Top 5 Water Filters Reviews and Buying Guide

Why is a safe water bottle not enough to keep you and your family safe from harmful chemicals? If the water that you put in your water bottle isn’t safe, it doesn’t matter what you’re drinking out of. Read these reviews on water filters below and start putting clean drinking water in your water bottles.

Jump to Top 5 Water Purification Systems

Top 5 Water Filters

#1 PUR DS-1800Z 2-Stage Water Dispenser
ProsBest-tasting water of all at-home filtersDimensions are fridge-friendly and shelve well with other itemsEasy to clean and maintainTwo-stage filter removes more contaminants than competitorsConsSlow filter can take a very long timeValve can be depressed by fridge door if arranged just rightA few consumers report cracked, leaking reservoir bottoms
The Pur DS-1800Z 2-Stage Water Dispenser is a large water reservoir, filter, and dispenser that allows fans of the filtered pitcher to chill and store larger amounts of water before having to refill. It holds 18 cups of water and features a 2-stage filter that removes more metals, microbiological organisms, and other contaminants than any other pour-through filter, according to Pur. Of all pour-through filters, this product receives some of the highest water quality marks from owners, based on taste, color, odor, and overall satisfaction. The filter can take quite a long time to process water from the top reservoir to the bottom, however.Design wise, the Pur 2-Stage Water Dispenser gets high marks for appearance as well as footprint: this fridge-friendly dispenser takes up less shelf space (but is taller) than similar products by other manufacturers. It features an easy-to-use valve, so water is dispensed without removing the container from the refrigerator. Some users report that items in the fridge door may press on the valve, causing the tank to empty while the door is closed, so users are advised to situate the dispenser carefully. In some cases, the tank has been known to crack and leak, but the vast majority of users do not report this problem.Bottom line: The Pur DS-1800Z 2-Stage Water Dispenser is designed for fridge or countertop use and provides access to 18 cups of chilled, double-filtered water through an easy-to-use spigot. The double-stage filter removes a variety of metals, cysts, and other contaminants and is one of the top-rated filters for taste, odor, and water quality. Some users have small design complaints relating to the spigot, but for the most part this dispenser gets some of the highest marks of any products serving the purpose of at-home, pour-through water filtration.Read Full Review
#2 Brita 42558 Aqualux Water Pitcher
ProsWater, as always, tastes greatFresh appearance is pleasing to the eyeErgonomic soft grip handle adds quality to the feelReplacement time helps keep track of filter lifeConsLid can fall off when pouring water into a glass
The Brita 42558 Aqualux Water Pitcher is a popular updated model of a popular classic. One of the first companies to produce a filtered water pitcher, Brita does it well. The best quality of this pitcher is that of the water itself. Customers report water that is consistently clean in appearance, taste, and odor compared to the tap water they started with. While some users complain that the more oval design of this newer model makes the lid fall off when pouring, others do not have a problem and appreciate that the new design better accommodates refrigerator space. The Brita filter for the Brita 42558 Aqualux Water Pitcher should be replaced after either 40 gallons of use, or after two months. To aid owners, the pitcher comes with a small electronic 2-month countdown timer on the lid. Replacement filters are widely available, and are increasingly affordable when purchased in multi-packs of greater number.Bottom line: The Brita 42558 Aqualux Water Pitcher is a classic for a reason. It makes great tasting water that is clear, clean, and freed of sediment and a number of impurities that may be bad for a person’s health (and certainly impact taste). While the lid can sometimes fall off while the pitcher is pouring, the design is otherwise refreshing, easy to use, and visually appealing.Read Full Review
#3 Brita 35530 Ultramax Water Dispenser
ProsWater tastes as good as advertisedLarge reservoir holds 1.13 gallons at a timeSpigot is easy to useHolds up well over timeConsSpigot may drip a littleDoesn’t filter out algae
The Brita 35530 Ultramax Dispenser is a popular 1.13-gallon water filter and dispenser. It is designed to filter and refrigerate water using the same filter technology as the popular Brita water pitcher series. With a larger capacity, the Ultramax Dispenser can chill more water at one time and requires refilling less often.The other advantage over the pitcher system is the ease of use. The Brita 35530 Ultramax Dispenser features an easy-to-use spigot on the front of the dispenser, rather than requiring users to remove the container from the fridge to pour a glass of water. It features an electronic gauge that alerts owners when it is time to replace the filter.This refrigerated water filter removes or reduces the rate of various impurities from municipal or well water, including chlorine, lead, mercury, copper, cadmium, zinc, and a number of sediments. In rare cases where algae is present in the original water, algal growth may be seen in the reservoir, but such complaints are isolated.Overall, the flavor, appearance, and taste of the Brita 35530 Ultramax Dispenser’s water is rated quite high. Owners appreciate its design and ease of use. Occasional complaints of a dripping spigot are generally outweighed by the product’s performance and longevity.Bottom line: The Brita 35530 Ultramax Dispenser is a large rectangular water filter and reservoir designed to be kept in the refrigerator. Holding 1.13 gallons, it filters numerous impurities (from metals to sediments and more). Occasional complaints are rare and uncommon, as most owners report high satisfaction with the Brita Ultramax for its good-tasting water, design, ease of use, and longevity.Read Full Review
#4 PUR CR-6000C 2-Stage Oval Water Pitcher with LED Indicator
ProsDoes its job: water quality is high in appearance and tasteSleek design is pleasing to the eyeLED Indicator helps gauge when filter needs changing (based on filter use, not just length since installing)Fits well in refrigeratorGood reputationReplacement filters easy to findConsPlastic quality is cheaper than some would likeSpout is open, not covered, making water susceptible to fridge odor if not refreshed regularly
The Pur CR-6000C 2-Stage Oval Water Pitcher with LED Indicator is a popular filtered water pitcher. It uses carbon filters to grab impurities, sediment, and a number of substances and contaminants that are known or thought to be harmful to health. It also can greatly improve the appearance, odor, and taste of municipal water. Pur says that the filter for this pitcher should be replaced every 40 gallons or 2 months, and the pitcher includes an LED display intended to gauge how much water has passed through the filter and alert owners of the need to replace the filter.On the whole, customers are very pleased with the taste of the water that the Pur CR-6000C 2-Stage Oval Water Pitcher with LED Indicator delivers. Its design is also well-received for its attractive shape and blue color, as well as the ease with which it fits into refrigerators.The most common complaint is that the Pur CR-6000C 2-Stage Oval Water Pitcher with LED Indicator is made of low quality plastic which can, at times, crack or splinter. However, this complaint comes from a minority of owners; most report months of use without any breakage.Bottom line: The Pur CR-6000C 2-Stage Oval Water Pitcher with LED Indicator does a great job of making great tasting water. Some people find the plastic a little thin for their liking, but most customers are satisfied with the pitcher’s appearance. Its replaceable filters are designed to remove heavy metals and a number of impurities from tap water. This pitcher has a good reputation for effective filtering when replaced according to the manufacturer’s instructions.Read Full Review
#5 Culligan FM-15A Level 3 Faucet Filter
ProsEasy to installComes with adaptors to fit (most) faucetsImproves taste of waterGood build quality: outlasts competitorsBetter price than competitorsGood customer supportConsTaste not quite as good as competitorsSlows faucet speedDoesn’t fit some faucets
The Culligan FM-15A Level 3 Faucet Filter attaches to a kitchen (or other) faucet and allows homeowners to switch quickly between filtered water, for drinking, and regular tap water, to save filter life for dishes and other tasks where taste is not important. The filter reduces lead, chlorine, and cysts to create water that taste, smells, and looks better and is cleaner and healthier as well. It comes with a simple assembly kit, including two adaptors for different types of faucets. Most, but not all, kitchen faucets are compatible with this faucet filter.One of the key design advantages is that the filter automatically flips off when you shut off the water. This means that the next time the faucet is run, it will revert to regular tap water, reducing accidental hot water use (which can damage the filter) and prolonging the filter’s life by using it only intentionally.Some owners complain that the taste is not quite as clear as similar products by Brita and Pur. However, almost all agree that the Culligan faucet filter is much more solidly built than these competitors’ products (many of which are reported to break easily). The only other complaint is that the Culligan FM-15A Level 3 Faucet Filter causes faucets to run a bit slower.Bottom line: The Culligan FM-15A Level 3 Faucet Filter is easily mounted on most kitchen faucets and toggles between tap water and filtered water, with tap water as the default setting to prolong filter life. This filter reduces lead, chlorine, cysts, and other impurities and improves taste, appearance, odor, and purity. Taste-wise, it’s a notch below some competitors, but most owners find that the build quality and price still make it a better buy.Read Full Review

Top 5 Water Purification Systems

#1 Crystal Clear 5 Stage Reverse Osmosis Water Filter System
ProsWater tastes and looks excellent (and has no odor)3 gallon storage tank so water is always ready when you need itQuieter than competitors’ five-stage modelsRemoves many heavy metals, cysts, and other known impuritiesGood value for the moneyConsInstruction manual is unhelpful and at times incorrect
The 5 Stage Reverse Osmosis Water Filter System by Crystal Clear is an advanced water filtration and purification system that is installed below the sink or countertop, typically in a kitchen. This system runs water through three filters, one reverse osmosis stage, and then an additional filter. It removes a number of minerals, heavy metals, and impurities, including lead, mercury, chlorine, rust, and particles, as well as several contaminants that are known to cause disease. Customers report significant improvement in the quality, taste, and appearance of their water. However, the instruction manual is notoriously unhelpful, and many users report frustration searching online for helpful advice; others hired a plumber to assist them. This system includes a sink-top faucet dispenser as well as a 3-gallon below-sink storage tank, which allows the unit to filter and store plenty of water for immediate use. Price wise, this model compares well to competing units from other manufacturers, is quieter, and also removes fluoride.Bottom line: This 5-stage under-the-sink Reverse Osmosis Water Filter System from Crystal Clear does an excellent job of improving water quality and removing harmful contaminants. It features an 3-gallon storage tank and an attractive sink-top faucet dispenser, separate from the primary kitchen faucet. Though it comes with poor instructions, once it is installed owners report years of consistent performance and great pleasure with the water quality.Read Full Review
#2 Watts WP5-50 Premier Five-Stage Manifold Reverse Osmosis Water Treatment System
ProsVery clean water: no smell, no color, no odor, measurably better qualityFive-stage system is thorough and removes several contaminants other products do notStylish, quality faucet fits easily in existing auxiliary sink holeRelatively simple to installFilters are easy to changeStorage tank holds extra waterConsOwners complain of loud hissing noiseCreates more waste water than pure waterDoes not remove bacteria or viruses
The Watts WP5-50 Premier Five-Stage Manifold Reverse Osmosis Water Treatment System is a comprehensive, five-stage water purification system that uses a combination of reverse osmosis and 4 filtering stages to rid tap water of a number of impurities and additives. It filters out sediment, chlorine, cysts (which can spread disease), lead, and a number of what are called total dissolved solids (TDSes), which includes arsenic, chrome, nitrates, and other impurities.This unit comes with a five-stage system and 3-gallon storage tank, both of which are installed underneath a sink or counter if used in the kitchen. It also includes a stylish faucet, which goes above the sink (in the auxiliary hole, if the sink has one available).When it come to water taste, appearance, smell, and overall quality, this is one of the most effective at-home filtration systems you can buy. However, many users report a loud hissing sound from the reverse osmosis process, which is irritating to owners who install the system in their kitchens. It also generates a significant amount of waste water for the amount of fresh water it produces.Bottom line: The Watts WP5-50 Premier Five-Stage Manifold Reverse Osmosis Water Treatment System is a thorough at-home filtration system. It serves its intended purpose very well: in terms of water quality (including taste, odor, and appearance) this product is one of the best. However, home users complain of a loud hissing noise, and the unit does create quite a bit of waste water for the amount of purified water it produces.Read Full Review
#3 Watts Premier RO-Pure 4-Stage Reverse Osmosis System
ProsLives up to the promise: very clean, clear, good tasting waterStorage tank for 3 gallons of water immediately readyGoes beyond smaller filters to remove TDS impuritiesAttractive, high quality faucet better than cheaper competitorsCan also connect to in-fridge ice makerStraightforward installation and filter replacementConsFour-stage means more bulk; takes up considerable under-sink spaceReverse osmosis wastes some water, creates gurgling noiseMore filters means more expensive filter replacement
Designed to go a step beyond smaller purifiers, the Watts Premier RO-Pure 4-Stage Reverse Osmosis System eliminates both biological contaminants and other impurities from tap water, including sediment, chlorine, bacteria, viruses, cysts, lead, chromium, sodium, arsenic, copper, and other unwanted substances. It comes with an attractive, high quality faucet designed to fit in the auxiliary hole of any standard sink. It can also be hooked up to a refrigerator or ice maker, in addition to the primary faucet, for additional functionality with in the kitchen.This four-stage system uses reverse osmosis with filtering steps both before and after the RO process itself. With four stages, it takes up a decent amount of space under the sink, but its installation is straightforward and clearly explained in the manual. This system also contains a high capacity, 3-gallon storage tank so that purified water is instantly available. Owners report that the resulting water is very clear in appearance, has no odor, and tastes very clean.Bottom line: The Watts Premier RO-Pure 4-Stage Reverse Osmosis System installs underneath the kitchen sink and provides high quality filtered water for drinking, cooking, and ice making. Its 4-stage reverse-osmosis and filtration system earns high marks from customers, even those whose municipal water is notably odorous and discolored. While somewhat bulky under the sink, this product does what it promises to do, and does so well.Read Full Review
#4 Culligan US-EZ-4 EZ-Change Level-4 Under-Sink Drinking Water System
ProsWater tastes goodThe price is rightDoesn’t take up the whole under-sink space like larger modelsCulligan is a trusted brand nameLight indicates when filter needs replacingConsCheap faucet breaks easily (even after replacement)Both faucet and connections are known to break and cause flooding
The Culligan EZ-Change Level-4 Under-Sink Drinking Water System provides an affordable way to have filtered and purified drinking water on tap with minimal cost or labor. Both its performance and its price establish it as a compromise between filtered water pitchers on the minimal end and multi-step reverse osmosis purification systems on the complex end. The Culligan EZ-Change Level-4 Under-Sink Drinking Water System installs below the sink and attaches to an above-sink faucet. The plastic faucet that comes with the filter has a reputation for breaking easily (even during installation), which has caused some owners to experience flooding in their homes. The filter itself works well, reducing bad taste, color, and odors, and also reducing a number of contaminants, including chlorine, asbestos, volatile organic chemicals, cysts (including cryptosporidium and giardia, which are known to cause sickness if contracted through water). Each filter has a lifespan of approximately 6 months or 500 gallons of water, whichever comes first, and the unit also has a light to indicate when the filter is ready to be replaced.Bottom line: The Culligan EZ-Change Level-4 Under-Sink Drinking Water System makes great water, but comes with a cheap faucet that can easily break and cause flooding. When installed with a solid faucet, this filter system does a good job of improving the drinkability and quality of tap water. It installs under the sink, where it takes up very little space and can also be attached to an ice maker.Read Full Review
#5 Watts WP2BVC Premier Two-Stage Microbiological Purifier Water Filtration System
ProsWater output looks clean & tastes good.Attractive faucet is higher quality than some competitors.Customers report good customer service from WattsSmall size under sinkGood price for the qualityConsOutdated or unclear manualNot as simple to install as manufacturer suggests
The Watts WP2BVC Premier 2-Stage Microbiological Purifier Water Filtration System is a 2-stage at-home water purification system that is installed underneath a sink and comes with a separate, well-styled faucet to provide filtered water at the countertop level alongside the existing kitchen faucet. It is designed to remove a number of microbiological contaminants including bacteria, viruses, and cysts, as well as chlorine (often added during purification at the municipal level) and also sediment (often found in water). Users report that the Watts WP2BVC Premier 2-Stage Microbiological Purifier Water Filtration System provides high quality, clear, clean tasting drinking water. It is not quite as simple to install as Watts promotes, but most users have no major complaints once it is in. This system works in two stages, each which a separate filter; both filters should be replaced every 6 months, or if the water begins to slow before that (a sign they are no longer filtering as effectively).Bottom line: The Watts WP2BVC Premier 2-Stage Microbiological Purifier Water Filtration System does a good job for the price and includes a more attractive faucet than cheaper competitors, yet it’s not at the top of the price scale either. It’s a little tricky to install, but the end product is very clean, good-tasting water that is inline with the manufacturer’s promises.Read Full Review

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