What is Filtered Water? LEARN About The Purest Form of Drinking Water

Buying bottled water can take away from your food budget quickly. Not only that, but you also end up buying a lot of plastics that you can hopefully dispose of.

Why do people buy a lot of bottled water, though?

People go to the supermarkets to buy bottled water because they are not sure how potable their tap water is. Some countries do have potable water. Some places make extra effort to keep water flowing through the pipes clean.

For example, some islands have their water providers shutting down water whenever there is heavy rain. They do not want dirty water leaking through the pipes and going out of the taps. They make sure that the water is safe to drink before letting water flow again.

This is not the case with other countries, though. Some still struggle to deliver clean water. That is why it is best to invest in a home filtration system. You can at least find a balance between cleanliness and affordability.

Why is Tap Water Bad?

Unfortunately, tap water generally has a bad reputation, and not without good reason. Here are some ways in which tap water can be bad for you:

  • Herbicides and pesticides: These chemicals can leak into your pipes. Even if the percentage is low, you may find yourself experiencing symptoms such as weakness and irritation.
  • Bacteria: This may be the main reason some people are hesitant about drinking tap water. Bacteria, such as E.coli and salmonella, can find its way to your tap water. You may find yourself suffering from food poisoning or worse.
  • Chlorine: It may be used to eliminate bacteria and germs. However, it can also cause harm to the body. At the least, it can cause irritations. Be wary if you start suffering from chronic irritation. 
  • Various Chemicals: All sorts of chemicals can go through the pipes, creating various physical disturbances.
  • Rust: Rust can originate anywhere from your own plumbing in your house to the water main.  Iron particles break free from inside corroded steel or iron pipes. Rust sediment will turn your water reddish-brown. According to the University of Illinois Urbana-Champagne, a little bit of rust is unlikely to hurt you but could produce a nasty metallic taste.
  • Heavy Metals: Indeed, you may not be negatively affected if you don’t drink a lot of tap water. However, with extended periods of tap water drinking, you may find yourself suffering from the brain’s diseases and the rest of the nervous system, such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and more.

What are the Benefits of Filtered Water?

From what you have read so far, you know that tap water poses some dangers, whether you are drinking it for the short term or the long-term. Of course, the long-term effects of contaminated water are significantly more dangerous.

18 benefits of filtered water

  1. Reduced bottled water expenses – Bottled water can cost up to 30x more water from a water filtration system
  2. More environmentally friendly80% of the 50 billion water bottles end up in a landfill and use 17 million oil barrels.  
  3. Remove heavy metals – Unfiltered tap water can potentially contain mercury, arsenic, dioxins, lead, etc      
  4. Not allowing bacteria and germs to seep through the water
  5. Improving hydration – Drinking alkaline water that is mineral-based improved hydration levels, per a study from the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition
  6. Promoting healthier skin – Clear your skin by drinking plenty of water daily
  7. Serves as an energy booster – Helps maintain and raise your energy levels throughout the day
  8. Removes unpalatable tap water odors – unbearable taste and smells make it unpalatable
  9. Lessen acid reflux – Alkaline water filters have been shown to reduce heartburn or acid reflux
  10. Anti-oxidation – Helps your body recover from exercise and disease; improves your outer and inner health
  11. Reduce colds and flu – Dehydration dries out your mucus membrane in your nose that traps things like dirt, dust, and bacteria from entering your lungs
  12. Protect tooth structure – Filters will reduce the acidic pH levels that potentially cause demineralization1 and deterioration of your tooth structure
  13. Assist in weight loss – Drinking water can increase your resting energy expenditure and reduce your appetite
  14. Better tea – Filtering out hard water and limescale can make a big difference in taste
  15. Increases likeability – You’ll want to drink more better tasting and odorless water after buying a water filter
  16. No chlorine smell and taste – Chlorine is often used to remove disease and bacteria from water but can potentially increase the odds of cancer over a lifetime
  17. Improved digestion – Your digestion can improve with enhanced mineral content
  18. Tastier meals – The natural flavors of the food will be better preserved and appreciated

Of course, with all the potential benefits, it becomes easier for you to drink water. You are fully aware that you don’t have to worry about bacteria and chemicals. There is no off-putting smell that can stop you from just drinking up. The more you drink, the more you are hydrated and healthy. Proper hydration can help you achieve better skin and overall health.

Is bottled water filtered? Read on to find out that this is not necessarily the case.

What are the Different Types of Water You Can Drink?

So, what are the different types of water out there?

Tap Water

Tap water is your cheapest option. It comes with your monthly water utility bill. It is also possible that your country or state has declared your water potable. However, tap water is also the most vulnerable to all sorts of pollutants, from bacteria to heavy metals. Some bacteria can immediately attack your digestive system. So, for example, a glass of tap water can give you diarrhea. However, some pollutants bide their time. It would take years of drinking tap water to trigger the development of dementia.

Filtered Water

The key to perfect filtered water is the choice of filtration. You must choose a carbon filter to get rid of the chlorine. Then, you can add more filters to remove other contaminants. The water is also ozonated before bottling for selling. However, you can instead buy a filtration system that you can use at home. This helps avoid having to buy all those bottles of water. You must initially invest in a home filtration system that can set you back a few hundred dollars. Over time, you will save both money and the environment.

Spring Water

Perhaps you have been spending money on bottles of spring water. Is it really worth it?

Well, something is tempting about knowing that your water comes from a natural spring.

Is spring water filtered?

Unfortunately, natural springs can contain a lot of the contaminants in tap water. When companies advertise their spring water as 100% pure spring water, they really mean that it is 100% from the water springs. They do not really mean there are no contaminants. They have to chlorinate the water to avoid digestive problems from drinking pure spring water.  Companies have to apply another process to get rid of the chlorine. Sadly, the metals and other chemicals may remain after this process.

You are spending extra for each bottle but are not getting better water than your regular tap water in some cases.

Purified Water

Purification is taken extra seriously here, as the name suggests. Water purifier benefits include better smelling and tasting water by removing contaminants like lead, bacteria, and chlorine.   Water goes through the initial processes used on filtered water – and more. In fact, you may have to go through a 12-step purification process.

You can add distillation, deionization, and reverse osmosis to produce very pure water. The purity is also quite evident in the taste produced by this purification process. You would be happy to know that some filtration systems come with the other filtration processes mentioned here (e.g., reverse osmosis).

Distilled Water

Distilled water is the result of boiling water to get rid of contaminants. However, since the boiling point of pollutants is higher than that of water, the latter has to reach its steam phase. The steam has to be captured, which will constitute the distilled water. The steam then needs to be cooled and liquified, and other purification processes have to be applied.

Differences Between Water

With all these various water types, you need to understand the slight differences between filtered, spring, purified, reverse osmosis, boiling, and mineral water. 

Filtered vs. Purified Water

This article is all about, “What is filtered water?” Filtered water poses purity, cleanliness, and affordability in one. You get water that is free from chlorine and contaminants.

Purified water is easily confused with filtered water. Arguably, both of these types of water have been filtered. It follows the same goals but goes the extra mile with additional purification processes such as distillation, deionization, or reverse osmosis. However, purified water goes through cycles that ensure a pure taste that takes your enjoyment of water drinking even higher. 

Spring Water vs. Filtered Water

Springwater, at its strictest description, is simply water that comes from a spring. Whether or not it gets filtered, chlorinated, or ozonated afterward, it would still be considered spring water.

However, water bottling companies do chlorinate and ozonate them to get rid of contaminants. Some minerals and metals do get through these processes. Thus, it can still expose your digestive system to possibly just as many pollutants you were avoiding from tap water. Filtered water, on the other hand, gets rid of those types of pollutants.

Filtered Water vs. Reverse Osmosis

Filtered water has gone through a lot of sifting and purification that takes away contaminants from the unpurified water you started with. You can use carbon filters that remove impurities and improve taste and odor. Pitchers can be placed in your refrigerator, or under sink water filters can be installed – well – under your sink. On the countertop and faucet-mounted water filters operate with the same idea but are installed in the places their names suggest.

On the other hand, reverse osmosis has water moving through a semi-permeable surface that blocks large, harmful molecules. This means the process cannot block smaller molecules, such as those of chlorine. However, reverse osmosis is still able to get rid of more impurities than a carbon filter. You can actually buy reverse osmosis bottled water from stores.

Boiling Water vs. Filtered

As it is now becoming more apparent, filtration works by blocking molecules. So, you pick a type of filtration system that removes the majority of impurities.

Boiling water, however, targets contaminants differently. You have to consider the boiling point of the pollutants. Boil the water using that temperature, which is higher than that of the water’s boiling point. The water must first reach steam form and then cool to condense before getting rid of the unwanted impure particles.

Mineral Water vs. Purified Water

Mineral water is what it suggests: it is water that contains minerals, particularly magnesium, sodium, and calcium. Usually, people go for mineral water when they want water that presents a variety of flavors. You can also think of mineral water as spring water because it is where it is often from. However, mineral water actually does not contain that many minerals, as the name may imply.

Bottled purified water does not focus on where the water was collected. Instead, the focus is on the purification process that the water must undergo. Sometimes, water has to undergo several steps before achieving the clarity and taste that people want from their purified water.

In the case of this comparison, which is better: spring water or purified water?  If spring water refers to mineral water, then the better option will depend on what the drinker requires. Those who want a different taste will have to go with the spring-collected mineral water. On the other hand, those who want clarity in taste in natural pure drinking water will have to go with purified water.

What are the Different Water Purification Methods?

10 different ways to purify water:

Distillation

You hear about distilled water all the time, but how does it get prepared? Distillation is one of the first water purification methods. Water is heated to very high temperatures. Then, the steam that results from the heating is condensed to liquid form. The process makes the water potable by getting rid of chemicals, microorganisms, and minerals. The water has to be set to these contaminants’ boiling point. Chlorine and some organic chemicals will remain.

Ion Exchange

Harmful ions get replaced by less harmful ones through ion exchange. The process is usually utilized to soften water by replacing magnesium and calcium with sodium. You must regularly recharge the filters so that they will extend their duration.

Activated Carbon

Activated carbon serves as more than a blockage that disallows large particles to pass through a barrier. It chemically bonds with water, removing contaminants this way. However, some of these filters can only eliminate chlorine, thus improving the surface taste and odor of water. Others are more effective at getting rid of more dangerous components, such as lead and mercury.

Deionization

This process also encourages ion exchange that allows it to extract salts and electrically charged ions. So, if a contaminant does not have an electrical charge, deionization can get rid of it. It means that electrically charged pollutants, such as viruses, bacteria, and other living organisms, will not be removed.

Reverse Osmosis

Reverse osmosis works by using a semi-permeable membrane that stops large molecules contained in the water. So, it may not be able to eliminate smaller molecules, such as those of chlorine. However, it does perform a good job of getting rid of more contaminants than activated carbon.

Ozone

If your concern about the water is more focused on whether or not harmful microorganisms are swimming in it, this is the water treatment you need. Ozone gets rid of bacteria and germs but does not remove chemicals.

Mechanical

Mechanical filtration is bent on getting rid of sediments and more tangible particles. So, it is only focused on ridding water of visible contaminants. A mechanical filtration system would best be combined with other types of filtration.

Granulated Carbon

This filtration system makes use of granulated carbon to get rid of contaminants. Though less effective than the carbon block filters, it does depend on the speed of the water.

Carbon Block

Carbon block filters come with a larger surface area; thus, they can stop more pollutants from flowing to your glass. Like the granulated carbon version, it must flow fast to be more effective.

Water Softeners

Water softening makes use of an ion-exchange, which has been previously discussed. It reduces the amount of calcium and magnesium found in the water. These elements are harmful and must be removed. With the ion exchange technology, they are replaced with sodium. However, you may want to stay away from softened water if you cannot consume high sodium content. Water that has been softened should also not be used to water plants. 

What are the Different Types of Water Filters?

How the water filter is set up in your home may vary. Here are some water filtration systems that you can choose from:

Faucet Mounted

One of the easiest setups is the faucet-mounted filter. Your water gets filtered straight through the faucet into your glass or whatever it is you are preparing to cook or serve. Such a filter has easy installation, but it may not fit every faucet there is. You must make sure that your faucet is a perfect fit. Most faucet water filter models come with multiple adapters to attach the kit to a standard faucet.

Countertop

If you want a more flexible and versatile filter, you may consider a countertop water filter. This filter is also right where you want it – where you prepare your food and drinks. It diverts water from your standard tap faucet to a countertop water filter. 

Under-the-Sink

Under-the-sink filters are more expensive than others, but they take away a possible eyesore from your vision line. The filter is directly attached to the pipes, thus ensuring that the water flowing up and through your faucet is ready to drink.

Pitchers

The best water filter pitchers are inexpensive and are simple to use. They contain carbon filters, which boost water tastes and eliminate odor. You can easily fit a water pitcher filter into your refrigerator.

Whole House

It certainly is an excellent investment to have all the water flowing through the best water filter whole house system money can buy. This system is installed at a junction in your house where all water passes through before going to any of the house’s faucets. Investing in such a system allows you to ensure that your family is drinking healthy water wherever they are in the house. A whole house filtration system prevents you from having to select point-of-use filters strategically.  

Is Filtering Water the Best Way to Purify Water?

At this point, you already know that there are various ways of purifying or filtering water. You can take one type, which may filter out chemicals, or another that gets rid of tangible sediments. Some water filters may get rid of larger molecules, and some can remove the smaller ones.

Suppose your filtration system covers all the water in your house and uses various types of filters simultaneously. In that case, chances are you have broadly and effectively removed most of the contaminants from your tap water.

So, filtering water covers a broad scope of methods. You can say you’ve achieved the best way of purifying water after finding a means to handpick all the processes that you deem critical to your health.

FAQs

What is the purest form of water?

If by the purest form of water, you mean the safest, then, yes, at this point, you need to rely on filtered water. You may be tempted to think that pure water is what others advertise as 100% pure spring water. Again, the bottling companies only mean that the water has been purely collected from springs.

The purest form of water should have the least sediments, chemicals, and microorganisms. So, water that has been filtered through several surfaces should work well enough for you. Filtered water is also the healthiest that you can get without harming the environment.

Is bottled water filtered?

Not all bottled water is the same. However, all have gone through various types of purification and filtration methods. For example, some bottling companies may be focusing on removing chlorine. To do this, the manufacturing companies use a process like reverse osmosis bottled water or another such process. Activated carbon can do the same thing. However, distillation does not get rid of chlorine but instead removes microorganisms and minerals.

Is spring water filtered?

To be sold, spring water has to be filtered just like any other bottled water. Its name and type, however, does not automatically suggest that it is filtered. Springwater is thus named not because it is 100% and clean. Springwater is named according to its source. 

What are the common uses of distilled water?

Distilled water is often used in household appliances, medical devices, and cars since the minerals have been stripped away.  Here are common uses for distilled water:

  • Steam iron and garment steamer – Though you can use tap water in the unit, you will extend the life and reduce cleaning the garment steamer with distilled water
  • Aquarium – The only downside of distilled water in an aquarium is you must remineralize the water for highly susceptible species like Betta fish
  • Houseplants – Plants, like indoor succulents, potentially have more leaves and better growth according to an experiment done by The National Student Research Center
  • Humidifier – Unlike tap water, using distilled water in a humidifier doesn’t release minerals into the air, according to the FDA
  • Vacuum steam mop combo – Hardwater from your home tap will reduce the lifespan of your vacuum steam mop combo
  • Engine coolant – The tap water mix has minerals that can form deposits and potentially lead to an over-heating engine over a long period.   
  • Laboratory experiments – Unlike tap water, distilled water removes the minerals and allows laboratories to perform controlled experiments. 
  • Sterilized medical use – The purity of distilled water adds to the safety of the patient by sterilizing the equipment and by the doctor while scrubbing and rinsing their hands
  • CPAP machine – Most manufacturers recommend distilled water for CPAP machines because it reduces mineral deposits, maximizes the water tub lifespan, and better for your health
  • Deep cycle battery – By not adding distilled water for a car battery, deep cycle battery, or sump pump battery will cause permanent failure.

What is Filtered Water Summary

Tap water is still the cheapest option out there. If your water provider is adept at their job, you may even be lucky enough to get potable water that does not have many contaminants.

However, there is still a chance that the water still contains harmful organisms, chemicals, or even heavy metals. So, a type of filtration system is needed to remove most of these pollutants. Combining different types of filtration methods is the best way to ensure that various contaminants are extracted from the water.

You must invest in a good filtration system. This way, you can ensure you have healthy and potable water. If water has clear and tastes clean, you are more likely to drink more without the risk of getting sick with diarrhea or something even worse. With proper hydration, you keep your body functions stable while boosting your skin health.

You do not need to rely on bottled water for the purest form of water. You can save money and the environment by installing the best affordable water filter for your whole house.

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