Are Healthy Minerals Removed from Tap Water Through Filtration?
Depending on the source and location, municipal water can contain varying amounts of healthy minerals. Although water should not be the only source of minerals in your diet, it can contribute to your recommended daily intake of these nutrients.
Water filters are known for their water purifying capabilities and their efficiency in removing undesirable water ingredients, but what about healthy minerals? Are these too removed during the filtration process, leaving your tap water slightly unpalatable?
The answer to this question depends on the water filtration technology used by your water filter system: Some water filters do remove healthy minerals, others will retain them, removing only contaminants.
Water Filters That Remove Minerals from Tap Water
Reverse osmosis water filters are one of the most performant filters used both in residential and commercial settings.
The semi-permeable reverse osmosis membrane that sits at the heart of a reverse osmosis system is capable of removing a vast array of water ingredients, including healthy minerals. Not to mention that reverse osmosis water filters are multi-stage systems, which only further increases their contaminant removal efficiency.
Because of their superior contaminant removal capacity, reverse osmosis water is often less palatable and slightly more acidic than tap water or water filtered through other filtration technologies.
Most reverse osmosis systems, however, will counter these effects by adding a remineralizer filter in the last stage of the filtration process. Sometimes these filters are called an alkaline filter, but the goal is the same: to reintroduce trace amount of healthy minerals that were removed by the powerful filters in the reverse osmosis system.
Quick Review of the BMB-20 +Alkaline +Detox Pumped Quick Change 6 Stage Reverse Osmosis System
The BMB-20 is a newcomer to the reverse osmosis filtration scene, offering a 6-stage filtration process that results in deliciously wholesome tap water. The filter combines the filtration efficiency of a thin-film composite reverse osmosis membrane with antibacterial sediment filters (rated at 5 and 1 microns respectively) and coconut shell carbon filters.
A detox filter and an alkaline filter make sure your filtered water is replenished with healthy minerals. Moreover, the zinc nanoparticles contained by the sediment filters activate in water for antibacterial properties.
The BMB-20 reverse osmosis filter removes 99.99% of microorganisms along with other contaminants including fluoride, heavy metals, chlorine, nitrates, etc.
The system is designed for households with a daily filtered water consumption of 20 to 50 litres. The BMB filter has a system capacity of 10 litres per hour.
All filters in the system are replaced at the same time — every 12 months or after 15,000 litres, which makes this system one of the lowest maintenance reverse osmosis filter in the industry.
You can install this filter with a separate filtered water faucet added to your kitchen sink, or you can replace your current kitchen tap with a 3-way kitchen tap to have filtered and unfiltered water dispensed by a single tap.
Water Filters That Don’t Remove Minerals from Tap Water
Activated carbon and ceramic filters don’t remove minerals from tap water. Thus, popular Brita filters or other carbon-based or ceramic filters all retain healthy minerals in your tap water, all the while removing dangerous contaminants.
As a general rule, activated carbon filters are best at removing contaminants attracted to carbon (a process called adsorption, which occurs due to the fact that carbon has a greater attraction to the contaminant than the contaminant has with the water.
Thus, carbon filters will remove chlorine, VOCs, THMs, but not minerals, salts, heavy metals, etc. Therefore, contaminants not attracted to carbon — and that includes healthy minerals as well — will not be removed by the filtration process.
With activated carbon filters or ceramic filters, you won’t need to add a remineralizer or alkaline filter to your system.
Carbon filters are sometimes paired with ceramic filters to make up for some of the shortcomings of carbon filters (e.g. to make up for the fact that carbon filtration is not enough to remove viruses and other pathogens from your tap water).
Quick Review of DIY 4 Stage Ultracarb Home Drinking Water Filter System
This undersink water filter features easy DIY installation and a 4-stage filtration thanks to the Watts Flow-Pro Melt Blown 2.5 x 10 inch Sediment Filter 5 Micron Cartridge and the Doulton Ceramic Ultracarb Cartridge, which provides sub-micron level filtration.
The Doulton filter is a combination of ceramic filtration and carbon filtration. The outer ceramic shell incorporates silver locked within the ceramic structure. This inhibits bacterial development and growth within the filter and allows the filters to be used without any prior sterilization. The ceramic filter also contains an inner core of activated carbon, which deals with the contaminants missed by the sediment filter and ceramic filter.
As a result of this pairing of different filter media, the Ultracarb Home Drinking water filter removes contaminants like turbidity, particulate matter, bacteria, cysts, chlorine, volatile organic compounds, industrial solvents, and more, all the while retaining healthy nutrients like magnesium or calcium.
The fact that healthy minerals might be removed from your tap water during filtration should not be a big concern for you for the following reasons:
- Filters that do remove healthy minerals (e.g. reverse osmosis filters) will usually come with a remineralizer filter to supplement for the minerals lost during filtration;
- Water is not — and should not be! — the primary source of your daily mineral intake (a balanced and healthy diet should incorporate the minerals needed for your health);
- Most residential water filters don’t remove healthy minerals.
If you’re worried about removing valuable nutrients from your tap water through filtration, we advise using a water filter that comes with a remineralizer or alkaline filter to ensure that your filtered water is replenished with these essential minerals.