Can water filters be dangerous

Water filter: what do you really bring?

The fear of drinking water pollution or the hope for softer water first give us the idea of ​​simply filtering our water ourselves. Countless manufacturers have therefore launched their water filters for tap water on the market. But after filtering, can you really be sure that all dangers have been eliminated? The Stiftung Warentest has taken a close look at popular models. The result: sobering. None of the tested devices could do better than "Satisfactory".

Water filter against copper, nickel and lead in tap water?

Water filters can effectively reduce copper and lead in drinking water. In particular, activated carbon filters like the IVARIO water filter are well suited here, as they are installed behind the fitting, so that loads that arise from the tap or mixer tap are also filtered.

Table filters can help, but their effectiveness varies greatly, so an activated carbon filter is the more reliable solution to the problem.

Softer water thanks to the water filter: It depends on the filter

The prices for table filter filters promise performance. However, you can rarely, if at all, keep it. Unlike with activated carbon filters like that IVARIO water filter Table filters usually have to be serviced once a month, as heat and sunlight ensure faster bacterial growth.

The Stiftung Warentest found in this context: The cost of a table filter is hardly worthwhile if you want to soften your water. The hoped-for water softening only works for a short time. And not only that: instead of fulfilling their main task of softening the water, the cartridges sometimes become seriously contaminated with germs. In the long term, none of the devices could live up to the hope of less calcified coffee machines and tastier tea.

If you want to soften the water efficiently, you usually have to have a water softener installed, which is, however, associated with high costs and, as a by-product, enriches the drinking water with sodium, which can be particularly dangerous for small children.

Clear problem: contamination in the water filter

Drinking water is generally not sterile. If the conditions are favorable, the germs in it can form colonies and therefore multiply - especially when the temperatures are right. Many table filters have cartridges mixed with silver ions, which prevent contamination. Even if that is a good thing, the silver that gets into the filtered water in turn may pose a problem again. It is still unclear whether health complaints can actually be the result of this relatively small continuous intake of silver.

Danger in the filtrate

However, the Stiftung Warentest found that the amount of the possibly carcinogenic substance dichloromethane in the filtrate of one of the devices tested was significantly too high. In addition, due to the design of some devices, a significantly too high number of bacteria accumulated.

Conclusion: Before buying, table filters should be compared carefully. Tests by Stiftung Warentest provide information about which devices are really useful. But it is also clear: under normal circumstances, the use of a water filter is unnecessary in Germany because the quality of the drinking water is exemplary.

Activated carbon block filters - the better way to filter

For everyone who wants to filter their water simply, easily, quickly and without great effort, activated carbon block filters are an excellent option and alternative to table filters. Unlike table filters, activated carbon block filters are installed in front of or behind the fitting. This point also makes a significant difference. For example, the IVARIO water filter is installed directly on the end piece of the fitting. This has several advantages: On the one hand, the water filter can also remove the loads emitted by the fitting in this way, on the other hand it simplifies the 4-6 month maintenance interval of the filter cartridge, which can be replaced in 3 simple steps can.

In this way, you can enjoy your water immediately filtered from the tap without having to refill it first. Heavy metals, pesticides and drug residues can be filtered, making the filter extremely versatile and efficient. Since the cartridge itself is made from coconut parts and stands out due to its sustainable properties.

Another advantage of this filter method is that minerals are retained in the water. Although the water filter does not affect the hardness of the water in this way, it does not lose any important trace elements for the human body that can be impaired by other filters.

When is the use of a water filter really advisable?

A water filter can be quite useful. However, this only applies if the water is actually polluted and a high-quality model is selected. Finding out whether your own drinking water is dangerous and whether the use of a water filter is even relevant is the first step towards feeling good about drinking water.

It is true that the water suppliers in Germany without exception deliver high-quality water to households that meets the requirements of the Drinking Water Ordinance. However, contamination is by no means excluded:

From the water meter onwards, house and property owners are responsible for the quality of the water themselves. Deficiencies in the tap water system, such as old pipes or insufficient maintenance, can result in severe pollution of the water, which is often not noticed over a long period of time or is not associated with the tap water.

Contamination and pollution of the water - a real danger

The sources of danger here are diverse: Outdated pipes, for example made of lead or copper, can pollute the tap water. Advised this Heavy metals into the water, this can lead to health problems. Are particularly at risk here Infants and young children. Long-term consequences are very likely here if the water is absorbed over a longer period of time, even in smaller quantities. Pregnant women or immunocompromised people are also among the risk groups who react particularly strongly to the consumption of polluted water. But even healthy people can suffer from the long-term effects of heavy metal intake, sometimes even after a long period of time.

Also the bacterial load of drinking water is an issue. Under certain circumstances, bacteria and germs can multiply here, for example in dead pipes or in hot water preparation. Legionella, E. coli bacteria and some other dangerous germs can get into the water and harm the organism if they are ingested through the drinking water or when showering (e.g. with legionella infestation).

Water analysis in the laboratory - quick security

Experts therefore recommend regular water controls. Private households can also have their tap water analyzed and thus prove or exclude possible contamination. This applies in particular to operators of their own drinking water wells who do not draw the water they have already controlled from the public supply network.

If it is proven that the tap water is contaminated, a high-quality water filter can be used at least until the problem has been resolved. Here, however, care should be taken to ensure that the selected model is up to the requirements and can provide appropriate assessments.

Water analyzes are available in the IVARIO shop and provide information about the quality of your own tap water in just a few simple steps.