Unbiased guide to indoor water filter systems
In fact, it’s very important. At this step, forget every marketing gimmick or trick you heard in your life. Forget about alkaline water, dead/live water, positively/negatively charged, magnetized etc. These are what they are, marketing tricks introduced to suck more money out of you pocket when you’re shopping for new system. There are only 2 types of water, safe to drink and unsafe to drink. We will leave everything else to snake oil sellers and other charlatans.
- Reverse osmosis (RO) systems offer the cleanest output water, however it must be made of quality components. It also wastes a lot of water, requires high water pressure, requires maintenance and has a weak point – water tank. Quality RO system will cost 1500RM or more, tankless RO systems with respectable flow will cost close to 2000RM.
- It is highly recommended for systems to have separate sediment filter with replacable/washable cartridge. If it doesn’t have one, you can get a separate sediment pre-filter and adapt it to any system. Without sediment filter, even the best system may get clogged within few month.
- Stay away from cheap Made-in-China systems and components. Their quality is questionable from both health and safety point of view due to lack of quality control and raw material input. This doesn’t generally apply to large brands manufactured in China (3M for instance).
- Careful with “Made in USA”, “Made in Japan”, “Made in Malaysia” etc systems, especially from smaller brands. What matters is where the components of the system are manufactured, not where the system is assembled. If someone buys cheap components in China, brings them to Switzerland and assembles the system there, he is allowed to say that system is “Made in Switzerland”, however it won’t be realistic representation of the product and the quality. To our knowledge, Fresca Disruptor is the only system on the market where each component that touches water is made in USA/UK.
- Is NSF absolutely required? No, but it is recommended. If system is made by big, reputable brand (Aquaphor, 3M etc), then you can ignore NSF, however, for smaller brands, better make sure that all components that touch water are NSF certified. For example, Fresca branded PoU systems have all components with at least NSF 42 or NSF 61 certification.
- Avoid ceramic filters. Some may not agree with us, but ceramic filters are evil. Claims that ceramic filters can stop bacteria are doubtful, however there is no doubt that bacteria enjoy growing inside ceramic layer. Think about ceramic filter as glorified (and way overpriced) melt blown sediment filter. There are more troubles than benefits.
- Consider that cartridges will need to be changed in 1 year time regardless of what manufacturer says (applies to UF membranes as well). Exception are washable cartridges (Disruptor, pleated polyester and RO membranes). After 1 year or so, a cartridge probably does more harm than good due to bacteria growth inside.