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Published Sep. 17, 2021

If you’re concerned about the quality of your tap water or simply don’t love the taste, a water filter is a great way to clean up your drinking supply so you can stay more hydrated without shelling out for bottled water. While there are several different styles and many features to consider when buying a new water filter, we’ve narrowed down the best filters on the market for every budget and household size. You’ll find both in-sink and external filters on this list. 

How We Picked the Best Water Filters

Methodology 

From the different styles of water filters to the efficacy of hard metal filtration, there’s a lot to consider if you want to clean up your drinking water. To find the best filters on the market, we dug into the specific features, including:

Style: Because every household has different needs, we did the research to find the best filters in every style, including countertop, in-sink, and pitcher-style. 

Efficacy: To avoid wasting money on a filter that does little to improve the taste or health of your water, we made sure that all of the filters on this list are shown to reduce hard metals and other common contaminants. 

Maintenance: No one wants a new kitchen appliance if it’s just going to require constant maintenance. The water filters listed are easy to install and keep clean. We also looked for appliances with long-lasting filters so you don’t have to deal with constant replacements. 

Size: Water filters can be bulky, so we looked for options that strike a good balance between water capacity and physical footprint in your kitchen. 

Value: While you can easily find filters that cost hundreds of dollars, we emphasized reasonably-priced models with replacement filters that don’t break the bank.  

The Best Water Filters: Reviews and Recommendations

Best Overall: Frizzlife Under Sink Water Filter System

Out of Sight, Out of Mind

Hook this discrete, under-the-sink water filter up and you can skip the refilling and chilling of other filtration systems. FRIZZLIFE

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Why It Made The Cut: This is one of the most highly effective filtration systems that also happens to be affordable and easy to install. 

Specs: 

  • Dimensions: 5 x 5 x 13.5 inches
  • Style: Under the sink
  • Flow rate: 2 gallons per minute

Pros: 

  • Removes 99.99 percent of contaminants but not essential minerals
  • Includes everything you need for installation
  • High flow rate

Cons: 

  • Some sinks have reduced water pressure with the filter attached

Once you’ve taken the three minutes to install this Frizzlife water filter system, you won’t ever have to think about it again. There’s no cumbersome refilling, waiting, and draining the filter like there is with pitcher-style and countertop filters. Instead, this machine works under the sink to remove heavy metals and other contaminants, leaving you with crystal-clear and flavor-free water fresh from the tap. It includes a filter that can last up to two years. However, the company recommends replacement every 6 to 8 months for the best filtration. 

The filter is as easy to replace as the entire contraption is to install. There’s no need to turn off your water supply or break out any special installation equipment. The filter is designed to work with any size water valve and has a low temperature setting of 38°F, which is just a few degrees above ice water. 

Best Value: Brita Extra-Large 18-Cup Filtered Water Dispenser

Spacious and Affordable

This large water filter sits in your fridge or on the counter for easy access to taste-free water all day long. Brita

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Why It Made The Cut: You can’t beat the price tag, especially for the size of this gravity-filtered model. 

Specs: 

  • Dimensions: 14.37 x 5.67 x 10.47 inches
  • Style: Countertop
  • Capacity: 18 cups

Pros: 

  • Large capacity
  • Locking lid to reduce spills
  • Fits in the fridge or on the counter

Cons: 

  • Takes up more counter space than other models
  • Made from plastic

For large households, this 18-cup filter from Brita is a great option. It has the filtration power you expect from the Brita brand name, with the ability to remove chlorine, mercury, copper, zinc and cadmium, at a wallet-friendly price. 

Customers note that their tap water tastes significantly better after running through this Brita. And because the appliance doesn’t require any electricity or other power source, you can even travel with it. This is a great size for an RV or camping with a group. The dispenser comes with one Longlast filter, which needs replacement every six months. Replacement filters are also compatible with other Brita models, including the pitcher-style filters.  

Best Pitcher Water Filter: Brita Longlast Everyday Water Filter Pitcher

Great for Large Households

Keep ice-cold filtered water on hand in the fridge with this 10-cup pitcher-style filter. Brita

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Why It Made The Cut: This is the simplest and easiest to use pitcher-style water filter with ample space for large households. 

Specs: 

  • Dimensions: 10.7 x 5.4 x 10.1 inches
  • Style: Pitcher
  • Capacity: 10 cups

Pros: 

  • Includes a Longlast filter with up to 6 months of filtration
  • Designed for space-efficient storage
  • Removes 99 percent of lead, chlorine, and cadmium

Cons: 

  • Made of plastic

Brita is a long-respected name in the world of water filtration, so it’s no surprise that its signature pitcher-style filter made the list. This larger 10-cup model holds enough water to keep most small households well hydrated. And despite its bigger size, it’s designed to squeeze comfortably into your fridge without monopolizing too much precious real estate. 

Their Longlast filters remove heavy metals and flavors from tap water and only need replacement twice a year. And if you have an older model, the filters are compatible with all Brita filters except the brand’s Stream line. To clean the pitcher, simply remove the filter and hand wash the plastic container with dish soap. This pitcher is also reasonably priced, and the replacement filters are reasonably priced, making this one of the most economical water filtration systems. 

Best for Countertop: Big Berkey Gravity-Fed Water Filter

High Volume Filtration

This gleaming, stainless-steel countertop filter removes an impressive amount of contaminants. Berkey

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Why It Made The Cut: This countertop filter is incredibly long-lasting. It removes hundreds of common water contaminants to turn nearly any water potable. 

Specs: 

  • Dimensions: 8.5 x 8.5 x 19.25 inches
  • Style: Countertop
  • Capacity: 2.25 gallons

Pros: 

  • Includes 2 purification elements
  • Easy to clean
  • Third-party tested for efficacy

Cons: 

  • Takes up a lot of counter space

This Berkey countertop filter filters out over 200 contaminants from your tap water, including 100 percent of copper, arsenic and lead, according to an independent test. This filter is even strong enough to turn raw, untreated fresh water into drinking water. It comes with two purification elements, which can cycle up to 6,000 gallons of water before needing to be replaced. Without requiring electricity or batteries, this filter relies on good old-fashioned gravity to draw your water through the purification elements.

To clean the filter inside and out, simply use a solution of 1 part white distilled vinegar to 3 parts water. Rinse it well to make sure no vinegar flavor lingers in your drinking water. You will need to find counter space for the filter, however, so this may not be the best option for smaller households. 

Best Faucet-Attached: PUR Faucet Water Filtration System

Minimalist Design

This sleek, stainless steel filter dispenses great-tasting tap water directly from your faucet. PUR

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Why It Made The Cut: This is the best-looking water filter on the market, but it also happens to do its job well without reducing water pressure or requiring much maintenance. 

Specs: 

  • Dimensions: 5.25 x 6.75 x 2.87 inches
  • Style: Faucet mount
  • Capacity: 100 gallons 

Pros: 

  • Indicator alerts you to change the filter
  • Easy install without tools
  • Reduces 70 water contaminants

Cons: 

  • Filter needs replacement every 3 months

This minimalist filter by PUR is the easiest to install sink-operated filter on the market. It also looks good and makes your water taste great. By using ion exchange technology, this small filter uses activated carbon to reduce heavy metals in your tap water, including lead and mercury. 

The filter needs replacing every 100 gallons, but instead of keeping track, you can rely on the simple indicator light on the filter head to let you know when it’s time for a change. 

This lightweight (3.98 ounces) filter is unobtrusive and easy to use every day. If you’re washing dishes or performing another task and don’t want to use filtered water, you can extend the lifespan of your filter by switching the handy valve on the end from filtered to regular tap water. 

Things to Consider Before Buying a Water Filter

Type of Filter

Think about what kind of filter makes the most sense for your kitchen. If you’re low on space, an under-the-counter or faucet-attached filter might make the most sense. On the other hand, if you prefer to keep your water cold in the fridge, a pitcher or dispenser-style filter is a good option. 

What You Want to Filter Out

Consider if there are any particular contaminants that you want to remove from your water supply. For example, if you’re especially concerned about lead, make sure that the filter you buy has been tested and proven to effectively remove a high degree of lead. 

FAQs

Q: What’s the best way to filter tap water?

The best kind of water filter for you depends on how you’ll use it and where. If you’d like to filter the tap water at your office, a pitcher or countertop model is a great option. At home, an under the sink filter that’s easy to install can help streamline your everyday water consumption. 

Q: Are drinking water filters worth the cost?

If you often buy bottled water for the clean taste, investing in a water filter at home is a great way to save money and reduce plastic waste. It can also be good for your health by removing contaminants in the drinking water supply. Plus, water filters don’t have to be expensive. Many of the options on this list are affordable and highly effective.

Q: Which water filter is best for home?

The best water filter for your home depends on what type of filter you want. The minimalist filter by PUR is an easy-to-install option for your kitchen sink. If you prefer a filter in your refrigerator, the Brita Longlast Everyday Water Filter Pitcher is a great option for large families. 

Final Thoughts

If you plan to use filtered water for all of your cooking and drinking, a discreet and low-maintenance under-the-sink filter like the Frizzlife model is a great option. With powerful water flow and an easy to install design, this filter can fit into any kitchen.

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