Article Last Updated: August 2023
Removing fluoride is something that more and more people want to do because of concerns over the negative effects of fluoride.
It’s not surprising when you consider some of horrible facts….
Horrible Facts You MUST Know
Cities all over the US started adding fluoride to water during the 1960s. This was done after a report showed that when fluoride is added to water it can reduce teeth cavities by 90%.
The Department of Health and Human Services in the US are on record for recommending a fluoride level in drinking water that is no higher than 0.7 parts per million (ppm) or mg/L. The idea is that this level of water fluoridation provides numerous health benefits including the prevention of dental fluorosis.
It is true that the right amount of fluoride is able to help improve dental health. However, it is also true that an excessive amount of fluoride can be responsible for weakening bones and ligaments. It may also cause problems with your nervous system.
Why Do You Need A Fluoride Removal Filter?
What makes it worse is that the data on the effects of fluoride is not yet conclusive.
There is still no convincing evidence that suggests that mandatory fluoridation of all water is necessary.
Many industrialized countries do not add fluoride to their water yet don’t have the dental issues that we are warned about by dentists and public health officials.
So although you may be looking for a method to remove fluoride in your whole house is it really necessary? Well answer is both yes … and no. Let me explain.
Do you really need to remove fluoride with a whole house filter?
The short answer is “no”.
If fluoride is dangerous, it is only harmful when you consume it. This means you may want to remove it from all drinking water. However, showering, doing your laundry or flushing your toilet with fluoride water can have no impact on your health.
This means you can happily buy a whole house water filter and then only worry about filtering your drinking water and nothing else. To do this you can get an under-sink water filter, water dispenser, refrigerator filter or even a water filter jug.
Here’s even better news.
Being a water geek means that I regularly keep you up to date on water quality trends. This sometimes means reviewing hundreds of local government water quality reports. I also use these reports to make recommendations, update content and advise readers like you on the best filtration methods for your needs.
I’ve certainly noticed that the level of fluoride added to public water is less and less each year.
The second trend is that the lower end is getting lower. Data from the available public records show that the average level of fluoride in public water is roughly around 0.8ppm. This is less than half of the typical maximum of 2.0ppm.
Still not convinced?
If you are still concerned about the amount of fluoride in your water then you can do 2 very easy things
1) You can check the water report for your local community. They are usually available online (typically in a PDF format) from the website of the water company that is your service provider. If you can’t find it online then get a copy of your most recent water bill and call the customer service number shown on the bill.
2) Take a water test to see the actual level of fluoride in your water. They are easy to use and will only take a few minutes to get your results.
However, chances are that none of the information provided so far has allayed your fears. So here are 3 ways you can easily avoid fluoride water altogether:
3 Ways To Avoid Fluoride Water
- Use the best water filters that remove fluoride: This is the most obvious way of avoiding and removing fluoride from tap water. However, the most important thing to note is that NOT ALL FILTERS REMOVE FLUORIDE. There are only 3 different types of filters that are capable of removing fluoride. They are 1) deionizers (that use ion-exchange resins) 2) reverse osmosis and something called 3) activated alumina. Although they are unable to guarantee 100% removal of fluoride, they should be able to remove around 90%. This is good enough given the low level of fluoride in most tap water and the fact that it is not harmful to health (especially in tiny quantities). Note that activated carbon filters like the ones used in Brita filter jugs do not remove fluoride. For more information on water filters, click here.
- Spring Water: Another way of avoiding fluoride is to always drink and buy spring water. This type of water tends to contain very low levels of fluoride. Just be careful to read the label or find out the ingredients because some brands like “Trinity Springs” contain high fluoride levels. You can find out this information by calling the number on the water bottle label. Your job is to verify that the fluoride content is lower than 0.1 ppm as a complete absence might not always be possible.
- Water Distillation: The 3rd and final water to avoid, or in this case ‘remove’, is to use a water distiller unit. This is because water distillation is able to remove most, if not all, of the fluoride. However, many of them include many further features and are able to remove many other water contaminants. It is very easy to get one and set it up within a few minutes. A small counter-top unit will set you back around $100-$250 but you can get a larger, heavy duty machine with plenty of features for $1,000+.
How To Remove It From Your Drinking Water?
After all this are you still looking for options on how to remove fluoride from tap water?
If you are determined to remove this mineral from your drinking water then there are 2 ways you can do this. The first is RO (i.e. reverse osmosis) or and the second water is water distillation.
1. Reverse Osmosis
Reverse osmosis (or RO for short) is one of the few filtration methods that is able to remove fluoride. It is by far one of the best forms of water filtration and I have written about it extensively.
RO works by pushing water through a semi-permeable membrane (i.e. a very fine filter) thereby leaving all contaminants behind. Apart from fluoride, the RO method can remove things like cysts, lead and pesticides. The result is healthy and pure drinking water.
Ensure that you regularly maintain your RO machine to make sure it continues to work and filter your water as it should.
2. Water Distillation
Distilling water is a purification method that removes everything from water including fluoride. It works by heating contaminated water and capturing the steam of heated water thereby leaving behind contaminants.
This works because both non-volatile organic molecules and inorganic compounds will not be condensed. Furthermore the boiling process kills all microorganisms including bacteria and some common viruses.
Apart from fluoride, water distillers are good at removing things like lead, iron, nitrate and minerals that cause water hardness (e.g. magnesium and calcium).
The water you are left with will be one of the purest forms of water available. This is partly why distilled water is favoured in industrial and biological processes.
Fluoride Water Filter
There are a few ways to remove fluoride from your drinking water. However, one fail safe way is to consider specific filtration systems in your home:
Big Berkey (With Special Fluoride Filters)
This is a counter top water dispenser that can purify certain amounts of water at a time.
The largest Big Berkey is capable of holding around 6 gallons of water at any one time.
Berkey filters are a good solution for people that need to remove a lot of impurities.
This includes things like chlorine and fluoride.