Disadvantages of Water Filters

Updated April 17, 2017

Using water filter systems incurs certain disadvantages. Knowing the disadvantages of the different filter systems on the market provides guidance for choosing which water filter system best fits home and office needs. In general, filter systems are cost-effective. Some systems may have initial installation costs. Some systems remove particular contaminants while leaving others in the water. Certain systems remove contaminants so effectively that they sacrifice health-boosting minerals.

Carbon Water Filters

Economical in set-up, the carbon water filter offers the most basic filtration system. Typically located in kitchenware stores, this type of water filter also requires no installation. The principle disadvantage in cost of the carbon water filter is the short filter life, requiring frequent replacement. Another disadvantage of this filter is its inability to remove certain metals and fluoride, the majority of radioactive compounds, asbestos and bacteria.

Carbon Block

The basic disadvantage of the carbon block filter is the initial installation cost, requiring a professional plumber set-up, usually on the kitchen tap. The filters last longer but are more expensive. Though this type of filter removes certain chemicals, such as solvents and pesticides, it does not remove bacteria, selected radioactive contaminants, asbestos or fluorides and certain heavy metals.

Ceramic Carbon

Consisting of a ceramic and carbon part, the ceramic carbon filter cartridge first requires the cost of plumbing installation under the kitchen sink. Major types of contaminant-filtering of tap water occur with the ceramic carbon filter, but this type of filter still does not remove fluoride, viruses, small microbes or some heavy metals.

Reverse Osmosis

Serious health issues arise because of the effectiveness of the reverse osmosis water-filtering system in removing natural mineral sources found in water. This can make it necessary to buy over-the-counter health supplements, such as calcium and iron.

The reverse osmosis filter often incorporates other systems into the design, such as the active carbon ceramic and carbon block types, resulting in higher retail costs as well as plumbing installation costs.

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About the Author

Catalina Bixler's journalism career began in 1970. After five years as a publishing teacher, Bixler then published/edited NATO's U.S. 5th Army and 17th AF "Wiesbaden Post" newspaper. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in bilingual-journalism/community development from Redlands University, and a Master of Arts in adult education/training from the University of Phoenix.