Your Guide to Buying the Best Hard Water Shower Filter
If you live in an area with hard water, you’ll notice how limescale develops in your bathroom, or in your appliances. When this mixes with soap, it can create soap scum deposits in your bathroom, that require special products to remove. Hard water minerals also aren’t kind to your skin or hair either: They tend to dry out the skin and make your hair brittle. A water softening shower filter can help you avoid the unpleasant effects of washing with hard water.
There are also other benefits to these hard water shower filters. They can remove chlorine and chloramine from your water which tends to give water a certain odor. Also, if you dye your hair, chlorine can wash out the hair coloring more quickly. There are also shower filters that also infuse the water with minerals and ions to actually improve your hair’s health and appearance.
We’ll go through some of the features of the best hard water shower filters, along with some tips on installing and using them.
Types of Hard Water Shower Filters
There are two main objectives in these special shower filter cartridges:
Filtration only: These filters will contain layers of materials to filter out sediments and undesirable chemicals and compounds. An example is the AquaBliss Multi-Stage Shower Filter (Model No. SF220). It employs layers of sand and microporous polypropylene cotton to remove sediments from your water. It then has calcium sulfite, a redox media, and activated carbon layers to remove chlorine, trihalomethanes (THMs), and limescale from your water. Some units include a KDF (= Kinetic Degradation Fluxion media) filter layer, which contains zinc and copper alloys. They work to convert reactive elements, such as chlorine, to safer molecules, such as chloride.
AquaBliss Multi-Stage Shower Filter (Model No. SF220)
Filtration with vitamins and minerals: There are also shower filters that not only filter out unwanted chemicals and sediments, but even infuse the water with vitamins, minerals, and ions! The AquaHomeGroup Luxury Filtered 20-Stage Shower Filter has special layers of mineralized beads to oxygenate the water, Vitamins C and E as antioxidants to reduce damage due to sun exposure, and tourmaline and anion spheres to add ions to the water.
AquaHomeGroup Luxury Filtered 20-Stage Shower Filter
Showerhead filters: There are also filters where the showerhead itself houses the filter. This is the design of the Barclay’s Buys Filtered Shower Head. It’s primarily for removing chlorine and total dissolved solids (TDS) from your bath water. You can rotate the shower head to provide a gentle rainfall shower, a powerful massage stream, or a combination of the two.
Barclay’s Buys Filtered Shower Head
What reviewers say
Here are what customers say about their choice of shower filter:
Definite improvement in skin and hair: A customer who went from an area with soft water to a hard water area, noticed that they suffered more from dry hair, itchy skin, and that conditioner wouldn’t help considerably to make her hair clean or soft. When she bought the AquaBliss High Output Revitalizing Filter she noticed a definite improvement, in that her hair is thicker and softer. She also can use less shampoo every time she washes her hair.
Reduce the need for removing limescale: People who suffer from hard water mention that they have to treat faucet attachments with vinegar and baking soda to remove the calcium deposits every so often. A shower filter will save you the trouble of removing limescale from your showerhead, which, if left untreated, clogs the holes on the showerhead.
No decrease in water pressure: The manufacturers of these filters point out that you’ll still be able to get 2.5 gallons per minute of water flow, even after installing the filter. There shouldn’t be any appreciable decrease in water after installing a filter.
Here are some tips regarding the installation and use of a hard water shower filter:
Installation on all shower head types: The inline hard water shower filters screw onto the shower inlet pipe. You can then attach a handheld shower head, a fixed shower head, or a rainfall shower head, according to your preference.
Need for Teflon tape: Some customers noticed that the shower filter wouldn’t mate perfectly with their showerhead. There are manufacturers that include Teflon tape together with their product, so you can ensure that the filter doesn’t leak when attached to the showerhead. But, the AquaBliss shower filter can attach just by hand. However, the Aquasana filter requires that you use a wrench to attach the filter correctly.
Flush out the filter: After you install a new filter, it’s usually required to let water flow through the filter for 2 minutes. This water will contain activated carbon and other minerals. Then, turn the shower on and off several times. These “spurts” of water will remove any additional stray carbon particles. After the initial flush, the shower head will be ready for use.
Filter lifetime: It’s recommended to replace the filter after six months of use, or 10,000 gallons of water. Some brands provide you with two filters upon purchase, such as the CraterAquaSystems 15-Stage Shower Filter. That’s enough filtration for an entire year, estimated to be 1,300 showers or 650 baths!
We investigated the inner workings of a number of hard water shower filters. If you live in an area with hard water, and you can’t install an inline filter to remove all of the sediments from the water in your home, you should at least install a shower filter. You’ll see that you’ll feel cleaner after taking a shower or bath and that you also won’t need as much shampoo or conditioner to get good results!