Which pure water filters are the best? Well, if you already have a system, then you have to stick with the same manufacturer. But, if you are still comparing products, then let me give you some advice.
If you compare product performance data, you will see that a pure water filter may not provide the purity that you expect and need. Some of the most highly advertised products do the least.
Those pitchers, for example, only remove some chlorine and lead. Those are important things to remove and it is good that consumers have an inexpensive option, but pure water filters should do more.
The levels of lead in some of the poorer sections of the country are high enough to cause behavioral problems and learning disabilities. Blood tests have confirmed the fact. But, no level of lead exposure is “safe" and we risk exposure in many different ways. Lead has even been found in lipstick.
So, if a pure water filter only removes 93% of the lead, then there is still a risk and not only to children. Low level exposure over the course of one's lifetime causes nutritional deficiencies and hypertension. It is has been linked to heart disease and Alzheimer's.
I believe that pure water filters should remove 99% or more of the most harmful contaminants that we face, as a society. But, most of the products on the market are not certified to do that.
Other than lead, the most deadly contaminants are probably cysts. Cysts are like parasitic eggs that go floating down the river looking for a host to infect. They are very hardy. They resist chlorination and can only be removed by boiling or through sub-micron filtration.
In order to be called a pure water filter, a company should be required to remove cysts, but that's not how it works. The purifier industry is largely unregulated. In a few states, they are required to provide product performance data, but in most of the country, there are no requirements.
They are not required to have a UL listing, but the better companies do. They are not required to have their systems evaluated by an independent laboratory or a public health department, but the better companies do that, too.
If cysts are ingested by at-risk individuals, they can die from the infection. The EPA says that “at-risk" people include those with AIDS, people who are recovering or being treated for cancer and other individuals with immuno-deficiencies. They say that these people should use pure water filters with a sub-micron structure or boil.
Boiling actually releases chemical contaminants that cause cancer, such as THMs, into the air. If you have a sub-micron pure water filter, boiling is only necessary when there is E-coli contamination. That's rare, but it can occur after heavy rains or flooding.
Infants and children should really be added to the list of those who are “at risk", because their immune systems are not fully developed. If you prepare infant formula in your home, you should use pure water filters for the purpose. Not only because of the cysts, but because of all of the other chemicals, drugs, hormones, lead and other traces that can do long term damage to their health.
Laurel Tevolitz is a dedicated researcher of critical issues that affect health and well-being. Visit her water purification blog now at http://www.safewaterpurifier.com to discover which water purification system she recommends after extensive research.