Water is essential to life, both to humans and animals.
It can be pure or impure; the responsibility rests on individuals to do things to make their water clean and pure. A water filter is a device that helps to remove contaminants from water. This device makes use of physical, chemical, and biological processes for its operation.
The use of filters makes water clean for different purposes, for drinking, irrigation, aquariums, pools, among others. Filters are more sophisticated than sieves, in that they can filter smaller particles that would be difficult with sieves or screens.
What is a water filter or cartridge?
A water filter is a device installed into the house, to remove dirt, small particles, and chemicals from water.
Almost all tradition and culture have their way of purifying water to make it clean and safe for drinking and use for other activities. Right from time immemorial, there have been some filtration methods and equipment, but they keep advancing due to technology change.
Water filters are used to enhance the protection and cleanliness of water to make them useful to man and for other purposes.
Why we need to change water filter
Water filters are used to remove chemical substances and small particles from water. As they are used over time, the substances accumulate in the filters, which can make them not suitable for the work they're supposed to be used for.
It is thus necessary to change water filters at certain times to enable them to function correctly. Filters contain carbon, and that is what is used to remove impurities from water. The quantity of carbon in the filter is of importance, as the longer water is uncovered to carbon, the more contaminants can be eliminated.
Aged water filters can be dangerous to water because impurities would have built up in the filters over the years, and the continued use of such to filter water can be hazardous to the water. It is advisable to change water filters when you notice the water coming out is no longer clean and pure.
How to change/replace your drinking water filter
A water filter provides you with clean and drinkable water. There will come a time that you'll need to replace it.
Once you notice that your water filter is no more performing to it's best, then it is a sign that you need a new one. You can note a need for replacement when the water starts getting odor or bad taste. All water filters have their capacity and service life, and some can be up to a year or more. But the most important thing is to know that when your filter has exceeded its service life, it is no longer suitable for use.
Changing a water filter varies from one filter type to the other, and some can be more difficult than others.
Whole house water filter
This is used in the house. It is fixed at the point from which water comes into the house and provides clean water to all parts of the building. It takes care of all impurities before they are distributed to any area of the house. A whole house water filter makes the water clean and safe to use.
Changing a full house water filter
A whole house water filter is the most challenging filter to replace. It requires a lot of preparations, and sometimes, even an expert's touch. You need some equipment at hand to be able to think of replacing a whole house water filter. These includes:
- New filter
- Household Wrench
- Plumber's tape
The first step to changing any filter is to switch off the water supply in the filter. You can't do anything on the filter if this is not in place. This is to prevent any unexpected accidents that might occur when installing.
Open up the nearest tap opening to you, to drain off any remaining water that might be left in the filter. Leave it open till you finish the installation of the new filter.
Open up any other outer valve, if there is any. This is to prevent water from flowing back from the house.
Three valves come with your new water filter, and these are used to control the water supply from the filter. The first is the filter's opening to get water into the filter. Make sure this is turned off during installation, to stop water getting into the filter while fixing it.
The second is for water backflow. It should be turned off also during installation.
The third is called a bypass valve. This allows water in the system to flow into the filter. This should be opened during installation to let the water go into the water filter.
Then, pick up the household wrench to unscrew the casing of the filter (canister). Most people have issues with this because it might have been overtightened when it was first installed. You need to put more pressure while opening it.
After removing the old filter, it is necessary to clean up the casing of the filter. Sediments and debris would have built up in that area over time. Carefully wash and clean the area before fixing a new filter.
It the old O-ring is no more in perfect shape, it is best to replace it. Oil the O-ring with grease and make sure to fix it incorrectly, else it can cause leakages. Now, you can fix the new filter into the casing. It is always advisable to soak the filter be for installation. This is to allow it to get soaked before installing it.
You have to be careful during installation so as not to damage the new filter. After fixing, you can now turn back on the water supply into the filter. Then, open each valve gradually to monitor the water flow.
Your new filter is ready for use.
How will you understand that your reverse osmosis membrane requires changing?
Reverse osmosis is different from normal filtration, though it is also a filtration process.
It is a cleansing process that uses a partly porous membrane to reduce ions and large particles from drinking water. Spread pressure is applied to withstand osmotic coercion. Reverse osmosis can get rid of many types of dissolved and chemical elements, that the normal filtration cannot get rid of. During the process, the membrane does not allow large particles to pass through the holes. It only gives room for the pure water to pass through.
Any particle that is greater than 0.001 micrometers cannot pass through the pores of the Reverse Osmosis membrane. This is how it can be sure of perfectly clean water through its process. It is often used in purifying water from seawater. It can remove salt and other dangerous materials from the water, making it safe for drinking and other purposes.
It is safe for you to know how long your reverse osmosis lasts. This is to be aware of when to change the filters. The first and always reliable way to know is when you notice that your water now comes with a certain taste. Water usually should be tasteless, so when the water coming out of your filter comes in with taste, then you know it needs to be changed.
The filters of your reverse osmosis are to be changed at intervals. You don't have to wait for it to be overused before changing. If you do not change your filters, there might be a blockage from the accumulation of debris or dangerous substances, due to use for a long time. And this will prevent the free flow of water in the filter.
Water filters do not necessarily have a lifespan, but there can be a guideline in the manual as to when to change your filter. There are also other significant changes you'll notice in your reverse osmosis membrane, that will give you a clue that they need to be changed:
- If you see that it takes a long time for water to flow out of the system, then it needs change. You have been using the system for a long time, so you will be aware of how long it takes to fill a specific jar with water.
- You need to change your filter when there is the water pressure in your membrane. You can easily change the filter or the whole system.
It is one thing to know when your reverse osmosis membrane needs change; it is another thing entirely to know how to replace them.
How to change a reverse osmosis membrane
The first thing to note in changing a reverse osmosis membrane is to close all water supply in and out of the system. But, first, open the nearest eater supply to drain off any water and release any pressure that may be left in the system.
Then detach the tube from the membrane casing. Remove the old membrane from the casing. Be sure to have rags or clothes around to clean any water that might come out of the system. Remove the cap on the membrane casing with pliers.
Insert the new reverse osmosis membrane into the O-ring. This is easier done by putting grease around the O-ring and the seal. Then, turn on the water supply into the system. Wait for about 2 hours, then turn on an opening, letting all the water out. This is done to flush the membrane. Do this for two or three times more. Then taste the water, if it feels good, you're good to go. But if not, flush the membrane again.
How will you understand that your under sink filter requires changing?
Under sink water filters are used in homes. They are fixed under the sink to filter water before use.
Under sink filter is easy to set up, you don't have to be a professional to set one up in your home. They help to filter drinking water from the sink and keeps the family whole and healthy. It uses the same process as a reverse osmosis membrane, but under sink, filters produce no wastewater.
The way to know when you're under sink water filter requires changing is still the same as for reverse osmosis and whole house water filter. If you notice an odor or taste in the water, then it is time to change the filter. Also, you will see some dangerous contaminants in the water, these are what the filter is supposed to get rid of, but if it is damaged, then it won't be able to do that job.
Your filter can also come with light outside to show when it is working. So when the light is off, that is a signal that the filter needs to be changed. You can also know when the filter starts making noise. It is supposed to work silently, but when you notice some disturbing sounds, that might be a sign to check the filter, it might probably need to be replaced.
How to change under sink water filter casings
It is advisable to clean and change your under sink filters within a year. Changing under the sink water filter does not require too many processes or techniques. It is quite easy to install.
Close the valve that supplies water to the system.
Then, open the valve that controls water out of the filter to drain out any pressure left in the filter.
Open the filter casing, by hand, if it is not overtightened, or with a housing wrench, if needed. Be sure to handle the casing with care, so you don't have your house full of water from to casing. It is also best to have an empty bucket close by.
Check the O-ring, if it is not damaged, you can continue the use of it, but if it is, you'll need to change it, before fixing your new filter on it. However, if you won't be replacing the O-ring, remove it still, to clean it, and make sure there is no debris locked around it. Check the cartridges also, and be sure there are no sediments in there, if there are, clean them up with soapy water and a soft brush.
Make ready a sanitizing solution which contains bleaching agent into the lower part of the filter. Connect the hose back and open up the valve to allow water to run into the casing. Once the water comes out of the other end, close it. Then, leave the bleach in the filter for about 30 minutes. Open up the valve again, and allow water to run through the filter to cleanse the bleach and clean the filter. Repeat this procedure till the water is tested to be clean, free of taste, and odor. Make sure there are no leaks.
How to replace a refrigerator water filter
These are found in refrigerators. It would have been nice to know that our waters are safe for drinking, but alas, they are not!
Some contaminants do not get destroyed during general treatments. This is where the refrigerator filter is needed. Refrigerator filters come in different types. Some are placed under the filter and comes with a knob, that can easily be seen. Some others are hidden in a compartment, amongst others.
Refrigerator filters come with different types. You know the right one for your refrigerator by checking the number imprinted on the filter. Refrigerator filters are needed to remove small contaminants, like lead and chlorine, from water.
Ideally, refrigerator filters should be replaced at least twice a year. If you do not replace them as and when due, they get dirty and do not allow water to flow freely through them. You also begin to notice dirt in the water, and sometimes, they have an odor and bad taste.
In replacing a refrigerator filter, the first thing is to know the type of filter your refrigerator uses. Then, locate the water filter cover. This is located at the upper right-hand corner in the fridge. Remove the filter and dispose of it.
Bring out your new filter, and tear off the protective covers from the O-rings. Be sure not to damage the O-rings while doing this. Then insert the filter into the hole with the arrow facing up. It should typically slide in on its own, with no force. But if it does not, change the position until it is properly in place.
Then, close the filter door. Pour water into the filter to flush the filter before use.
Why Changing water Filters is Important
How long would dependably clean, the great tasting water? How will you be sure the filter is removing the impurities which may affect the flavor of the water?
Our standard answer: It depends on.
The quality of the water modifies the frequency of the filter of your water usage. Suppose, there are more sediments in your water, you need to change the water more frequently than some of no sediment.
If you are in a large restaurant and using a significant amount of water in a minute or a hospital with big ice machines, then you need to change the water filter more frequently.
A right kind of O-ring needs rigid mechanical mounting which uses a predictable confirmation to the O-ring.
This has calculated mechanical stress with the O-ring contacting surfaces. The pressure of the fluid will not exceed the contact stress of O-ring; there will be no leaking.
Luckily, the pressure will transfer the necessary incompressible O-ring material, for pressure the contact stress will be higher. So O-ring can endure high pressure as it does not fail mechanically.
The most common are extrusion by the matching parts.
The seal is made to contact between sealing faces and O-ring. This gives a high stress, ensure high pressure, without more stress of the body of the O-ring.
The materials of O-ring will accommodate imperfections to the mounting parts. But it is necessary to maintain the even finish of the mating parts, by using low temperature in the place where the seal rubber approach to the glass transition temperature is increasingly crystalline.
For dynamic application surface finish is important. The rough finishing will abrade the top portion of the O-ring, and smooth surface would not permit the seal to be sufficiently lubricated with fluid film.
Watch The Video on How to Change a Water Filter
How To Change Water Filter FAQs
How often do I have to change my water filter?
The best is to clean or change your water filter every two months. But, this also depends on the capacity of the filter, the rate at which it is used, and the maintenance measures put in place for it.
Can my water filter expire?
Water filters do not have a lifespan as it were. They only need to be maintained and cleaned at intervals. It is only the filters in them that have to be changed regularly.
Why is it necessary to filter my water?
Water is one of man's significant needs, that is taken directly into the body. It is thus of necessity to get the best out of it. Not all water that comes from treatment plants is entirely free of contaminants and small particles. Water filters are essential to get rid of any unwanted particles that may come with water. They also get rid of lead from water.
What happens if I don't change my water filter?
A dirty water filter can bring out water with bad odor and taste. It can also get blocked and may affect the performance of the water filter system.
Is it necessary to change the filter in my refrigerator?
It is advised to change the refrigerator filter every three to six months. It doesn't affect your water, but it helps the taste and odor or the water filtered.
The water that flows into your home has been passed through various purification processes to make them safe for drinking.
But, this doesn't mean the water still does not contain other impurities, like lead, salts, or other compounds. This is why it is necessary to have water filters in your home. A whole house water filter is useful for the entire house; it filters water as it is entering into the home. Under sink water filter, on the other hand, is placed under the sink. It filters the water that comes from the sink, before drinking or for other uses.
Refrigerator water filters help to improve the odor and taste of water and to keep water free of contaminants and dangerous chemicals.