Since the last decade or so, water purifiers have been the talk of the town, with the ever-increasing pollution and new diseases that are being spread, people have realized the importance of drinking clean and purified water. A report published by Times of India last year shows that 1 person dies in every 4 hours due to contaminated water. You can see a water purifier in almost every household and the water purifier for hospitals and industries are customized as per the needs.
You have decided to buy a water purifier, what next?? The biggest headache is to choose the right water purifier for your needs. The water purifier industry has a huge market in India and with lots of brands, it is never easy to choose one. Higher the number of choices, the more confused you ought to be. If you are new to this whole water purifier concept, then I am pretty sure you won’t be able to understand almost half of the things that the salesperson tells and with all the technical terms, it only becomes more complicated. This article covers all the basic things that you need to know about water purifiers and water treatment systems.
The first thing you need to know in selecting a water purifier is to understand the nature of the water. You will have to understand the source and the TDS value of the water. TDS stands for Total dissolved salts and the TDS value is measured in ppm (parts per million).
Hard water contains more mineral salts and has a ppm of 120-180
Soft water has less mineral salts and has a ppm of less than 17.0
The Bureau of Indian Standards(BIS) has listed the maximum TDS limit of safe drinking water as 500 ppm and Minimum of at least 30 ppm.
I am sure hearing these words will take you right back to your school/college chemistry books and quite frankly they were terrifying. You don’t have to relive that; we are here to make life easier for you and below is an overview of different water purification techniques available in the market. A combination of these techniques is used in the drinking water dispensers to make it very effective.
Gravity-Based Water Purifiers
These are the most basic and least expensive water purifiers available in the market.
Opt for these water purifiers only if the ppm value is less than 300 and there is no impurities or mud present in the water.
These purifiers are very mobile, easy to install and occupy less space.
They don’t need electricity to operate and their price ranges anywhere from 1000 to 5000 rupees.
The name itself carries the explanation for this and this method involves the use of high-intensity ultraviolet rays to kill bacteria and viruses that may be present in the water.
This purifier does not remove dissolved salts and other impurities and hence is only recommended if the TDS value is very minimum.
These purifiers also use separate filters to remove undissolved impurities from the water.
Ultra Filtration Purifiers
This purification technique is very much similar to that of the RO process.
The technique uses membranes with large pores and hence it can only remove undissolved impurities.
This purifier does not require electricity to operate and is not capable of removing dissolved impurities.
This purifier has been in the limelight for some time now and only certain brands offer this purifier. Ozone is a colourless gas that has an odour similar to the smell of the air after a major thunderstorm. Ozone has a greater disinfection effectiveness against bacteria and viruses compared to chlorination.
If you are using soft water, this purifier is ideal wherein it kills the germs and bacteria using Ozone and it also retains the original taste of water. Because of its excellent disinfection and oxidation qualities, ozone is widely used for drinking water treatment.
Reverse Osmosis Purifiers
These are the most commonly used purifiers and is an upgraded version of the Ultra Filtration technique.
This method uses a semi-permeable membrane with very minute pores that filter and retain all the impurities and dissolved salts.
It uses a pump that is run by electricity to pressure the water and make it flow through the semipermeable membrane.
This technique sometimes also removes the good minerals present in the water.
Most brands these days offer a TDS controller and make sure that your purifier is equipped with TDS controller that would enable to retain all the good minerals in the water.
The RO purifiers are mostly preferred and they are used as a water purifier for hospitals.
Few of the other things to keep in mind while hunting a drinking water dispenser are the usage of electricity, the capacity of water, after sales service and the wastage of water.
Installation, Maintenance and After Sales Service
You will have to make sure that you have adequate space to install the purifier and most of the brands out there offer free installation of water purifiers and water treatment systems.
Maintenance of water purifiers can be a real handful of a task and sometimes they lead to unexpected expenses. In specific, the maintenance of RO purifiers is quite costly as the membranes have to be changed periodically. No matter how robust the equipment can be, they are prone to damage especially if hard water is being purified. That is why the after sales service is so important.
Wastage of Water
Most people remain ignorant to the amount of water that will be wasted if a purifier is used. Especially in RO purifiers, the wastage of water is quite such that 2/3rd of the water is wasted and only 1/3rd of the water is used for drinking purpose. In normal terms, for every 1l of water purifier, 3 liters of water is wasted. It is also important that you find a proper use for the water that is wasted. If the TDS value of the wastewater is low, you can use it for watering plants or for washing your vehicles and mopping your floor.
By now, you would have gotten a fair idea about all the things that you need to know and plan before you choose your drinking water dispenser.