water filter recommendation?
10-21-2015, 06:45 PM,
water filter recommendation?
Can someone recommend a water filter,and a store where i can get one in gto?or Leon,if need be...Also is the water perfectly safe to drink after being filtered?
many thanks
10-21-2015, 07:13 PM,
RE: water filter recommendation?
There is a wide variety of water filters. Many, cartridge type, 150-250 pesos, only remove sediments, i.e. Physical properties like sand and some chemicals depending on filter size and type. These clean the water somewhat but anything living is still there and it is these microbial matter that sickens you.
There are a number of solutions to much of the microbial problem, most involve reverse osmosis membranes or ultraviolet lamps, which is what we use. Home Depot in Leon have several type of sediment filters and can order RO or UV systems by GE Water. There is a supplier in Guadalajara Aqua-tec that builds household systems and will ship to GTO. Small household systems cost around 5000 pesos.
I worked in the water utility industry for over 30 years. If you use a decent sediment filter then expose water to direct UV light, it is perfectly safe to drink. Otherwise, no 100% guarantees for any water, anywhere.
10-27-2015, 11:14 AM, (This post was last modified: 10-27-2015, 02:46 PM by DonaldW.)
RE: water filter recommendation?
Here is what I recommend with a couple of accessories:

5 stage RO system: http://amzn.to/1XwrKsK

I recommend this model with the standard size filters (opposed to the thin line models) because the large normal 10" filters are a lot cheaper and more readily available, not to mention that they last longer due to larger size.

Now this is a model which is sold for use on a conventional US pressurized water system. It won't work on a gravity feed (tank on roof) without a water booster pump, which can be found here:

Auxiliary booster pump: http://amzn.to/1LVuSHw

Now even if you have a pressurized system serving your home, if it has a small tank and for example if it cuts on and off a lot, many times you'll want the booster pump anyway because rather than presenting a fluctuating load to an existing pressurized system where the home service water pump may cut on and off a lot, the way the booster pump works is to pump a higher amount of water through the filter to get "done" (RO tank full of water) faster so it will minimize any cycling of the house system that does take place.

Now this system setup to be most effective in questionable municipality water systems really needs and additional "stage" and that would be to kill any micro biological living things in the water source. The RO system as it exists will be better than almost every other type of filter, but still it is not perfect. If you are going to the trouble why not make it near perfect, right? To kill or block the biological matter, you can go two routes, with either an additional UV filter or an additional ceramic filter. The disadvantage to the UV is they burn out every 6-12 months and the UV lamps can be expensive and hard to find in Mexico. The disadvantage to the ceramic is that it must be carefully washed periodically (with each 6-18 month filter change or the carbons & sediment, for example) and normally requires a system where the booster pump exists due to the pressure required to force water through a ceramic. The ceramic is added between the final carbon and the RO membrane; the UV is added as the first stage prior to the sediment.

I'd choose one or the other of these setups:

UV front end (choose UV or Ceramic): http://amzn.to/1POPCqe
Note: This model has a switch to only turn on during flow, saving bulb life

Ceramic mid end (choose UV or Ceramic): http://amzn.to/1k7fdxd plus, add a housing for it http://amzn.to/1Mgwvi6 , plus connections http://amzn.to/1M00TSe

With the booster pump, you will hear a hum of the pump starting when the pressure in the RO tank gets down to about 30PSI and it will run until the RO tank pressure builds up to about 45PSI under normal circumstances. And to repeat, the overall system requires about 45-65 PSI of input pressure to operate properly and the booster pump will supply about 100-110PSI which means with the booster it will filter at about twice the rate as on a conventional pressurized home water system (fill the tank up quicker) than an normal pressurized household which typically has the 45-65PSI as an ambient water pressure.

Note most gravity feed homes of 2 stories have at maximum about 15PSI on the first floor.

Note when I have installed these for many friends in the past, I also normally Y off the feed to the spigot to the ice-maker as well. In the concrete homes of Mexico, for aesthetic purposes this should be considered as not "for everyone", however, when building a new home, always consider running a 1/4" PEX or copper tubing from where you plan to install the RO system (typically under sink) to where the refrigerator will reside.

P.S. Try not to miss lugging those 5 gallon bottles too badly ;-)

Disclaimer: The information in this post was gathered by my own experience in over 20 years of installing RO systems along with that supplied to me by the owner of local company Pure Water Systems in Denton TX. No water filtration system is perfect and I am in no way taking on responsibility for your results of using my own suggestions or those of any other manufacturers. Use your own research to make the final decision on what water filtration system is best for you and remember that you are responsible for your own safety. This setup is one that has worked for me with no ill health of anyone I have worked with as a result. And last but not least, always remember with water filters and like with everything, marketing is simply that, marketing.
11-07-2015, 10:25 AM, (This post was last modified: 11-12-2015, 12:39 AM by DonaldW.)
RE: water filter recommendation?
Some tips on maintaining your R/O system that I have found works best over the years ....

Basic maintenance:

If you are installing the system yourself, with the 5-filter assembly empty of water (and light) mark a place on the wall where the 2 mounting screws/nails will go and after marking, either use anchors or concrete nails (screws for wood) to mount it first to see that it fits and can be easily unhooked from the wall by lifting up and out and that the tubes are long enough for it to reach just slightly outside the doors under the sink, enough to straddle a container later. This is important when changing the filter, to be able to easily remove it from under the sink. Therefore it is important to leave the long tubing on the system that ships with it (don't try to be neat and cut the tubes short because the entire assembly has to stretch from under the sink during filter changes). I keep a 5 gallon bucket available for changing my filters. If you later try to change them with the unit on the wall, a lot of things are going to get wet. A very bad idea to cut the tubing too short. Any extra length of tubing can be secured with some sort of bread-style or cable-tie mechanism while the filter is in normal use and filters are not being replaced.

When it comes time to change the filters, after turning off both the water source and the tank valve (or letting all the stored water run out through the R/O faucet if you don't have a tank valve) you basically unhook the filter assembly off the wall (lifting it up and out) and pull it from under the sink, laying it cross-wise across the 5 gallon bucket just in front of the sink. You would then open each filter (twisting the canister loose) while allowing all the water to spill into the bucket and the old filter to drop out and into the bucket. The filter assembly will be heavy due to the water in the filter canisters (hopefully you followed the guide to turn off the water source as well :-). Now leave the o-rings in place due to their changing shape slightly over time and if you always pull them out, you can't always get them back in the same place when you replace the filters. Regardless it's good to keep a spare set of o-rings, especially if not living in the US.

Once all the filters are removed, I swish a small amount of bleach in the top portion of the filter assembly rack with the whole assembly inverted over the bucket. I swish the bleach back and forth in the filter canister top section and then rinse off the bleach into the bucket with some pure water that I have saved to the side. I also use bleach to pour and coat the inside of each canister, setting them in the sink and pouring the bleach from canister to canister while they are tipped like a beer mug and I continue to twist while pouring until their sides are all coated. (Technique to coat all the walls of the three filter canisters without wasting all the bleach.) Then I also rinse the canisters with some pure bottled water or water reserved from the filter beforehand. Complete the bleach and pure water rinse on all three canisters and insert each filter (1 sediment spun fabric and 2 carbon based) into the canisters you just cleaned while noting that the fiber sediment is installed as the first filter in line from the water source (you should see the tubing feeding this side goes up to the regular sink faucet connection). While screwing the filters on I either have an assistant hold the entire filter assembly upright (or between my knees if working alone) while I install each new filter with the filter in a straight up and down position (basically don't install these at an angle). The insertion of the filter canister onto the filter assembly in a vertical position will keep the filter element inside the canister from tipping to the side and not mating with the hole that is in the actual filter assembly. Basically the canister should easily slide with no resistence right up to where the threads match and are ready to screw in. If there is any resistance, the filter has probably tipped in the canister when installing.

Once all the filter canisters are screwed into the filter assembly hand tight (if you are strong you should tighten with a little pressure; if you are not strong you may have to tighten them with a tool). Once the three filter canisters are in place (you are not changing the membrane this time), the entire unit can be returned to the wall and water valves once again opened to check for leaks. Some people may elect to check for leaks while the unit lies over the bucket but this makes the unit a great deal more heavy and difficult to hook onto the mounting nails/screws, so I always elect to take my chances and hook it on the wall before opening the water valves again. If there is a leak, I unhook it, returning it to the bucket to check for problems.

If it's time to change the R/O membrane as well you will need to remove the tubing that attaches to the end of the R/O canister. Most times the cap can be unscrewed then by hand (hold it over the bucket) but since the regular canister tool does not fit this cap, you may need to secure a set of very large channel locks to get around and break the cap loose. Note this is often a two man job, having someone hold the base of the R/O membrane canister tube and another person with some large channel locks unscrewing the R/O membrane. Once the cap is off, more water will pour into the bucket. At this point you must take come conventional pliers and grab hold of the center hard plastic tubing that is part of the membrane and while twisting left/right on that membrane, pull it out of the tubing. It will be a tight fit. Drop the membrane and the water behind it into the bucket. Now I use a conventional baby bottle brush with some bleach to clean out the housing and cap and rinse them with pure water to get rid of the bleach. Now the new R/O membrane can be inserted by pushing it hard into the canister and pressing with your thumb until it resides as deep as the one you removed. Now return the cap of the membrane canister and twist it back on the canister until tight. Now find the tubing you removed from the connection on the membrane canister cap, and re-insert and tighten the connection for tubing you removed from the end. Remember when you replace the actual R/O membrane and after opening the water valves to supply the assembly, be sure to leave the R/O faucet on the sink open and dripping once the water is turned on and let the water trickle thorough the filter overnight to clear all the preservatives off the new membrane prior to use. The next morning the faucet should be closed and the R/O tank will begin to refill (if you emptied it for any reason). Note the R/O membrane filter is replaced every 2 years or as needed.

Now here is how to know when to change the filters. The set of three filters in the three canisters should be changed from 6 months to 2 years, depending on use, with 1 year being a good suggested point if you have no other indication they need it (no taste deterioration at all). The way to know to change them is if the water begins to have any taste to it whatsoever. You will find after years of use, you will begin to better know your water quality by comparing various sources of purified water. Basically purified water has zero taste. In the absolute worse case of holding off on changing the three canister filters, the water will begin to taste like lake water but of course that is an exaggeration.

Now the membrane is more tricky to know when it's time to be changed. You can buy special meter attachments to go in your system which can add to the cost and they will tell you when the R/O membrane (the filter inside the large sideways tube on top of the 3 regular filters) needs to be changed or you can use a visual method. First of all you have to train your eye using ice trays. If you have a bottle of distilled water and fill one ice tray and fill another ice try with tap water, when the ice freezes you will see that the distilled water produces see-through ice and the tap water produces white or cloudy ice. You might take a photo of the two, then toss the cubes from the tap water. Now over time you will watch the ice your filter produces and once the cubes start to become less clear or no longer see-through, then it's time to start looking for a new R/O membrane. This is on a cycle of about every 2 years.

The third filter to change is the very small tube-like in-line filter. which should be replaced with every other change of the 3 normal 10" canister filters.

Now as tedious as this sounds, after the first learning exercise of changing filter elements, you can do it in 20 minutes or less and it sure beats dealing with water bottles.

Tips on installing a booster pump.

Again, a booster pump is absolutely needed where home water systems are gravity feed (water tank on house and no high pressure from whole house water pump). A problem with these booster pumps is that they make some noise. This noise can be eliminated by following these installation procedures. Most of the noise will be coming from the tubing that leaves the pump and goes into the first stage (sediment/fiber filter canister) of the filter assembly. Now what I have done in my last installation of a booster system where insulation supplies were limited is use cable-TV wire anchors (half moons with a small nail) to secure this section of the filter's tubing to a wooden shelf under the sink. Otherwise this tube flaps up against something when the pump is operating normally because the booster pump moves water by sending it out in pulses. Unfortunately what securing this section of the tubing to something solid does is cause the filter assembly to lose its extendable tubing capability to allow removing the entire assembly from the wall (the inlet tube from the pump is secured to a shelf to prevent noise). If this section of the rattling tubing is secured, it has to be released by removing the cable-TV wire staples when the filter is changed, adding to the complexity of the process. Instead of using this method I would recommend experimenting with some noise insulators, perhaps using the soft foam rubber covering that Home Depot sells to wrap around the condensation line of a home air conditioning system. This should absorb any ratcheting noise coming from the tubing that runs from the pump output to the first stage of the filter assembly, and also prevent noise from this section of tubing slapping against anything under the sink to make noise.

Tips on servicing the additional UV lamp sterilizer or the Ceramic filter element.

(Add one or the other of these filters to provide an additional protection from biological agents.)

UV Filter: Most manufacturers recommend changing the lamp every year, which assumes a constantly glowing bulb. If you install the unit I recommended, the on/off pressure switch only lights the lamp when water is flowing and should make the bulb last a lot longer.
Constant on UV lamp model: http://www.stuff4water.com/when-was-the-...r-uv-lamp/
UV Lamp with pressure switch: Depends on use, the power supply of the UV lamp will normally indicate when the bulb is not working.
WARNING: Never look into a UV lamp with the naked eye - just like a tanning bed or welder, it can permanently damage the eye.

Ceramic filter: The ceramic filter addition will require that the ceramic filter be cleaned each time the filter assembly is torn down to replace the carbon or sediment filter, which basically involves scrubbing the filter element with a scotch brite pad ...
11-09-2015, 09:51 PM,
RE: water filter recommendation?
It depends. If it's only chemical and bacterial contaminants and anything else but virus and heavy metal contamination, then I would go with a very easy and quick installation of a MULTI-PURE STAINLESS STEEL product and filter. It's the largest activated carbon block filter on the market for domestic use, and does NOT waste a lot of water as does the R/O systems. It may be shipped here directly, although I'm not certain of it.

BUT, if you feel that GTO water has been contaminated by heavy metals, than you would need to go the R/O route, as the RO membrane is capable of removing the very small heavy metal contaminants, along with everything else an activated carbon filter system can do, PLUS VIRUSES.......but also strips the water of ALL minerals. Many people do NOT like the taste of water without the minerals.

An RO system requires MUCH more maintenance than a single activated CARBON filter,such as the MULTI PURE, and wastes a hell of a lot of water to make its "purified water".
11-12-2015, 12:11 AM, (This post was last modified: 11-12-2015, 12:50 AM by DonaldW.)
RE: water filter recommendation?
Totally pure water has no taste. When you begin to taste something in the water, the filter is not working.

Here is what Pure Water Products states about R/O units "wasting" water:

A guy told me reverse osmosis units waste a lot of water… Is that true?

It depends on what you mean by waste.
A home RO unit uses water to clean itself and wash away impurities. It's like a lot of other water-using appliances. We use water to wash clothes, to wash dishes, to wash cars, to flush toilets.
A reverse osmosis unit uses more water in its operation than you actually consume, but it doesn't use enough that you'll notice it on your water bill. It uses water only while it's filling its storage tank. When the tank is full, the whole unit shuts down and no water runs to drain.
In terms of expense, it's like a couple or three extra toilet flushes a day.

I've personally used a lot of water filters in my life and the R/O system is the only one I have been satisfied with (the purity of the water can be seen in the ice cube clarity test that I previously spoke of, put the output of any filter in your ice tray and see if the cubes are see-through when frozen).

Here is some good info if you are fearful of water filters removing minerals (basically you get them from healthy food in real life and don't actually rely on water to produce them). https://www.nutriteam.com/Minerals

P.S. If you'd like to see a R/O system like the one I suggested in action, drop the Cervecería Dos Aves Micro-brewery in San Miguel de Allende and see it sourcing the wetness of their delicious craft brews.

P.P.S. Believing you are going to get pure water from a small cartridge filter is just not a happening thing, whether it was "As seen on TV" or higher acclaims. The maintenance of the system is easy using the step by step procedure I laid out. Basically just unscrew the cartridges on a yearly and every two year cycle and enjoy clear, pure water every day of the week and without lugging around or storing another one of those heavy and space wasting water bottles. No more fuel for water trucks and no more CO2 from their engines. Salud!
11-13-2015, 08:34 PM,
RE: water filter recommendation?
Certainly, even according to the "expert", R/O systems do waste water.

As for purity, I can guarantee that a MULTI PURE activated carbon filter, MUCH easier to install and maintain, is a SUPERIOR filter to any aspect of a typical R/O system, and will provide absolutely "sparkling-clear-clean-DELICIOUS water". A R/O system strips the water of EVERYTHING, including the minerals that give normal water it's flavor. The MULTI PURE will not take out heavy metal contamination.

BUT, if you're concerned about heavy metal contamination, and GTO is very suspect, then it would make sense to go the R/O route.
Still, many people do NOT like the flat, tasteless water that a R/O system produces. In the US, there were no plumbers that would install a R/O system due to it's complexity (for them). So, a specialist would have to be hired to install a system, typically about an hours' worth of work to do it correctly. If you feel pretty confident with your mechanical and plumbing capabilities and can follow installation directions well, then you might be able to install it yourself. If you intend to have a spigot installed at the edge of a porcelain sink, you will need a special type of drill bit, available from HOME DEPOT or a similar type store.
11-22-2015, 10:03 AM,
RE: water filter recommendation?
Sparkling clear, delicious? No offense meant whatsoever but the R/O has 2 of these elements you speak of as part of it's overall 5 elements and 6 elements total if you add a UV light or a ceramic. You keep speaking of water's taste .... Isn't the "taste" you are talking about simply the idea of what you think water should be like only derived from what you are familiar with and used to over time? I had a lifelong friend from Argentina who grew up on strong iron laden well water and he said the didn't like the "taste" of an R/O system. True sparkling clear water HAS NO TASTE. You can't taste something that is not there. Try drinking real R/O water (the same stuff you get in the bottle if it has been processed correctly) for a few months and then have a sip of something that has "taste". I guarantee you will gag. You don't need water as a mineral source and certainty not water that is of unknown mineral content, especially in a city known for silver mining.

I urge people to do scientific research on their chosen type of water filter and not rely on the subjectivity of taste. For example if you, as I have for years, happen to live in a US a city with a water system that is rated exemplary which also sources from a nearby lake and each summer you "taste" the algae bloom, if you think about it, perhaps "taste" is not such a good idea to try to simulate. In fact that's why I first starting using a R/O system is because my top 10% rated city water system tasted like the water I swallowed accidentally while swimming in the nearby lake. Regardless, certain minerals and contaminants cannot be seen by the naked eye and the purity of water from that aspect is an illusion.

If you need taste, sprinkle some salt and minerals in your pure water at a level recommended by a medical or dietary professional and at what suits your overall desire and pleasure factor. A little lime added to it actually might be a better idea if you can't swallow anything that does not stimulate the taste buds.
11-22-2015, 12:24 PM, (This post was last modified: 11-22-2015, 12:28 PM by mr bill.)
RE: water filter recommendation?
DonaldW you wrote: "...Basically just unscrew the cartridges on a yearly and every two year cycle and enjoy clear, pure water every day of the week and without lugging around or storing another one of those heavy and space wasting water bottles. No more fuel for water trucks and no more CO2 from their engines. Salud! "

Here's a link to an old post you may find of interest Drinking Water Cost Comparison http://www.gtolist.com/forum/thread-61-post-107.html?highlight=water#pid107
11-26-2015, 06:50 PM,
RE: water filter recommendation?
If the contamination of heavy metals is a problem, then an R/O system will take them out. The water will taste flat, it doesn't taste like really good activated carbon filtered water, or a fresh clean spring fed water. It would be out-of the question to try and add the minerals that a R/O system strips from the water. It wouldn't be easy to match or even find the correct levels of the types of minerals that are normally found in fresh, pure, natural water.

R/O systems are more complex to install, waste a great deal of water, have more components and connections that can leak, more complex to maintain, and require more frequent filter purchases to maintain them at the level of contaminant removal than, say the MULTI-PURE or AMWAY activated carbon filtration systems. They are two of the best activated carbon filter systems on the market, worldwide.

But, that being said, if a critical concern for heavy metal contamination exists, the R/O system is the only way to remove them. OR, possibly a type of micro fine ceramic filter might remove them.

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