Our urban homes are supplied with purified water from the main water pipeline. Nevertheless, almost every apartment has an additional filter. How then to be in the country, where the main source of water - well or borehole? Use a water filter or not? Many would say that it is a luxury. Others will argue that with our ruined ecology is a necessity.
In my opinion, it is worth to join the latter opinion. So let's consider the options and try to intelligently choose exactly "country house" filter.
Why and from what to filter water at country house
Even the deepest and most well-kept well does not guarantee that the water in it is suitable for consumption. Chemical analysis is ideal for determining its composition.
A time-consuming and expensive process, but with reliable results. If you don't want to go to the lab and wait for an answer, you can do a simple test yourself:
- Draw a small amount of water into a clear bottle.
- Leave it for several hours.
- If sediment or brown flakes appear at the bottom, it means the water needs to be purified, or else these substances will "settle down" already in the human body.
Of course, this is not the most accurate method. It does not clarify what exactly the useful and harmful substances are in the water, but it will show whether the water needs additional filtration. Unfortunately, very few places nowadays have clean natural water.
Clean and clear water also does not mean that there are no pathogenic microorganisms or poisonous substances invisible to the eye. Hydrogen sulfide, ammonia, nitrogen, they all get into the water as a result of decomposition of animal or plant waste.
Important: Do not take chances and drink from abandoned wells, about which you know nothing. They usually have the highest number of different parasites and putrefaction bacteria, and therefore poisonous gases.
At risk are gardeners whose plots are located near fields that belong to agrocomplexes, or with industrial facilities. The fields are regularly sprayed with chemicals, and the latter end up directly in the groundwater. There is nothing to talk about emissions from industrial areas. One should not use such water at all, especially for drinking or cooking.
One should not relax even in the case, if there are no sources of "danger" in the neighborhood, but the same country house owners live there. Only they know what fertilized crops, how pests were flushed out, what can be buried on the plot. But all the chemicals will inevitably get into the water of the neighbor.
The depth of the well does not affect the harmlessness of water. The fact that the water from a deep well is cleaner, can not be disputed. It will not have as many bacteria, but there will be other unpleasant minuses. The main problem of deep water is an overabundance of iron oxides. Its signs are the above described sludge and brown flakes.
Too hard water can cause allergies, affect the deposition of salts and even slow growth. A vivid illustration of the result of prolonged contact with hard water is water pipes. What if our bodies were instead of them!
In any case, even with one hundred percent confidence in the quality of water, it's better to back it up. Good water after the filter will not get worse, and not trustworthy will be safer.
Types of filters according to the method of installation
There are a huge number of different water filters in hardware store windows. Many hang labels "suitable for country house. Seeing such a label, you should not immediately grab the product. Maybe this is not the right product for you.
First, all wells and wells water is different in composition, each has its own "problems". Secondly, the filter can perfectly purify water, but it will not suit your location. For example, if you do not feel comfortable changing the cartridge under the sink or do not like to constantly pour water from a jug.
So, according to the method of installation filters are divided into three types:
Filter jug .
The most popular among country house owners method of purifying water. A plastic container, which resembles a jug, is perfectly familiar to all. Inside is a smaller container - for water intake - and a place for a removable cartridge. The level of purification is average, one might say, satisfactory. It will not protect from all impurities, but it will remove chlorine, rust and particles of sediment.
Important: Choose a replacement cartridge based on the characteristics of the water. On each package is written, from which impurities protects the filter.
The frequency of cartridge replacement depends on how often you use the filter. Most often - after 300 liters. But if you can see by the quality of purified water that the filter has exhausted its resources, you will have to replace it earlier.
The device is mobile, easy to disassemble and assemble, if you need to wash or clean it.
The filter jug is suitable:
- for country house, where there is no possibility to try a more powerful unit;
- with low water consumption (only for drinking and cooking), because at one time it purifies a maximum of three liters of water, the minimum - one and a half.
If there is a water supply in the cottage, instead of a jug filter, you can use a faucet nozzle. This small device made of plastic "under the metal" with a cleaning agent will save space. It is attached to the spout of the faucet with special clamps or screwed on its threads.
If you do not want to attach anything, just put it next to each other. Here, in fact, the installation ends. The filter can be used, you just need to replace the cartridge regularly.
- The quality of filtered water is higher than that of the pitcher, because of the two stages of purification (mechanical and subsequent purification by activated carbon). There are simpler models, with one degree of purification. Although it is far from ideal.
- This filter purifies from lime, chlorine and rust, reduces the hardness of water.
- Pleasantly pleased and its cost.
- If your water supply is pumped, then you need to be more careful with the nozzle filter. It significantly slows down the passage of water. The pump will begin to work with overload, turning on and off. And prolonged jerking operation is detrimental to the equipment.
The filter "under the sink".
This is probably the best option in terms of degree of purification. It traps all harmful impurities and bacteria.
But there are problems in operation:
- First, such a filter is only suitable for country house with plumbing.
- If everything is okay with the plumbing, then the next problem that the owner will sooner or later face is the replacement of the cartridge. The replacement element is filled with activated carbon. When cleaning heavily contaminated well water, it instantly clogs, becoming a breeding ground for germs. Consequently, in order not to become a victim of these germs, the cartridge will have to be replaced frequently. And to disassemble such a complex construction is difficult. To at least somehow alleviate themselves, many users take out a separate small faucet through which the water purified "under the sink" flows.
The disadvantages of the device include its rather high price. After the filter with four stages of purification water becomes the same as bottled water, so it costs accordingly.
Important: the filter "under the sink" does not threaten the operation of the pump.
Membrane or flow-through filters?
The filter "under the sink" and the filter nozzle described above belong to the category of flow-through. They require a plumbing to work. In addition to the listed pros and cons, their main difference is in the degree of purification:
- The nozzle filter can have a maximum of 2 stages of purification,
- filter "under the sink" - a maximum of 4.
For those who want to clean everything all at once, sellers often offer membrane filters. They are also called universal filters. This is not a cheap pleasure. Will it be a profitable investment?
The basis of such a filter is a membrane consisting of many microscopic cells. Only H2O molecule can penetrate into them, everything else remains "overboard". The result is almost sterile water.
Country house owners do not particularly like this novelty:
- First, it is expensive (why such a luxury, if you are at the cottage only in summer?).
- Secondly, the system requires a decent pressure to work smoothly. And this entails extra costs for a powerful pump and time for installation and connection.
- Third, the universal filter has a huge water intake. To get 5 liters of clean drinking water, 30-40 liters should pass through the membrane. The rest is discharged into the cesspool, which is not bottomless and also requires cleaning.
- And most importantly: the water from such a filter is "dead". Together with harmful substances washed out and useful mineral salts. To restore the salt balance, the sellers will immediately recommend adding a special substance to the water, which will put everything in its place and restore the mineral reserve. But this will seriously increase the already considerable price.
That's why the country house owners who know the issue make a choice in favor of flow filters, and if there is no water supply, then in favor of the pitcher.
Types of filters according to the principle of action
The principle of operation of the water filter is directly related to what contaminated water and from what impurities it needs to be cleaned. In any well there is sand, clay, rust that gets into the water. To rid it of insoluble particles, first install filters for mechanical purification.
Mechanical purification filters
This group includes two types of filters: coarse and fine.
This device takes the brunt - it detains only insoluble particles. The water purified from them goes into the water supply. When the filter is full, it must be removed, cleaned and put back in place. Its work does not involve the use of chemical reagents, only mechanical action.
Under the generic name "coarse filter" there are 4 types of devices. Which one is right for you depends on the amount of water you use and how much solids are deposited in it.
Represents a mesh with 50-500 microns of mesh. Non-flushable strainers need to be changed by yourself as they fill up:
- disconnect the water supply,
- disassemble the construction,
- You must unplug the water supply, disassemble the system and clean the filter.
A more convenient option is a self-cleaning strainer. There is no need to clean it. When the required amount of "garbage" is accumulated, the system will work and the filter will clean itself automatically. You only have to take out a pipe to drain the dirty water into it.
This device is easy to use. In the set of more expensive include a pressure gauge to measure the pressure and a pressure control valve to avoid surges, harmful to machinery.
As the name suggests, the basis of the filter - a replaceable cartridge, placed in a case made of plastic (sometimes steel). Such a filter detains particles from 0.5 microns.
It will not let through not only solid particles of sand and rust, but also substances of a viscous structure - algae, mud, softened clay.
Filtered shower head
As the name suggests, it is used to clean the water in the shower. The shower filter is easy to install and cleans the water from impurities (salts, heavy metals, iron, etc.), makes the water softer, which is beneficial to your skin and hair. Also by installing a shower filter, you will get rid of plaque on the surface of your important bath or shower stall.
The high-speed pressure filter cleans water that has many impurities of different structures. In this regard, it is versatile. Perfectly filters out both solid particles (from 30 microns) and viscous ones.
It consists of an anti-corrosion tank with filtering material, a regulating unit and a drainage pipe.
Simple-looking device has significant disadvantages:
- it has a very large size,
- it can work only in a warm room.
Usually installed together with the filters of coarse purification. In water, purified from solid impurities, there are still a lot of harmful substances that can not cope neither cartridge, nor mesh, or pressure filters. These are suspended particles of heavy metals, chemical compounds or microorganisms. Fine filters, on the other hand, will do the job just fine because they are designed to eliminate particles as small as 5 microns.
Important: It is best to install the fine filter after the coarse filter. The result of joint work will be of higher quality.
Filters of this group include membrane filters, unloved by country house owners. We will not dwell on them again. For country house needs as a "fine purifier" will suit either a sorption filter or a filter with ion-exchange resins.
Designed to protect our body from microorganisms, chloride compounds and heavy metals. It consists of a tank of sorbent (usually activated carbon).
Sorption filter will help disinfect the water and get rid of unpleasant odors. Depending on the characteristics of the water, you can choose a de-ironing, disinfecting or charcoal filler.
The device is small, easy to remove for cartridge replacement and just as easy to put back together. The only thing that might be confusing is the low water flow rate and the need for frequent tank replacement.
This will come in handy if the water is too hard. It will reduce the hardness to the limits and rid the water of various compounds.
The body of the filter is made of plastic or steel. A capsule filled with ion exchange resins is placed inside.
Productivity of the device depends on the load on it and on compliance with the care instructions. It is categorically not recommended to skip the time of replacing the resin unit.
The disadvantage of such a filter - the use of saline solutions and regenerating tanks, as well as the need to dispose of waste components. The room temperature specified in the instructions to each filter will also play a role.
Important: after the ion-exchange filter it is necessary to install a carbon filter. It will clean the water from tar residues.
It turns out that each filter has its pros and cons. Before you buy, you should still be concerned about the analysis of water. Alternatively, just talk to your neighbors, who have country houses for a long time: they certainly know the peculiarities of the local water.