Are Water Filters The Answer To Our Tap Water Health Concerns? 8 Methods For Cleaner Water

There are a variety of different types of home water filtration systems that can purify your water in the long-term. Each type uses a different purification process that produces cleaner and better water for you and your family to enjoy. Purification processes differ by the type of water filter and range in price range and contaminant removal.  

Installing a water purification system in your home is cheaper in the long haul over constantly buying bottles of water. It’s going to be a bigger cost at the beginning but down the road, you’ll end up saving. Not to mention the amount of damage plastic bottles do on the environment.  A water filtration system helps to prevent more plastic waste in landfills throughout the world.  

Plus, there’s always the chance of getting harmful contaminants from your tap water. Chemical compounds include pesticides and toxins and biological contamination includes bacteria, viruses, and parasites.

If you’re thinking of making the switch to a home water filtration system, review the different purifications below. Once you determine the right one for you, ensure the filter is certified by the NSF or ANSI. This is important if you’re making a purchase online, as a recent report found many water filters show no form of certification.


Sediment Filtration System

Sediment filtration systems are the most common and widely-used systems for both commercial and private use.  

The sediment filtration system works best to remove sediments (as its name implies) like dust, sand, rust, heavy metal, and other particles that float in water.

Sediment filters work pretty easily. The water flows through a filter and blocks the microns that are larger than 5 microns. Sediment filtration systems tend to be low cost and have a very straightforward replacement process.  

The one big con however, is that you need to combine the sediment filtration system with other filters to be able to get tasty and safe drinking water.


Activated Carbon Block

The Activated Carbon Block filtration system (ACB) is made up of fine carbon powder held in place with a static binding agent. ACB is effective in removing the chlorine taste and odor that’s often found in water.  

ACB tends to be very affordable and offers clients a high return value. It has a longer lasting life than the sediment system and doesn’t require a power source to run. There are no chemical additives and it runs on eco-friendly tech.  

The ACB system cannot remove viruses however and doesn’t effectively remove excess minerals or solids.  


Reverse Osmosis (RO) Filtration Systems

Reverse Osmosis, besides having a wicked cool name, is a form of filter technology which uses a membrane to separate inorganic contaminants from water and produces a clean form of drinking water.

It can remove up to 99% of contaminants including pesticides, chlorine, iron, calcium, mercury, and other solvents.  

Of all the systems, RO systems produce the best form of drinking water. In order to do that though, it has a very slow water filtration rate and the systems tend to be very expensive. It also can’t be used alone to treat chlorinated water from your tap.


Distillation System

Distillation is one of the oldest forms of water purification. The distiller evaporates the water by heating it past the boiling point by using an electric source. The steam is then captured and condenses into a pure form of liquid drinking water.  

During the condensation process, only the essential minerals get filtered through and all the other negative compounds get left aside.  

While distillation systems have a strong form of purification, the process is rather time consuming and gives out   slow output. Distillation systems also come at a high operating cost and it consumes a lot of electrical power. It does, however, remove the majority of contaminants that are often found in water, so it’s a pay-off you’re going to want to consider.  


Ion Exchange  

The Ion Exchange process, which sounds like a cool Hollywood movie, is a process that removes unwanted ions from water with a different electrically charged ion.

When treating water, exchanging ions is usually used to soften water which absorbs acids and removes metals and minerals.

The method is inexpensive and very effective against inorganic contaminants. The Ion Exchange methods are able to remove a bevy of negative contaminants including arsenic, fluoride, sulfates, uranium, and iron.  

The IX cannot remove sediments however, and comes at a high operating cost.


Ultraviolet Disinfection

Ultraviolet (UV) treatment is used to destroy microorganism viruses and bacteria from water reservoirs including lakes, wells, streams, and rain. UV rays can kill almost 100% of contaminants that can cause human illnesses when drinking. But since UV lamps are added protection and not technically a water filter, you’ll still need to get a filter to complete the process.  

The UV process is simple maintenance, low operating costs and consumption and environmentally friendly.  

It does however, only remove the microorganisms in water and requires a prefilter to block out other impurities in water. Since it can’t be used as a standalone filter to purify water, it has it’s negative backlashes but it’s near 99.9% of destroying harmful microorganisms is intriguing.  



Ionization uses a method that charges water molecules to produce an antioxidant-enriched alkaline water and acidic water. The tap water passes through a filter system that reduces chemicals and compounds and then processes it through water electrolysis.

Ionization produces great tasting water and you can adjust the water’s pH levels to suit whatever your needs are. It does require an electric power supply to work and tends to be very expensive.  


Activated Alumina Filter System  

Activated Alumina (AA) is a system that’s designed to remove fluoride, arsenic, and thallium from water. It’s most often used in homes and treated tap water. When tap water runs through the AA system, fluorides are absorbed and the system removes up to 99% of the fluorides in water. The system requires a periodical cleaning and it can prove to have pretty high maintenance time which is bothersome to some users.  


As a consumer, you’re best off to weigh out all your water filter options before deciding what type of contaminants and features you need from a water filter. Each process has different benefits and cons on your home but the end goal is all the same – having pure water.  



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Written by HealthStatus Crew
Medical Writer & Editor

HealthStatus teams with authors from organizations to share interesting ideas, products and new health information to our readers.

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