Shower filters -- becoming obsolete?
I bought a Rainshowr' CQ-1000 filter not long ago. NSF certified to remove free chlorine. Though many shower filters claim they remove more, check the NSF site yourself and the only certified claim is for free chlorine reduction.
So that's fine...chlorine isn't good. But wait, I don't seem to notice much difference in my skin and hair. I get my water quality report. I talk to the president (George Ricci) of Rainshowr'. I come to find the 2.4ppm of chlrorine in my water is actually 99% chloramine and about 1% free chlorine.
So that explains it. The filter can't remove chloramine he says. No filter is certified to. So it can only remove the roughly .05ppm of free chlorine in my water.
He says that many municipalities are using chloramine instead of free chlorine these days.
So I have to ask, if shower filters are only NSF certified to remove free chlorine, and though many probably aren't aware that they probably have hardly any free chlorine in their water anymore, aren't shower filters (NSF certified at least) becoming pretty well useless?
From Houston Tomasz at Aquasana...
The below response was given from Houston Tomasz at Aquasana (Sun Water Systems) ....
Chloramines are a relatively new form of water treatment, and over the last few years, many municipalities have been switching to it. Though chloramines have been around for over a hundred years, the have just recently been used for large cities. The main reason for the switch is that the EPA has set a limit of 80 ppb for total Trihalomethanes. Trihalomethanes are created when chlorine comes in contact with organic matter like dirt, leaves, hair, bacteria, urine, sweat etc. Chloramines are a combination of chlorine and ammonia. The ammonia prevents the chlorine from turning into a trihalomethane. Now we've all seen our cleaning products warning labels that advise not to mix ammonia based products with bleach (chlorine) based products because of the harmful compounds that are formed, but this has not stopped the cities from switching in order to meet the EPA's new TTHM's maximum. Other compounds formed by adding ammonia to chlorinated water include dichloramine and trichloramine, which are extremely dangerous.
KDF filters are extremely ineffective at removing chloramines, because the KDF is unable to break the bond between the chlorine and ammonia. The Aquasana system uses KDF and coconut shell carbon. Coconut shell carbon will reduce the chloramines, but because of the high flow rate, the AQ-4100 will only remove about 40% of the total chlorine, and not very much of the ammonia, if any at all. For this reason, we have been testing a different version of the AQ-4100, utilizing Catylitic Centaur carbon, which was designed specifically for chloramines reduction. We claim that our AQ-4100C will reduce chloramines by >75%, but there is not currently a test protocol for chloramines removal from shower water, so the system will not be certified for several years (it usually takes 2-3 years for NSF/ANSI to come up with new standards and testing protocols).