Trying to decide whether a ceramic water filter is worth your money? This article should help you to weigh up the pros and cons of this filter type, so you can decide whether or not it’s worth your money.
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❔ What Are Ceramic Water Filters?
Before we look at the pros and cons of ceramic filters, let’s quickly recap what they are and how they work.
Ceramic filters, otherwise known as ceramic filter candles, are made from a ceramic outer shell that encompasses an internal media of activated carbon, KDF, activated alumina, or ion exchange (or a combination of several).
A ceramic drinking water filter has a network of pores that are typically 0.5 microns in size. When water flows through these pores, contaminants become trapped in the media. The internal media further reduces contaminants with processes such as adsorption and ion exchange.
✅ Pros of Ceramic Water Filters
The biggest advantages of ceramic filters are:
Impressive Contaminant Removal Potential
On its own, a ceramic water filter system can remove turbidity, sediment, and microorganisms like pathogenic bacteria, protozoans, and some viruses. When the filter contains other filter media types, like activated carbon filters and ion exchange resin, it can act as a complete water filtration system within a single cartridge, removing a whole host of harmful contaminants.
Chlorine, fluoride, and heavy metals are just some of the additional impurities that a ceramic water filtration system may be able to remove.
Retains Healthy Minerals
While ceramic filters are able to remove some of the smallest drinking water contaminants, they still retain healthy minerals, like calcium and magnesium. This means your water will still have the same enjoyable alkaline taste after using a ceramic filtering cartridge.
Affordable to Maintain
Ceramic filters are some of the cheapest filters on the market. They’re commonly used in affordable water filter systems, like pitcher filters and countertop filters.
You can buy a ceramic filtration cartridge for less than $30, and spend less than $50 per year on filter maintenance. Ceramic filter cartridges are a good choice for people with small budgets.
An advantage of ceramic filter media is that it can be flushed and reused. To prevent contaminant buildup from slowing the flow rate of filtered water, simply send water in the opposite direction through the filter. This will wash the suspended solids down the drain.
Because they’re reusable, ceramic candle filters have the potential to last longer than the average filter. Typically, a ceramic filter lasts from six months to two years. The media inside the filter affects its lifespan – some media is exhausted faster than ceramic media.
Natural Filter Media
Ceramic water filters are completely natural. They don’t contain metals, plastics, or chemical contaminants, and they won’t leach anything into your water.
If you’re looking for a filter that’s both safe and effective to use, a ceramic candle filter is a good choice.
One of the Few Bacteria Filters
A ceramic filter is one of the few filters that’s capable of removing bacteria. The filter’s 0.5 micron pores are small enough to trap bacteria, protozoans, and some viruses, so it’s suitable to use in emergencies.
Aside from ceramic filters, the only other water treatment systems for bacteria removal are reverse osmosis membranes, UV systems, and chlorine injection systems. These systems tend to be clunky and expensive in comparison.
Potential for Portable Filtration
Ceramic filters can be made in any size, and some ceramic filters are small enough to be used in portable applications.
Many drinking water filters designed for hikers use a ceramic filter candle. The advantage of ceramic filters for hiking and camping purposes is that they’re lightweight and easy to flush and reuse.
Can Be Used in Pressure Filters and Gravity Filters
Ceramic filters are versatile enough to be used in systems that rely on water pressure, like under-sink filter systems, and systems that use gravity filtration, like countertop and pitcher filters.
Most ceramic filters are used in under-sink or countertop filters. Some are used as a filter stage in reverse osmosis water filter systems.
⛔️ Cons of Ceramic Water Filters
Some of the setbacks of ceramic filters are:
Reduced Flow Rate
Whether you install a ceramic drinking water filter at your water line or you prefer countertop or portable ceramic filters, you’ll probably notice a reduction in your flow rate from using this filter.
Ceramic filters have tiny pores, so they filter water at a slower rate than other types of filters. This is especially the case with ceramic gravity filters, which don’t have water pressure to power water through the media. If you don’t want to interrupt flow or pressure in your water supply, you’re best looking at UV water filters instead.
Delicate Filter Material
Even the best ceramic water filters are prone to breaking. Ceramic filter material is brittle and likely to crack under pressure. You’ll need to be careful not to break the filter during cleaning and maintenance.
Don’t Remove Chemical Contaminants
On their own, ceramic filtration systems can’t remove heavy metals or chemicals. A ceramic cartridge will only remove these impurities if it’s combined with other filter media, like granular activated carbon, ion exchange resin, or KDF.
Regular Cleaning Required
Ceramic filters have tiny pores that are prime to clogging, so they need to be cleaned regularly to ensure a consistent flow of water from the cartridge. Water passes through a clogged ceramic filter at a much slower rate than a clean, contaminant-free filter.
If you’re using a ceramic filtration cartridge for well water, you may need to install a sediment filter upstream of your ceramic cartridge to protect it from large sediment particles.
🤔 Choosing and Buying the Best Ceramic Water Filter
Not all ceramic filters are created equal. When shopping for a filter, read plenty of ceramic water filter reviews – both by members of the public and by industry experts. This will give you the information you need about a filter’s everyday useability to decide whether it’s worth your money.