How to Select a Water Filter for Your Refrigerator
Finding a replacement filter for your refrigerator can be challenging, especially when name brand filters can be pricey. Considering that manufacturers recommend replacing the water filters every six months (depending on the manufacturer), costs can accumulate substantially over time.
For instance, if you own a GE refrigerator that uses an RPWFE filter, it costs as much as $44.50. Supposing that the expected lifespan of your refrigerator is 12 years, you’re looking at a total of about $1,068 for the cost of replacement.
It is understandable that many consumers will turn to cheaper alternatives. Although there are a variety of affordable options, few may be able to reach the standards you require. In addition to price, there are other factors you need to consider.
Like all machines, refrigerators are manufactured by putting together specific parts. The size, shape, and materials used for these parts vary depending on the model of the fridge. Successfully replacing a part of a refrigerator means looking for one that is compatible with the filter. Incompatible filters can lead to problems with fitting and leaks. Do your research and ask the supplier whether the filter model matches your unit. It is easier to choose a model that matches the brand of the refrigerator unit. This doesn’t necessarily mean getting a filter from the same brand, so long as it matches the refrigerator.
Make certain it has the right certification
Quality, performance, and safety are as important as price when looking into a new filtration system. There are a wide range of contaminants that may be present in the tap water. Make sure that the filter is certified so you can rest assured that your refrigerator’s filtration system dispenses clean and safe drinking water.
The certifying body responsible for determining the health and safety standards for various products is NSF International. This organization sets the rules for development and provides product certifications across multiple supply chains including restaurants and food service supplies. An NSF certified product has undergone stringent inspections to ensure that manufacturers comply with the highest requirements for safety.
For refrigerator water filters, two NSF standards apply:
- Standard 42 - Standard 42 is awarded to products that minimize contaminants that affect aesthetic values and do not pose any threat to health. Filters possessing the Standard 42 certification are designed to eliminate chlorine and other substances that affect the taste and odour of water.
While Standard 42 does not remove any health risks, it makes it more palatable. However, this standard should not stand alone. There are a variety of harmful substances that are tasteless and odourless, which is why the next standard is necessary.
- Standard 53 - Clean tasting water does not necessarily mean it is safe for consumption. A number of these substances cannot be detected by smell or taste and can cause severe health problems when ingested beyond certain levels.
Standard 53 establishes that a product is void of any substance that can be hazardous to health. Filters with the Standard 53 certification are capable of freeing drinking water of contaminants including:
- Parasites (e.g. Cryptosporidium and Giardia)
- Volatile organic chemicals (VOCs)
- MTBE (methyl tertiary-butyl ether)
Standard 53 filters, though they do not improve taste, ensure its safety. A refrigerator water filter that is certified to both Standard 42 and 53 provides drinking water that is both clean and delicious. Fortunately, many options have both certifications.
Be cautious when purchasing filters online
In the search for a quality filter that does not break the bank, many consumers may be tempted by the myriad of cheaper alternatives online. However, a great deal of caution is necessary when doing purchasing from online sources. For one, there is little to no guarantee that the products you acquire through the web may work. Many companies sell counterfeit water filters online.
Determining whether a water filter is real or not can be difficult even for experts. Imitation filters are made to resemble legitimate brand-name products with the fraudulent use of logos, brand graphics, and certifications. They are disguised to the point that they become indistinguishable from their certified counterparts.
The low prices of these counterfeit models may seem like an amazing deal, but many do not meet the minimum structural and safety requirements. Consumers need to be wary. Fake water filters pose a health risk to the public. Sure, the water may taste good, but that doesn’t mean that these filters are properly removing hazardous contaminants. In addition to health concerns, fake water filters may not match the exact specifications of the original and could leak or damage your refrigerator.
Before making a purchase online, make sure to review your source. Only purchase from suppliers that have been verified. The Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers (AHAM) warns consumers about the dangers of counterfeit water filters and recommends that consumers buy water filters from the refrigerator manufacturers themselves or their trusted retail partners.
Finding an affordable water filter
The prevalence of counterfeit water filters makes finding a suitable one a herculean task. Since the brand design and certification labels can easily be duplicated, it is no longer enough to base your decisions solely on what you can see plastered on the product. Run a search on the product through these databases:
- NSF International
- Water Quality Association (WQA)
- International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials (IAPMO)
Whether you select a branded water filter or an aftermarket model, the most important thing is to make sure that it is safe. Ensure that it is compatible with your refrigerator model to avoid leaks and future damage, and be sure that they conform to the safety standards NSF 42 and NSF 53.
If you’re looking for high-quality and equally affordable water filters for your home or food service establishment, Efilters is your Everpure seller in Canada. We are a leading supplier of all types of filters and have been in the business for over 20 years. Our products possess the necessary certification and are a model of performance and safety. For a reliable supply of water filters from a trusted source, contact us at 1-866-283-9919.