You may live in the UK or US and think our water is perfectly fine. Water filters and water softeners are for countries where you can’t drink water straight from the tap. Right? Unfortunately, this is not the case and you may be surprised to learn that you could actually benefit from a filter or softener. It is important that you do your research to find out if you could benefit from a filter or softener. Sites like SoftWaterFiltrationgive you all the information you need to work out how to improve the quality of your water. There are also reviews and comparisons of the different options which are really useful.
What is a Water Filter?
A water filter removes contaminants from your water. Water can contain bacteria and impurities such as heavy metals, and chemicals. A water filter will purify your water to filter out the impurities so your water is safe to drink and tastes better.
There are numerous choices with a water filter. It can be connected to your water supply for example under your kitchen sink, or you could just filter drinking water by using a jug.
What is Hard Water?
Our water may be treated and absolutely fine to drink, you may still have a problem with hard water. Our water comes from rainwater. Rainwater either stays soft or picks up hardness from the ground. Therefore, hard water is a geographical problem. If you live in an area with hard water, everyone else in the area has hard water.
You can check to see if your area is a soft water or hard water region. Chances are, if you live in a hard water area then you probably already know it. If you have hard water, you will get limescale deposits from your water. This will reduce the efficiency of, and ultimately damage, your appliances. You can see it as bits at the bottom of your kettle, and that white powder that comes out of your iron and onto your clothes. Normally your best ones.
Hard water is water with minerals like magnesium, calcium and iron. Not only can these minerals line your pipes, but they can have an unpleasant taste. They can even affect your hair and skin when you bathe and shower.
What Harm Does Hard Water Do?
As you can see, it is not great to have hard water, but what harm does it actually do?
- Hard water causes a build-up in your pipes of the scaly deposit. This will eventually block your pipes.
- They will also get clogged up so will work less efficiently as they are working harder. Eventually, they will break down.
- Hard water leaves a residue on your dishes when you do the washing up.
- Hard water is harsh on your clothes and the residue will leave the colours looking dull.
- Skin and hair. Hard water is harsh and drying on your skin and hair. If your hair is very frizzy, this could be a cause.
What is a Water Softener?
A water softener removes the excess minerals from your tap water that cause the hardness and scale. This is usually done with a process known as ion exchange. It is normally connected where your water enters the house. It doesn’t sound very nice, but it uses salt to remove the minerals. The salt is slowly added to the water, so you need to refill the dispenser on a regular basis. You can get salt free water softeners if you don’t like the thought of adding salt to your water.
Water softeners need a fair amount of maintenance. A salt-based water softener needs restocking with salt. You can use a system that is not salt-based such as a magnetic system. This type of water softener is cheaper and requires less maintenance but is less effective.
When Would I Need a Water Filter?
If you think your water smells, or tastes, of chlorine. If you’re concerned about the quality of the water that you are drinking and using. Then you should consider a water filter.
When Would I Need a Water Softener?
If you live in a hard water area, and you have a lot of limescale then you would benefit from a water softener. A water softener is not just a nice to have, but it can ensure your appliances and boiler are working correctly and more efficiently.
Types of Water Filter.
There are a variety of water purification techniques to remove the impurities from your water. There are 3 common methods:
- Activated carbon
- Reverse osmosis
- Sediment filtration
The filter system sits under your kitchen sink. Water filtration systems don’t require much maintenance, but they are quite expensive.
If you have hard water, a water softening system will be the most cost-effective solution. However, if the quality of your water is not great, then the water softener won’t give you better tasting water. You will need to remove the contamination with a water filtration system.
Only you can really decide if you need either a water filter or a water softener. Remember, these are two totally different solutions. One system removes chemicals and contaminants from your water, the other system makes the water softer. It doesn’t have to be an either one or the other solution, you can install both systems. You can also get a solution that does both in your house. You really need to know if you have impure or hard water, or not.