Have you ever realized that unfiltered shower water can be dangerous to our body? It is true because of the health risks brought about by the chlorine content in the water. Although chlorine is used to disinfect water, it is not safe for drinking, showering or bathing.
What is so dangerous about chlorine?
Especially if you take a hot shower in an enclosed stall, chlorine vaporizes on the spot and is easily inhaled. Also, warm water opens up the pores of the skin making it more susceptible to dermal absorption of chlorine from the water. The inhalation and absorption of chlorine has been linked to risks for diseases and serious illnesses. It may also trigger pre-existing conditions, such as asthma and eczema, to worsen.
With regard to the aesthetic aspect, regular exposure to chlorine can promote the aging process of the skin, the effect being similar to an extended exposure to sunlight. Immediate effects are dry or flaking skin. On our hair, the effect of chlorine damage results in breakage and splitting. It becomes tangled and difficult to comb, dry, and brittle. The effect on the hair is similar to oxidation from peroxide burning, except chlorine adds density to the hair. High chlorine content in the water can also irritate the eyes.
On a more serious note, exposure to excessive chlorine content in water is like activating a time bomb. In the long run, it may be the cause of cancer, heart trouble, premature mental or physical senility, or hardening of the arteries.
What are the benefits of using a chlorine shower filter and how does it work?
A shower filter reduces all symptoms of chlorine exposure. Skin and hair feel softer than before and there is less irritation and redness of the eyes.
Shower filters make use of two kinds of media for use in potable water: GAC (granular activated carbon) and KDF (atomic brass). GAC is not suitable for hot water use and need frequent replacement. KDF media is the most effective. It is half made of copper and half zinc, and it removes chlorine by reversing the electrochemical process making the chlorine recombine with a metal ion becoming too big and heavy for the skin to absorb. Since it is also bacteriostatic, it can reduce fungus and mildew buildup in the shower enclosure.
What are the known brands available? How much is the starting investment?
Aquasana is the most popular brand. Other available chlorine shower filter brands include Rainshow’r, Niagra, Universal, Sprite Hose, ShowerUp, Shower Falls, Rio Vita, and Slim-line to name a few. The average cost for a typical shower filter is around $30-$40. The more expensive ones cost a little over $60 each. If the filters cost more than that, then most likely the consumer is just paying for the marketing.
Replacement filters cost less than $20 each. The frequency of your usage and how bad your water is will affect how often you will need to change your filter. If your water is really bad, or if you have a large family, or if you yourself take a lot of showers, you may need to replace the filter sooner. You should replace the filter cartridge if the smell of chlorine is very strong or if the filter is starting to clog the flow of water.