Reverse osmosis is a great way for any home user to remove fluoride as well as any other contaminant from the water. However, it does remove many wanted minerals like calcium and magnesium from the water. A great alternative is to use a simple combination of filter cartridges with carbon and activated alumina. Carbon filtration is perfect for any standard filtration and the activated alumina works best for fluoride removal.
Activated alumina works with all types of water filtration systems. These kinds of replacement water filters may cost more than your average carbon filter but they are well worth the money. Activated alumina filters require a very slow flow rate. For every cubic foot of activated alumina (approx. 44 lbs.), the service flow is only 1-2 gallons per minute (GPM) per cubic foot. This means that for a small drinking water unit which uses only 1.5 lbs of media, the service flow is only 0.068 GPM. This is equivalent to a drip of water per minute. Getting water never seemed so slow - but the way to properly get this flow is to use something called a flow restrictor of approximately 110 ml/min and use a pressurized tank to store the water until you are ready to drink it. This way you will have a reservoir holding filtered water free of fluoride.
Both methods of removing fluoride are great and both have many benefits. Reverse osmosis typically strips all elements - good or bad - in the water in order to give the most purified water possible. Activated alumina when combined with carbon filters and a flow restrictor will also give you great purified water free of fluoride without incurring larger maintenance costs of replacement water filters. The cost of replacing water filters for a reverse osmosis system every year may cost you $40-50 while changing out the activated alumina filter system could also cost about $40. It's all a matter of preference. One thing is for sure, we want to remove fluoride from the water because we already get enough of this from the toothpaste and foods that we eat.
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