The truth is, we need water more than anything. Yet, water can either heal us… or it can make us sick!
Did you know there are 2,100 known water contaminants? Including chlorine, fluoride, pesticides, herbicides, endocrine disruptors, glyphosate, and nitrates, plus others, they can cause cancer, allergies, hormone imbalances, respiratory issues, and much more.
Our world is more contaminated than ever, so now it's more important than ever to ensure we're drinking and bathing in clean, uncontaminated water.
On today's #AskWardee, I'll share the details on which whole house water filtration system we chose… and why!
Plus, I'll give you options if you can't or aren't able to use a whole house system. You might be surprised at the number of options and the affordability!
Keep reading or watching below to learn more!
The Question: Which Whole House Water Filtration System Did We Choose And Why?
We are currently using a Berkey for our drinking water and would like to move to a whole house water filtration system. What are key components to look for in a whole house system that is not reverse osmosis? We want a system that removes fluoride, chlorine, pharmaceuticals, bacteria, viruses etc. but leaves minerals. Does such a system exist?
Conni, thank you for your question!
Because we're featuring your question today's #AskWardee, you're getting a gift — a FREE Mini eCourse! Our team will be in contact with you so you can choose which one you'd like!
What Is The Best Water Filtering System?
Our family recently went through choosing a whole house water filtration system. We were moving from a rental in Indiana on city water (where we also used a Berkey) to owning a home in Idaho with municipal water. Since we have more control now in a home we own, we decided we wanted to install a whole house filtration system.
We looked at a lot of different systems and finally chose one from Radiant Life.
Why Radiant Life?
We chose Radiant Life water filtration systems because we think they're the best, and for these reasons:
- they filter the greatest number of contaminants
- they either leave in (or replace) the minerals
- they have the longest longevity — when sized appropriately for your family and home size, your whole house system will last 10 years or more
- they require the least maintenance — i.e. fewer filter/media changes; although the length of time varies by product, the recommended times are all longer than their competitors
In this FREE water webclass I hosted recently, Tom DiGiuseppe, the water expert at Radiant Life, said that their systems focus on more than chlorine, odor, and taste. Their ultimate goal is to produce pure, uncontaminated water.
There have been studies that have shown that there's 2,100 potential chemicals in our drinking water, and to truly know you're getting those out, you really need a well-designed purification system to get all of those chemicals out of the water. —Tom
Even though it was a significant investment of money up front to go with Radiant Life whole house filtration systems, we're quite happy. We know that our water is as clean as it can be, and we're confident we're saving money in the long run because of not having to buy expensive replacement filters frequently.
Which Whole House Water Filtration System We Chose And Why
Our water filtration “system” ended up being made of 3 parts — a whole house water filter, a whole house water conditioner (salt-free softener), and a 14-stage bio-compatible drinking water purifier at the kitchen sink.
I'll explain each part now…
1. Whole House Water Filter
We chose Radiant Life's Series 6 Whole House Water Filter. They offer 2, 4, and 6, with 6 offering the most complete filtering. We wanted a system to do it all. That's why we chose the Series 6 over the others. It is their best.
The whole house systems are typically installed where the main water supply enters the home so they can filter the water that then feeds all the sinks, faucets, laundry, etc.
The whole house systems work primarily through GAC, or graduated activated carbon filtration, which is essentially different sized rocks (aka “media”), each with different contaminant removal benefits. The filtering tank is filled with the different sized media, added in layers, so that water flows over all the media and the widest range of contaminants is removed.
The more types and sizes of media in the tank (as is the case with the Series 6), the more complete the filtering.
According to Radiant Life:
The Series 6 is designed to remove the widest range of possible contaminants including chlorine, chloramines, fluoride, heavy metals, plus hydrogen sulfide, and sediment. The system also removes trihalomethanes, haloacetic acids, and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) such as industrial solvents, herbicides, and pesticides before they enter your home's plumbing while ensuring an anti-bacteria, anti-fungal, anti-algal and scale prevention water environment. This is all done while retaining essential minerals that are naturally present in your water supply.
The Series 6 Water Filtration System is a Point-of-Entry (POE) system installed wherever the main water supply enters your home, possibly in your garage, basement or water closet. As such, it filters ALL the water in your home, including water used for kitchen and bathroom sinks, showering, bathing, laundry, dishwasher and toilets. Thus, it is a great solution for families who want to know that they have clean, safe water throughout their home without resorting to installing individual filters at each location. —Radiant Life
When you work with Tom at Radiant Life to choose the right filter and size for your needs, you can be confident it should last you 10 years or more, and without needing any maintenance.
2. Whole House Salt-Free Conditioner
The water is hard here in Idaho. However, we came from a rental home in Indiana that had a water softener, so we knew the benefits of having soft water: less dry skin, less hard water deposits a.k.a. “scale” in sinks and toilets, less laundry detergent needed, and longer lasting appliances.
Looking for a solution like this led us to find out about Radiant Life's Whole House Salt-Free Conditioners. They “soften” the water… yet without using salt!
These salt-free conditioners give you the benefit of soft water, yet without the slippery/slimy feel. Nor do you have to replace salt or contribute excess salt to the sewage system… and you can drink the conditioned water!
This is because all that happens is the minerals in the water — the calcium and magnesium that make it “hard” — are made harmless and inactive. You can still drink them and benefit from them, yet they don't wreak havoc on your sinks, toilets, pipes, or appliances.
Here's the description from Radiant Life:
The [salt-free conditioning] system prevents scale by transforming the dissolved hardness minerals (calcium and magnesium) into harmless, inactive microscopic crystal particles. These micro-crystals stay suspended in the water flowing harmlessly through your water system without sticking to pipes and components, thus preventing the buildup of scale. The NoScale® System retains the calcium and magnesium minerals in your drinking water while not adding any other chemicals such as sodium to the water supply. —Radiant Life
When you work with Tom at Radiant Life to choose the right size conditioner for your needs, it should also last you about 10 years without any need for maintenance!
3. 14-Stage Drinking Water Purification System
Finally, we added a 14-stage bio-compatible drinking water purification system at the kitchen sink. The unit is installed in the cabinet under the sink, while the 14-gallon storage tank is in the garage by the whole house filter and whole house conditioner.
You might ask: if the water is so clean coming out of the filter, why do you need this, too?
We added the 14-stage purifier because of the one limitation of the whole house filter. The mixed media in the whole house filter is NOT effective at removing one type of contaminant — nitrates.
Living in an agricultural area of Idaho, we felt sure (and later verified through testing) that nitrates might be in our water more often than not. We certainly don't want to drink them or cook with them, so we added the extra purification system at the kitchen sink to ensure the removal of these from our water as well.
The 14-stage bio-compatible drinking water purification system does just what it says: through 14 stages the water is made completely pure.
Here's more about it from Radiant Life:
Radiant Life Company offers the best water purifying system for drinking water on the market today. Fluoride, lead, chlorine, MTBE, chromium-6, nitrates, pesticides, pharmaceutical residues, water-borne illness—you name it: this is the only system that can completely take out whatever your water throws at it!
The unique 14-Stage Water Purification System incorporates three purifiers (reverse osmosis and two deionization purifying stages) as the foundation of the system. This ensures 99.99% purification when new, only falling to 99.9% over time. Almost all other reverse osmosis-based systems use just one purifier and thus may start at 95% purification, but after a year that figure will often be as low as 80%. This is just one of the things that water dealers won't tell you.
Our pre- and post-filters offer additional filtration and we also include a UV light system enclosed in a compact stainless steel chamber for added protection against bacteria and pathogens. These first seven stages are designed to remove all toxins in your water.
Creating Biocompatible (healthy, hydrating) water is completed in the second seven stages of this system. The water is balanced, restructured, and remineralized, mimicking the best waters in nature. —Radiant Life
While other under the sink units may need media changes after a few months, this one doesn't much for 1 to 3 years. See what I mean? You can be hands-free longer with Radiant Life's systems!
This system comes with a really beautiful lead-free stainless steel faucet. You'll need to drill a 1/2″ hole in your countertop for the faucet, unless you already have a water filter hole ready to go.
What's Wrong With Reverse Osmosis?
Conni, you specifically asked me to recommend a system that is NOT reverse osmosis. And based on your question, that you said “but leaves minerals”, you have just pointed out the main criticism of reverse osmosis.
I'll start with the bad news: reverse osmosis DOES remove minerals from the water. 🙁
Why would it do this? Because reverse osmosis is one of the most effective ways to purify water. (Along with de-ionization, which is another of the 14 stages in this purifier as well.)
Yet, even though reverse osmosis is so effective at purifying water, the well-known downside is it removes everything, including minerals.
What to do about this? Well, most companies would leave it at that and it's up to you to remineralize your water (or not).
Not so with Radiant Life's kitchen sink 14-stage purifier. It replaces the minerals so that the water that comes out is as close to perfect spring water as it can be!
And, as I learned from Tom in this FREE water webclass, they don't just put any old minerals back in! They use a high quality, natural, pure form of coral calcite sourced from the ocean off the coast of Australia! So the water is perfectly pure… and perfectly hydrating!
Do These Water Filtration Systems Remove Glyphosate?
Glyphosate, which first entered the scene in 1974 under the name of RoundUp, is our world's #1 toxin by far. This herbicide, or weed killer, was first produced by Monsanto in 1974. Glyphosate, the key ingredient, is a molecule very similar to the essential amino acid glycine.
Glyphosate has been associated with cancer, birth defects, leaky gut, hypothyroidism, gluten sensitivity and celiac disease, diabetes, autism, birth defects, and so much more. (Go here for 15 health problems linked with glyphosate.)
And worse, even if you don't personally use glyphosate on your lawn or garden, you still can't get away from it. It's been so widely used in agriculture, both in applying it topically and in the “Round-Up Ready” seed supply, that it's now deeply embedded in our soil and water supply.
If your lawn or garden gets rained on, it will receive glyphosate from the rain water. That's how bad it is.
Even organic produce and your own garden will receive glyphosate without you adding a drop yourself.
Really, really bad news! (By the way, I'm researching ways to avoid and detox from glyphosate… let me know if that interests you.)
Yet do Radiant Life water filtration systems remove glyphosate… so at least we're not drinking it?
The answer is yes!
I asked Tom specifically about glyphosate and here's what he replied:
Both Granulated Activated Carbon (GAC) and Reverse Osmosis (RO) have been shown to be effective in removing glyphosate from your drinking water. Our Whole House Water Filtration Systems contain a blend of GAC media to remove the widest range of contaminants from your incoming water supply. Additionally, our 14-Stage Water Purification System with triple purification includes a carbon pre-filter, a reverse osmosis membrane and two deionization stages to completely purify your drinking water. Thus, both of these systems are capable of reducing the concentration of glyphosate from your incoming water supply.
Also, since all of our Point-of-Use (POU) water filters contain GAC, they are also very effective at removing glyphosate from your drinking water and have been tested to remove >99% of the incoming glyphosate.
What Maintenance Is Required?
Although it varies depending on which system you purchase, the benefit with Radiant Life systems is that you have more time before any maintenance is required. With an appropriately sized whole house water filter or conditioner, that's a good 10 years!
For the whole house water filter, at about 8 or 9 years, Radiant Life recommends that you do a water test to check on the health of your system and for the presence of any contaminants.
If there are contaminants, the filtering media most likely needs replacing. Radiant Life offers replacement media and will work with you on a good deal for purchasing it or a replacement tank.
Regarding the kitchen sink 14-stage purifier, Radiant Life includes a complete schedule for what filters/media to replace and when.
Because of the 14 stages, different components will need changing at different times and you just follow the schedule. Radiant Life offers all the replacement parts.
How Do You Know What's In Your Water, Anyway?
It can be helpful when choosing your systems to know exactly what kind of contamination you're dealing with. In other words, perhaps you can save a little money if your water's “not too bad”.
If you're on well water, the only real way to find out what possible contaminants are in your water is by doing a comprehensive water test like this “Well Check” offered by Radiant Life.
If you're on city or municipal water, you can visit your city's website to find their published water quality reports. Some cities score better than others, but you're likely to find some info to get you started. Then, to know for sure, you can also do a comprehensive water test like this “City Check” offered by Radiant Life.
If you do get any of these tests, be sure to speak with Tom at Radiant Life afterward so he can help you interpret the results and come up with the right plan to clean up your water. Whether you rent or own, you have options. 🙂
How To Install A Whole House Water Filtration System
If you are handy, you can install whatever systems you choose yourself. Once you order from Radiant Life, they ship everything to you — all parts and hoses — with complete instructions. Then it's just a matter of hooking everything up.
In our case, even though my husband is really smart and capable, we chose to hire a plumber. Our situation was a bit more complicated than most would be, I think.
We needed some pipes under the house re-routed so that we could also filter the water feeding the garden hose bibs. That required awhile in the crawl space. And the 14-stage purifier took him about 3 hours as it's a bit complicated.
All said, he was here for the better part of one work day and charged us about $1100.
Prior to the day of installation, he came out two or three times to look around, plan the job, and open all the boxes from Radiant Life. Just to make sure it was all there and ready for the scheduled day. 🙂
And in addition to a plumber, we hired a granite guy to drill a 1/2″ hole in the granite for the 14-stage purifier faucet. That was $50.
Psst… if you're in Idaho's Treasure Valley, we worked with and highly recommend Ken Duplex from Pipemaster Plumbing LLC. 🙂
Video: Our Installation From Start To Finish
This quick video is a compliation of the Instagram “stories” I shared while the installation was happening. Enjoy the peek!
Before & After: Our Water Test Results
We tested our water before and after installation of the water systems I described above.
Not only that, we actually did two tests after installation: 1) at the kitchen sink faucet where the water goes through the whole house water filter and conditioner and 2) at the 14-stage purifier faucet at the kitchen sink, where the water goes through the whole house filter, the conditioner, AND the 14-stage purifier.
Before the installation, our tests showed contamination with chlorine, nitrates, and more.
After the installation, at the kitchen sink, our testing showed clean water except for nitrates. That's to be expected, since we knew going in that the whole house filter's mixed media couldn't tackle nitrates.
after, at the 14-stage purification faucet
However, the test results from the 14-stage purifier faucet showed water so pure the nitrates were gone, too!
Oh, and in both “after” test results, the water showed mineral content… another good thing!
FYI: We did this testing at our own expense because we wanted to ensure the systems performed as Radiant Life promised they would. We were able to confirm this with flying colors. Yay!
And in case you're wondering, even though bloggers can often get free things for review, in this case we purchased and installed all three systems at our own (significant) expense. We felt that our recommendation would mean a lot more to you if we had chosen to make this significant investment ourselves and are happy with it. And we are!
How Does The Water Taste? Feel? Benefits?
We LOVE this water! It tastes great, feels great, and is great!
Off the top of my head, here are some of the things I love:
- going through a whole winter without dry skin! Woohoo!
- getting in the shower and not walking into a cloud of chlorine (cough, cough)
- how the water tastes — I crave it and love drinking water like I never have before! (My husband and I feel that this is the best water we've ever tasted)
- knowing that any sink I go to in the house offers clean water
- not using as much laundry detergent or dish soap because the conditioner helps it go farther!
- taking a hot shower and knowing that the water is good for me
- taking a weekly bath knowing I'm not soaking in contaminants
- that this water doesn't irritate my KP rash; clean water is a crucial part of healing Keratosis Pilaris!
- and more, I'm sure!
What If You Rent Or Can't Install A Whole House System?
If you rent or aren't able to install whole house systems, you still have options. And affordable ones!
Basically, you can filter some or all of your water without installing anything permanent!
How To Save $25 or $100 On Water Filtration Systems From Radiant Life
For a limited time, you can save $25 or $100 off water systems from Radiant Life with the coupon code WARDEE.
- get $25 OFF Radiant Life Gravity Countertop System (similar to a Berkey but simpler filter options)
- get $25 OFF Radiant Life Direct Connect (filter ANY sink or faucet… even with limited space!)
- get $25 OFF NilusOne Direct Connect (similar to above, just another brand that's really good)
- get $100 OFF any whole house system (what we have, described above)
- get $100 OFF the 14-Stage purification system (what we have, described above)
Shop here and use the code WARDEE at checkout, or use any of the links above.
Basically, with that code you can save $25 off smaller systems and $100 off larger systems.
Still Not Sure Which Water Filtration System Is Right For You?
If you know water filtration is high on your list but you want more guidance, please watch this FREE water filtration options webclass I hosted recently. Tom from Radiant Life was my guest and he basically covered everything you would want to know. Click here to watch (or download the transcript).
If you're still unsure what is best for you, click here to “Connect with a Water Expert”. Your message will go to Tom and he will get back to you shortly!
More Traditional Cooking Info…
If you haven't already, be sure to sign up for the FREE Traditional Cooking Cupboard… you'll get 14+ FREE eBooks featuring recipes, info, and articles on Traditional Cooking School, and a free Traditional Cooking video series!
Any Questions Or Comments?
If you have other questions or comments about your own experience with water filtration, be sure to leave them in the comments!
- FREE 14+eBooks and FREE Traditional Cooking Video Series
- FREE “Water Filtration Options” Webclass
- Whole House Water Filter Systems from Radiant Life
- Whole House Salt-Free Water Conditioner from Radiant Life
- 14-Stage Bio-Compatible Drinking Water Purification System from Radiant Life
- get $25 OFF with code WARDEE Radiant Life Gravity Countertop System (similar to a Berkey but simpler filter options)
- get $25 OFF with code WARDEE Radiant Life Direct Connect (filter ANY sink or faucet… even with limited space!)
- get $25 OFF with code WARDEE NilusOne Direct Connect (similar to above, just another brand that's really good)
- get $100 OFF with code WARDEE any whole house system (what we have, described above)
- get $100 OFF with code WARDEE the 14-Stage purification system (what we have, described above)
- Connect with a Water Expert (consult with Tom from Radiant Life)
- Comprehensive “Well Check” water test
- Comprehensive “City Check” water test
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