The Hidden Risks of Fridge Water Filters

Fridges with built-in water filters appear to be an excellent discount. You want a fridge anyway, so why not buy one which additionally filters your water? Plus, with between 4 and 32 million Individuals falling sufferer to waterborne diseases yearly throughout america, a fridge water filter could also be a dependable option to defend you and your loved ones in opposition to dangerous contaminants in ingesting water – or perhaps not?

Fridge water filters have turn out to be commonplace in lots of US households as they’re designed to remove numerous sorts of impurities from water, equivalent to those who trigger foul tastes and odors. Additionally they assist maintain water traces and different areas of the fridge free from contaminants that have a tendency to collect in pipes and result in clogging and smelly ice.

The priority is that many householders rely solely on these filters to filter out toxins like arsenic, fluoride, nitrate, or radium, usually with out changing the filters sufficient or any in any respect, or the filters can’t take away dangerous substances nonetheless within the water. Positive, having a fridge water filter is healthier than nothing, however ingesting water filtered by a fridge might carry some hidden risks.

Proceed studying as we discover how an ordinary fridge water filter works, the contaminants it removes, the dangers related to its use, and a safer and extra dependable various.

How Does a Common Fridge Water Filter Work?

Faucet water from municipal therapy crops sometimes accommodates chlorine and chloramine, two chemical compounds used to kill micro organism, parasites, viruses, and different microbes that make folks sick. Nevertheless, research present that hint quantities of contaminants might stay within the “handled” water even after eradicating the microbes. Moreover, some pollution might escape via the municipal filtration programs or enter the water via leaks and water major breaks within the water distribution community.

When the contaminated water reaches your private home and flows via the fridge filter, the water will get filtered utilizing a mix of sediment and carbon filtration.

Right here’s a short rundown of how every course of works:

  • Sediment filtration: Through the sediment filtration stage, the sediment filter makes use of mechanical filtration to lure and remove suspended solids getting into the filtration system. Sediment filters take away filth, sand, silt, particles, rust flakes, and all different suspended strong particles with sizes at or above the filters’ micron-rated capability. Additionally they scale back cloudiness in water brought on by suspended solids.
  • Carbon filtration: Fridge filters comprise a carbon block core wrapped in a cloth like polypropylene. When water flows from the sediment filter to the carbon filter, the water passes over a big porous floor space with activated carbon (the fabric that permits for adsorption). Right here, the activated carbon capabilities like a magnet, inflicting the contaminants to stay to the filtration media and permitting the water to go via. Inside the limits of their small measurement, built-in fridge water filters sometimes take away chlorine, pesticides, lead, unstable natural chemical compounds, radon, prescribed drugs, and plenty of different manufactured chemical compounds, in addition to dangerous tastes and odors. Nevertheless, their capability to take away these contaminants is dependent upon the filter’s measurement and the contact time between the filter and the pollution (extra contact time normally equals higher filtration).

Study extra about how activated carbon filters work.

The Hidden Risks of Fridge Water Filters

Fridge water filters are sometimes hailed as a handy and cheap line of protection in opposition to waterborne contaminants. However as you’ll uncover shortly, they often carry a number of hidden risks that may make them a dangerous funding for householders in search of a dependable and extremely efficient water therapy resolution.

Let’s study a few of the dangers related to fridge water filters:

1.     Potential Publicity to Mould, Fungus, and Micro organism

Maybe probably the most appreciable threat related to fridge water filters is the elevated threat of publicity to mould, yeast, fungus, micro organism, and different nasty parts – not all the time due to the filter itself however the water dispenser.

A number one public well being group discovered that the typical kitchen fridge water dispenser harbors a bunch of nasty, probably harmful micro organism. In 2013, the Nationwide Sanitation Basis took swabs from 20 houses in Michigan in a bid to search out the ‘germiest’ spot and found that many of the built-in models had been coated with ‘regarding ranges’ of yeast and mould.

One doable cause for that is that whereas catching ice from the ice dispenser, folks’s soiled fingers might contact the water dispenser, passing on microbes to the water dispenser. The dispenser may also decide up airborne microbes from rotten meals probably within the kitchen.

Algae, sediment, mineral, and extra may also construct up within the fridge’s hardworking filter, permitting micro organism to develop on an unchanged, overworked filter that’s near getting clogged with all of the undesirable particles it’s holding again.

Because the water pours via the dispenser, it will probably decide up these contaminants. Meaning even when the fridge filter is functioning nicely, the water will be reintroduced to particles on the dispenser, exposing anybody who drinks the water to contamination.

An unclean water dispenser additionally offers the optimum setting for mould to develop and accumulate on the dispenser. Mould provides off a foul odor and may also unfold micro organism and germs. The worst half about mould is that it grows on hard-to-reach areas within the dispenser. Mould may also develop within the ice maker, contaminating ice with salmonella, E. coli, and shigella.

Then once more, we should needless to say not all fridge water filters are designed to take away micro organism and different pathogens from water. Nonetheless, many householders aren’t conscious of this and proceed to depend on their fridge water filters to take away microbes. And since fridges present the best setting for waterborne micro organism to thrive, you possibly can think about the variety of folks being uncovered to massive colonies of nasty micro organism day-after-day and presumably falling ailing in consequence.

2.   Substandard Filtration

Most fridge water filters use carbon filtration to remove compounds that trigger foul tastes and odors. The filter’s effectiveness depends on the water having ample contact time with the carbon to enhance filtration efficiency.

In small filtration programs, equivalent to a fridge water filter, the quantity of filtration media is restricted by necessity. The small measurement of the filter additionally means the water spends a minimal period of time with the carbon, versus a lot bigger filtration programs, like whole-house filters or countertop filters.

Consequently, in a high traffic setting, like a household residence, lower-quality fridge filters might not be capable of catch all of the impurities, permitting them to go via into your ingesting water.

3.   Comfort Points

One other problem with fridge water filters is that they solely deal with water passing into the fridge – a single location. Except you will have a system in place to filter water at your kitchen faucet or different areas in your house, you might be prone to cooking with untreated water or utilizing it to make drinks and child bottles, or issues like bathing or showering, cleansing dishes, and washing garments. As you most likely know, untreated water normally accommodates scores of contaminants, together with heavy metals, micro organism, chemical compounds, and sediment, all of which may wreak havoc on human, animal, and plant well being.

4.   Restricted Filter Lifespan (Extra Bills and Presumably Elevated Publicity to Contaminants)

Fridge water filters have one final threat to think about: filter substitute frequency and price. Since activated charcoal filters use carbon for adsorption, they ultimately clog up with contaminants and wish changing. That is additionally the case with complete home filters, however there’s a big distinction with fridge filters: the small measurement. As a result of complete home filters are a lot bigger, they require much less frequent filter adjustments, which suggests much less trouble, extra comfort, and fewer stress in your checking account. Fridge filters are normally the entire reverse. Due to this, householders might postpone filter replacements because of the excessive price or overlook to wash or change the filters commonly because the fridge filter is out of sight. If the filter is uncared for for no matter cause, it will probably shortly turn out to be clogged with filth and micro organism that may create probably hazardous well being dangers.

A Safer and Extra Dependable Different: Complete-Home Water Filters

In the event you’re involved concerning the dangers of utilizing a fridge water filter, you’ll be joyful to know that there’s a safer and extra dependable various: whole-house water filters. Not solely does a whole-house water filter removes extra contaminants earlier than getting into the fridge, however it additionally treats all of the water flowing to kitchen and toilet faucets and all of your different water-using home equipment. Usually, whole-house filtration programs use carbon filtration to deal with water. Nevertheless, the Springwell CF1 Complete-Home Water Filter permits you to add a UV water purification system to destroy 99.99% of micro organism, viruses, parasites, and different probably harmful microbes presumably in your water. Simply bear in mind to wash and sanitize your fridge’s water dispenser commonly to maintain pathogens from accumulating there and escaping into your ingesting glass.

Browse our complete home water filter programs.

Last Ideas

Fridge filters are nice since they take away a few of the undesirable pollution in our ingesting water. Nevertheless, they carry some hidden dangers that make them unsuitable for a lot of households, together with the shortcoming to take away numerous contaminants and substandard filtration in some circumstances. Fortunately, you possibly can set up a whole-house water filter system to remove most pollution earlier than they attain your fridge. However be sure to wash your water dispenser commonly to forestall micro organism buildup.

If you wish to study extra about our whole-house water filtration programs or the risks of fridge water filters, please get in contact with us right now!

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