Your home is your castle, but like a lot of castles in the days of yore, the water could probably be better. Unlike in those ancient castles, though, modern technology makes it possible for you to have clean, safe water, no matter what sort of problems plague your fortress’s water supply. Choosing a whole home water filtration system is a big commitment, but depending on your water quality and source, it can make more sense than using filters at specific end points in the house.
Whole House Filters Versus Point of Use Filters
Many homeowners wonder what the advantages are to installing a whole home filtration system versus simply using things like tap filters and refrigerator filters. After all, aren’t those the only places where water quality really matters? Absolutely not.
Hard water, for example, can be very hard on any appliance that has water regularly run through it, from your washing machine to your toilet or dishwasher. Over time, sediment and mineral build-up can shorten the life span of any and all of these often expensive pieces of equipment. Installing a whole home water filtration system automatically removes problematic minerals and particulates from your water before it enters other points in your home, so you won’t have to take your chances on when an appliance will stop working or need repairs.
Water filters on specific appliances can be sufficient if you really just don’t like the taste of your water, or if you’ve placed in-line filters on your most delicate equipment. But remember that spot filters can only protect the items that are being filtered, and won’t cover other parts of your home that you may not have realized need filtering. They can also get expensive to maintain if you have many filters that need to be changed regularly.
What Can You Filter With a Whole House Filter?
A whole house filter can remove many common contaminants that may be present in your water. It’s a good idea to have a water test before you make a final decision on what you’d like your whole house filter to accomplish. A few things the most popular filtration mediums can reduce or eliminate entirely include:
- Chlorine and chloramine
- Hydrogen sulfide
- Heavy metals
- Bacteria and viruses
- Pesticides and herbicides
Most whole home filters consist of sediment filters, carbon filters, and, if you’re on well water, a UV lamp. However, because these are generally cartridge systems, you ultimately have control over what’s being filtered out. If your water tests show significant problems with heavy metals, you may need additional equipment for drinking water. Reverse osmosis systems can also filter out things like heavy metals and produce very pure water, but they use a lot of extra water and can be very slow, so they’re generally only recommended for spot usage. They’re often used only for drinking and cooking water, so you won’t necessarily need a huge add-on to your whole home filter.
Choosing the Right System for Your Home
The right system for your home is the system that both meets your needs for water usage and is able to filter out the contaminants that are in your water. This is why it’s so important to have a water test before you even start to look at whole home filter systems, even if you already have an idea as to what you think would be good for your lifestyle. You may discover that your water simply doesn’t contain the contaminates you’re most concerned about, which would be great news! Since both municipal water and well water can change over time, a system that allows for multiple interchangeable cartridges, from a company that will support your whole home filter over the long term, is always the ideal. The same can be said for a reverse osmosis system, should you need one in addition to a filtration system.