Pure Water 101

Why is water filtration/purification a necessity?

Water is essential to life and optimum health. Without it, the human body will survive only a few days. No other nutrient deficiency has such a dramatic effect. Water makes up two-thirds of the body’s weight and every cell requires water to function. It lubricates, flushes waste and toxins, hydrates the skin, regulates body temperature, acts as a shock absorber for joints, bones, and muscles, and transports nutrients, minerals and vitamins.

But, unfortunately, our U.S. drinking water is contaminated and city tap water has been found to contain as many as 500 different disease-causing bacteria, viruses, and parasites along with more than 2100 toxic chemicals. Heavy metals, pesticides, herbicides, MTBE (gasoline additive), chlorine and chlorine by-products, chloramines, ammonia, low-levels of pharmaceuticals (prescription and over-the-counter therapeutic drugs and veterinary drugs) and chemicals from personal care products (PPCP’s) have been found in our nation’s municipal and well water supplies.

Part of creating a healthy body involves getting the best quality water you can. Water purification/filtration is imperative not only for the water you drink, but also the water you use to bathe and shower in. After a 10-minute shower, you have ten times more trihalomethanes and chemicals in your body than if you had 8 glasses of the same unpurified water. At 100 degrees, the steam cloud is full of chlorine byproducts that you are breathing in. And, at the same time, the skin pores are taking it in through the gas as well as through the water. The chlorine and chloramines rob the skin of oils. While dry skin can be attributed to the soap used, it may also be the chlorine or chloramines that contribute to the problem.

Three Branches recommends finding out what is in your water and purifying it accordingly.

With water purification/filtration, it is not only the materials in the water purification /filtration unit itself that are important, but it is also choosing the right system for your particular water supply. And in addition to that, it needs to be the system that works the best for your family.

Three Branches has chosen Mary Cordaro of H-3 Environmental to help you evaluate your water tests and determine which purification/filtration systems will best meet your needs. Mary is a water quality expert that has over 20 years of experience in dealing with water, environmental issues, and the chemically sensitive. Mary will look at your municipal water report or ask you to test your water as described in “Testing Your Water” if your water report is not extensive enough or if you are on a well.

Mary Cordaro, H-3 Environmental 1.818.766.1787

Three Branches recommends Rainshower filters for point of use filtration in the shower and the bath if whole house purification is not an option. This company provides filtration systems that are free of materials that will leech into the water as it passes through the purifier such as caulks, adhesives, and plasticizers (many systems have plastic components that can leech into the water.)

Deciding which purification/filtration you need and can afford takes time and expert advice.

Purification Systems

As a rule of thumb, water for drinking must be purified and water for bathing and showering must be filtered.

Both systems should be customized to fit local water conditions as well as personal needs. For example, water purification systems for drinking require that you maintain the equipment and change filters. If it’s doubtful that someone in the home will take the responsibility for making sure that the maintenance – upkeep and changing filters in a timely way – will be done, then it is best that you use one of the systems for drinking water described in “Quick and Easy Solutions for Quality Water” (article coming soon). If your family is renting an apartment or home, then whole-house purification would not be possible, so a Rainshower shower filter and Rainshower Bath Ball would be suitable.

Drinking and Cooking Water

There are three point-of-use ways to purify water for drinking and cooking:

  1. Reverse Osmosis (RO) unit
  2. Deinoization
  3. Distillation (to get what is considered “dead water”)

For point-of-use water purification used for cooking and drinking, Three Branches recommends Reverse Osmosis coupled with Deionization Purification systems. They should be chosen only after your municipal water report has been analyzed or well water has been tested and analyzed. To get the right system, the first step is to find out if your water is treated with chlorine or chloramines.

A good point-of-use purification unit comes with some responsibility. You need to buy a purifier suited to your particular water, maintain your filters, and periodically measure your total dissolved solids. (We sell an easy-to-use and inexpensive TDS meter.) We discourage purchasing a water purification system if you are unable to keep up with filter maintenance.

Ask the Expert

Contact Mary Cordaro of H-3 Environmental to help you evaluate your water tests and determine which purification/filtration systems will best meet your needs. Mary will look at your municipal water report or ask you to test your water as described in “Testing Your Water” if your water report is not extensive enough or if you are on a well. Work with Mary or the company that you get your filter from to make sure you know what your particular system needs.

Mary Cordaro, H-3 Environmental 1.818.766.1787

Whole-House Filtration

A whole-house water filtration system is located on the incoming supply line and is chosen after water has been tested and analyzed. Again, one of first priorities is to find out if chlorine or chloramines and ammonia are used for filtration in your area.

Whole-house filters have relatively little maintenance, unlike the point-of-use drinking water purifiers, as the filter should be replaced only when it starts becoming saturated. It is important to have your water analyzed by an expert so a suitable system is chosen for your water. One advantage to a whole house filtration system is that it protects the pipes from chlorine and chloramines. Chloramines pit copper pipes.

Shower Filtration

If unable to get a whole house system, then shower and bath point of use filtration should be employed.

Get a point-of-use shower filter to use if you live in an apartment or rented home or if you are unable to get the proper whole-house system. Three Branches recommends RainShower filters. Note: Point-of-use filters help to reduce chlorine, but not chloramines and ammonia.

Three Branches recommends that you hire a licensed, bonded, and insured plumber to install your shower filter and to insure warranty. Some showers need special adaptors for the filter and it’s possible to turn and twist the shower arm too much, resulting in a broken pipe. The warranty is wavered if you don’t use a licensed, bonded insured plumber.

Bath Filtration

For baths, use the Bath 3000 Crystal Ball. The Crystal Ball uses a KDF Formula Copper Zinc filament and Crystalline Quartz to remove the chlorine and the quartz crystals help to “energize” the water by reducing the water’s surface tension. This allows for an increase in sudsing and lathering of soaps and shampoos.

Use the bath ball to prepare the bath water for detoxification baths. Also shower filters are economical and can be used to fill the bathtub if the shower and bathtub are the same unit.

Water for Travel and Emergencies

We recommend The Zero Water purifier to keep on hand for travel and emergencies.

  • To get started with the Branch Basics products mentioned in this article and to learn more about all natural, human safe cleaning products, start here.
  • For more healthy living and nontoxic cleaning tips, be sure to “Like” us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram, “Like” our Pinterest page, and follow us on Twitter!

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