Why filtered water?
If you are like many homeowners, you have grown used to drinking what comes right out of the tap. Whether or not that’s a good thing depends a great deal upon where you live.
According to data rankings by the Environmental Working Group, our region was ranked 29th overall and received a “mixed” review on a scale of cities that ranged from “leading in water quality” to “endangered”.
What does that mean?
It means while we are not the worst city in America as far as drinking water quality goes, we certainly are far from the best.
How does water filtration work?
Most filters today are charcoal, or activated charcoal. Charcoal, which is mostly carbon, is the residue of partial burning or destructive distillation of organic material. When special heating or chemical processing is added to charcoal, it becomes much more absorptive, and is then referred to as “activated charcoal”. So a charcoal filter works on the principle of absorption. Large volumes of gases, including most poisonous ones, stick to the charcoal, which is quite porous. (That’s why it’s used in gas masks.) Because it has such a large porous surface area, it absorbs a lot of impurities, making activated charcoal such a highly effective process for filtering water. Charcoal filters are used in icemaker filters, under-counter filters, countertop filters, whole-house filters, and more.
Another type of water filtration system available today is reverse osmosis. That’s the technical name for the process of water being pushed through an ultra-fine semi-permeable membrane, where it separates the tap liquid into the pure permeate which is diverted to a storage tank for later use; the brine concentrate is diverted down the drain. The water is stored in a pressure tank and is treated to a final activated-charcoal polishing filtration stage to remove all remaining odors and tastes before dispensing the purified water into your glass. The disadvantage of reverse osmosis systems is that they waste a lot of water – for every gallon of purified water produced, up to five gallons are wasted, and then there’s the yearly maintenance.
Types of Water Filtration
There are two types of water filtration: Single Source and Whole House. Three-Way Plumbing can help you determine the best option for you! Once you’ve selected a solution, let our professional installation staff set up your new filtration system. We install it right the first time, so you don’t have to worry.
The Benefits of a Single Source or Point of Use Filter
Concerned about what’s coming out of the tap? Tired of spending all that money on bottled water?
Did you know that the average family spends more than $1,000 a year on bottled water?! According to MSNBC, 25% of all bottled water is drawn from municipal water supplies! So much for thinking you were drinking premium, clean water.
Filtration at a single source, such as under the kitchen sink, provides clean, clear water for both drinking and cooking. In fact, Three-Way Plumbing’s single-source filtration device can eliminate your need to ever buy bottled water again. It’s easily installed under your kitchen sink and will filter contaminants from your water… contaminants like chlorine, particulates and many chemicals or poisons found in treated tap water. Once professionally installed, it’s essentially “set it and forget it!” Just that quick, you get to enjoy filtered, odorless, good tasting, safe and clean water from your kitchen faucet. It’s clearly the best choice for families wanting to kick the bottled water habit!
The Benefits of Whole House Water Filtration
To get the same great benefits of filtered drinking and bathing water throughout the house without the need to install multiple units at each faucet, consider a whole house filtration unit. This unit installs at the source of where your water enters your home and performs all its filtration duties right there, delivering fresh, clean, filtered water everywhere throughout your home including the dishwasher, washing machine, water heater, every faucet, and shower head. Having a water filtration system extends the life of the equipment in your home since chlorine and chloramine are toxic and corrosive.
Common Health Dangers and the benefits of filtered water
Filtered water is simply healthier. Reports have indicated that it is very important to remove chlorine and chloramine from our water after it has done the job of destroying all dangerous bacteria from our water supply. Chlorine is very volatile and easily evaporates, so in some cases ammonia is added to the chlorine which changes it to a completely different chemical called chloramine. What is known is that it is responsible for many incidences of respiratory illnesses and perhaps most worrying of all, causes lead to leech out of pipes and fittings. Even brass fittings are not immune as they usually contain some lead, making removing chloramines a priority.
And the problem exists beyond just drinking chlorinated water. If you don’t want to drink it, why would you want to cook with it or bathe in it, or give it to your pets?
Why is chlorine so bad for me?
Studies by Dr. K. Thickett of the Occupational Lung Diseases Unit at the Birmingham Heartlands Hospital in Birmingham, England, showed that there was an increase in asthma related conditions for those working around swimming pools. When they moved away from the pools, their symptoms improved or went away entirely.
It has also been shown that tap water contains the same problems for many people. The U.S. EPA has stated that every household in America on a chlorinated water system has an elevated level of chloroform gas in the indoor air. This elevated level is directly related to showering, cooking, washing dishes, clothes, and even flushing toilets with chlorinated water. The fact is that every time you open a waterspout in your home, you are releasing asthma-causing substances into your household atmosphere.
When choosing a system look for one that uses activated carbon with submicron filtering. This will ensure 99.9% of contaminants including chlorine are removed, leaving you with safe, pure water.
Chlorine is necessary for local municipalities to kill the bacteria found in water to deliver safe water to homes and businesses. However, water filtration is also necessary to remove the chlorine since it creates its own set of issues along with all the other organic properties found in that water. Did you know that you can breathe in more chlorine in a 5-minute warm shower than you ever could possible drink in a single day?
Water Softener Systems
What’s the difference between hard water and soft water?
You’ve probably heard people refer to “hard water” or “soft water” before, but have you ever really wondered what exactly those terms mean? Well, let us explain. Hard water is water that contains microscopic (parts per million) of inorganic compounds like calcium, or magnesium, or even chalk! These compounds are picked up and deposited in the water as the water runs through rock and soil and the end result is that the water becomes very alkaline. The more of these compounds that are contained in the water, the “harder” the water is. One “symptom” of hard water is that your soap or your shampoo does not produce a lot of sudssing action because of these compounds contained in the water. By contrast, “soft water” refers to water where high levels of these compounds are not present. It’s necessary for water to maintain the pH balance within a normal range.
In order to soften their hard water, many people install a water softening system. This is a system that introduces minerals (primarily salt) that continually clean the resin beads that take the hardness out of the water and remove the ions in hard water. When performing the “suds” test with soft water, you will see that it is quite a bit more impressive!
- Spotting on glasses and silverware
- Soap scum on the shower doors
- Scale build-up in pipes, water heater, dishwashers and washing machines
Water softener systems will eliminate or drastically improve many of these conditions. They are, for the most part, low maintenance and can last for several years. Water softeners systems are connected to existing water lines and generally placed on a timer so that the softening of the water is easy and automatic. There is a tank where the salt is stored for the water softener. This is called the “brine tank”. With the exception of making sure there is an ample supply of salt pellets in the brine tank, maintaining the water softer is easy and not at all time consuming.
- Spot free glasses and silverware
- No more soap scum!
- Softer, cleaner skin and hair
- Detergent, shampoo, soap and fabric softener will last longer because you’ll need less
- The cost of running your water heater can decrease significantly due to better efficiency
What is the best salt to use in a softener system?
You can purchase 50lb bags at any of the big box stores, but the best type to get is “solar salt.” Different brands bag it such as Morton’s (just like the table salt, but do not use table salt!) Why is solar salt better than softener salt? This is because solar salt is naturally crystallized and doesn’t have the binder additives like softener salt. These binders create a crusting called bridging. When this occurs and you look in the softener, it looks like there is still plenty of salt, but it is only a layer of the crust you are seeing and the salt may actually be fully depleted.
why choose three way plumbing?
With over 20 years of experience as a trusted plumber in Charlotte, NC and surrounding areas, we have proven our ability to provide fast, high-quality plumbing repair, replacement, and installation service. Our friendly team members are dedicated to getting to the root of your problem, not merely a band-aid fix. Expect upfront, transparent, and respectful services from start to finish.
- Regular Saturday Appointments
- 100% Guarantee
- 30 Minute Call-Ahead
- WAREHOUSE ON WHEELS
- Honest Pricing