Aquasana AQ-4000 Drinking Water Filter System
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- Voted Consumers Digest Best Buy
- Performance Certified by Underwriters laboratories and the California Department of Public Health
- Help prevent thousands of plastic containers from winding up in landfills and further polluting the environment
- Filters out chlorine, lead, VOCs, MTBE and Cysts
- 30 gallons a hour of ultra-filtered high quality
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Aquasana is the #1 rated home water filtration system in America, works better & costs less than any other brand! Top 10 Water Filter Comparison This patented twin cartridge drinking water filter installs in seconds to standard kitchen faucets and provides up to 30 gallons an hour of ultra-filtered high quality water for drinking, cooking and other beverages. Includes filter housing? chrome faucet diverter? twin filter cartridge set (lasts 6 months/filters 500 gallons), easy to follow instructions and cartridge re-order forms. Replacement filters cost $48.00 every 6 months/500 gallons...that's only 9¢ a gallon/ $8.00 a month for a virtually unlimited supply of "healthy water". Includes 2 filter cartridges? faucet adapter & instructions
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
We bought the filter after doing a couple of hours of research. Essentially everything you'll read elseware about it is true. I'll just add a couple of detractors so that you get the whole picture.
The first thing you'll noticed when using the filter is that it takes it's own sweet time. If you think you're going to get a full size stream of water at full pressure -- think again. So, plan ahead -- factor in the fairly slow flow rate, and you'll be fine.
Everything functions as advertised. However, what is not mentioned is that the water diverter valve stem (the little metal button you pull on to divert the faucet water into the filter) does not always return itself to the off position when you turn off the water -- you have to push the valve stem back in to fully deactivate the filter. This may not sound like a big deal, but it can potentially destroy the filter! The filter elements cannot handle hot water according to the instruction manual which is included. If you use the filter, with cold water but don't remember to re-seat the valve stem to it's full off position, and you come back in a couple of minutes and turn on the hot water to wash your hands, the hot water will get unintentionally diverted into the filter unit and destroy the expensive filter elements. BE WARNED!
Other than the above mentioned items (one of which is potentially quite harmful to the filter) -- everything is fine. As long as you're not in a hurry, and always remember to push the valve stem back in you should be OK.
One final note is that someone else posted a review which states that the valve stem should never be operated while the water is on. The reason stated, is that the valve stem is fairly thin and can break if it is subjected to the stress of overcoming the faucet water pressure when diverting the water into the filter.
One thing that is really disappointing me about this Aquasana system is that the TDS meter I own and use to measure filtered water systems only shows the TDS for my tap water to be 063 PPM (Parts Per Million) and after filtering it is only down to 58 PPM. A TDS meter for those that do not know is a simple device that lets you know how many Total Dissolved Solids or TDS are in the water. It could be anything from chlorine to asbestos to minerals. It does not differentiate, but it just tells you how many solids are in your water and this also includes potential pollutants. I had to change my filter when I saw this number was actually drastically higher at 85 PPM when my tap water at the time was 72 PPM. It was showing me that if you need to change your Aquasana filter it will actually put more crap in the water than it will if you don't filter the water.
The other disappointing aspect that I don't see written anywhere is that my TDS meter shows much higher readings for the first 30 seconds of running water through the filtering system. It is usually higher than my tap water, but after the first 30 seconds it drops slightly lower than my tap water. That means that unless you have a curious mind like myself and test your water then you would be ignorantly ingesting more solids that appear to be the carbon that is disturbed when initially turning on the water filter.
Aquasana also misleads the public by promoting blatant lies such as they filter water better than reverse osmosis systems that can filter out .001 microns when they can only filter particles of .5 microns. They also market that they let through the good minerals in the water while selectively filtering out the bad and market this as a benefit when the truth is that the filter simply can't filter out as much as a reverse osmosis system or distilling water as I have proven through my own testing.
I proved this theory to myself using the simplest method possible. Simply run water from all sources through a water distiller to see what type of material is left over in the waste water in my water distilling system. I ran tap water as a baseline, Brita and PUR brand pitcher filters as pre and post filters, then Aquasana filtered water and finally my Watts Reverse Osmosis (RO) filtered water through a water distiller. My water distiller is the MegaHome white countertop water distiller that holds about a gallon of water.
The results of the test are as follows:
1. Tap water - leaves a brown residue at the bottom of the water distiller waste water tank that smells of burnt metal and that taste comes across in the distilled water. The water is practically undrinkable unless you pass it through some sort of charcoal filter after distilling the water. After a few times running through a scale builds up on the bottom of the water distiller and you have to use either vinegar or the cleaning agent that comes with the system to remove the scale buildup and smell.
2. Brita and PUR pitcher filtered water - leaves the same amount of brown residue at the bottom of the water distiller that smells of burnt metal but the distilled water tasted a bit better after distilling, but I still had to rerun it through a brita or PUR carbon filter pitcher again after distilling to make it palatable. The same scale buildup happens with these pre-filters and I found the best use for the Brita and PUR filters to be a post carbon filter because the build in carbon filter on my water distiller is too small to make a difference in water taste.
3. Aquasana filtered water - surprisingly it still left some brown water at the bottom of the water distiller's waste water that smelled foul but it was noticeably less foul than Brita and PUR filters. Although there was still an off metallic taste to the water after distilling I didn't need to rerun through a brita or PUR system to make it drinkable. However, if I did run the distilled Aquasana water through the post carbon filter using Brita or PUR filters the taste did improve noticeably. Although the taste was better than the Brita and PUR systems it was less than I expected for the price of the filters and the marketing from the Aquasana company.
4. Reverse Osmosis (RO) filtered water - After filling the distiller with RO water and running it through the leftover water was crystal clear and there was no brown residue left afterwards. The smell of the waste water was very slightly off but the waste water actually smells better than the drinking water portion of distilled Aquasana water. The distilled drinking water is so remarkably clear tasting that no additional carbon filtering is necessary and is by far the best tasting water.
Don't get me wrong, the Aquasana filter is much better than using a Brita filter or Pur filter but they can only filter out about 50% of the fluoride in the water you drink. Fluoride is more acutely toxic than lead, mercury and every other non radioactive substance on the planet except for arsenic. My personal feelings is that I will risk getting a cavity in my mouth than to drastically increase my chances for getting cancer by having Fluoride in my drinking water. Fluoride is most commonly used as rat poison and is also used in some of the nastiest pesticides and I choose not to have it in my drinking water when possible.
Taking out the promises and the marketing the only reliable source to go to that measures the toxins taken out by different filtering companies is the NSF International's website where Aquasana is only certified to take out the following impurities:
Reduction Claims Validated for this unit by NSF:
Chlorine Reduction - Aesthetic
Nominal Particulate Reduction, Class I
Taste and Odor Reduction
What the Aquasana misses are the most toxic of chemicals,namely: Arsenic, Fluoride, Radium 226/228 (Radiation), Chromium (Erin Brockovich carcinogenic chemical), Barium, Copper, Perchlorate (rocket fuel), Cadmium, Turbidity and TDS (total dissolved solids)
To put it bluntly, there are limits to what a coal filter can do and Aquasana is a very good countertop coal filter, but it in no way shape or form can compare to distilled or reverse osmosis filtered water in terms of the pollution removed from the water. The facts presented by NFS International can be searched by anyone as it is public information.
So yes the Aquasana is rated higher than the Brita pitcher, but it can't get certified in the most deadly poisons that need to be filtered from your water. Couple that with my own testing and research and in order of effectiveness I would put all of my filtering systems in this order:
1. RO water pre-filtered followed by Distilling the water
2. RO water alone
3. Aquasana followed by Distilling water and post filtered through coal
4. PUR filtered water followed by Distilling and post filtered through coal
5. Brita filtered water followed by Distilling and post filtering through coal
6. Distilling tap water and post filtering through coal
7. Aquasana followed by Distilling the water
8. PUR filtered water followed by Distilling
9. Brita filtered water followed by Distilling
10. Aquasana alone
11. PUR alone
12. Brita alone