Installing a Water Filter in House: the Pros and Cons

Water FilterA water filter in the house can be a lifesaver, especially if you live in an area where the quality of the tap water is less than perfect. Even in cities where the water is drinkable, though, you might still have to deal with chlorine and other chemicals that can affect the taste and healthfulness of your water. Although buying a water filter for the house is usually a big investment, you will reap the benefits for years to come.

Not sure if you’re ready to take the plunge? Here are some of the pros and cons of installing a water filter in your house.

Pros

Saves you money

Depending on the brand and type of bottled water you buy, you’re paying from $1 to $5 or more for a gallon of bottled water. After the cost of the initial installation, a gallon of water filtered at home will cost you less than 5 cents per gallon. This is even taking into consideration the price of changing the filters every few months. There are water filters at all costs you can choose from.

Clears your water of contaminants

The biggest advantage of having a water filtering system in your home is that you’ll have 24/7 access to clean water. A water filtration system will eliminate chlorine, nitrate/nitrite, lead, mercury, volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and bad taste and odor. Some filters will also remove nominal particulates (Class I) and toxaphene.

It’s better for the environment. Another big advantage of a water filter house system is that it eliminates the need for plastic bottles. While a good percentage of bottles are recycled, many end up in landfills or the ocean, endangering wildlife and damaging the environment. Processing and transporting bottled water also increases greenhouse gases, as it requires the use of energy. Most water filter systems require no energy at all, since they’re directly connected to the faucet or plumbing. Some need to be plugged in, but their energy consumption is minimal.

Cons

Expensive

Installing a water filter in your house might require an initial investment of $1000 or more, depending on the type of system you choose. Some filtration systems require additional expenses because they can only be installed by a professional plumber.

Wastes water

Not all filtration systems are efficient when it comes to water processing and filtering. Reverse-osmosis water filters waste the most water for every gallon of drinkable water they produce, they waste three to five gallons. Others waste less but still don’t make all water usable, discarding at least part of the water that passes through the filter. Think about the earth’s dwindling water supply when choosing your filter.

Gives you a false sense of security

Installing a water filter in your house doesn’t automatically mean that you’re protected against all types of bacteria, metals, and other contaminants. For example, only reverse-osmosis filtration systems completely clear arsenic, lead and nitrates out of the water. However, reverse-osmosis systems might let through some bacteria, so you probably need to get a second carbon-based filter to clean the water a second time.

It doesn’t work for everybody

Filters that are attached to the main plumbing system only work if you have new, clean pipes. If the pipes in your house are old, corroded or dirty, in-plumbing filters will not work, as the water will get dirty and contaminated again as it goes through the pipes. If you want faucet filters, you need to make sure the type of faucet you have will accept a filter. If the filter doesn’t fit, you will either need to change the faucet or use the filter in a different faucet of the house. This can be inconvenient and expensive.

If you’re sure a water filter system is a good choice for you, make sure you compare brands and models to find a water filter that fits your house and lifestyle best.

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