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What filtration medium is used in water filter pitchers

There is nothing as disappointing as being so thirsty, and upon taking a sip of water from your tap, it does not taste right. You end up spitting it out or swallowing with renewed and heightened senses to make sure you are not paranoid. The second sip confirms that indeed your water has a weird smell and taste, so you resolve to buy a water filter pitcher and begin enjoying clean and great-tasting water. However, landing on the right water filter is also a challenge since different filters use a variety of media to rid the pollutants.

Not wanting to be a critic of everything you cannot help but wonder what filtration medium is used in water filter pitchers to get rid of the impurities. Well, water filters eliminate different types of contaminants. So, before you rush to the store to pick the first one you see, you should know the method of filtration a pitcher uses to ensure you buy one that suits your needs, depending on the impurities in your water. Some common filtration media include:

Activated carbon

Organic materials such as wood or coal have a high carbon content such that when you heat it not to burn, it produces char. Char creates a porous material upon treatment, which pulls specific toxins and contaminants out of the water by chemically binding onto them. It is useful in removing chlorine which improves the taste and smell of the water, as well as eliminating other toxic components like lead and mercury. Unfortunately, it cannot remove inorganic contaminants for instance fluoride.

Activated aluminum

Ion exchange technology uses activated aluminum to soften hard water by removing magnesium and calcium and replacing them with sodium. It uses a resin which undergoes regular recharge with a harmless ion to replace the toxic ions. Activated aluminum is effective in eliminating arsenic, fluoride, barium, and radium.

Catalytic carbon

Similar to activated carbon but with more catalytic capability. Most treatment centers use chloramine to treat their water. Since chloramine is a powerful disinfectant that does not get bacteria even as it flows through the pipes, it can be challenging to get rid of it when it gets to your taps. For this reason, activated carbon is not enough hence the need to use catalytic carbon. Activated carbon will eliminate a little of the chloramine, but catalytic carbon gets rid of almost 100% of the chemical.

Carbon blocks

These are crushed carbon particles shaped into a block. They are effective compared to other carbon filters because they cover a wide surface area. However, the rate at which the water flows through the blocks impacts significantly on its effectiveness. Carbon blocks are available in many types, but fibredyne blocks have a higher capacity to hold sediments than the rest.

Granulated carbon

These work the same as carbon blocks but have a much lower efficiency due to their small size. The small carbon grains filter the impurities out of the water although the speed at which the water flows through them also affects how good it eliminates the contaminants.