Top 5 Residential Water Treatment Systems

Residential tap water may contain a variety of different bacteria and viruses. There is even a risk of lead exposure with older public sewage systems. To address these issues, homeowners may choose to use various solutions for water purification, such as the following water treatment systems.


Reverse osmosis systems are typically installed as whole-house filtration systems. They are a point-of-entry option, which means that they filter the water coming in from the main line before it reaches the sinks and showers.

With reverse osmosis, the water is sent through a membrane with a porous surface. The pores are very small, allowing water to pass while collecting contaminants. The purified water gets collected and the contaminants are flushed away.

These systems are expensive. However, they are one of the most effective residential water treatment systems.


Activated carbon filters may be used in point-of-entry filtration systems. However, they are also commonly used in a variety of faucet filters and water filter pitchers.

Activated carbon is a type of carbon that has been carefully processed to increase the number of pores on the surface. The porous surface helps to trap particles that attempt to pass through the filter.

These filters are often used for removing organic compounds, chlorine, and odours from water. It is also commonly used with other filtration systems as a pre-filter, helping to remove sediment and debris before the water passes to another filtration method. However, it cannot remove minerals or salts. For more insights, Global Hydration is a good resource to find additional information.


Ultraviolet disinfection is a form of water purification. Instead of filtering the water through filters, it is exposed to ultraviolet lights. The lights purify the water by killing waterborne bacteria.

While the use of ultraviolet disinfection is effective at killing bacteria, it is not efficient. It also does not remove fluoride or minerals.

Installing an ultraviolet water treatment system is costly but does not produce any wasted water. It is also sometimes combined with an activated carbon filter to help remove impurities.


Distillation is also a type of purification, as the water is purified of any impurities. With distillation, the water gets boiled, creating a steam. The steam is then cooled and collected as liquid.

Residential distillation systems are often installed near the point-of-use. Instead of distilling all water entering the home, the system only distils water for a single source, such as a kitchen sink.


Water filter pitchers provide a cost-effective way to purify tap water. The pitcher includes a lower compartment to store the clean water and an upper compartment for holding the untreated water. The untreated water slowly passes through a filter in the centre of the pitcher, until it is all filtered.

These pitchers are best suited for small families or individuals who want clean drinking water. The filters typically need replacing every three months and often use activated carbon filters.

Besides pitchers, there are similar products designed to connect to a sink faucet. These products filter the water as it passes through the faucet and can be turned on or off as needed.

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