Whole House Water Filtration System: Can Filters Be Cleaned or Should They Be Replaced?
October 24, 2018
Whole house water filtration systems scrub your mains water supply free of floating contaminants, sediment, and other undesirable elements. Typically, they're replaced every few months. If that action doesn't take place, as advised by the filtration system's user manual, expect flow rate problems and taste changes. Interestingly, there's another option, but it doesn't apply to every filtration system, unfortunately.
Optioning an Expensive Filter Replacement Approach
Way back at the wall, where the main water line enters the structure, a whole house water filter is stopping hard minerals, sediment, bacteria, chlorine, and other invasive elements from entering the water system. Unfortunately, perhaps because the building is located inside an area that has water cleanliness issues, the filter is failing. To remedy the problem, return to the user manual, which advises a replacement filter. Of course, the one downside to this solution is the cost, the money put down to buy what could potentially be an expensive purchase. Before putting a dent in your wallet or purse every 3-months, try looking for a reusable filter, one that can be flushed and put pressed into service again and again.
Reusable and Flushable Whole House Filters
This option isn't going to work every time. If the media is delicate and loaded with paper, then the sieving media will collapse into a papery gunge when you attempt to clean its inner workings. However, reusable filters can be purchased. They may cost a little extra, but their pleated polyester and carbon activated interior builds are more durable than cheaper products. Expect a premium build, a steel mesh and carbon activated mass. Alternatively, look for strong pleated polyester, nylon or Teflon, polymers that can withstand an occasional wash and rinse. Do realize, though, that this isn't a permanent solution. Eventually, perhaps a year or more into the future, the pores in the cartridge media will become choked. Stronger cleaning solutions help prevent this eventuality, but the best option is still to replace a whole house water filter, safe in the knowledge that the cleaning action extended the product's operational lifespan.
Do clean whole house water filters when the flow rate drops. Sediment and dirt have clearly blocked the pores inside the filtration media, so a quick wash and rinse will open up those tiny, micron-sized apertures again. However, do also remember that other contaminants float in mains water lines. If the dubious substance is chlorine, then you'll taste the stuff. If the dirty filter is allowing bacteria or heavy metals through, taste and cleaning routines may not be enough. Consider the condition of the municapal water when taking the filter-cleaning route.
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