This article has been prompted by a reader who, like so many others that contact me, had spent a great deal of time researching water ionizers online. Every time she was close to making a decision about buying a water ionizer, she would find another article or website that would force her back on the sidelines. She was frustrated and ready to give up on the entire idea. Sound familiar?
Here is what you should know without all the hype
1) All water ionizers work in terms of providing free hydrogen (energy), which is responsible for numerous health benefits
2) There are two kinds of water ionizers…electric and natural
3) The best drinking water is “clean” (contaminants removed) and “healthy” (full of energy)
3) Reverse osmosis “RO” machines are very effective at cleaning the water, but they remove Calcium and Magnesium which are the elements that are responsible for producing energy (the helathy part). Long term consumption of acidic water devoid of essential elements produce by RO machines is very unhealthy according to the World Health Organization.
4) There is a wide range of contaminant removing capability in water ionizers. Many water ionizer companies gloss over this important function. You should not make the same mistake.
5) Electric water machines are good at producing short term “healthy” energized water, but they must rely upon the Calcium and Magnesium content of the source water for longer term (stable) ionizationater. Natural water ionizers increase the content of Calcium and Magnesium in the water which produces stable (long term) ionization.
6) Electric water ionizers produce acidic water which can be used for cleaning purposes. Natural water ionizers don’t produce acidic water.
7) RO machines that remineralize water with controlled release bioceramics produce the best “clean” and “healthy” water.
8)) Some RO companies are now offering low cost (Calcite and Corosex) remineralization solutions to produce alkaline water.
9) Calcite and Corosex filters were never designed to work with the aggressive nature of the acidic water produced by RO systems. The acidic water chews through the filters in two to six weeks instead of the avertised six months that the filters will last for when used with slightly alkaline tap water. The excess amount of calcium or magnesium being introduced into the water by the low cost filters can result in the formation of kidney stones.
The “Best Solution” for you
There is no such thing as one single “best solution” for everyone. Source water conditions play a huge role in the performance of any system, so it is imperative to “know your source water” before buying anything.
If I had to choose one system for myself regardless of price, it would be a well made RO/Remineralization combo unit because they provide clean and healthy drinking water.
If you have hard source water (over 10-12 grains of hardness) a water softener will extend the life of the RO membrane, or there are cost effect point of use water softening solutions. Point of use means where the water is actually dispensed as opposed to point of entry which is where your water enters your house from the municipality or well.
If your source water contains fluoride, you need a Reverse Osmosis system or distiller to remove the fluoride. Don’t believe all the websites that claim to remove fluoride because they don’t in 99% of the applications. Please see an upcoming article on this subject.
If you have chloramines in your water, you need to have a Catalytic carbon pre-filter as opposed to a basic carbon filter. The same applies to Reverse Osmosis systems. There are millions of RO systems in use whose membranes will have a very short life expectancy when municipalities start replacing chlorine with chloramines as a disinfectant.
The water ionizers can be installed above or under your kitchen counter while an RO/Remin system is installed under the counter.
If you live in a rental property that won’t allow you to install an under counter system, your options are limited to electric or natural water ionizers that can be hooked up to your tap, or you can look into more affordable “batch” filters (similar style as a Brita filter) which provide modest filtration and ionization.