With so much concern about clean drinking water it seems that everywhere you look someone is carrying a bottle of water. More and more people are beginning to question the actual source of their bottled water. A 2008 Reader's Digest article, written by Janet Majeski Jemmott, said that "25 per cent of it comes from a municipal supply," and "bottlers are not required to list the source on the bottle." However, tap water is regulated by the FDA. A better alternative to bottled water would be to use a water purification system.
Volatile Organic Compounds
When purchasing a distiller, make certain that it has the ability to filter out volatile organic compounds, or VOCs. VOCs are gases that contain a variety of chemicals emitted from certain liquids, including water. VOCs can produce adverse health effects over a short or long term. According to the FDA, VOCs can cause headaches, dizziness, respiratory tract irritation and memory impairment.
H2O Labs (H2oLabs.com) offers two of what it refers to as its "best" models of portable water distillers. The White Baked-Enamel distiller, models 100 and 100SS, and models 300 and 300SS. Internally, the distillers are exactly alike, but in the 300 models you can select a particular exterior colour. The price runs around £129 for either one, but these water distillers can be found on sale for £109 on the company's website. Both models have a 100 per cent, stainless steel interior, and they remove VOCs with the use of activated charcoal filters. They can produce up to 4 gallons of purified water per 24-hour period, and a six-month supply of the charcoal filters is included in the purchase price.
A-1 Water Distillers
With claims of being the "fastest water distiller in the market," A-1 Distillers (a1-water-distiller.com) has its All Glass collection container, which will distil 1 gallon of water in 3 1/2 to 4 hours or around 6 gallons in a 24-hour period. As with most of the top models, the interior of the distiller is 100 per cent stainless steel. This model also has a stainless steel exterior, and the collection container is made from 100 per cent glass, as compared with some other models that have collection containers made of food-grade plastic. This model sells for £161 on the company's website.
Also in the fast distilling category, comes the Waterwise 8800 from Freshwater Systems (freshwatersystems.com), which is portable and lightweight. It can distil 1 gallon of water in four hours or 6 gallons in 24 hours. This model sells for £259 and is said to eliminate bacteria, viruses and 99 per cent of total dissolved solids. It also removes sodium, chlorine, arsenic, nitrates and VOCs.
The Mini-Classic II
One of the most expensive models is the Mini-Classic II Countertop Pure Water Distiller, which sells for £373 on Amazon (amazon.com). Somewhat slower than the other models, the Mini-Classic II distils four-fifths of a gallon of water in 3 1/2 hours to 99.9 per cent purity using a carbon filter. The carbon post filter used in this unit is made in the United States. It has a removable, stainless steel chamber that can be taken out for occasional cleaning. The Mini-Classic II also comes in a 220V model for £13 more that will automatically shut off at the end of the distilling cycle. The Mini-Classic II, 220V, has a built-in safety feature that will turn the unit off if it ever overheats.