Having access to clean, safe drinking water is essential for good health and well-being. Unfortunately, many of the world’s water sources are polluted with a variety of contaminants that can cause serious health problems if ingested. To protect yourself and your family from these contaminants, it is important to understand how point of entry water filtration systems can help.
Point of entry water treatment systems provide whole house protection by filtering all incoming water before it reaches any faucets or appliances in your home. They are designed to remove dirt, sediment, chlorine, lead, rust, and other impurities from your tap water so you can enjoy purer tasting and healthier drinking water throughout your entire home.
In this article, we will discuss the benefits of using a POE system as well as how they work so you can make an informed decision whether this type of filtration solution is right for you.
What is a Point of Entry Water Filtration System?
A point of entry (POE) water filtration system is installed directly at your main water line to treat all of the water entering your home. These types of filters are ideal for water sources that are heavily contaminated because they protect every water fixture throughout the house.
Compared to a point of use (POU) system which requires multiple filters at each water fixture, a point of entry water treatment system uses one filter. POU systems are often referred to as “faucet filters” or “tap filters” since they are designed to attach directly to your faucets.
Depending on your water supply, point of entry water filters are used to remove contaminants such as sediment, chlorine, fluoride, PFAS, and bacteria. In addition, POE systems can be used to reduce bad tastes and odors from the water.
Types Of POE Filtration Systems
While there are various types of point of entry water treatment systems available, the most popular include:
Whole House Water Filter
This type of system is designed to filter contaminants from your entire home’s water supply. It is typically installed near the main water source, such as a well or municipal connection, and filters all incoming water before it reaches any other fixtures or appliances in your home.
A whole house water filter comes in two forms, a tank based system and a cartridge based system. A tank based system consists of one large tank that contains the filtration media. These types of systems last for 7 – 10 years before replacing the media. A cartridge based system consists of individual filter cartridges that need to be replaced every 3 – 12 months. They typically contain multiple filtration stages consisting of activated carbon and a sediment filter.
Whole house point of entry water filters generally remove the following contaminants:
- Chlorine and chloramine
- PFAS, PFOA, PFOAS
- Heavy metals (lead and copper)
- Pesticides and pharmaceuticals
Point Of Entry Reverse Osmosis System
The point of entry reverse osmosis systems are a type of POE filtration system that uses multiple stages of filtration to remove contaminants from your water supply. Unlike traditional water filters, RO systems use a semipermeable membrane to remove dissolved solids such as lead, arsenic, and fluoride from your water.
RO systems are considered to be one of the most effective types of filtration available; however, they can be expensive to install and maintain. Another downside to whole house reverse osmosis systems is they waste water to flush the RO membrane clean of contaminants. They are best for people with a higher budget with serious contaminant risks in their water supply.
Point of entry reverse osmosis systems can remove a wide spectrum of impurities, including:
- Bacteria and viruses
- Total dissolved solids (TDS)
In some cases, sediment is the main water contaminant. If this is the case in your home, a sediment filter can be a great solution. Not only that, but they frequently accompany a whole house water filter system to protect the system and other appliances like a water heater. Sediment filters are designed to remove dirt, rust, and other particles from your water supply.
Most cartridge sediment filters require frequent replacement of their filter cartridges; however, they are relatively inexpensive and easy to install. However, some spindown sediment filters can use a reusable mesh screen and can be reused for over a year.
Sediment filters are best to remove the following contaminants:
- Sand, dirt, and silt
- Debris from eroding wells
- Rust or iron particles
Well Water Filter System
If you have a private well, it may be necessary to install a well water filter system. These systems are designed to remove sediment, iron, magnesium, and sulfur from your water supply so that you can enjoy clean and safe drinking water in your home. Many homes on private wells suffer from a rotten egg smell or water staining. A whole house water filter for well water uses specialized technology like air injection oxidation to effectively treat those issues.
Well water filter systems typically include multiple stages of filtration, such as sediment filters and green sand media. They are best used to remove the these contaminants:
Water Softener System
Water softeners are a type of POE system designed to remove calcium and magnesium from your water. These two minerals cause hard water, which can lead to a variety of issues such as soap scum, lime scale buildup, clogged pipes, and inefficient appliance performance.
Ion exchange water softener system works by using an exchanging calcium and magnesium with sodium ions. This helps make the water softer and easier to use. And while they aren’t technically a whole house water filter, ion exchange softeners are able to treat iron levels of 1 ppm or less.
There are also salt-free water softeners that use a process called template assisted crystallization rather than sodium. Salt free alternatives are very effective add reducing the negative effects of hard water and scale.
Whole house water softener systems are best used to treat the following:
- Hard water minerals (calcium and magnesium)
- Limescale buildup
- Water spotting
- Small amounts of iron
UV Water Purifiers
UV water purifiers are a POE system that uses ultraviolet light to kill bacteria and viruses in your water supply. These systems are designed to provide an extra layer of protection against microorganisms in your home’s water supply.
UV purifiers are easy to install and maintain, and they are relatively low maintenance compared to other types of POE filtration systems. They are typically installed after a sediment or whole house filter so that the water is free of debris before passing through the UV chamber.
UV water filters are best used to remove the following contaminants:
Point Of Entry Vs Point Of Use Water Filter
Point of entry (POE) and point of use (POU) water filter systems are two different types of filtration systems. POE systems are designed to filter the incoming water supply to your home, while POU systems are designed to filter the water at a specific fixture or appliance in your home.
Both types of systems can be used to improve the quality of your water; however, POE systems are capable of treating a broader contaminant range than some POU filters. Conversely, point of use filters are typically easier to install and maintain than point of entry water treatment system.
Lastly, POE systems can provide a greater level of convenience, as they will filter all the water in your home versus just one location. For these reasons, POE drinking water treatment is often the preferred choice for homeowners looking to improve their water quality.
Advantages Of A Whole House Water Filter
There are many advantages to installing a whole house water filter system. Some of these include:
Treats Every Drop Of Water Entering Home
While some filters are designed to filter only specific fixtures in your home, a whole house water filter treats all the water entering your home with a single water connection. This means that you can enjoy clean and safe drinking water throughout your entire home instead of having to purchase multiple individual filters.
Long Filtration Life
A whole house filter typically has a longer filtration life than other types water filter. For example, a large tank media filter will last up to 10 years before replacing. Conversely, a point of use water filter will need to be replaced every 3 – 12 months. Using a POE can save you time and money in the long run.
Protects Your Appliances
By filtering out sediment and other contaminants from your water supply, a whole house filter can help to protect your home appliances such as washing machines and water heaters from damage.
Better Tasting Drinking Water
Filtered water tastes better than unfiltered water, so you can enjoy fresh and clean drinking water throughout your entire home. Getting bottled water quality at home also means less wasted plastic and money spent on disposable bottles.
Healthier Skin and Hair
A whole house filter will help to remove damaging pollutants such as chlorine, lead, and arsenic that can make your skin and hair dry and brittle.
Disadvantages Of A Whole House Water Filter
Just like any type of filtration system, a whole house water filter does have some disadvantages. These include:
Cost Of System
Whole house filters are generally more expensive than other point of use water filters. However, they can be more cost-effective in the long run due to their longer filtration life and wide coverage area.
Takes Up More Space
A whole house filter system will take up more space than more compact point of use filters. Before making a decision, make sure you have the appropriate room for to accommodate they system.
Installation Can Be Tricky
Installing a whole house water filter can be tricky and may need be done by an experienced professional. Failing to properly install the filter can lead to poor performance and even damage.
Overall, a whole house water filter can be an effective solution for improving your water quality. However, it’s important to understand both its advantages and disadvantages before deciding if it is right for you. Doing research ahead of time will help ensure that your investment pays off in the long run.
Signs You Need A POE Filter System
If you’re unsure of whether or not a whole house water filter is right for you, there are some signs that can help point you in the right direction. These include:
- Unusual Tastes and Odors: If your water has an unusual taste or odor, this could be a sign that it needs to be filtered. And a POE system can help to eliminate these contaminants and improve the taste of your water.
- High Contaminant Levels: If the water in your home has been tested and found to contain high levels of contaminants, a point of entry water filter can help reduce these levels and improve the quality of your water.
- Cloudy Water: Cloudy or discolored water is typically a sign that something is wrong with your home’s plumbing. A POE carbon filter can help to remove sediment and other contaminants from your water supply, which may help clear it up.
- Spots On Dishes: If you notice spots on your dishes after they’ve been washed, this is often a sign that there are minerals and contaminants in your water. A POE system can help remove these impurities to keep your dishes looking clean and clear.
- Malfunctioning Appliances: If you’ve noticed that your appliances are malfunctioning or require frequent repairs, this could be due to impurities in your water supply. A POE system can help remove these contaminants and protect your appliances from further damage.
If any of the above signs apply to you, then a point-of-entry water filtration system might be just what you need to improve your water quality. By installing a POE filter in your home, you can enjoy clean and safe drinking water that tastes and smells great.