Trust is What NSF/ANSI Certification is All About
Do a quick google search for water filters. You’ll find systems making all sorts of performance claims, but how do you know that you can trust that these claims? The answer is independent NSF/ANSI certification.
The best rule of thumb is to confirm that the system’s claims have been certified by a trusted third-party source. Without much regulation, water filtration manufacturers are able to make their own claims. Sadly, this has led to an industry riddled with false and unvalidated performance claims. NSF/ANSI certification from a trusted independent source ensures that the filtration products you’re using actually remove the contaminants that you’re worried about.
What Does NSF/ANSI Certification Mean?
There are no federal guidelines that currently exist for residential water filters. Because of this, voluntary national standards have been developed. If you’re looking at a water filter with an NSF/ANSI claim, it means that the product should have been tested and certified by an accredited laboratory for one or more of the specific NSF/ANSI Standards.
The Most Common NSF/ANSI Standards for Water Filtration:
- NSF/ANSI 42 – Filters with this certification have been confirmed to reduce aesthetic impurities like taste, odor, and chlorine.
- NSF/ANSI 53 – Filters with this certification are tested and confirmed to reduce contaminants with negative health effects. Every product with this certification should have a performance data sheet that will list all of the contaminants that are reduced.
- NSF/ANSI 177 – This is the only certification standard available for shower filtration, which certifies that the system reduces free available chlorine.
- NSF/ANSI 401 – Filters with this certification have been tested and verified to reduce at least one of 15 emerging contaminants. They include contaminants that are not yet regulated by the EPA, such as pharmaceuticals, hormones and detergents. These contaminants should be listed individually on a product’s performance data sheet.
- NSF P473 – Filters with this certification have been confirmed to remove PFOA/PFOS.
- NSF/ANSI 372 – Filters with this certification have been confirmed to be lead-free.
“The WQA Gold Seal Product Certification Program offers a scientific method to assure the safety and efficacy of the devices consumers are purchasing.”Water Quality Association
Who Are the Trusted Third-Party Testing Laboratories?
The most trusted testing and certification authorities in the water filtration industry are WQA (Water Quality Association), IAPMO, and NSF International. These three laboratories test to the same strict NSF/ANSI Standards. As a result, they are trusted by consumers, manufacturers, and regulatory agencies worldwide.
- WQA – Established in 1974, the Water Quality Association is a not for profit organization that represents the water treatment industry. Their Gold Seal Product Certification Program “offers a scientific method to assure the safety and efficacy of the devices consumers are purchasing.” In order to receive the WQA Gold Seal, a product must go through rigorous testing as well as a thorough review of all literature and materials.
- IAPMO – Founded in 1926, the International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials works to develop and implement comprehensive plumbing and mechanical systems throughout the world. They protect people around the globe by putting health first in their practices.
- NSF – NSF International has helped develop “public health standards and certification programs that help protect the world’s food, water, consumer products and environment” since 1944. Because of this, they are one of the most recognized authorities in water quality.
Not all water filters are equal. When looking for the best water filter system, always look for one with NSF/ANSI certifications that address the specific contaminants in your water. Do your research and choose only trusted filtration products backed up by science.
Rigorous testing by a trusted third-party laboratory is the only way to ensure that your chosen filtration product is effective. In an industry riddled with invalidated and exaggerated performance claims, independent NSF/ANSI Certification is all about trust.
WaterChef offers advanced water filtration products that are independently NSF/ANSI certified for a broad range of common tap water contaminants. Our premium quality water filter lines include whole house, under-sink, countertop, shower, and refrigerator filter solutions.