Newest Review: ... that filters will need to be bought regularly to ensure it works at its best performance. The filters can be bought at almost any s... more
A Scandalously Good Water-Gate
Brita Marella Water Filter
Member Name: Puggers
Brita Marella Water Filter
Advantages: Easy to use, well-designed, produces good-tasting water.
Disadvantages: Not cheap.
I drink it somewhat obsessively owing to a deeply entrenched fear of headaches - which, as fears go, seems a pretty reasonable phobia when you've got people suffering from Arachibutyrophobia; the fear of peanut butter sticking to the roof of your mouth, or the entirely understandable terror caused by chins that is Geniophobia ...
In any case, as much as I love the aquatic stuff, I don't appreciate it tasting like a swimming pool or looking like it's been scooped from a stagnant puddle. Such are the joys of foreign plumbing (and Southern Water, to be fair), and such is the void into which Brita's water filters step.
My particular model is a sleek and sexy plastic fellow who sits happily inside the fridge door, keeping my water cool and clean-tasting. Design-wise, water from the tap fills a reservoir (via a natty flip-top lid) and passes down through a removable filter into the jug's main body, ready to be poured. The gleaming blue lid, redolent of the secretive crystal waters of the Norwegian fjords ... or something ... is inbuilt with a filter-gauge, which supposedly tells you when you need to splash out on a replacement mechanism.
~ ~ ~ The Clever Bits ~ ~ ~
This filter is very much the ingenious part - and comes with a price tag to match. The cartridges retailing at £4.65 a pop, and claiming to last a month each, you'll have doubled the price of the jug itself (£15.66) before you've had it half a year. Still, good things come to those with weighty pockets - and despite simple appearances, the filters seem to do their stuff pretty effectively. Chunky little cuboids which seem to be filled with bean-bag beans, they remove "taste and aroma-impairing substances"; chlorine, limescale and metallic traces namely as the water passes through, giving a quality of water akin to bottled taste-wise.
The cartridges are plenty simple to insert and remove, slotting into the base of the reservoir. As much as Brita claim that a month is the lifespan of each filter, there's no spontaneous combustion at the end of the period (always a plus) - and indeed, there's no perceptible difference if you leave it in longer. It's tempting to conclude that the filters' lifestyles are conveniently short given their considerable cost, although perhaps I'm just a cynical so-and-so. Who I am to question "unique MAXTRA filtration technology" anyway? I tend to crumble under the imagined disapproving eyes of the Brita deities and change my filter every six weeks or so.
Ooh, and they're recyclable! Happy days.
~ ~ ~ Money for Nothing? ~ ~ ~
It's certainly not drinks for free. Do you need a water filter? Plenty of people would tell you that you do. Others would point at you and laugh. Probably behind your back. You're either wasting your money on pointless gadgets or exposing your family to countless mutagens, just inviting the day when Timmy overdoses on Chlorine and sprouts a third arm. The truth is probably somewhere in the middle, and ultimately if it makes you feel better about what you're drinking, or simply takes away the chemically aftertaste, it's likely worth it.
The cartridges are, of course, wildly overpriced. Living in England, I've drunk tap water happily enough, but whenever I've lived abroad I've avoided it - and the last time round I bought bottled water, accumulating enough to construct a full set of bowling lanes. The filter-jug is much the better alternative for me; almost certainly cheaper, environmentally better and countless times easier. For the intrinsically lazy, this is the deal-sealer - clean, fresh-tasting water with a minimum of effort. Plus it looks quite nice on my fridge shelf. The Brita revolution awaits.
Summary: An easy, if pricey route to clean, clear water.
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