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Bottled water vs. filtered water
Old 11-16-2008, 10:51 PM   #1
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Bottled water vs. filtered water

A long time ago I drank tap water then I switched to bottled and I noticed right away the big taste difference.

I figured if I'm going to be drinking that much of something it might as well be as clean and good for me as possible.

I drink aquafina now and I'm kind of a health nut so I drink about 1/2 gallon to 1 gallon a day.....the 1 gallon would be more common in the summer when I'm outdoors constantly.

It's about $1.00 a gallon I think.

I have been considering switching to a filter instead of bottled water but I thought it's just no where near the purity of bottled water because it only reduces some of the contaminants where the bottled should have close to zero.

Aside from the chlorine and fluoride now there are reports of pharmaceutical drugs in the tap water. I guess so many people are on drugs now they can't even filter the stuff out of the water.

I had a distiller from sears years ago. It was a total pain to clean and with the energy it used it might not have saved me much money. I stopped using it. The water was very good though.

I just wanted to see what others do about getting water as pure as possible.


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Old 11-16-2008, 10:53 PM   #2
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mmm isn't aquafina bottled tap water (might be filtered - dasani is the same)? It's not even spring water....?

I use a brita to filter my water...much easier on the pocket book, no lugging from the store and less plastic for a whole host of reasons...

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Old 11-16-2008, 11:02 PM   #3
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bright eyed

Yes aquafina is filtered tap water.

I remember a while back the media put out a report about it being "nothing more than tap water" to make it sound like a scam.

It starts out as tap water and then they run it through a pretty stringent filtering when they are done it's not really "tap" water but a pretty pure product.

I have tried a bunch of different waters and aquafina is a good product.

But like you were saying it is a pain to lug from the store and the cost is another issue.

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Old 11-16-2008, 11:25 PM   #4
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You could get a reverse osmosis filter or a water distiller and get cleaner water than aquafina.

But realize that by trying to drink pure water you are seriously reducing your exposure to common bacterial and contaminants setting yourself up to be more prone to diseases and likely to get sick if you drink water at a restaurant.
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Old 11-17-2008, 02:12 AM   #5
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I'll stick with straight tap water when i'm at home,its government tested,is filtered a dozen times,tastes good and the price is right.i do drink bottled water when i go see my parents who have a well and the water has a hint of sulfur,or when i'm camping and the water is usually coming from the lake or river probably unfiltered.
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Old 11-17-2008, 04:42 AM   #6
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I drink water out the refrigerator, it does have a filter, which I usually change late, water is water IMO tastes fine. I think most that use the bottled stuff have just talked them into the "it tastes better" camp; just like I have talked myself into the "it is not any better than tap water" camp. I often wonder how many I see running around with water bottles actually just put tap into the reused bottles.

BTW I have drank water all over the US and much of the World - drinking water is just something most do - it does not have to be glamorized. Our bodies are "designed" to destroy most of the bacterial and contaminants; I think it is part of the immune system. But to each his own.
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Old 11-17-2008, 04:57 AM   #7
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Brita filter here in Asia. Well water in our rural California home. It is pure. We have a filter on the fridge there, but it isn't necessary. We drink water from the faucet there and it tastes very good, like spring water. We could not do that here, the chlorine/chloramine taste is awful, but the brita filter takes care of that. I only buy a bottle of water once in a while and re-fill the bottle till it wears our or starts looking pretty ragged.

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Old 11-17-2008, 05:43 AM   #8
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A PhD buddy of mine is a chemist at an independent water test lab. He has tested my well water, and as a favor he went way above and beyond local and federal testing requirements. Its was very interesting.

Bottom line - bottled water is no bargain and especially no assurance of purity. However if your local water stinks and tastes bad, go buy bottled water cause it tastes better.
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Old 11-17-2008, 06:08 AM   #9
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Always bottled water when away from home.
Brita on Tap at my sink. i live within a mile of the treatment plant and it has a strong chlorine smell. i fill a wide mouth water container for local travel. i do drink water at local restaurants.
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Old 11-17-2008, 07:19 AM   #10
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We're on a well, so our water runs through a salt filter system. Tastes pretty good, but we installed a reverse osmosis system, and that water tastes wonderful! I don't know about the setting myself up for getting sick through not having enough crap in my water. I'm relatively sure I'm exposing myself to enough deadly toxins in my other daily activities. Probably get a weeks worth of bacteria every time I touch a grocery cart.
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Old 11-17-2008, 08:08 AM   #11
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We use Brita at home.

I think bottled water is bad for the environment because it's such a huge waste of plastic.
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Old 11-17-2008, 08:11 AM   #12
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I had a Brita pitcher, it did ok. I installed a PUR filter, it was crap. 5 years ago I had a reverse osmosis installed, along with feeding a line to the icemaker in the fridge. The difference was unbelievable. When I have friends over and I give them a glass of water, they ask which brand it is. I use the water for cooking too. I highly recommend a reverse osmosis. From what I have heard, water like Aquafina is run through a process quite similar.........
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Old 11-17-2008, 09:05 AM   #13
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My drinking/cooking water is filtered using charcoal to reduce the chemical taste. Cost about $50/yr.
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Old 11-17-2008, 09:58 AM   #14
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There are also water delivery services that will bring 5 gallon/3 gallon/case of liter bottles to your house or office.
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Old 11-17-2008, 10:04 AM   #15
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I believe it has to do more with where you live than anything else. I know that Denver has the most pleasant tasting tap water of anywhere I have been. (Honolulu runs a close second.) The worst was tap water in western Texas that I "had to" drink recently. It had what seemed like a high sodium content... not gag reflex levels but close. (This was particularly true at room temperature.)

Safety, on the other hand, is not really an issue (I don't believe) as one would have to trust in the local water department's ability to supply potable water.
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Old 11-17-2008, 10:05 AM   #16
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We use a Brita filter due to the high mineral content of our tap water. Tastes fine.

From an environmental standpoint, bottled water is a disaster. A HUGE amount of plastic used once, then trashed or recycled, and the fuel and energy required to truck water around is enormous (water is heavy!).

From a cost standpoint, bottled water is so much more expensive than tap water that's it's ridiculous.

Finally, from a health perspective, if you're living in the US and are on a municipal water system there's little benefit to bottled water. We've got the Safe Drinking Water Act and you can always ask your water utility for their testing results. They're required by law to tell you.

As far as the chlorine smell that comes with many municipal water supplies -- a Brita filter will take that out pronto.
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Old 11-17-2008, 10:14 AM   #17
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I drink tap water, it tastes good here. I also use old bottles and freeze tap water to take on trips on hot days. I keep a pitcher in the fridge filled with water because I like it really cold.

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Old 11-17-2008, 11:05 AM   #18
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I think that tap water tastes OK here, but I cannot stand the taste of filtered water (I tried Brita, Pur, ...). I don't know what it is but I can't stomach it. My favorite are mineral or artesian waters and in the US my favorite is Fiji.

I grew up on Evian mineral water (which comes out not far from where I grew up, see avatar picture taken a few miles from Evian) and untreated mountain spring water (from the tap), and I like the taste of both. It's clean and has no after taste. I also use water almost as a therapeutic agent, i.e. drink a water naturally rich in potassium to relieve muscular cramps or to lower blood pressure, a naturally basic water to treat heart burns, a naturally carbonated water to relieve indigestion, etc... In Europe bottle waters are strictly classified. "Spring waters" always come from the same spring but their mineral content can vary. "Mineral waters" on the other hand always have a stable mineral content which must be reported on the label. Each brand has a different taste and specific properties. Europeans take their water very seriously, and they usually are very loyal to their favorite brand.

I always wonder why there are no American "mineral waters"... It sounds like there would be a market for them if marketed right...
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Old 11-17-2008, 11:28 AM   #19
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I have a Brita filter and I agree that it is really bad to be using bottled water because of the carbon footprint and waste of plastic.

At work we get the big Poland Springs jugs and had a running debate about making coffee with that or using tap water.

I claimed that the coffee tasted like crap when made with tap water. A co-worker decided to be cute and filled four plastic cups, two with Poland Springs and two with tap water and challenged me to tell which was which.

I started with the smell test and tentatively separated them correctly.

When I took the first sip of the tap water I had such a violent reaction that I spit it on the floor and nearly puked on the spot.

That settled the debate on whether I could tell the difference. However, it seems that some city dwellers are so tolerant of the bad tasting water that they cannot tell the difference between the two.

My well is pretty good, but I started with the Brita filter when my cat had kidney failure and have kept on with it. One time a visitor from Boston asked for some water and was insulted when I filled his glass from the tap. He was surprised how good it tasted.
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Old 11-17-2008, 12:54 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by Urchina View Post
We use a Brita filter due to the high mineral content of our tap water. Tastes fine.

As far as the chlorine smell that comes with many municipal water supplies -- a Brita filter will take that out pronto.
I'm pretty sure that a Brita-type filter will not remove minerals, that takes RO, ion-exchange water softener, or distillation.

As you say, a carbon filter *will* take out chlorine, as will letting the water stand overnight. Carbon filters also take out chloramines, which more and more municipalities use because they are more stable (they will not dissipate overnight).


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