When you compare home water purifiers, or “point-of-use” systems, as they are sometimes referred to, you will see that you have many options. Distillation, reverse osmosis, pitcher types, aquaguard royale carbon filtration systems, multi-media blocks, ion exchange, sub-micron filtering or a combination of any or all of these systems is available. Choosing the right option is important, both to your family’s health and to your spending department. Let’s look at the pros and cons of each.
Pros: This method destroys harmful bacteria. Inorganic compounds that have a higher boiling point than water will be removed.
Cons: Chemical contaminants that have a lesser boiling point will travel along with the steam and be returned to liquid form in the final chamber. Electricity is required, so electric bills will increase. The cost to filter a gallon is higher than 20 cents. Additional steps are required for complete safety. When you compare home water purifiers, you will find that there are less expensive systems that cost less to use and filter some common contaminants more effectively.
Reverse Osmosis (RO)
Pros: This is a process employed by treatment facilities and desalination plants. It removes contaminants larger than water’s compounds, so most things like lead, arsenic and other groundwater contaminants will be removed.
Cons: Removes trace mineral required for good health. Water cleaned this way tastes stale. Chemical contaminants, such as pesticides and herbicides are too small to be removed by the semi-permeable membrane. Gallons of wastewater are created. The system is slow, so a large storage tank is needed. The cost to purchase, maintain and use is excessive. Electricity is necessary to pressurize and power the pumps. Cost per gallon is higher than 15 cents. Additional steps are required for complete safety. When you compare home water purifiers, you will see that RO has more disadvantages than any other.
Pitchers and Carafe-Style Filtration systems
Pros: These are inexpensive to purchase. They remove some chlorine and odor. Most also remove lead. Water can be filtered and stored in the same container. No electricity is required. This is a low cost alternative to bottled.
Cons: Filtration systems have a short expected life. Cost people is about 25 cents per gallon. They work slowly and are inclined to trickle. They only offer a slight improvement over tap-water. Additional steps are required for complete safety. If you compare home water purifiers, you will find better options.
Carbon Filtering and Multi-Stage Systems
Before I get to the pros and cons, I will say that when you compare home water purifiers available today, you should view the product performance data sheets before you buy. All activated carbon and multi-stage systems do not have the same effectiveness. The system that we am evaluating here is the most effective on the market, assuming you are serviced by a treatment facility or have a well.
Pros: Removes a wide range of contaminants including chlorine, THMs, VOCs, cryptosporidium and giardia cysts, pesticides, herbicides, MTBE and lead. No electricity is required. They operate with any water-pressure. Countertop units are easy to install without the help of a plumber. It costs less than $125 to purchase. It costs less than a dime per gallon.
Cons: This is not really a drawback to the product but a warning about bacterial contamination. Following a heavy storm or when your source has been infected with E coli bacteria, you should filter first and then boil before use.