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Do I Need a Whole-Home Filtration System?

Last Updated on: November 9, 2021

woman drinking water at home
Water and sanitation issues have been a growing concern in the United States for the last 20 years with an estimated 30 million Americans living in areas with unhealthy levels of pollutants. A whole-home filtration system provides your entire home with clean, filtered water free from harmful contaminants. This article walks you through everything you need to know about whole-home filtration systems.

What Is a Whole-Home Filtration System?

According to a recent study published in Nature, water and sanitation issues have been a growing concern in the United States for the past 20 years. (1) Time magazine estimated that “more than 30 million Americans lived in areas where water systems violated safety rules . . . according to data from the Environmental Protection Agency.” (2)

A whole-home water filtration system connects to your home’s main water line, ensuring that every showerhead, every faucet, and even your washing machine is connected to clean, filtered water. Also referred to as a point-of-entry tap, whole-home filters help reduce harmful contaminants such as sulfur, chlorine, and arsenic from your water. This means that no matter where you access water in your home, whether it is to clean your dishes, drink from the fridge, take a shower, or brush your teeth, you are able to access fresh, clear water that is free from any harmful contaminants. (3)

Choosing the best whole-home water filter will depend on a number of factors, including the size of your home, your source water, and what pollutants are in your water. Depending on where you live, your water may contain pesticides, bacteria, or other toxic pollutants. Before deciding on a home filtration system, make sure to do your research on what pollutants may be in your area’s source water so that you can be sure to choose the home filtration system that is right for your needs. (4)

faucet with water running
All sources of water, whether it is from a lake, well, rain, or groundwater, contain different levels of pollutants.

What Are the Benefits of Whole-Home Filtration Systems?

Water is an essential part of everyday living. From cooking food, to brushing your teeth, to washing your clothes, and drinking, making sure your water is free from harmful contaminants is a necessity. A whole-home filtration system works to:

  • Provide clean, safe water throughout your entire home for showering, cooking, drinking, and washing
  • Reduce harmful contaminants such as arsenic, sediment, bacteria, and sulfur that may cause your water to taste and smell bad
  • Reduce hard water and rust buildup on your appliances and fixtures so that your appliances can last and stay cleaner longer
  • Provides you with extra protection against harmful contaminants from every water source in your home, which will greatly benefit household members with compromised immune systems
  • Help you and your family to enjoy cleaner, crisper-tasting water that is free from foul taste and smell
woman about to take a drink of water
A whole-home water filtration system connects to your home’s main waterline, ensuring that every showerhead, every faucet, and even your washing machine is connected to clean, filtered water.

How Do I Know If I Need A Whole-Home Filtration System?

All sources of water, whether it is from a lake, well, rain, or groundwater, contain different levels of pollutants. Most tap water in the United States contains unhealthy levels of contamination from industrial and environmental pollution. Additionally, many wells or public water supplies can be contaminated by pathogens, pesticides, and even arsenic. (5)

While some harmful substances go unnoticed, many contaminants can make your water smell or taste bad or may leave stains on your appliances. Some signs that you may need a home filtration system include: (5)

  • Bad smelling water
  • Streaks on your dishes
  • Hard water deposits on your faucets and appliances
  • Rust stains on your faucets and appliances
  • Dry skin and hair after bathing or showering
  • Corroded pipes

It is often difficult, however, to tell what contaminants are in your water just from a few visual signs. Some contaminants in Utah drinking water that are above the recommended health guidelines include: (6) (4)

  • Radium
  • Arsenic
  • Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs)
  • Nitrate
  • Dibromochloromethane
  • Bromodichloromethane
  • Chloroform
  • Chromium (hexavalent)
  • Haloacetic acids (HAA5)
  • Dichloroacetic acid

Additionally, the contaminants in Utah tap water that exceed the legal limits include (6):

  • Di(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate
  • Radium
  • Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs)
  • Arsenic
  • Nitrate

These contaminants are toxic to the body and, over time, lead to various skin conditions, cancer, and an accelerated decline in overall health. But, depending on the area that you live in, do you need a whole-home filtration system? (6)

filling a glass of water from the tap
More than 30 million Americans lived in areas where water systems violated safety rules.

Utah Water Contaminants By City

The following data was taken from the Environmental Working Group’s (EWG’s) Tap Water Database which was updated in 2021. (6)

American Fork

  • Serves: 30,437
  • Source: Groundwater
  • 5 contaminants exceed EWG Health Guidelines and 15 hazardous contaminants were found including:
    • Arsenic (28x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Chromium (20x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Haloacetic acids (HAA9) (12x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Nitrate (5.3x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Radium (6.5x over the EWG health guideline)

Bountiful

  • Serves: 37,500
  • Source: Surface water
  • 9 contaminants exceed EWG Health Guidelines and 18 total contaminants were found including:
    • Bromodichloromethane (82x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Chloroform (46x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Chromium (31x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Haloacetic acids (HAA5) (87x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Haloacetic acids (HAA9) (299x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Nitrate (27x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Nitrate and nitrite (15x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Radium (30x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs) (126x over the EWG health guideline)

Cedar Hills

  • Serves: 10,261
  • Source: Groundwater
  • 6 contaminants exceed EWG Health Guidelines and 14 total contaminants were found including:
    • Arsenic (69x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Bromodichloromethane (6.5x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Dibromochloromethane (2.4x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Nitrate (3.8x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Radium (3.7x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs) (12x over the EWG health guideline)

Draper

  • Serves: 17,500
  • Source: Purchased surface water
  • 15 contaminants exceed EWG Health Guidelines and 29 total contaminants were found including:
    • Arsenic (517x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Bromodichloromethane (162x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Chloroform (83x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Chromium (4.5x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Dibromoacetic (2.4x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Dibromoacetic acid (29x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Dibromochloromethane (55x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Haloacetic acids (HAA5) (250x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Haloacetic acids (HAA9) (440x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Nitrate (10x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Nitrate and nitrite (9x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Radium (11x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs) (304x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Trichloroacetic acid (133x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Uranium (7.7x over the EWG health guideline)

Eagle Mountain

  • Serves: 36,000
  • SSource: Purchased surface water
  • 16 contaminants exceed EWG Health Guidelines and 27 total contaminants were found including:
    • Arsenic (1, 462x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Bromodichloromethane (21x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Bromoform (4.2x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Chloroform (10x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Chromium (16x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Dibromoacetic acid (13x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Dibromochloromethane (6.8x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Dibromoacetic acid (14x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Haloacetic acids (HAA5) (54x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Haloacetic acids (HAA9) (180x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Nitrate (12x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Radium (11x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Thallium (6.2x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs) (57x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Trichloroacetic acid (25x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Uranium (3.4x over the EWG health guideline)

Heber City

  • Serves: 14,969
  • Source: Groundwater
  • 13 contaminants exceed EWG Health Guidelines and 19 total contaminants were found including:
    • Arsenic (463x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Bromodichloromethane (30x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Chloroform (4.3x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Chromium (5.5x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Dibromoacetic acid (2.5x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Dibromochloromethane (13x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Dibromoacetic acid (4.5x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Haloacetic acids (HAA5) (14x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Haloacetic acids (HAA9) (155x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Nitrate (9.8x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Radium (4x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs) (45x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Trichloroacetic acid (6.4x over the EWG health guideline)

Highland

  • Serves: 18,000
  • Source: Groundwater
  • 14 contaminants exceed EWG Health Guidelines and 13 total contaminants were found including:
    • Arsenic (66x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Chromium (25x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Nitrate (16x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Radium (2.9x over the EWG health guideline)

Lehi

  • Serves: 66,037
  • Source: Purchased surface water
  • 13 contaminants exceed EWG Health Guidelines and 25 total contaminants were found including:
    • Arsenic (1,671x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Bromodichloromethane (7.8x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Chloroform (3.8x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Chromium (27x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Dibromochloromethane (2.3x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Dibromoacetic acid (3.7x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Haloacetic acids (HAA5) (26x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Haloacetic acids (HAA9) (26x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Nitrate (6x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Nitrate and nitrite (6.8x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Radium (6.4x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs) (27x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Trichloroacetic acid (7.5x over the EWG health guideline)

Orem

  • Serves: 97,839
  • Source: Purchased surface water
  • 13 contaminants exceed EWG Health Guidelines and 24 total contaminants were found including:
    • Arsenic (41x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Bromodichloromethane (66x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Chloroform (28x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Chromium (28x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Dibromochloromethane (12x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Dibromoacetic acid (2x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Dichloroacetic acid (27x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Haloacetic acids (HAA5) (109x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Haloacetic acids (HAA9) (272x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Nitrate (6.5x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Radium (15x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs) (114x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Trichloroacetic acid (51x over the EWG health guideline)

Provo

  • Serves: 116,288
  • Source: Purchased surface water
  • 11 contaminants exceed EWG Health Guidelines and 23 total contaminants were found including:
    • Arsenic (111x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Bromodichloromethane (26x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Chloroform (6.1x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Chromium (17x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Dibromochloromethane (12x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Dibromoacetic acid (3.4x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Haloacetic acids (HAA5) (12x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Haloacetic acids (HAA9) (66x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Nitrate (3.5x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Total trihalomethanes (TTHMs) (39x over the EWG health guideline)
    • Trichloroacetic acid (7.1x over the EWG health guideline)
woman drinking water to stay hydrated

The Takeaway

Depending on the types of contaminants in your water, and depending on your home needs, you may need a specific type of whole-home filtration system. However, if you would like all-round coverage, you may benefit from an all-round powerful home filtration system. (7) By investing in a whole-home filtration system, you can be sure that you and your family are safe from harmful contaminants, and that you are ingesting only clean, filtered water, which is required for optimal health.

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