Is it Enough to Install an Undersink Water Filter?
If you’re searching for a water filter for your home, but you’re having trouble deciding which filter you should get, you’re not alone. Water filters come in all shapes and sizes, and for all types of purposes, so it’s normal to get a bit confused when faced with the decision to choose one filter over the other.
Undersink water filters are by far the most popular filters used in residential water filtration, yet, sometimes, undersink water filters may not be the best choice, and depending on your tap water situation, other filter systems may be more indicated.
If you’re not sure that an undersink water filter is good enough to take care of your at-home water filtration needs, this article will help you decide on the right filter for you.
When to Buy an Undersink Water Filter?
Undersink water filters are the quintessential example of point-of-use water filters. These filters are designed to filter water only at the water outlet they are installed at, which is usually the kitchen tap.
With the help of any standard undersink water filter, you can draw filtered water for drinking, cooking, washing dishes, etc. These filters are usually dispatched with a filter tap, installed as a separate tap on your kitchen sink.
So, when is an undersink water filter enough to manage all your filtered water requirements? Here’s a quick overview of what an undersink water filter can and can’t do:
An undersink water filter is suitable for:
- Situations when your demand for filtered water is limited to drinking and cooking;
- Small household with low drinking water consumption (1-3 people);
- Tap water issues that are mostly limited to non-health related contaminants (e.g. turbidity, taste and odour issues) and some health-related contaminants (e.g. bacteria, chlorine, heavy metals);
- Filtered water is not needed at every water outlet in your home, and where needed, you prefer installing other point-of-use filters (e.g. shower filter).
Undersink water filters are usually easy to install and don’t require ongoing maintenance, only periodic filter cartridge replacement, which is also easy to carry out. These filters don’t come with bulky hardware, since they are designed to fit under your kitchen sink.
This, however, does not mean that undersink water filter don’t feature multiple stages of filtration, on the contrary, undersink water filters can have as many as 6 stages of filtration like in the case of the Ecosoft 6-Stage Non-Pumped Reverse Osmosis System, which, in addition to a reverse osmosis tank, features two sediment pre-filters, a carbon block filter, an RO membrane, a carbon post-filter, and an alkaline filter.
Although there are single-cartridge undersink water filters as well (inline filters, taste and odour filters, etc.), most filters will feature more than one filter cartridge, or in some cases, a single cartridge with multiple filter media locked within the same cartridge (e.g. H2O Pure Life 2 Year 6 Stage Under Counter Water Filter System).
An undersink water filter is not not suitable for:
- Whole house water filtration;
- Households where the demand for filtered water is not limited to drinking and cooking, and filtered water is also needed for washing, bathing, etc.
In cases when an under-sink water filter does not prove to be enough, a whole house water filter system may be a better choice. These filters deliver filtered water to every water outlet in your home, which allows you draw filtered water in your bathroom, kitchen, laundry room, etc.
Signs That You May Need a Whole House Water Filter
Usually, the quality of your tap water coupled with your filtered water consumption needs will determine the type of water filter system you should install in your home. If your tap water only has taste and odour issues, a simple taste and odour undersink water filter, and maybe a shower filter for your bath, may be enough to deal with these issues.
Sometimes, however, there are signs that indicate the need for a whole house water filter system instead:
- Your tap water is high in sediments that affect the health of your appliances (washing machine, water heater, etc.). A sediment reduction filter is usually added as a pre-filter to most whole house water filters. Sediments can clog or otherwise damage various home appliances.
- Your tap water is hard, which causes lime-scale build-up in home appliances. For the most part, we advise using a water softener system to deal with hard water problems and limescale issues, however, in cases when a water softening system may not be a feasible option, we recommend that you install a whole house water filter that inhibits lime-scale formation. For example, the Osmio PRO-III-XL Ultimate Whole House Water Filter System is a complete whole house filtration unit that provides softer, non-scaling water.
- You want to get rid of chlorine not only from the water you use for drinking or cooking, but also the water you use for bathing. Whether you find that chlorine dries out your skin or hair, or you suffer from a skin condition, a whole house water filtration system is a perfect solution to get chlorine-free drinking water and chlorine-free bath water.
- You live in a large household with a high filtered water demand. It may not be feasible to install a whole house water filter system in a small apartment with low filtered water consumption, but in a large household of 4 or more people, a whole house water filter is the most cost-effective and efficient water filtration solution.
- You want to target a wide range of contaminants. If your tap water contains various health-related and non-health related contaminants, multi-stage whole house water filters can aid in their removal.
Given that not all water filtration requirements are the same, undersink water filters aren’t a one-size-fits-all technology, and you may have to look at other water filter systems to find the one that fits your needs. Although undersink filters can also be multi-stage filters with superior filtration capacity and high filtered water output, given that they are designed for point-of-use filtration , if you need filtered water throughout your home, you’ll either have to install a point-of-use filter at every outlet, or you can opt for a whole house water filtration system.