Getting a water purifier is important if we want to take care of our families’ health. So, water purifiers have become a basic necessity today. With increased water pollution, the water that we get in our taps is highly toxic and contains lot of impurities, thus, finding best type of water purifier should be our goal.
Types of Water Purifiers
There are different types of water purifiers available in the market. These are
- Ceramic Candle Water Purifier
- RO Water Purifier
- UF Water Purifier
- UV Water Purifier
- Multistage Water Purifier
Ceramic Candle Water Purifier
Candle-based purifier consists of ceramic candle. Water passes through the candle as it traps certain impurities, chlorine and some types of bacteria such as E. Coli.
This type of purifier was a common site in India till few years back. Now after arrival of more modern water purifiers, their usage has decreased considerably.
Advantages of Ceramic Candle Filters
- It is quite inexpensive.
- Cost of maintenance is also low.
- It requires no electricity.
- No hassle of installation.
Disadvantages of Ceramic Candle Filters
- It is a basic type of filter, thus it can not remove dissolved salts, heavy metals, different types of bacteria and viruses.
- Regular maintenance is needed.
RO Water Purifier
RO stands for the Reverse Osmosis. It consists of a semi-permeable with very small pores. Water passes through this membrane, while impurities get trapped in the membrane. It can filter impurities such as minerals, dissolved salts, organic and inorganic impurities along with germs such as bacteria and virus from the water.
Since the pores of this membrane are very , the water pump is used to pressurize water to pass through the it.
This water purifier is the most effective in purifying hard water that contains different types of salts and impurities. Thus, it is used to purify water with high level of TDS. Moreover, RO is the only technology that can remove heavy metals such as nitrates, lead, chlorine, sulfates and so on.
Types of RO Water Purifier:
There are three types of RO water purifier available in the market, these types are based upon the way they are mounted or fixed at our homes.
- Wall mounted RO water purifier: This type of purifier is attached to the wall.
- Table top RO water purifier: This type of purifier can be kept on the kitchen counter or any table top.
- Under-Counter RO purifier or under-sink RO purifier: This purifier is fixed under the sink of the kitchen. Due to this, it is most space efficient.
Now, that we know it’s types and it’s procedure of working, let’s jump to its advantages and disadvantages:
Advantages of RO water purifier
- This purifier extracts the harmful chemicals and dissolved solids.
- It can filter harmful microorganisms such as bacteria and viruses.
- It improves the taste and the odor of water by eliminating imputrities that cause bad taste and odor.
- It is completely safe as it does not use any chemicals.
- It can remove hardness of water and can reduce TDS by upto 90%. Thus, it is ideal for water with TDS level of upto than 2000 ppm.
Disadvantages of RO Water purifier
- It requires electricity to operate.
- It also produces high amount of waste water. Read RO waste water recycling tips here.
- It is expensive as compared to other technologies.
- It can remove essential minerals from water.
- It requires high water pressure.
UF Water purifier
Ultrafiltration or UF uses a semi-permeable membrane to separate water from other particles present in it. When water passes through this UF membrane, the bacteria and the suspended solids gets trapped on its surface. This is actually similar to RO technology, the only difference is that the RO can filter almost all the impurities while UF is not as effective but can filter suspended particles, bacteria and some viruses effectively. thus, it is ideal for water with TDS less than 500 ppm.
This purifier is perfect for the places where the chemical contamination takes place at a lower rate, because this purifier does not eliminate dissolved salts. Now, some of its advantages and disadvantages are:
Advantages of UF water purifier:
- This purifier works without electricity.
- It does not uses any chemicals.
- It filters bacteria and virus.
- It is more affordable than RO technology.
- It’s easy to handle and maintain.
- It does not waste any water.
- It can work in low water pressure.
Disadvantages of UF water purifier:
- It cannot eliminate hardness of water. Thus, not ideal for water with TDS more than 500 ppm.
- It requires regular cleaning.
UV Water Purifier
Ultraviolet or UV water purifier kills water-borne disease-causing microorganisms such as bacteria and virus. This is an environment friendly purifier and does not contain any sort of chemicals. It consists of a UV tube with UV lamp inside it. Water passes through this tube and the UV lamp releases UV light that deactivates harmful germs.
It is perfect for places that has low TDS level, because it can not work properly in high TDS water. Some advantages and disadvantages are mentioned below
Advantages of UV water purifier:
- This is a low maintenance water purifier.
- It consumes very low amount of energy.
- This purifier does not eliminate useful minerals present in the water.
- It has quite low cost of maintenance.
- It has high rate of purification. High speed of 60 to 120 litres per hour is common in UV water purifiers.
Disadvantages of UV water purifier:
- The dead bodies of the germs remain in the purified water
- This purifier does not improve the taste or odour of water
- It does not remove harmful chemicals and other impurities
Multistage Water Purifier
As you can see, each type of water purifier comes with its own set of advantages and disadvantages. Therefore it is always recommended to use water purifier with multiple technologies.
RO+UV: RO is effective in removing dissolved salts and heavy metals such as arsenic, flourides, nitrates etc. while UV kills all the germs such as bacteria and virus.
RO+UV+UF+MF: This water purifier is more useful to purify water with high TDS. UF and MF perform first level of purification so that RO membrane does not get chocked with excess impurities. In the final stage ,UV eliminates all the micro-organisms.
Please note that there is no specific category named as multistage water purifier. We have categorised it as such for understanding purposes. Almost RO water purifiers are multistage water purifiers.
Advantages of Multistage water purifier:
- It gives most effective purification.
- It can purify hard water such as borewell water.
Disadvantages of Multistage water purifier:
- It is more expensive than other water purifiers.
- It requires regular maintenance.
Other Filters Used in Water Purifiers
Activated Carbon Filters
Activated Carbon filter consists of a type of carbon that is made of charcoal. It absorbs harmful chemicals that change the taste, color and odour of water. This purifier takes the assistance of the adsorption technology to purify water. Water is made to pass through this activated carbon that absorbs chemicals and harmful molecules such as pesticides. It is ideal for eliminating chlorine from water.
Advantages of Activated Carbon:
- It removes chlorine, pesticides and organic impurities.
- It improves the smell and taste of water.
- It protects the RO membrane from damaging effect of chlorine.
Disadvantages of Activated Carbon:
- It does not remove dissolved salts.
- It requires good amount of maintenance because if it is not used for a while, bacteria and other germs starts growing on it.
Sediment filter is mostly used as a pre-filter in many water purifiers. It is made of cotton and polyester fibre. Large impurities such as mud and dirt gets trapped in it and gets deposited in form of sediment.
Advantages of Sediment Filter:
- It removes large visible impurities.
- It protects other filters such as RO and UV from getting damaged.
Disadvantages of Sediment Filter:
- It is a very basic filter that can not remove small impurities or germs.
- It has to be used along with other technologies of purification.
Different types of water purifiers server different needs. RO and UF are similar technologies with different level of filtration. UV is useful in eliminating germs. While, Multistage water purifiers combine the advantages of different technologies. Thus, a combination of RO + UV + UF is best if you want excellent purification when TDS level is high.