Filtration FAQ | Drinking Well Co.


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Filtration FAQ

  • How Do Water Filters Work?
    • A water filter is composed of a screen with many microscopic holes. The smaller the holes, the more contaminants the filter can remove. Filter holes are measured in microns. (The period at the end of this sentence is 500 microns.) When considering filter size, look for an absolute (the largest hole), not a nominal (the average hole), rating. EPA and CDC recommend an absolute one micron filter (or one labeled for cyst removal) to remove Cryptosporidium.
    • Some common contaminants and their size (in microns):
      • Giardia Lamblia - 8 to 12 microns
      • Cryptosporidium Parvum - 4 to 6 microns
      • Bacteria (such as E. Coli and Salmonella) - 0.2 to 4 microns
      • Viruses - 0.004 to 0.1 microns (Generally, only a few filters, such as ultrafilters and reverse osmosis, have holes small enough to assure removal of all viruses. However, viruses can be killed using a disinfectant).
  • How Often Do I Need To Replace My Filtration Cartridges?
    • The life of a filtration cartridge varies by manufacturer, filter type, usage patterns, and your home's water quality. For example, many under-sink filters last one year or 1,000 gallons.
  • Why Does My Water Taste Bad?
    • There are many variables that can give your drinking water a bad taste. Chemicals could be added to treat your drinking water, contaminants from the environment can leech into the water supply, or even metal concentrates from aging plumbing pipes could contribute to the bad taste or odor of your drinking water.
  • What Is Activated Carbon And What Does It Do?
    •  Activated carbon is a natural material derived from bituminous coal, lignite, wood, coconut shell etc., activated by steam and other means. Each has its own adsorption properties (e.g. bituminous carbon for high chlorine reduction capacity). Some manufacturers use various blends of carbon to achieve specific water quality and contaminants reduction. 
    • Activated carbon surface properties are both hydrophobic and oleophilic; that is, they “hate” water but “love” oil. When flow conditions are suitable, dissolved chemicals in water flowing over the carbon surface “stick” to the carbon in a thin film while the water passes on. This process is called adsorption. As a result of this process, activated carbon is an effective way to remove chlorine, it's by-products (TTHM's), and volatile organic compounds (carbon based VOC's). 
  • Why Do Cartridges Have To Be Flushed When First Installed?
    • All carbon-based filters must be flushed prior to use in order to remove any excess carbon fines that are in the cartridges. Air is contained inside new cartridges; therefore, flushing removes the air from inside the cartridges and replaces it with water. This process will allow any carbon-based filter cartridge to function at optimum efficiency without affecting or damaging any equipment that may be attached.
  • Do Hot Tanks Require Maintenance?
    • Generally, no maintenance is required. It is recommended, however, that you turn off your hot tank if you do not use it for an extended period (e.g. more than 2 weeks). Hot tanks can vent steam and could run dry if not periodically replenished.
  • How Much Energy Does A Hot Tank Consume?
    • Energy consumption varies based on usage. Under normal usage, consumption is comparable to running a 40 watt light bulb.
  • What Is A Pressure Regulating Valve (PRV)?
    • A pressure regulating valve (PRV) helps regulate water pressure. This component may be required in under-sink systems that have maximum water pressures that are below your home's water pressure.
  • What Does It Mean To Be NSF Certified?
    • The National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) is an accredited third-party that conducts technical performance tests. NSF certification is one way that the general public can evaluate the performance of a range of products, including water filters. For more information on NSF certification, please contact technical support at 1-800-279-9404 or visit NSF International.
  • Other Questions? Ask us here!