This question of how to select a water purifier for a home? or even for an office has been asked by many of our readers and we decided to dedicate a different blog for it. It is the most exhaustive water purifier buying guide in India. But before that let us go through some of the quick Q/A session.
Questions & Answers
Question 1: What to look for when buying a water purifier?
Sol: Below are the some of the parameters you should go through before you judge on how to select water purifier for home.
- Water Quality.
- Daily Usage.
- Budgetary constraint
- Purification process & Technology.
- Electricity consumed.
- Maintenance Cost involved.
- Service level offered
Question 2: Can water purifier be switched off?
Sol: While most water purifiers can be switched off, it depends on the type of water purifier. Distillation, Reverse Osmosis, Ultrafiltration, and Ultra Violet water purifiers can all be switched off.
Question 3: How much electricity does a water purifier use?
Sol: The consumption of electricity in water purifiers is negligible. It has a power consumption of 25 watts. So let us do a calculation. On average, if a family drinks 15 Litres of drinking water per day the electric consumption will be approximately 1.52 units per year. Needless to say, power consumption may vary slightly for different models.
Question 4: Best water purifier under 5000?
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Question 5: Is RO water good for health?
Sol; Go to the heading “Role of the source of water” for complete information.
Question 6: Is low TDS water is harmful?
Sol: Go to the heading “Role of the source of water” for complete information.
Question 7: Is 60 TDS water is safe for drinking?
Sol: Go to the heading “Role of the source of water” for complete information. Also see table namely “CHART FOR TDS OF DRINKING WATER ACCORDING TO TASTE“
What is TDS in the water purifier?
One of the most crucial question in the quest for the water purifier buying guide!! One of the most critical questions to answer before answering the question of How to select a water purifier? The Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) has set the acceptable limit of TDS in drinking water at 500 mg/L. However, the standard also mentions that in case no alternative source of drinking water is available, then this acceptable limit can be relaxed to 2,000 mg/L.
Let us have a look at the various kind of impurities found in water:
|TYPE OF IMPURITY||MOST COMMON WATER SOURCE||EFFECT ON DRINKING WATER|
|Un-dissolved solids such as sand and mud||River, borewell or piped water where pipes are damaged||Muddy or turbid appearance|
|Dissolved inorganic salts like Sodium & Potassium||Borewells and seawater||Salty or brackish taste|
|Dissolved inorganic compounds like Calcium & Magnesium||Borewells and river water||Hardness and scale formation|
|Organic compounds||Lakes and ponds||Foul smell or bad odour|
|Decontaminants like Chlorine||Municipal piped water supply||Bitter taste|
|Biological impurities like bacteria & viruses||Piped water where pipes are damaged, water tankers||Biological contamination, waterborne diseases|
Not to say that you would find all the impurities in your water sources, this tables is just ahead up to the different kind of water and the pollutants in it. Hence it becomes very crucial to ponder over the best water purifier for your home.
Identifying the water:
Water can be classified as soft or hard based on the level of dissolved solids/impurities in it. There is also a benchmark to measure such dissolved solids, known as “Total Dissolved Solids (TDS)” which is regarded as the degree of hardness and measured in units of Parts Per Million (PPM) or Milligrams per Litre (mg/L). Mathematically speaking,
1 ppm = 1 mg/L
Refer to the table below for more information on this. This acceptable TDS limit applies to only ordinary freshwater, if the water contains toxic impurities like arsenic or fluoride, then other particular BIS standards will be applicable.
|CHART FOR TDS OF DRINKING WATER ACCORDING TO TASTE|
|TDS LEVEL (MG/L)||RATING|
|Less than 300||Excellent|
This tables form the cornerstone of the question of the water purifier buying guide.
Role of the source of water
Another important question, when you look for a water purifier buying guide. What’s the source of the water you get supplied to your home? If it comes from underground water, provided by water tankers, or drawn from deep dug bore wells, then most probably it’s hard water. Now, hard water contains pretty high percentages of dissolved solids like calcium, magnesium, heavy metals, fluorides, and arsenic. All these dissolved impurities make hard water unfit for human drinking.
On the other hand, water sourced from rivers, rainwater harvesting systems, lakes, and municipality managed storage and delivery system is known as soft water. Soft water, though not as dangerous, also needs purification before it can be deemed safe for human consumption over the long run.
Different kind of water purifier available:
In a quest to know how to select water purifer for home, one must know what are the different kind of purifier. Think of it like soul for “water purifier buying guide”. When looking for water purifier buying guidePlease do find them below:
Reverse Osmosis (RO)
Reverse Osmosis (RO) filtration is one of the most popular water filtration methods available. In simple terms, reverse osmosis works as water is forced across a semi-permeable membrane, leaving contaminants behind. The clean drinking water collects in a holding tank. That is all. Can you believe it to be so simple?
RO water purifiers are therefore always recommended for purifying water that has a high TDS level. The TDS level of the output drinking water from RO purifier is shallow as compared to the input water.
Some of the advantages of this kind of water purifier is:
- Filtration is automated and is generally considered safe for family use.
- It is reasonably priced.
- Since it operates on electricity, easy to operate and install.
Like RO, Ultrafiltration also uses a semi-permeable membrane to purify water. Now, this must force you to think that both RO and UF use the same method to clean the water then what might be the difference between RO and UF.
Ultrafiltration or UF uses a membrane with much larger pores (appx. 0.01 microns) as compared to RO, which uses a layer with microscopic pores (appx. 0.0001 microns).
The advantage of using this kind of water purifier is that UF purifiers can work without electricity because the membrane has much larger pores and water can pass through it naturally using the force of gravity. Which means no external pressure or water pump is required. Also, since UF purifiers do not hold back any water, there is no wastage of water.
But because of these larger pores, the performance of such water purifier may be in question. I mean this may not be your ideal best water purifier for your home, because there may still be undissolved particles even after the filtration process.
Ultraviolet (UV) Purification
As the name suggests, Ultraviolet or UV purification uses ultraviolet rays for the purification of water.
A UV water purifier works by throwing high-intensity UV rays on the water which kills or inactivates the disease-causing bacteria and viruses.
However, these UV water purifier cannot remove all the dissolved or un-dissolved impurities or chemicals from water. Because of which most of the UV purifiers that are available in the market use some form of external sediment pre-filters to remove undissolved impurities and activated carbon filter to remove Chlorine and some dissolved impurities.
Therefore, UV water purifiers are for areas where the water source has a low level of TDS.
What is my best water purifier for me??
The quest of water purifier buying guide is indeed incomplete without this table. I want to summarize this below:
|TDS LEVEL||IS WATER MUDDY?||PRESENCE OF BIOLOGICAL IMPURITIES?||IDEAL CHOICE|
|Below 500 ppm||No||No||Gravity-Based Purifiers|
|Below 500 ppm||No||Yes||UV|
|Below 500 ppm||Yes||No||UF|
|Below 500 ppm||Yes||Yes||UF or UF+UV|
|Over 500 ppm||No||No||RO|
|Over 500 ppm||No||Yes||RO+UV|
|Over 500 ppm||Yes||No||RO+UF or RO+UV+UF|
|Over 500 ppm||Yes||Yes||RO+UV+UF|
So what can we infer from the above table:
- Soft water has low TDS level; UF water purifiers work pretty well for it.
- For soft water with a high level of biological contamination, go for a UV or UF+UV water purifier.
- Hard water contains a higher level of TDS, apart from specific toxins; so, RO based purifiers are well suited for purifying it.
- For hard water with a high level of biological contamination, go for a RO+UV or RO+UV+UF water purifier.
- Best way to use UF filters is by combining it with another water purification system. UF filters only remove suspended solids from water.