDGC Whole House 2-Stage Water Filter
You have a few options if you want to remove harmful contaminants from your family’s drinking water. But the best whole house water filter to remove fluoride and chlorine may come down to personal preference.
Point-of-entry water systems are relatively expensive, so you may need to shop around for the best option and price point for your family’s needs. Take a look at custom systems as well as ones you can buy as a kit, and look at the manufacturer’s claims carefully. Not all systems are created equal.
Finally, make sure that the water filtration system you ultimately go with is certified to meet or exceed ANSI/NSF or EPA standards.
You simply can’t live without water, so it is very important that you pay attention to the quality of the water you drink at your home.
In recent times we’ve seen alkaline water growing to be quite popular because it has a balanced pH and it’s said to be very efficient at doing what water does best - hydrating.
You can purchase it in bottled form, but you can also get a filter designed specifically to turn your tap water into alkaline water. Let’s get you better acquainted with alkaline water and the ways you can get it from your nearest faucet, which depends on you knowing what is the best alkaline water filter.
Alkaline water is ordinary water with a slightly different pH level. It is a lot less acidic than the ordinary tap water that comes out of your faucet.
PH level shows how alkaline or acidic any substance is on a scale from 0 to 14. Any substance with a pH level of 1 is considered to be very acidic, while any other with a pH level of 13 is considered as very alkaline.
Regular tap water is considered to be more on the acidic side of things with its pH level at 7. In most cases, alkaline water is somewhere around 8 or 9 on the pH scale.
According to several reputable sources, plain water is actually better for most people, but there are still those who believe that alkaline water is even better for a person’s overall quality of health.
Without scientific research to back up such claims, it can only be left to one’s individual experience and opinion.
Those who believe in the health benefits of alkaline water usually say that it’s very helpful with cancer resistance, weight loss, proper hydration, detoxifying, improved skin health, improved immune system, colon cleansing, and slowing down the process of aging.
Drinking alkaline water is completely safe, but in some rare cases it may also be associated with certain mild side effects such as confusion, tingling sensations, muscle twitches, hand tremors, nausea, and vomiting.
Water can become alkaline naturally when it passes over rocks and picks up certain types of minerals, but in that case, you need to purchase it in bottled form.
If you want alkaline water from your faucet at home, you can purchase a specially designed filter.
These devices are also sometimes referred to as water ionizer, and they are very efficient at neutralizing the acid buildup inside your body, and therefore very helpful at reducing blood pressure and acid reflux.
When choosing the one that would suit your needs the best, you need to be extra careful as there are many scams out there. Here are a few of the most important guidelines which will help you understand what is the best alkaline water filter.
These are probably the most important components in any water ionizer. There are two different types of water ionizer, those with single filter and those with dual filters. Obviously, the dual filter systems are far superior to the ones with just one filter.
When shopping around, keep in mind that dual filter units are usually more expensive. Also, when it’s time to change the filters you will need to pay more. Take a look at the manufacturer’s specifications to check the time intervals between filter changes, as that can affect your decision budget-wise as well.
This is the crux of all the controversies surrounding water ionizers. There are a large number of different units out there, with very differing number of plates featured. It is true that ionizers with more plates are also more powerful, but you should steer clear of any ionizer with more than seven plates as that’s likely to be exaggerated in more than one way.
Having five to seven plates will give you the best results, while the units with only three plates are nothing but cheapskate products.
There are also different types of plates, so you should also take this factor into consideration when making a purchase.
Slotted and mesh plates should be avoided, and you should opt for water ionizers which come equipped with flat, solid plates. This is simply due to the fact that they are the most durable and the easiest to clean and maintain.
Any water ionizer worth your time and attention should be able to make water more acidic or alkaline.
ORP or Oxidation Reduction Potential is a way of measuring how efficient water is at reducing harmful free radicals in your body. Always go for ionizer which can give you at least 600 to 800 ORP.
As far as the pH range is concerned, you should definitely choose a device which can provide you with a healthy range from 7 to 11. Some more advanced models on the market even come with predefined pH range modes, where you can choose according to different tasks you want to use your water for, such as cleaning, drinking, cooking, and face cleansing.
It goes without saying that you should never go for alkaline water filters from companies you have never heard of. Also, if the device doesn’t come with a warranty, it’s probably a scam and you should steer clear of it.
If possible, always go for products from a company that is ISO 9000 certified. As these are not very complicated devices, you should make sure to always pick a model that is warrantied for a minimum of five years.
Big online shopping sites will always feature ratings and customer satisfaction info, so make sure you check those, too. A product with too many negative reviews is most likely bad.
1) Bawell Platinum Alkaline Water Ionizer Machine
This is currently one of the best alkaline water filters on the market. It offers a pH range between 2.0 and 12.0. It vastly reduces the oxidation levels in your body thanks to its ORP -800 range.
Both the pre-activated carbon filter and granular activated carbon filter can eliminate a range of contaminants like harmful pesticides, chlorine, industrial solvents often found in tap water, chlorinated hydrocarbons, volatile organic compounds, benzene, arsenic, radon, lead, mercury, chromium, and bad odors and taste caused by pollutants.
Only downside is the price. You're paying a premium price because of its advanced features. Expect to pay about $2,200 in certain stores and about $1500 online for the [easyazon_link identifier="B008IXRY6Y" locale="US" nw="y" tag="slehacins-20" cart="n" popups="y"]Bawell Platinum Alkaline Water Ionizer Machine[/easyazon_link].
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2) Air Water Life Aqua Ionizer Deluxe
It uses a total of 5 titanium coated plates. This ensures as much water as possible is passing through the system when it undergoes electrolysis. The antioxidant potential is between -600 and +600 ORP. You always want to check the negative value as this value represents the level of anti-oxidation that the water possesses. The pH level ranges between 4.5 and 11.0. The [easyazon_link identifier="B01836UGZ6" locale="US" nw="y" tag="slehacins-20" cart="n" popups="y"]Air Water Life Aqua Ionizer Deluxe[/easyazon_link] is also more budget friendly than the Bawell.
[easyazon_image align="center" cart="y" height="500" identifier="B01836UGZ6" locale="US" nw="y" nf="n" src="https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/41M%2B6aI-YqL.jpg" tag="slehacins-20" width="500"]
If you want to improve the overall quality of your health by drinking only alkaline water, you can easily do so by purchasing a water ionizer. Hopefully, we’ve helped you find out what is the best alkaline water filter for you.
What is so special about reverse osmosis (RO) that makes it the highest recommended water treatment method for your home? Is it a standalone filter or does it work as part of a system to deliver the highest quality drinking water? These questions and more is exactly what we try to answer, so lets get into some of the best reverse osmosis water filter reviews.
The following reverse osmosis water filter reviews contain different approaches to cleaning water, all of them centered on a reverse osmosis membrane. We are looking at not only the top brands but also the most efficient products and the most economical.
Reverse osmosis is a slow filtration process since it takes time to push water through the RO membrane, which is why most if not all home RO systems are installed at the point of use instead of the water main. You will find that many of these reverse osmosis reviews are under-sink RO system reviews.
To better compare RO water systems and choose the right design for your home or office we have also laid out a detailed buyer’s guide. That will explain the most important features to look for in an RO system. We will also provide information on what it usually takes to install and maintain an RO system in working order, so that you can get the most out of it.
Home Master TMAFC
- Heavy metals
- Easy to maintain
- 7 filtration stages
- A bit complicated to install
APEC Top Tier 5-Stage ROES-50
- Over 1000 viruses removed
- Great tasting water
- 5 filtration stages
- Not easy to follow installation guidelines
Home Master TMHP HydroPerfection
- Heavy metals
- Other contaminants
- Re-mineralizes the water
- 9 filtration stages
- Quite expensive
- Over 1000 contaminants
- Easy to install
- Replacement filters are inexpensive
- Design could have been built more sturdily
APEC Ultimate-series RO-90
- Heavy metals
- Over 1000 contaminants
- Installation is easy
- System is very quiet
- Great tasting water
- Fairly costly
- Over 1000 contaminants
- Sturdy design and components
- O-ring is a little flimsy
Express Water RO5DX
- Over 1000 contaminants
- Excellent customer support
- Complicated installation instructions
- Copper and many other contaminates
- No hard water taste
- Water wastage is reduced
- Quite costly
- Over 1000 contaminants
- Sturdy housing for the filters
- Large capacity
- Reduces scale build up
APEC Portable Countertop
- Over 1000 contaminants
- Perfect for apartments or motorhomes
- Quick to install
- Large capacity
- Only has 4 filter stages
- More than 1000 contaminants
- Very large flow rate
- Easy to replace filters
- Very expensive
The Artesian Full Contact RO system by Home Master features an easy-to-use high flow rate design. This pre-assembled model comes with seven stages of filtration and water enrichment that guarantee the production of high quality drinking water.
Reverse osmosis can remove nearly all minerals from the water, thus lowering the pH of the filtered water which can leave an unpleasant acidic taste. The Home Master Artesian Full Contact addresses this issue by adding calcium and magnesium after the filtering process. By balancing the mineral concentration, the water becomes tastier and even healthier.
This model is also faster than others in its category. By faster, we mean it allows a higher water flow rate, almost double that of its competitors. This means that although it is a 50 gallon per day (GPD) RO system it can actually provide sufficient water for a larger household.
The filters are not your traditional cartridges housed in containers. The filters in the Home Master TMAFC Artesian are fully disposable meaning there’s no twisting, turning and scrubbing the casings involved during maintenance. You simply remove the entire cartridge and replace it with a new one.
A great feature of the model is the use of a catalytic carbon filtration unit. This is superior in dealing with chlorine by-products and other harmful chemicals that can damage the RO membrane. It speaks volumes to the longevity of the whole system.
There’s nothing not to like about the Artesian Full Contact RO system by Home Master. The 7-stage filtration and treatment circuit delivers high quality water at impressive speed. The simple installation and filter maintenance also help put it at the top of most under-sink RO system reviews.
The APEC Essence-series ROES-50 uses a highly effective pre-treatment line of filters to increase the longevity of its RO membrane. It can provide you with many years of clear and clean drinking water. It also doesn’t take up much space under the sink.
This model runs the water through a 5-stage filtering system before it goes in the storage tank, ready for your glass. The filtration process starts off with a sediment filter to block out dust and rust. This is followed by two separate carbon block filters that remove any chemicals that could be damaging to the RO membrane.
The high rejection RO membrane can trap 99% of potential contaminants which include lead, fluoride, arsenic, and other heavy metals. Another carbon filter, a coconut carbon filter, is used in the final stage of treatment. This last filtration step takes care of any residual impurities that cause bad taste and odor.
The installation process is straightforward which makes it a prime candidate for a DIY project. The instruction manual provides all the details and the online tutorial found on the APEC Top Tier 5-Stage website is very easy to follow. The maintenance is no problem as the entire unit is quite small and all individual filter casings are easy to reach.
What more can you ask for than an easy installation and multiple filtering stages that produce high quality drinking water? If you’re looking for durability and great customer support, you’ve got that too with one of the top manufacturers in APEC.
The HydroPerfection TMHP is Home Master’s top-of-the-line model that can more than hold its own no matter how you compare RO water systems. It uses advanced pre-treatment and post-treatment purification methods to deliver the best drinking water for residential homes. The addition of the UV filter makes it one of the most complete under-sink filtration units available.
The HydroPerfection achieves a 1:1 waste water to clean water ratio – this is extremely efficient for RO water filtration systems which are notorious for high water waste rate. It does this while also having an output of 75 GPD, assisted by a permeate water pump.
In addition to the traditional sediment and carbon block filters, the Home Master TMHP HydroPerfection has a remineralization treatment unit and a UV filter. The UV light sanitization is instant and unmatched by other methods.
Much like the Home Master Artesian Full Contact, this modular design is a breeze to install even if you lack basic plumbing skills. The detailed manual and instructional videos provide enough information for you to be your own plumber and have this RO system ready to go in under an hour.
The maintenance is smooth because of the disposable filters. There’s no more need to change cartridges and clean casings. You can just throw them out entirely and put new ones on. Because of the efficient pre-treatment process, the RO membrane and UV filter are more effective and will last longer.
Although the HydroPerfection doesn’t come cheap, it is easily in the running for the best reverse osmosis water filter. It reduces waste water to a 1:1 ratio, it has medium-to-high GPD rating, and it sanitizes water with a UV light. It’s hard to find a better structured design with such efficient patented technology.
The RCC7 by iSpring is another juggernaut RO system of almost unmatched quality and efficiency, and it does at a highly competitive price point. Multiple pre-filters are used along with a multi-layered RO membrane to provide crystal-clear and tasty drinking water.
There’s more to the pre-treatment the RCC7 offers than meets the eye. This RO system also has a water softening feature which makes it perfect for anyone faced with hard water problems.
The waste water ratio varies between 5:1 and 2:1. These are decent numbers for an RO system and it’s easy to stay in the 2:1 range if you can supply good water pressure. While it doesn’t have the best ratio it does offer one of the best flow rates of up to 75 gallons per day.
The combination of pre-filtration, RO filtering, and a granular activated carbon filter ensure that most harmful contaminants don’t make their way into your drinking water. However, at this price point, you can’t expect the iSpring RCC7 to offer post-treatment options such as remineralization or UV sanitation.
The RCC7 from iSpring is a strong competitor on the RO systems market. It delivers high quality drinking water and maintains very low waste water ratios. The built-in water softening feature makes it more versatile than other similarly priced models. Whatever it lacks in post-treatment options it makes up for with an attractive price tag.
No reverse osmosis water filtration system review is complete without the popular APEC Top Tier Supreme. The APEC Ultimate-series RO-90 is a high capacity, high flow reverse osmosis system. It uses multiple filtering stages to help the RO membrane work at maximum efficiency, removing 99% of all contaminants.
The pre-filtration is a 5-micron sediment filter for rust, dust and similar particles. This is followed by two carbon filters that remove most organic and chemical contaminants that may damage the RO membrane. There is no post-treatment remineralization process so the pH level may get low enough to turn the water slightly acidic, but that’s actually the clean taste that many people associate with the best reserve osmosis water filter.
The best feature of the Ultimate RO-90 is its 90 GPD capacity. Of course, this is measured at a standard 60 psi and 77 degrees Fahrenheit. It could drop to as low as 75 GPD if the pressure is not lower.
As most reverse osmosis reviews will tell you, a higher capacity offers more utility. A 90 GPD RO system can do more than just provide drinking water from the faucet. You can hook it up to other appliances such as ice makers to have the clearest ice cubes. RO treated water also lasts longer when frozen so you’re in for a real treat.
If you care more about GPD and less about post-filtration treatments then the APEC Ultimate RO-90 might just be the system for you. It is easy to maintain due to the use of premium materials and larger cartridge sizes which make them last longer. The above average water flow rate gives you the choice of connecting it to your appliances, if you so wish.
The iSpring RCC7AK is an efficient 6-stage RO water filtration system with multiple layers of protection before and after the RO membrane. It is easy to set up as a DIY project and the flow rate is up to 75 GPD for your household use.
This medium-to-high output RO system is relatively easy to install if you follow the manual instructions or the online videos. Depending on your plumbing and existing sink configuration, very few extra tools are required.
The RO membrane is a proprietary thin film that can filter down to 0.0001 micron. As long as it works at maximum efficiency you should always have clean and proper tasting water to drink. We say tasty because the alkaline remineralization filter takes care of any pH imbalance that affects acidity and taste.
The sediment filter is housed in the same reinforced transparent casing as other models. This allows you to see whenever it is clogged or shows signs of dirty. If you are relying on well water then the sediment filter will require more frequent replacement.
The RCC7AK by iSpring can supply clean and tasty drinking water to an entire family. Its high capacity and easy-to-install design make it a good choice. It is relatively affordable and offers plenty of post-filtration treatment options for its price range. Perfect taste and safety aren’t always a package deal with some of the other RO systems out there.
The RO5DX by Express Water is a 5-stage RO water filtration system perfect for small homes. It uses a post-treatment carbon inline filter to enhance the taste and odor of the water. It is one of the best designs Express Water RO5DX has to offer yet available at a very competitive price.
Before the water reaches the RO membrane, it passes through a sediment filter, a granular activated carbon filter, and a carbon block filter. This makes it so the water contains as few chemicals, dust particles and particles as possible before going through the reverse osmosis membrane.
While it doesn’t have a pH post-treatment option, it does feature the carbon inline filter to enhance the taste. This also helps maintain the storage tank for a longer time.
Perhaps the most interesting feature of this budget-friendly design from Express Water is that it comes with a set of replacement filters. Since the maintenance is easy enough to perform you should have no problem noticing when it’s time to change. The signs are decreased pressure or a decline in taste.
Considering its price, the RO5DX delivers more than we expected. We can overlook the lack of a pH treatment in favor of the 0.8 gallons per minute flow rate that the included faucet can deliver. However, this is of course not the actual flow rate through RO membrane (0.8 GPM is 1152 GPD which is astronomical). As soon as you use up the water in the storage tank, the faucet will stop – but you can enjoy 0.8 GPM in the meantime if you use the water judiciously.
The Brodell H2O+ Circle has a very futuristic hi-tech design. It’s not just for show as it completely hides the filters from plain sight while still allowing easy access from the back. It also uses an innovative system to maintain the water flow at a constant level without the use of electric pump.
The patented Smart Valve feature is highly efficient when it comes to flushing the membrane and maintaining the water flow. Because it reduces back pressure, it allows the Circle to be one of the most efficient RO water filters.
The waste water ratio is between 2.4:1 and 2.1:1 gallons, which is miniscule for an RO water filtration system. The refill rate of the Circle water storage tank is the fastest out of all non-electric designs. It also manages to compete with some models with built-in pump, which is more than impressive.
While it doesn’t have the highest water flow rate it has the most consistent one. The design is also something very few other RO systems have, if any. The sleek black finish looks like a high tech computer server. It’s surprising that the maintenance is so easy given that the filters are covered.
The Brondell Circle is in an interesting place. It uses innovative patented technology to deal with the inconsistencies of water flow rate and yet it lacks post-treatment features and storage capacity. Somehow it manages to overcome those drawbacks with a unique design and quiet operation and of course, high quality drinking water.
The RCG1UP 6-stage RO system by iSpring is one of the most efficient bacteria-killing systems on the market. It comes with a UV filter already attached that turns on and off whenever it’s needed. To top it all off, it has a very low waste water ratio and quite the high flow rate.
The RO membrane can handle 100 GPD. It’s clearly superior to most home RO systems. The standard pre-filters are top-of-the-line and make sure no rust, organic particles or harmful chemicals reach the RO membrane.
The cherry on top is the 11W UV light filter. This applies instant treatment on the water by killing unwanted bacteria, microbes and many viruses commonly found in municipal and well water. The UV light only works when water is flowing and shuts off when there’s nothing to do. This increases the life of the bulb.
The booster pump is almost silent but don’t let that fool you. When this pump kicks in you won’t have to worry about low incoming water pressure from your main line. The booster pump provides the necessary force for water to go through the RO membrane at the high clip of 100 GPD. This also does wonders at maintaining a low waste water ratio.
This may not be the cheapest option but it can outperform more expensive models. It has everything you need for the highest quality drinking water from pre-filtration to post-RO UV treatment and pH balancing. It also has one of the highest GPD ratings on our list.
You may not always need a permanent solution when it comes to RO systems. If you don’t want to bother with installing a large tank under your kitchen sink then the APEC Portable Countertop Reverse Osmosis is for you. It has a standard pre-filtration line and a very high GPD RO membrane.
The most important feature of any countertop RO system is the fact that you can take it with you whenever you like. As long as there’s a standard faucet waiting for you, you just connect it and start drinking. It only takes minutes and most times no tools are required.
You don’t always need large and bulky systems to benefit from a multi-stage filtration system. The APEC RO-CTOP is the case in point. The standard sediment and carbon filters are used to keep the RO membrane working at optimum levels.
You can rarely ask for more than a 90 GPD capacity on such a small unit. The variation in water pressure needed is very good for a small countertop RO system, though this is to be expected considering it’s by a top manufacturer.
Sure, it takes up some counter space and looks out of place but you can cover it up with a stylish cloth. This small unit is working nearly anywhere. You can take it on the road or keep it in your permanent home. Unless you’re extra picky about how the water tastes, this RO system might just be your best friend for years to come.
They rarely come bigger and meaner than the RCS5T from iSpring. This won’t fit under just any kitchen sink. It looks more like a whole house RO system and has the capacity to back up the claim as well.
The 500 GPD capacity is staggering considering it’s nearly 10 times as high as regular RO systems at only two times the price. Sure the flow rate will vary with pressure and temperature, and for this model it can go down by as much as 75%. That’s still a massive flow rate no matter how you look at it.
The RCS5T makes use of a dual-flow RO membrane to maintain a consistent flow and ultra-low waste water ratio of 1:1. It also uses five filtration stages in total to provide 99% clean water. It has the standard pre-filters of sediment, granular activated carbon and carbon block, as well as a post carbon filter.
There is one piece of equipment missing from this massive system. The RCS5T comes without a tank, but you don’t really need one since the membrane works fast enough if you can supply the water pressure. Per the manufacturer’s instructions, you can add one with a capacity between 200 and 500 gallons. You might also want a separate delivery pump too.
We’ll overlook the tankless design of the iSpring RCS5T 500 because of its sheer power and capacity. The dual-flow RO membrane maintains a great flow rate and keeps waste water ratio to a constant 1:1 under perfect conditions. This is not something you want for your studio or two-bedroom apartment. This commercial-grade system is for large families, restaurants and offices.
As promised, here’s the buyer’s guide following the reverse osmosis water filtration system reviews.
There are many reasons why you should want to purchase an RO system. There are also plenty of factors involved in what makes a particular system better for you, or better overall. Before we get there, you should familiarize yourself with some commonly used terms and features and understand how much of an impact they should have on your decision.
TDS refers to some organic matters but mostly it stands for calcium, sodium, chlorides, sulfates and other inorganic salts. The TDS value on RO systems is an indicator of efficiency. Of course, no matter how good an RO system is, it won’t achieve optimum TDS levels (500mg/L) if the pre-filtered water is too contaminated or hard for the RO membrane.
Water output values are often given based on tests performed under perfect conditions. This usually means the water is at 77 degrees F and 60 psi. You should always take water output values as a guideline and expect a lower output than advertised. Based on the efficiency of the RO system, you may experience up to a 50% output loss.
Why is this so important? It really isn’t. This is one of those fancy features that you don’t have to look for when buying an RO system. Regular RO system faucets have their own siphon breaker installed and some believe it is just as effective as an air gap.
Air gap faucets use an air pocket to prevent waste water from backing into your RO system. This siphon breaker is very effective but it almost always requires professional help when installing the system. There are different diameter holes needed for the pipes and for the faucet. It takes a long while to install and you will be charged more for the installation.
Reverse osmosis will remove minerals and therefore lower the pH values in the permeate water. Depending on how high a value your pre-filtered water has, this post-treatment decrease can cause the water to have an acidic taste. While there is nothing wrong with that, it may not tickle the taste bud of some people. If that is the case, there are RO systems with post-treatment in place to add minerals to the water to raise the pH.
There’s just so much to take into consideration when it comes to buying an RO system. Some of the best reverse osmosis water filter reviews agree that a few factors are often overlooked in favor of fancy terminology and numbers listed on the packaging. Let’s take a look at what should really be at the top of your list.
The main concern of most customers is always the cost. While it is true that there are some very budget-friendly RO systems out there, going the budget route might not always be the best idea.
When you pay extra for an RO system, you pay for technology and higher quality materials. The materials are what make the model durable and worth it as an investment. It is especially important with under-counter RO systems since they are permanent solutions.
When you pay more for technology you are usually getting less waste water. While it’s not always true that an expensive RO system cleans the water better, in most cases it will have better water management. You can save a lot of money in the long run by wasting no more than 1-2 gallons for every gallon of permeate water.
The capacity of the water tank and how many gallons per day the RO system can process is a major factor. If you have a large family or want to connect the RO system to other appliances like ice makers, you want a high capacity of around 100 gallons. Keep in mind that most RO systems aren’t 100% efficient and you may end up getting less than what’s written on the label.
You can choose a 50 GPD model for a small home or if you’re single. This category of RO systems provide all the drinking water you need. If you’re looking for more use with appliances, even though not many people use it, go for an 80 GPD model. It should provide enough flow rate and water pressure.
You might think that all RO systems come with the proper pre-treatment methods, but you would be wrong. Just because there are three sediment and carbon pre-filters installed before the RO membrane does not mean you have the perfect system.
Always check for the quality of the materials used. Not only that, but make sure that the RO system you’re looking at can handle the water in your house. Always keep that water analysis handy when you’re buying a water filter system of any kind.
In some cases, you may not need high-end additional filtering stages in your RO system. For residential use, you don’t always need a 7-stage RO filtering system. You may not even need a 4 or 5-stage RO system if you already have a good whole house filtering system.
How much water your RO system wastes is highly important. Some units waste up to 24 gallons of water to produce one clean gallon. Paying more upfront for new technology will help keep your bills at a more reasonable rate.
Another factor you might want to consider when it comes to waste water is how it is dealt with. Not all RO systems dispose of the waste. If the system you have your eye on recycles or dispenses waste water to other appliances, think long and hard if that’s something you want. Most of the contaminants that are bad for you are also bad for your boiler, dishwasher, washing machine and other appliances.
These two factors should not be first on your list of priorities. The installation process can be done by customers most of the time. Whenever that’s not an option, the cost of calling a professional is well worth it if you want the best water treatment system.
Using an RO system on a daily basis requires no skills or knowledge. It’s as easy as using any other faucet. Maintenance is also not as complicated as advertised sometimes. Changing the filters on the pre-filtration units is easy and cleaning the RO membrane is usually done by a specialized cleaning process. You rarely need any tools to get in and out of the casings as most times it’s as easy as twisting a cap – if special openers are needed, they will be included.
Water that undergoes reverse osmosis treatment does so in five stages. For the sake of this discussion, we will exclude any pre-filtration treatments that happen before the reverse osmosis stage.
In the first stage, the water enters the system and gets fed to the pump. The second stage involves the pump increasing the pressure of the water to force it through the RO membrane. In the third stage the smaller water molecules get separated from unwanted salts and other contaminants.
The final two stages occur almost simultaneously. As the permeate water with a low concentration of salts gets pushed towards the storage tank, the waste water stream gets pushed through the disposal tube or pipe.
The water that makes it through the RO membrane can have up to 99% of salts removed from it. The rejected water is pushed away by cross filtration and ends up in your main drain pipe.
Ok. That’s how the system works but what exactly does it remove? The process of reverse osmosis is able to remove a wide variety of water contaminants. RO membranes that function properly are able to reject particles and contaminants with molecular weights of over 200. This includes some bacteria, microbes, colloids, and salts.
Because of the deionization process, most contaminants with high ionic charges will not get past the RO membrane. This is why it is more efficient at removing calcium than sodium. For the same reason, the permeate water will have a lower pH level than usual.
Here is a video that demonstrates the reverse osmosis process:
There are two main choices when it comes to RO systems. You can go for a countertop model or an under counter model. There are of course some differences in terms of efficiency, convenience, and price.
Countertop RO systems are not as efficient but they are very convenient for people that travel a lot. They are also a great choice for people that rent. They don’t have a complicated installation process and can be moved from one home to another with ease.
Although these are designed to stay on your counter, they do take up some space. They are clearly not as big as under-counter RO systems but may still inconvenience you. They are also not visually appealing so they might not be for you if you care about décor.
Your typical under-counter RO system is the most popular option. It takes up plenty of space but it goes under the sink so at least it’s out of sight. It has a lengthy installation process that may often require professional help. Another drawback is the potential of massive waste water production.
Luckily the pros outweigh the cons with under-counter RO systems. New models have great waste reduction technology and most efficient may not waste more than one gallon per gallon of permeate water. Although they take longer to install, the end result is worth it since they can filter and store larger quantities of water. Not only that, but they also do it faster than countertop RO systems.
Most RO systems come with multiple stages of filtration not only to get the most out of the RO membrane but also to protect it. Microorganism growth in the RO membrane is a common cause for it losing efficiency. The same can be said about chlorine and chlorine by-products passing through the RO membrane.
Because this final stage in the RO systems uses such a delicate thin layer of membrane, there are many precautions taken. The most common pre-filtration stages include a sediment filter, a granular activated carbon filter and a carbon block filter, in that order.
The sediment filter removes dust, rust and other large sediments from the water. The granular carbon filter takes care of organic contaminants. The carbon block filter removes chlorine and chlorine by-products as well as other chemicals that are damaging to the RO membrane.
It is rare for RO systems to come with more than these three pre-filtration stages but not uncommon. Furthermore, for some households additional pre-treatment methods may be needed. If the water quality is very poor, you might need to install a whole house filtration system or at least more point-of-use filters upstream of your RO system.
Installing an RO filter system is not too difficult and can be done without professional assistance if certain conditions are met. First of all, you should have your water analyzed before purchasing a water filter system. As most manufacturers will point out, using an ineffective RO system due to the wrong type of water won’t always entitle you to a refund.
You should also consider your existing sink. Most RO systems come with their own faucets so it would be easier on you if you have an additional hole in your sink for that. If not, you may need to change your sink or start cutting a hole for the RO system’s faucet. If you lack the tools to do this, you will need to call a professional.
Another common installation issue comes up when it’s time to connect the waste water tube to your main drain pipe. Not all kitchen sinks come with a drain pipe that has an extra orifice. If that is the case, you will need to start drilling. Make sure to measure properly. You could also wrap some tape around the drill tip to make sure you don’t drill all the way through both sides.
The rest of the installation is actually easier than it seems. You should not be intimidated by all the tubes and cables as everything tends to be color-coded. Either that or they have clear markings as to which goes where. Be sure that before you do anything, your main water line is turned off and excess water from the drain pipe is removed to make it easier should drilling be necessary.
After everything is set up according to the instructions manual, take your time to run a couple of cycles through before using the water for drinking. It will depend on what the manufacturer recommends and how long it takes for the tank to fill up. The process of filtering and emptying the storage tank could be anywhere between one and three hours.
Of course, installing the RO system is not the last time you’ll have to deal with the unit. As all filtering systems go, whether they are point of entry or point of use, the filter cartridges will need changing. Carbon and sediment filters may require a replacement every six months. If you have high quality ones and the water coming in is not too bad they might last you a year.
Under ideal conditions, an RO membrane can hold up for two years. You can easily notice when your RO membrane deteriorates. If the quality of the water simply drops then it is probably due to a high concentration of chlorine in the water. If your RO faucet doesn’t offer the same pressure, it is likely due to mechanical damage.
Just because RO membranes last up to two years doesn’t mean they don’t need the occasional cleaning. Some recommend that you clean the RO membrane up to four times a year. We find that it is generally enough to wait until the water pressure drops. If this happens before the two-year mark, you may want to remove the membrane and take it to a cleaning service.
You could do this at home, but the investment in high pH cleaners and cleaning equipment is not worth it. To effectively clean an RO membrane, you need more than just a good chemical mix. You need to control the water flow, temperature and much more, which is why a professional service is highly recommended.
An additional maintenance treatment could help maintain the efficiency and durability of your membrane. Using a water softener is recommended when your water analysis shows high grain per gallon (GPG). If higher than 7, you may want to look for a softener immediately.
Reverse osmosis (RO) filters out many contaminants from water by forcing the water through a semi-permeable membrane at high pressure. This process causes the water to deionize. The reason it is called RO is because unlike naturally occurring osmosis you need to push the water through the membrane with enough force.
You can think of the RO membrane as a screen door. It will let all the air in but it won’t let flies, mosquitoes and other such critters enter your home. A similar effect is obtained when sifting flour or when using a strainer to separate unwanted bits of meat and veggies from your gravy.
The same technique is use in RO systems with one addition. Pressure is added to push water through the membrane and have it catch unwanted particles. Without forcing the water through the membrane it won’t go through at an efficient rate.
Struggling with dirt and rust in your house water? That's why we have decided to review the Watts WH-LD water filter. Sometimes the quality of the water that arrives at our homes may not be the best. Even if we don't intend to drink it, particles in the water may hurt the performance of some equipment like water heaters.
In these cases, the best solution is to install a whole house filter. For one, it saves you the trouble of installing individual filters in all your water outlets. Furthermore, it works with other filters that you do have installed and improves their efficiency. Without further ado, let us introduce the Watts Premier WH-LD Whole House Filter.
As the name indicates, the Watts WH-LD is meant to filtrate water for the whole house. Unlike the slow reverse osmosis water filter system, it is not installed only in your kitchen. You should also keep in mind that the WH-LD will not remove substances such as chlorine or fluoride from the water, neither will it eliminate microorganisms.
What the WH-LD does is remove sediments and particles, like dust and rust, from the water that arrives at your home through the city water supply. It uses a 50-micron sediment filter for that purpose.
This system is designed by Watts Premier, a company that specializes in water filtration systems. It was founded in 1989 and is in turn part of the larger company Watts Water Technologies, founded in 1874.
The only other version of the WH-LD is the Full Flow Whole House System, which features a pressure release valve to make it easier for the user to replace the filter. It also has a significantly higher flow rate.
Before purchasing the Whole House Filter, you should be aware that it will require some expertise to install it, and it will not be easy to uninstall it, either. So, if you are considering a temporary solution or one that you can carry around easily, this system is not for you.
Also, keep in mind that this type of filter will not remove microscopic organisms or soluble impurities from the water. If you're worried that your water might be contaminated with bacteria or viruses, or toxic substances like arsenic, cadmium or chlorine, this system will not help you filter them out of the water.
What this system will do is remove small particles like dust, sand or rust. It will help any water equipment you have in your home, like the boiler, function more efficiently. And if you are also concerned about water contamination, there is no problem with installing additional filters, for example, in your kitchen. In fact, the WH-LD will help other filters do their job by preventing them from getting clogged with sediments.
Finally, we must say that if you are looking for an affordable solution to eliminate sediments from the water, this filter is the way to go.
The packaging of the Whole House Filter is pretty straightforward. It features a filter housing with a built-in bypass valve, a filter wrench for the filter housing, and 3 sediment filters, which is nice because it will save you the trouble of ordering the first two replacements.
Finally, the box also includes a manual for installation and maintenance of the WH-LD. These contents are not enough for you to perform the installation, so you will have to purchase some additional tools if you don't own them already.
The WH-LD is quite small and does a pretty good job filtering the water for your entire house considering its size. It weighs only 4 pounds and measures 14x6x6 inches.
This filter is meant to be installed directly after the water main and before your water heating system, as it cannot handle hot water. The temperature of the incoming water should be between 40º F and 100º F.
You should also consider the filter's water supply pressure requirement. Water from the supply line should range from 20 to 100 psi. Similarly, the water's pH should be between 5 and 10.
The installation of the filter may be somewhat permanent, but the included bypass valve is helpful if for some reason you wish to stop filtering the water. The other case when this valve is used is for when you have to replace the filter cartridge.
In terms of sediment filtration, the WH-LD performs admirably and delivers a great value for the price. It is also NSF certified, which is a sign of quality and reliability.
Installation of the WH-LD requires some expert plumbing and may even require some welding, so if you are not 100 percent confident, it is better to ask for help from a friend or a professional.
Apart from the items included in the box, the minimum recommended tools for installation are:
You may also need to purchase pipe fittings depending on the type and size of your pipes. In addition, Premier advises the users to install the filter indoors, where it will be safe from the wear and tear caused by exposure to the elements.
A handy installation guide can be found in the WH-LD manual.
Maintenance-wise, you should only need to replace the filter every now and then. The recommended replace interval varies from 3 to 6 months, where 3 months corresponds to a water with more sediment and 6 months to a cleaner supply water. Replacing the filter is easy, thanks to the embedded bypass valve.
If you're looking for a filter that eliminates chlorine from the water, along with bad tastes and odors, the WH-LD is not the best solution for you. You might be better off with a carbon filter like the Aqua-Pure AP903, which besides purifying the water also has an impressive flow rate of 20 gallons per minute (GPM).
However, the AP903 does not do well with dirty water, or water full of sediments, so using a pre-filter is recommended. At the end of the day, the two filters might even work well together.
If water flow is your only concern, you can also try the relatively affordable 500221 Full Flow Whole House System, also by Premier, which outputs a mighty 22 GPM.
Water that arrives at our homes with dirt or rust can be a problem, especially if it damages your water heating system. This can happen not only if your water comes from a private well, but also from the city supply.
In these cases, you should get a whole house filter to clean your water and improve your health, as well as the lifetime of your equipment. And as far as these filters go, you’d be hard-pressed to find a water filter better at filtering sediments than the Watts Premier WH-LD, especially considering the price.
Are you searching for a water filtration system that scores highly on water quality, pressure, and ease of maintenance? The Aqua-Pure AP903 might be just what you need.
Not all whole house filtration systems are created equally, and some do a better job than others. The Aqua-Pure AP903 not only combats sediments, chlorine, and particulates, but it also has the best water pressure for all household needs.
The Aqua-Pure AP903 by 3M is the second filtration system in the AP900 series. It’s particularly suited for home and light commercial applications. It has just one filter - ideal for city water supply but not heavily contaminated water that needs thorough filtration.
This system is actually an upgrade of the AP902 system. While the AP902 relies only on non-woven pleat media to reduce sediments, the AP903 also incorporates carbon block filtration. It’s also considerably cheaper than most competitors.
The system has been available in home improvement stores since early 2012. There haven’t been any significant changes since, but it has nonetheless been gaining popularity among homeowners.
The Aqua-Pure AP903 system is suited for city/municipal water supply, and for good reason. That it has just one filter means there’s no pre-filter. Thus, the system is not ideal for well water – which contains more sediments than municipal water sources.
The filter lasts for about one year, after which you may need to replace it with a new one. It provides good filtration of dirt, chlorine, rust, and odors. If your water has high concentrations of heavy metals like iron, this system wouldn’t be a good fit.
Another thing worth noting is that this system is built to withstand operating temperatures of up to 100°F (37.8°C). If you install the system to the hot water supply line, the lifespan of the filter will be reduced considerably.
This system also works best when the water pressure does not exceed 80 psi. You should avoid installing the system when water pressure exceeds 125 psi. If you live in an area that does not have water hammer conditions, this system would be ideal.
If cost ranks highly on your list of preferred qualities, this might be the real deal for you. This system is about three times cheaper than most competitors, including Home Master and Aquasana. It is one of the best filtration systems for city dwellers on a budget.
If you decide to acquire the Aqua-Pure AP903 filtration system, in the box you will find a filter head, bracket, and filter cartridge (AP917HD). To hold the cartridge in place, the system comes with a stainless steel head. What makes this system truly stand out is the fact that the steel head is protected by a 25-year limited warranty.
To install the system you will need a pipe cutter, plumber’s tape, and plumbing solder. Unfortunately, these tools are not included in the box. You can either buy them separately or seek help from a well-equipped professional.
The Aqua-Pure AP903 is capable of reducing sediment for up to 100,000 gallons, equivalent to 378,541 liters. And thanks to a flow rate of 20 gpm, the system can meet most city/municipal water applications. 1” inlet and outlet connections go a long way to maintaining high pressure within the system which again manifests in the high flow rate.
The AP903 system is the first filtration product to use the Sanitary Quick Change (SQC) design. This means you do not need a filter wrench for cartridge change-outs. The cartridge easily twists off, enabling you to avoid contact with the filter material.
Since the head is made of stainless steel, you won’t have to contend with rust or corrosion ever. The head is also designed to facilitate “sweat in place” installation.
Trying to remember the date you should replace the cartridge can create an unnecessary burden. For this reason, the installation kit includes an electronic countdown timer refrigerator magnet which automatically reminds you when the next change is due.
Perhaps even more noteworthy is the fact that the entire system is made of FDA CFR-21 materials. And if space is a bit limited, the Aqua-Pure AP903 filtration system should fit in smaller areas compared to most competitors. It measures 6 x 6 x 27 inches.
A 10-year limited warranty for the system as a whole should give you some piece of mind after installation.
This system is one of the easiest to maintain because it has just one filter, which only has to be replaced once a year. Installation can be quite difficult for beginners. If you do not have basic plumbing experience, you can seek the services of a professional plumber.
Before installation or change of cartridge, you should shut off the main water supply. This can help you to avoid too much water spill when replacing the cartridge.
To get the most out of this system: