The Truth About Refrigerator Water Filters

Refrigerator filters are not as effective in preventing PFAs in your water.

If you think that your refrigerator filter is keeping your water safe, think again. A study by scientists at Duke University and North Carolina State University found that while using any water filter is better than not using one at all, most are only partially effective in removing toxic perfluoroalkyl substances (PFAs). The study also found that when filters were not properly maintained, they can actually increase the levels of PFAs in your drinking water.  


PFAS, also known as “forever chemicals,” are indefinitely in our environment and accumulate in the human body. It is believed that 99.9 percent of humans worldwide already have PFAS in their bloodstreams. For decades we have known the harmful health effects of PFAS, especially in drinking water. Exposure to chemicals has been linked to various cancers, low birth weight in babies, thyroid disease, impaired immune function, and other health disorders. PFAS may also affect the reproductive and developmental health of mothers and children


According to researchers, who tested 76 point-of-use filters and 13 point-of-entry or whole-house systems, the filter effectiveness varied widely. “All of the under-sink reverse osmosis and two-stage filters achieved near-complete removal of the PFAS chemicals we were testing for. In contrast, the effectiveness of activated-carbon filters used in many pitcher, countertop, refrigerator, and faucet-mounted styles was inconsistent and unpredictable,” said Heather Stapleton, Associate Professor of Environmental Health at Duke’s Nicholas School of the Environment.


The good news is that when reverse osmosis and two-stage filters were utilized, PFAS levels were reduced by 94 percent in water. On average, activated carbon filters removed 73 percent of PFAS contaminants. The researchers suggested changing filters regularly in order to ensure proper functionality. The results of the study regarding the PFAS-removal efficiency of whole-house systems using activated carbon filters varied widely.


To be sure your home is getting the best filtration system that meets your needs, call Torres Water Company today at (504) 838-8345 and schedule a consultation.  There are many things to consider when making the decision to ensure you have clean water in your home and your business. We will provide you with a free water analysis test and fully explain all the options available to you.

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