5

votes

Anyone have suggestions regarding *effective* water filters or filtration systems?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created June 10, 2012 at 2:59 PM

As empty beer cans are to rednecks, so plastic water bottles are to this self-proclaimed "classy lady." In an effort to combat both the sheer number of empty plastic bottles littering my car & home (unless I'm willing to make recycling-bin runs in my pjs), as well as the deleterious impact that such a large amount of plastic is surely having on my health & the environment, I have entered the "serious" water filter market. And by "serious," I do not mean Brita, Pur, etc. I mean "serious" in that I could clock a home invader with it, and he/she would remain on the floor.

Due to my current location (Midtown Atlanta), I am most interested in something that will remove...well...virtually everything: chloramines (chlorine should be a given), pesticide residues, pharmaceuticals, other assorted pollutants, & as many heavy metals as possible at a price point of $500 or less. While Reverse Osmosis & Whole House Filtration both appear to be fairly successful at removing pollutants & cost effective per gallon, the respective water waste, & initial cost/space requirement seem prohibitive for a student living in a small condo.

To recap:

-Hoping to avoid whole house filtration since I am in a condo, and am not sure that I have enough space for one (it's cramped!)

-Hoping to avoid the excessive water waste & professional plumbing involved in Reverse Osmosis
-Would prefer an above counter, portable, or reasonably compact system that doesn't require time consuming or professional plumbing changes

-If it's not small enough to hide away in a cabinet, it shouldn't be an eyesore sitting on the counter

-Would like for it to remove as many of the following as possible: chloramines, pesticide residues, pharmaceuticals, fluoride (I know this gets complicated), other pollutants you think are important, & heavy metals.

-Would LOVE a price of $500 or less...

-Willing to consider a distillation system & mineral drops, but not sure that any systems fit the above requirements

Is this even feasible without such magic as an activated mammalian diving reflex, rhino-horn powder, or non-ingested magic beans?

I am currently considering a Berkey, but would love to hear any other suggestions, or experiences that anyone would be willing to share. So, anyone have comments, suggestions, or experiences?

Please advise before I go off and do something utterly glutarded.

7e1433afbb06c318c4d90860d493c49d

(5959)

on June 13, 2012
at 09:56 PM

The OP is looking for fluoride removal. Carbon block won't remove fluoride.

8508fec4bae4a580d1e1b807058fee8e

(6259)

on June 11, 2012
at 04:32 PM

It tastes pretty good but doesn't eliminate fluoride. It nearly $600 and I'd rather go with Big Berkey (under $300) and does remove more stuff including fluoride.

8e3782b68e033763485472f414f507a5

(2433)

on June 11, 2012
at 11:35 AM

Yeah, they had a manufacturing issue with the filter base coming off. Not a good situation. I think they handled it fine -- they gave out replacements, etc. Seems to be resolved now.

8e3782b68e033763485472f414f507a5

(2433)

on June 11, 2012
at 11:33 AM

Yeah, they had a manufacturing issue with the filter base coming off. Not a good situation. Seems to be resolved now.

Ca1150430b1904659742ce2cad621c7d

(12540)

on June 10, 2012
at 10:15 PM

PPS: Don't skip the "priming" step for both the Black and PF-2 filters... rinse them until the water comes out both fast and clear. There are salts, etc., in the filter that settle out, and if you don't rinse thoroughly, your water will taste HORRIBLE until the stuff washes through -- so do the prime up front and you won't deal with that.

Ca1150430b1904659742ce2cad621c7d

(12540)

on June 10, 2012
at 10:05 PM

BTW, we had our Berkey water independently tested back when all the stink came out about the whole 'fraud' thing -- and our water tested pure and in the +5 range for drinkability, without a trace of contaminants, including bacterial/fungal/microbial contamination.

7660f5a0ec906d3922d79b20f3434ecc

(788)

on June 10, 2012
at 09:05 PM

I've seen some bad reviews about the Big Berkey and a lot of information accusing the company of fraud. Have you seen any of this?

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8 Answers

3
Ca1150430b1904659742ce2cad621c7d

(12540)

on June 10, 2012
at 04:21 PM

I'll back Kilton up on this one. If you're not going to install a whole-house system, the Berkeys, using the Black Berkey filter and the optional PF-2 fluoride filter is the best possible filtration you can find -- and in my experience, it even beats out whole-house systems for producing healthy water.

In your situation, you'd probably be perfectly fine with the Travel Berkey, which is smaller and well suited to a single person living alone -- plus, it will save you about $100 over the Big Berkey.

Down here, because of hurricane season, we use a Travel Berkey, but keep an Imperial in the garage in case we need to fill it for an impending storm.

Ca1150430b1904659742ce2cad621c7d

(12540)

on June 10, 2012
at 10:15 PM

PPS: Don't skip the "priming" step for both the Black and PF-2 filters... rinse them until the water comes out both fast and clear. There are salts, etc., in the filter that settle out, and if you don't rinse thoroughly, your water will taste HORRIBLE until the stuff washes through -- so do the prime up front and you won't deal with that.

Ca1150430b1904659742ce2cad621c7d

(12540)

on June 10, 2012
at 10:05 PM

BTW, we had our Berkey water independently tested back when all the stink came out about the whole 'fraud' thing -- and our water tested pure and in the +5 range for drinkability, without a trace of contaminants, including bacterial/fungal/microbial contamination.

3
8e3782b68e033763485472f414f507a5

(2433)

on June 10, 2012
at 03:57 PM

I've been using a Big Berkey for a few years, and have been impressed. It's always nice to throw some food coloring in there and watch the water come out crystal clear.

Out of curiosity I did some research again about a year ago, and I couldn't find anything that looked better to me.

8e3782b68e033763485472f414f507a5

(2433)

on June 11, 2012
at 11:35 AM

Yeah, they had a manufacturing issue with the filter base coming off. Not a good situation. I think they handled it fine -- they gave out replacements, etc. Seems to be resolved now.

7660f5a0ec906d3922d79b20f3434ecc

(788)

on June 10, 2012
at 09:05 PM

I've seen some bad reviews about the Big Berkey and a lot of information accusing the company of fraud. Have you seen any of this?

8e3782b68e033763485472f414f507a5

(2433)

on June 11, 2012
at 11:33 AM

Yeah, they had a manufacturing issue with the filter base coming off. Not a good situation. Seems to be resolved now.

2
B23318c968ac589b87131d5b489d6e16

(1294)

on June 10, 2012
at 08:32 PM

I love the Berkey! Been using it for a year. It is a bother to clean, but once you get into a rhythm its not bad. Be careful about any distilling without replacing the minerals, that can really cause bone problems. In other words, every way you do it takes some extra work. So worth it!

1
Cf416725f639ffd1bb90764792ce7b8a

(2799)

on June 10, 2012
at 04:55 PM

These are nice in the shower if you don't go whole house.

http://www.amazon.com/Culligan-WSH-C125-Wall-Mount-Capacity-Showerhead/dp/B0006VVN1S/

1
87b7d250ea30415ed4c1afd809f4053f

on June 10, 2012
at 04:44 PM

I use a distiller and love it - cost me au$290. We just leave it out on the kitchen counter. It actually looks nice too. Follow the link for info about it.

http://www.plantessentials.com.au/store/water-distiller.html

0
B4a2c2c619b1a5488b7196586a815354

on June 13, 2012
at 09:41 PM

Check out the Clear2o pitcher. Amazon sells it or check out the clear2o website. Best one on the market, hands down.

7e1433afbb06c318c4d90860d493c49d

(5959)

on June 13, 2012
at 09:56 PM

The OP is looking for fluoride removal. Carbon block won't remove fluoride.

0
7e1433afbb06c318c4d90860d493c49d

(5959)

on June 11, 2012
at 12:47 AM

Personally, I'm hardcore about using reverse osmosis, but a Zero Water pitcher system might be something to consider. They claim it makes water that is nearly as pure as RO, and it doesn't waste any water. Take a look: http://www.zerowater.com/

0
Fc64db6a555559762432d503a1dbad19

(1478)

on June 10, 2012
at 03:55 PM

This is what I use:

E-spring Water Purifier

This in-home water treatment system, with a patented cartridge design incorporates a carbon-block filter and UV light, reduces potential health-effect impurities, and destroys microorganisms. This unit comes with the eSpring Diverter Kit for quick connection to your existing faucet.

There is a less expensive unit that is closer to your price range, the difference is that the this one does not have the black light filter, but it still has a lot of great features.

e-spring Carbon Water Treatment Benefits Effectively reduces more than 140 potential heath-effect impurities, including: 13 disinfection byproducts. 30 pesticides and pesticide byproducts. Lead, mercury, radon, and radon decay products. Two pharmaceutical impurities. MTBE (Methyl tert-butyl ether). More than 40 suspected endocrine disruptors. Suspected carcinogens known to exist in water. Reduces particulate down to 0.2 microns, including asbestos, sediment, dirt, and scale. Allows beneficial minerals like calcium, magnesium, and fluoride to pass through. Dramatically improves the taste, odor, and clarity of water. More convenient and less expensive than bottled water. Convenient and easy to use. Innovative, patented design offers efficiency and reliability. Water Quality Association Gold Seal certified. NSF/ANSI Certified to Standards 42 and 53. Includes a 2-year limited warranty.

Private message me if you are interested and I will get you in touch with the person who sold me my unit. I love it, I have had it for years, my only complaint was the dis continued the filters for the older unit I used to have, so I had to buy the newer one. Oh well.

8508fec4bae4a580d1e1b807058fee8e

(6259)

on June 11, 2012
at 04:32 PM

It tastes pretty good but doesn't eliminate fluoride. It nearly $600 and I'd rather go with Big Berkey (under $300) and does remove more stuff including fluoride.

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