Does Brita remove PFAS? [ANSWERED]

Activated carbon is used as a filter in Brita Filters, so they get rid of some of the PFAS in water. But they don’t always get rid of all the PFAS to make the water safe to drink. You shouldn’t use pitcher filters like Brita permanently to get rid of PFAS so that you can drink them.

High iodine number AC easily absorbs perfluorooctanoic acid, so Brita filters should work fine, temporarily while you save up to get a water system that can get rid of the chemicals 100% of the time.

Brita water filters use activated carbon made from coconuts and ion exchange resin in a BPA-free housing to get rid of the taste and smell of chlorine, zinc, and the health risks of copper, cadmium, and mercury.

Activated carbon absorbs large organic molecules like PFOAs, so Britta water filters should get rid of some of the PFOAs. However, Britta water filters aren’t very good filters, so they might only get rid of 75–85% of the PFOAs. In any case, go to their website and look at the filters that remove trichloro compounds. A regular water pitcher filter is not enough, but one that is attached to the faucet might be.

Even though Brita filters weren’t made to get rid of PFAS (per- and poly fluoroalkyl substances) and don’t say they do, they use the same process that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) says works to get rid of PFAS. Activated carbon and an ion exchange treatment are two of these.

Industries make and use these man-made chemicals for a wide range of things. PFAS have now gotten into water and food, making it easy for people to eat these chemicals that could be harmful.

A Brief Look at PFAS

The group of chemicals called “PFAS” includes PFOA, PFOS, and GenX.

Because it was bad for people’s health, companies in the US stopped making these chemicals. In other countries, though, these chemicals are sometimes used to make consumer goods that are then shipped to the United States. Here are some examples of these goods:

  • Paper Food packaging
  • Fabrics that can’t get wet or dirty
  • Non-stick surfaces
  • Cosmetics

How people get PFAS in their bodies

Since these chemicals have been used in a wide range of products for the past 80 years, they are now found everywhere.

  • Drinking Water

Standard water treatment plants don’t always get rid of PFAS, so these chemicals could be in your tap water. Also, PFAS can get into the water supply from places like landfills, firefighter training facilities (because they use foams), factories, wastewater treatment facilities, military bases, and places where trash is burned.

  • The Food We Eat

PFAS can get into our food in a number of ways. Fruits, vegetables, and grains are watered with water that has PFAS in it, or they are grown in soil that has PFAS in it. Some food packaging has these chemicals in it, and some places that process food use equipment that has PFAS in it. PFAS can be found in fish, chicken, beef, pork, and other meats.

  • Products for the home

It would be a miracle if your house didn’t have at least a few things with PFAS in them. Some everyday items that have PFAS in them are cleaning products, paints, waxes, polishes, pots, pans that don’t stick, and fabrics that are treated to repel stains or water.

ALSO SEE: How to Remove PFAS in Drinking Water

PFAS and how they can hurt your health

Some PFAS can’t be broken down by your body. Over time, these chemicals build up in your body. The harm to a person’s body, based on laboratory testing on animals, according to the EPA, can include:

  • Babies who are born too small
  • Cancer
  • Child developmental disorders
  • Immune system is not as good as it should be
  • Changes in thyroid hormones
  • Problems with reproduction
  • Liver and kidney diseases
  • Elevated cholesterol levels
  • As more research is done in this area, more bad health effects could be found in the coming months and years.

How to deal with PFAS in your water

Since Brita filters don’t get rid of PFAS, you should look for other ways to cut down on your use. The U.S. Navy says you should use water from a different source to drink, brush your teeth, or do anything else that could cause you to swallow some of the water. This is true whether you are cooking, washing fruits and vegetables, making baby formula, or doing anything else with food.

Boiling doesn’t destroy or get rid of PFAS, but it could make the amount of them in the water higher. If the amount of PFAS in your water supply is too high, you shouldn’t even water your garden.

When there is too much PFAS in your tap water, you should only drink bottled water or water from another source, but only if the water has low levels of PFAS or none at all.

Filtering PFAs from Drinking Water

Brita filters reduce or get rid of a lot of different chemicals in tap water, but they don’t get rid of PFAs. Brita says on its website that its filters get rid of the taste and smell of chlorine, as well as zinc, copper, mercury, and some small particles.

Some Brita filters get rid of some industrial chemicals, but Brita’s website doesn’t say anything about getting rid of PFAs.

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