What Is Water Filtration? Choosing a Home Water Treatment System

What is water filtration?

Choosing the Right Home Water Treatment System

Water filtration can improve the safety and taste of your home's water.In recent years, filter technology has become more advanced, easier to install and maintain and more effective. There are many affordable treatment options available that can address any issues you might have. Water treatment filters are designed to eliminate specific contaminants. It is essential that you know that a filter will remove a particular contaminant and that the filter matches NSF-certification for that contaminant.

Let's look at the options for water treatment and how to choose the perfect water filtration system to meet your needs.

Have Your Water Tested

If you receive your water from a private well, you're responsible for the quality of your home's water supply. Annual testing can inform you of any contaminants that may be present. Contact Skillings & Sons. We are well water professionals who can ensure your testing for help you analyze your test results. They will know of any contaminants specific to your area and can arrange testing and review results with you.

If you receive your water from a municipal water system, the EPA requires community suppliers to provide customers with a Consumer Confidence Report (CCR) each July. This CCR tells you about the water quality in your area, but not what is coming out of your tap. If you live in an older home (pre-1986), your water may contain small amounts of lead.

Lead solder was used on plumbing before it was banned in 1986 and small amounts of lead may leach from your pipes into your home's water. According to the FDA, there is no safe lead level, so it's best to test your water at the tap to determine exactly what is in your home's water.

What is Water Filtration?

Water filtration is a process that passes your water through a filter designed to remove contaminants. Systems like pitchers or countertop units use granular activated charcoal which is effective at removing larger contaminants like lead. Larger systems like whole house water treatment systems use some methods including ultraviolet light, several stages of filtration, or in the case of reverse osmosis, a semi-permeable membrane that water is pushed through to remove contaminants. Larger treatment systems can use several different methods in combination.

Matching the Filter To Your Needs

Once you know what is in your home's water, you can then choose the proper filtration system to meet your specific needs.

When shopping for filtration systems check to see that it carries NSF certification for the substance you need to remove. NSF International is a non-profit testing lab that works with the industry to develop quality standards. Third party labs also test and certify products to NSF standards. Check for other accepted certification from labs including CSA, UL, and WQA.

Water treatment systems can range in price from $20 up to $1000 or more for a whole house system. Any filtration system you install will use a removable filter that needs to be changed periodically to keep it useful. When purchasing any system consider this expense as well! If you're not sure or need more information, contact your well water professional.

Choosing the Right Water Treatment System

When purchasing a water treatment system for your home make sure you factor in the price (including ongoing maintenance), your family's water use, and most importantly the contaminants in your water that need to be removed.

Here are some of your water filtration choices:

Carafe/Pitcher Systems 

These can be purchased at any supermarket or big box store. They are limited in their effectiveness, but most remove lead and chlorine without sacrificing flow rates. If your primary concern is the taste of your water than a carafe filtration devices work well enough. We do not recommend this option as a replacement for a water treatment system.

Countertop Systems

Countertop systems are installed much like faucet mounts, but the system sits on the counter and can clutter your space. They do not require any modification to your home's plumbing and can filter larger quantities of water than a carafe or pitcher style filtration device. We do not recommend this option as a replacement for a water treatment system.

Faucet Mounted Systems 

Faucet mounted systems are designed to filter water at a single source. They are easy to install, readily available and can filter water for consumption and cooking. Faucet mounted systems allow you to switch the filter on and off which can extend filter life. Depending on the manufacturer, they are as efficient as carafe or countertop systems. We do not recommend this option as a replacement for a water treatment system. 

Under Counter Filtration Systems

These systems can filter a lot of water, and instead of cluttering the counter, they are mounted under the sink. Because they use a dedicated faucet, you'll need to factor in plumbing modifications when budgeting.

Whole House Water Treatment Systems 

A whole house treatment system is installed at the point where your water enters your home. These types of systems provide clean, safe water not only for consumption, but also for showering, and cleaning. Larger systems can incorporate several different treatment methods like reverse osmosis, microfiltration, and ultraviolet light and are designed to remove specific contaminants. They require professional installation but if you're seriously concerned with water quality and the health of your family a whole house water treatment system is your best option. Talk with your Skillings & Sons well water professional to determine the correct system and installation costs.

Water filtration is a smart way to protect the health and safety of your water supply and can improve the taste of your water. Whether you want a carafe system or a whole house treatment system, it's an affordable way to protect your family.

At Skillings and Sons, we've been helping our New Hampshire and Massachusetts customers with everything from testing and analysis, to choosing the right system to meet their needs, through installation and maintenance. If you're serious about the purchase of a water filtration system to protect your familys well being, give us a call. We're here to help!