As Real Food enthusiasts, we do our best to prepare nutrient-rich meals for our families. We scrutinize the labels on foods to avoid nasty preservatives, additives, and genetically modified ingredients (GMOs).
Yet, paradoxically many of us don’t give enough thought about the quality of the water that we are using or research what might be the best water filter for our particular situation and the water available in our area.
Even if we do manage to filter our drinking water, the filter is usually not of the quality necessary to remove fluoride or pharmaceutical residues. And surprisingly, the vast majority of people still bath or shower in tap water containing chlorine and other toxins which research has shown devastates beneficial gut microflora.
Water is the most basic raw material of the kitchen and today, with the unprecedented amount of contaminants in the environment, the same level of care and concern we use in planning our meals must also be used for examining our water.
Water quality in this country is being severely impacted with each passing day whether we realize it or not. Contaminants from a myriad of sources continue to enter into our water supplies at an alarming rate either by accident, incident, runoff or intentional chemical treatment. Increasingly, as toxins accumulate in the environment, including those from herbicides, pesticides, heavy metals and commercial solvents, they are seeping into our water reserves. These dangerous industrial chemicals were never meant to be ingested or absorbed into the skin, and yet many of us have been gulping them down by the glassful and showering daily in this toxic soup.
Over 2,000 chemical compounds have been found in US drinking water, although the EPA has established enforceable safety standards for only 87 of them – that’s less than 5%. Water filters have sadly become a modern necessity, but how do you find one that fits your house, lifestyle and budget?
Finding the best water filter for your situation is not always a simple process. However, the steps below will help you to navigate all of the marketing and hype around water filters, so that you can more easily track down the best option for keeping your water clean and your family healthy. A water filter is generally comprised of a porous media such as activated carbon contained in a cartridge that can generally improve the taste and odor of your water while reducing the level of many chemical contaminants found in drinking water. The large internal surface area of activated carbon filters make them a great choice for removing the widest range of contaminants, however, it is important to know that the carbon media has to be carefully selected and prepared to be effective in removing contaminants. Oftentimes manufacturers will blend a number of different types of activated carbon together to give you the broadest range of protection.
Step 1: Figure out what is in your water!
The first step in making a change to the quality of water in your home is to investigate what is actually in it! This seems basic enough, but strangely enough, is skipped by most people in the market for a water filter.
By determining the basic chemical make-up of your water, you will be an armed and informed consumer, ready to make decisions about the type of system that will protect your family to the greatest degree.
If you have well water
In many major municipalities, water is piped in, chemically treated and often sent right out to homes without being filtered! Although disinfectants such as chlorine and chloramines are added to town supplies with the intention of protecting us from unwanted pathogens, they also have undesirable chemical side effects.
Chlorine reacts with the naturally occurring organic and inorganic matter found in water to form harmful disinfection by-products. If you are on municipal water, there should be regular district reports that may disclose certain facts about your water. This is why testing your water yourself is a very good idea before purchasing any water filter. This resource provides reliable options for getting this accomplished for a reasonable cost.
If you have well water
Chemical treatments aren’t usually the primary concern with well water. However, homes which obtain water directly from underground sources need to examine other issues such as bacteria and microorganisms in their water, the presence of arsenic, excessive iron, manganese or hydrogen sulfide (the rotten egg smell), fertilizer runoff, general industrial pollution, pharmaceutical residues and extreme hardness.
Hard water is characterized by high mineral content, primarily in the form of calcium (Ca+2) and magnesium (Mg+2) ions. These minerals will form deposits in your pipes and water appliances, leave a white residue in your sinks and bathtubs and clog your showerheads and faucets. Because well water is often unpredictable and varies significantly from property to property, a water testing kit is the best tool for understanding its precise composition.
Step 2: Make personalized water goals
Based on the data you receive from your water testing, you will have to decide on what your personal goals are for your household water. Is your primary objective to have healthy water everywhere in your home, to decrease the burden on your plumbing, to remove toxins in drinking and bathing water?
There is no right or wrong answer here—everyone has different objectives, budgets and living situations. Generally speaking, there are two types of filtration products that you can choose from:
So you have that nice Kenmore Elite, GE, Samsung, Whirlpool, LG refrigerator and the warning light to change your water filter is on red. You ever wonder what controls your refrigerator to tell you when to change your refrigerator water filter? 
Talking to the techs that repair these refrigerators i have learned that this mechanism is actually controlled by the amount of times you open and close your door.  This is not exactly the greatest indicator for changing your water filter. Most filters can be easily replaced by simply pushing and twisting. 
Whole house Water Filter:These systems are installed wherever the water first enters your home to provide filtered water throughout the entire house for showering, bathing and everyday use. Although most whole house units on the market today have a higher up-front cost, they are designed for long-lasting service and low maintenance. They will also reduce, if not totally eliminate, most common contaminants found in water such as chlorine, chloramines, disinfection by-products, fluoride, heavy metals along with a wide range of Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC’s).
These whole house water systems are an excellent choice for homeowners who want to make their water safe for all uses (drinking, showering, bathing, laundry etc) by attacking the problem at the start.
Under sink Water Filter : The Under Sink Water Filter can filter lots of water. Instead of cluttering the counter, they rob space from the cabinet beneath the sink. They may also require professional plumbing modifications, and drilling a hole for the dispenser through the sink or countertop.
Faucet Water FilterFaucet Water Filter : If you're looking for easy installation, these are a good choice for filtering drinking and cooking water. Simply unscrew the aerator from the threaded tip of the faucet and screw on the filter. Faucet-mounted filters let you switch between filtered and unfiltered water. On the downside, they slow water flow, and don't fit on all faucets, including ones with a pull-out sprayer. 
Pitcher Water Filter : The Water Pitcher has a spout dispenser that quickly provides clean water. Pitcher water filters from AquaCrest( ) use advanced coconut activated carbon and ion exchange resin to improve the water quality. Water filtration technology of AquaCrest ensures you to enjoy crystal clear and healthy drinking water by effectively reducing limescale, chlorine and other impurities in water.
Coffer Water Filter Faucet Water Filter : Coffee water filters from AquaCrest( ) use advanced coconut activated carbon and ion exchange resin for better water purity. Get a perfect cup of coffee with mellow taste and intense aroma by effectively filtering chlorine odor, taste and other impurities in water.
Shower Filter : There also are individual filters tailored to remove chlorine from the shower and bath. I’ve used these shower filters for many years. It’s especially important to filter bathing water for children and women who are pregnant! Shower water filters are a smart and important choice for reducing the amount of chlorine and vaporized chemical contamination your body and lungs are exposed to from the water you bathe in and the air you breathe.
Baby Filter : The AquaCrest ( Tippee Closer to Nature Perfect Prep Replacement Filters removes impurities in the water and is designed for use in the Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature Perfect Prep machine. These Perfect Prep Replacement Filters have a 150 litre capacity that removes impurities in your water for up to 3 months (based on consumer preparing 6 x 260ml bottles per day). A warning light on your machine will indicate when your filter is coming to the end of its life. This same light will then flash when the filter needs immediate replacement, giving you the peace of mind that your machine is working safely for you and your baby. Breast milk is best for your new baby, but if you are making the move to formula milk, Perfect Prep is everything. The Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature range was developed because babies are happiest when everything works just the way nature intended--especially when they're hungry. That's why the unique Tommee Tippee Closer to Nature baby bottles feature an extra-wide Closer to Nature teat--it mimics the flex and stretch of a natural breast, making it easier than ever before to combine breast and bottle feeding.
Air Filter : Waterdrop( ) brand ensures the highest standard of contaminant reduction, especially the odors in your refrigerator and makes the air inside your refrigerator much fresher.
Whatever you do, avoid water distillation systems. Distilled water is devoid of dissolved minerals and is not healthy and can be potentially dangerous to consume on a regular basis.
With this basic information, a water expert should be able to properly size the best water filter for you that will provide your family with plenty of safe, clean water for washing, bathing, showering, cooking or doing your laundry.
Step 3: Change your Filter regularly
We recommend replacing your fridge filter every six months but it really depends on how often do you use your fridges water filter system, and the amount of contaminants in your water. It can be hard to know the levels exactly but a tell tale sign that you need to replace your filter is when the taste or smell have changed for the worse.  Keep track of how long the filter lasted and repeat the process a couple of times to determine how often you really need to change your refrigerator’s water filter.
Changing your filter regularly helps to assure you are getting the best water possible drinking water. Changing your filter regularly helps to assure you are getting the best water possible drinking water. By choosing to drink filtered water and regularly changing your refrigerators water filter you will be able to reduce odor, taste, and possibly certain contaminants in your water!
For other filters, for optimum results, please refer to the instructions for the filter life.
The best time of year to buy refrigerator water filters is around Black Friday you can find 2 for 1 filter packs and cut your cost in half! But for Waterdrop ( )and AquaCrest( ) which always offer an affordable price. Buy it will be a good choice at any time.