Saturday, January 18, 2014

How to Compare Water Treatment Systems - The Facts

With the vast amount of different water purification products, it was inevitable that at some point water treatment system reviews and comparison information was going to start appearing on the Internet.

As happens with any other popular product, several specialized sites as well as enthusiastic users write and post reviews of the water treatment systems they have tested, and make conclusions about which one is the best.

However, many of these comparisons are not fair, not because the authors lack objectivity, but for the simple reason that some comparisons are made among different aspects of such systems. It's much like comparing oranges and potatoes, sort of speaking.

If you are looking for good information that correctly compares the different systems, you should look for sites that separate their table of comparison in several sections, comparing each feature with the corresponding one on the other system.

In this case these sections are mainly made up of four: the volume of water that can be processed, the quality of the treated water, the technologies used by the system, and the costs associated to installation and maintenance.

1- Water volume: The amount of water that can be processed effectively. It determines how much water you can consume during a certain amount of time, typically litres per hour or per day.

To compare water treatment systems of different types, you should consider equivalent or similar uses; for instance, when comparing a whole-house water treatment system with smaller filters, you should think about the volume of water processed by a single whole house system versus the combined volume of treated water if you had a smaller system in every sink and shower in your home.

2- Water quality: The level of purity of the water obtained, i.e., the amount of toxins and contaminants present in the processed water compared to a similar sample of untreated water. Preservation of beneficial minerals and other elements should also count for purity measurement.

You can compare the results by taking equal samples from them, regardless of how much water they process.

3- Building technology: Refers mainly to what type of filters are used to process the water. This is one of the most important things to take into consideration when you compare water treatment systems. Filters determine which toxins and harmful chemicals are retained and which ones pass through, and different filter technologies have different effectiveness.

A good comparison should inform about the duration of each type of filter, and about how efficient they are over time.

4- Costs: The amount of money you will spend to set up and maintain it. To compare in a fair way, you should think about how much will it cost to use the compared systems to process the same amount of water, and how frequently will the equipment need maintenance (like a filter change, for instance).

Typically, whole house systems cost more in the beginning, but end up being very cost-effective in the long run.

Installing a water treatment system is a good decision to make, but choices can be tough. An accurate comparison leads to an informed decision, and this will ensure you pick the best system for your needs.