By Sheila Anthony
Historically, one of the most common complaints about tap water is its taste. “Like a swimming pool” is a descriptive phrase that frequently crops up. Chlorine and chlorine-based compounds, however, are the only disinfectants that can kill harmful microorganisms, including dangerous strains of E. coli, and bacteria that cause typhoid fever, cholera, and dysentery, to name a few scary waterborne illnesses. Chlorine also reduces the risk of bacterial regrowth, maintaining safe water quality as water flows through municipal pipes and into homes. It’s for these reasons that over 98 percent of water utilities in the United States use chlorine to disinfect drinking water. (Source: scientificamerican.com)
That’s very good news. It means your water is safe to drink. But the problem is, you hate the chlorine taste. How do you remove it once water is safely inside your home? That’s where the Brio Stage-2 Pre Carbon Filter [link] comes in. It’s a granular activated carbon filter, or GAC filter for short, and removing chlorine taste and odor (among other things) is its main job.
What is activated carbon?
Brio uses coconut shell-based carbon because not only are coconut shells more environmentally friendly than coal, but they’re also extremely high in carbon, and carbon is naturally porous. After the coconut shells are ground up or milled, they’re steam-heated at 1000°C. The result is twofold: The atoms that make up activated carbon create disordered layers filled with irregular pores, pockets, nooks, and crannies, while the surface area of the carbon is massively expanded (one teaspoon of granular activated carbon is equivalent to one soccer field). This whole process is called “activation.”
What can the Brio Stage-2 Pre Carbon Filter remove?
The Brio Pre Carbon Filter traps compounds that give water an unpleasant taste and odor, e.g., chlorine and hydrogen sulfide (rotten egg smell). It also filters out iron rust and small particulates that can affect the color or appearance of water, increasing water’s clarity and reducing its turbidity. By the way, this process of getting stuck or trapped in the pores is called adsorption. And, yes, that’s with a “d” not a “b.”
Like the Stage-1 Sediment Filter, the Stage-2 Pre Carbon Filter also protects and extends the life of the filters down the line, particularly the reverse osmosis membrane.
Long story short, the Brio Stage-2 Pre Carbon Filter makes water look great and taste even better.