What are Chloramines and Should You Filter Them?
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Chloramines are a group of chemical compounds formed when chlorine reacts with ammonia, producing one of three main products (monochloramine, dichloramine and trichloramine) that can convert back and forth between the different forms. Although no widespread testing has ever been conducted on its health effects, many municipalities have switched to chloramine as a water disinfectant after many years of widespread use of the more well tested, and easier to filter, chlorine. While municipalities prefer chloramines due to their more stable nature when compared with chlorine, it takes more commitment and extensive water filtration to remove the former than the latter.
Chloramine Does Not Evaporate
Unlike chlorine, chloramines will not evaporate out of water, even when boiled. They cannot be removed by traditional carbon shower filters due to the high water temperatures and flow rates needed while showering, and in fact are only partially removed by carbon filters of any type, which leave behind the ammonia component of the chemical. For a long time, the only way to successfully remove chloramines from water was with the use of a carbon filter followed by a reverse osmosis or cation filter. However, that has changed and with the HydroCare City Supreme, available at WAVE Home Solutions. It is an extremely effective filter that can remove all the chloramines from the water, for the entire house.
Health Effects of Chloramines Have Not Been Well Studied
While no extensive studies on the health effects of chloramine have been conducted, it is well known as a lung irritant and accumulates within enclosed spaces to concentrations that can cause a host of breathing problems, particularly when showering. Inhaled chloramine vapors enter the bloodstream directly through the lungs, posing a greater potential health hazard than contaminants that enter through the digestive track.
Dangerous Byproducts of Disinfection and Reduced Ability to Destroy Pathogens
When both chlorine and chloramines react with organic matter, trihalomethanes (THMs), byproducts of disinfection on the list of suspected carcinogens, are formed; if this were not undesirable enough, some of the byproducts specific to chloramine (such as iodoacids) are even more dangerous than those formed in conjunction with chlorine. Chloramines are not as effective as chlorine at water disinfection, leaving people more at risk of exposure to pathogens. UV light can completely destroy all pathogens, and produces zero byproducts or harm to water. UV lights can be installed as a component to a whole house filter when desired.
Toxic to Aquatic Life and Removed by Producers of Medical Supplies
Despite the fact that its effects are not well tested, the EPA states that chloramine is safe to use as a water disinfectant. However, even at levels approved for municipal use, the chemical is toxic to aquatic life, a fact alone that may be compelling enough to remove it from the all the water within your home. Companies that use water to produce medical products, pharmaceutical products, and more, filter out chloramine before their products are manufactured, giving another reason to question its overall safety.
Protect Yourself With a Whole House Filtration System
Those of you concerned about your personal health and the health of your loved ones will be well served to install a whole house filtration system which will remove undesirable chloramines from your water supply before ever entering your home. In addition to protecting yourself from respiratory and skin irritation, potential digestive problems, and exposure to a host of suspected carcinogens, you’ll also be protecting the plumbing within your home, as chloramines are known to be corrosive to pipes, rubber, and more. Talk to a professional at WAVE Home Solutions and ask them about their new HydroCare City Supreme water filtration unit.