The 9 Best Water Filters of 2022 for Clean Water at Home

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Best Water Filters

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If you prefer to drink filtered water, an at-home water filter could be right for you. Home water filters are made to remove non-water substances from your water. Certain filters can impact the taste, feel, and makeup of your water. There are multiple types of water filters on the market ranging from simple pitchers to more advanced whole-house solutions.

“At-home water filters can remove as little as simply chlorine or sediment, or up to hundreds of different contaminants. They can even remove beneficial minerals such as calcium and magnesium,” says Craig Hoffman, chief technologist and founder of Atla Water System and a former nuclear engineer managing water chemistry for the U.S. Navy. 

To find the best water filters for your home, we researched a variety of picks, keeping in mind each pick’s size, flow rate, filter type, and water type. We also consulted Hoffman for additional insight. 

Here, the best water filters.

What We Recommend

Best Under the Sink: Aquasana 2-Stage Under Sink Water Filter System

Aquasana 2-Stage Under Sink Water Filter System

Amazon

Why You Should Get It: It doesn’t require a plumber for installation. Plus, three faucet finishes make it easy to match your kitchen. 

Keep in Mind: This system only filters one tap and will require a new style faucet.

Overall, the best water filter for under the sink is Aquasana’s 2-Stage Filter System. The filter goes under your sink and doesn’t require a plumber to install it, making it easy to use. Plus, The NSF-certified design claims to remove up to 97% of chlorine and chloramine, 99% of cysts, lead, VOCs, and asbestos, and 95% of mercury, so you can feel confident that you have safe and clean drinking water. 

The set comes with filters, hosing, an install kit, and a faucet, which is offered in three finishes. Once you’ve installed it, you’ll be able to enjoy it for six months before a performance indicating device alerts you that it’s time to change it. Luckily, changing the filter is easy—just twist off the current filter and screw in the new one, no tools or disconnected water lines necessary. 

Price at time of publish: $126

Product Details: 

  • Flow Rate: 0.5 gpm 
  • Filter Type: Ion exchange, activated carbon
  • Water Type: Not listed

Best Pitcher: Brita Longlast Everyday Water Filter Pitcher

Brita Longlast Everyday Water Filter Pitcher

Amazon

Why You Should Get It: This water pitcher filter is easy to use and with standard use, the filter will last for six months. 

Keep in Mind: The pitcher comes with one filter, so you’ll have to buy additional replacements. Plus, it has to be hand washed, which may make it harder to maintain.

For an easy-to-use option, one of the best water filter options is the Brita Longlast Everyday Water Filter Pitcher. To use it, all you have to do is simply fill up the pitcher with water from your tap and let the enclosed filter do all the work. 

The pitcher is available in black or white and holds up to 10 cups of water. Unlike other Brita styles, this longlast version only needs the filters changed every six months—just pay attention to the electronic indicator, which notifies you when it needs to be replaced. The pitcher, which has to be hand washed, comes with one filter so keep in mind you’ll have to continuously purchase replacements. 

Price at time of publish: $42

Product Details:

  • Flow Rate: Not listed 
  • Filter Type: Not listed 
  • Water Type: Not listed

Best Faucet : PUR PLUS Faucet Mount Water Filtration System

PUR PLUS Faucet Mount Water Filtration System

Amazon

Why You Should Get It: This option is easy to install and makes it simple to swap between tap and filtered water.

Keep in Mind: This design won’t work on a pullout or handheld faucet. The filter also lasts around three months before needing to be replaced, which is less time than other filters.

Faucet filters, like this design from PUR, are a simple solution, making them some of the best water filters for your home. The installation is more simple than some under-sink or whole house filters and will even save refrigerator space, unlike pitchers. 

To install the PUR Plus Faucet Filtration System, all you have to do is attach it to your faucet, no tools required. Each filter lasts for around three months before an indicator light on the unit reminds you to replace it. It’s worth noting that the filters on this design have a shorter lifespan than some other options, so you’ll need to replace it more often. 

Unlike some other filters, this design allows you to swap between filtered water and standard tap water, so it’s got you covered for lots of uses. The faucet is available in six finishes and comes with three adapters to fit most faucets. Just keep in mind it doesn’t work with pull out or hand-held faucets, so it may not be suitable for every kitchen. 

Price at time of publish: $30

Product Details: 

  • Flow Rate: Not listed 
  • Filter Type: Ion exchange 
  • Water Type: Not listed

Best Water Bottle: Grayl Ultrapress Water Purifier and Filter Bottle

4.3
Grayl Ultrapress Water Purifier and Filter Bottle

Amazon

Why You Should Get It: This self-contained filter works in ten seconds and is available in multiple colors. 

Keep in Mind: The bottle is more expensive than other options and not insulated, so it won’t keep the water very cold.

The Grayl UltraPress Water Filter and Purifier Bottle is the best water filter for backpacking, hiking, travel, or everyday needs. Made with an enclosed filter, the bottle is easy to use—simply fill it with water from any source, press the filter, and in ten seconds, you have filtered water to drink. 

The 16.9-ounce bottle is offered in multiple colors and is the ideal size for either a backpack pocket or cup holder. The bottle’s cartridge is rated for about 300 cycles, but you’ll know to replace it when the bottle’s press time reaches about 25 seconds. 

The bottle is more expensive than some other water filters on the market, however the durable design makes it one of the best water filters to consider. In addition to non-slip properties that’ll protect it while you travel, the bottle is able to filter out a variety of viruses, chemicals, heavy metals, and bacteria, so even river water will be safe to drink. 

Price at time of publish: $90

Product Details: 

  • Flow Rate: Not listed 
  • Filter Type: Activated carbon, ion exchange 
  • Water Type: Not listed

Best with a Spout: Brita Extra Large Filtered Water Dispenser

Brita Extra Large Filtered Water Dispenser

Amazon

Why You Should Get It: The dispenser is on the larger side, which is ideal for large households.

Keep in Mind: The dispenser can be heavy when full, which could make it difficult for some to refill. If you use the standard filter it’ll have to be replaced every two months.

This water dispenser holds up to 18 cups of water and is the best water filter for larger households. The larger style is designed to be space efficient and fits on your refrigerator shelf, so you’ll always have clean drinking water on hand. 

Unlike other pitchers, this style has a spout for a dispenser, so you won’t have to lift a heavy pitcher each time you want water. Just keep in mind that refilling it may be difficult for some as it can be on the heavier side once it’s full. The lid locks in place and the spigot is made to prevent leaks, essential details that’ll prevent a mess in your refrigerator. 

Before you choose this style, make sure you have the room in your refrigerator—although it’s space efficient, you’ll still need to have a shelf with the proper shelf height to fit the style. A filter indicator will notify you when it’s time to change the filter as well. The dispenser is compatible with the brand’s elite and standard filters but it’s worth noting that the elite filters last for six months while the standard will need to be replaced after two months. 

Price at time of publish: $41

Product Details

  • Flow Rate: Not listed
  • Filter Type: Not listed
  • Water Type: Not listed

Best Whole Home: Express Water Heavy Metal Whole House Water Filter

4.6
Express Water Heavy Metal

 Courtesy of the Home Depot

Why You Should Get It: This system filters water throughout the entire house, so there’s no need for special faucets. 

Keep in Mind: Professional installation is required, your home pipes need to be compatible, and the steel frame and filters require storage space.

The Express Water Heavy Metal Whole House Water Filter will dispense clean water throughout your whole home and is the best water filter if you don’t want to worry about new faucets and attachments for every kitchen and bathroom. 

Unlike many other water filters, this option takes up a bit of space in your home and does require a professional installation and plumbing requirements for the filtering capabilities to function correctly. However, this pick is a three-filter system, so you choose each type of filter based on your needs and water type. 

Once installed, the filter change process is easy for homeowners to do. Most filter cartridges will last between six months and a year before needing a change, so you won’t have to worry about replacing them often. While you’ll need a plumber to install this type of filter, it also comes with lifetime support for any issues, questions, or updates. 

Price at time of publish: $500

Product Details:

  • Flow Rate: 15 gpm
  • Filter Type: Sediment, kinetic degradation fluxion, and activated carbon block
  • Water Type: Not listed

Best for Hard Water: AquaGear Water Filter Pitcher

Aquagear Water Filter Pitcher

Amazon

Why You Should Get It: The filters are recyclable, making it a more environmentally-friendly choice. 

Keep In Mind: This design is more expensive than other pitchers and will not impact the shower or dishwasher, where hard water may be more obvious.

Hard water is water that has high mineral content, which happens when water moves through limestone, chalk, or gypsum. To combat it at home, the best water filter is the AquaGear Water Filter Pitcher. The pitcher works to remove any unwanted contaminants, offering a clean water option for your home. 

The pitcher is more expensive than some other similar styles, however it utilizes recyclable filters that make it a more environmentally friendly choice. Just keep in mind that while clean drinking water is certainly important, hard water is common in both showers and dishwashers, so you may still want to look for a pick that’ll filter other areas in your home as well. 

Price at time of publish: $70

Product Details:

  • Flow Rate: Not listed 
  • Filter Type: Activated carbon, ion exchange 
  • Water Type: Hard

Best Countertop: AlcaPure Reverse Osmosis Countertop Water Filter

AlcaPure Reverse Osmosis Countertop Water Filter

Amazon

Why You Should Get It: The standard filters last up to 12 months, which is longer than most other filters on the market. 

Keep in Mind: This option needs electricity to run, so it’s not ideal for camping or use out of the home.

Countertop water filters come in two types: one that requires being hooked up to the faucet and another that requires zero installation. The AlcaPure Reverse Osmosis Countertop Water Filter does require some electricity, however its portability and zero installation make it one of the best water filters. 

The space-saving design is said to remove 99% of contaminants, offering clean drinking water with each use. It features a top filter that holds a half gallon of water and takes about 15 minutes for each half gallon to be filtered. 

Although the unit is more expensive than other options, the filters on this pick only need to be changed every 12 months, so you won’t have to worry about purchasing replacement filters often—just look out for the blinking red light that’ll notify you when it’s time to swap it out.

Price at time of publish: $489

Product Details:

  • Flow Rate: Not listed
  • Filter Type: Reverse osmosis, alkaline
  • Water Type: Not listed

Best Reverse Osmosis: Waterdrop Reverse Osmosis Drinking Water Filtration System

waterdrop reverse osmosis water filter

Waterdrop

Why You Should Get It: The small footprint is ideal for limited counter or under-sink space. 

Keep in Mind This system is more expensive than other options and requires a power source, so it can only be used in specific spots.

If you prefer a reverse osmosis system, the best water filter is this option from Waterdrop. The filter is compact and attractive, making it a great option for limited under-sink space or yet the design can also be left on your countertop. 

While the filter is more expensive than other options, it can filter a cup of water in 12 seconds and the fast flow moves up to 400 gallons per day. The system is relatively easy to install as well but it does require its own power source, so you may be limited on where you can place it in your space. 

Price at time of publish: $529

Product Details:

  • Flow Rate: Not listed
  • Filter Type: Reverse osmosis
  • Water Type: Not listed

The Bottom Line

Overall, if you prefer a reverse osmosis system, the best water filter is the Waterdrop G3 Reverse Osmosis System. The water filter is compact, so you can either put it on your countertop or beneath your sink. For a design with a spout, the best water filter is the Brita Extra Large Filtered Water Dispenser. The filter has a large capacity and stays in your refrigerator, so you’ll always have cold water on hand.

What to Know About Water Filters Before Shopping

Flow Rate

The flow rate is measured in gallons per minute (GPM) and tracks the amount of water coming from a fixture in a set amount of time. This measurement matters because water that’s being treated by a filter needs a contact time with the filter in order for the filter to do its job and remove contaminants. 

Flow rate can be estimated on a per appliance basis, which is helpful if you’re installing a single filter. If you’re installing a full home filter, determining your home’s total flow rate would also be beneficial since it’ll ensure the filter can handle the capacity your home requires.  

Filter Type

When it comes to the best water filters, there are a number of types on the market. Some of the most common types include:

Reverse Osmosis: One common type of water filter many consider for their home is reverse osmosis. 

“Reverse osmosis is a water filtration technology whereby water is pushed through a semipermeable membrane with a pore size so small that there is a high amount of solids rejection,” says Hoffman. 

Using applied pressure from within the system, the water goes through one (or more) filters. The contaminants are trapped and the pure water passes through, leaving you with the clean water you want. 

Activated Carbon: Activated carbon is a type of carbon that has been altered to have an extremely large surface area. Once altered, activated carbon is highly absorbent, thanks to the increased surface area. When water comes in contact with the carbon, the carbon attracts the contaminants and filters the water. 


Ion Exchange: Ion exchange filters work by utilizing a filter made of a material that binds positively charged ions to it. When water flows past the filter, the ions bond to the filter and the filtered water moves through. These are especially helpful for hard water since they remove the “hardness” and soft water will flow out of the filter. 

Water Type 

Water is often characterized as either hard or soft. Water that has extra calcium and magnesium is known as hard water. Hard water can result in household issues like soap scum on clean dishes and glasses, difficulting lathering soap in the bath or shower, and causing build-up in your washing machine. Soft water is water that is free from some dissolved elements, usually calcium, iron, or magnesium.

Your Questions, Answered

How do water filters work? 

While different filters work in different methods, they all have the same goal: to provide you with clean water. 

“Water filters employ one or more filtration technologies to reduce the number of non-water substances in water. Filtration technologies can target substances based on their physical size, physical shape, ionic charge, and ability to participate in specific chemical reactions, to name a few,” Hoffman says. 

Is distilled water the same as filtered water? 

When it comes to distilled water versus filtered water, the key difference is how they’re prepared. Filtered water is any water that has been filtered. However, distilled water has been boiled into a vapor and then condensed back into liquid form. 

Do water filters remove fluoride? 

Fluoride removal depends on the type of filter.. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), almost all water has some naturally occurring fluoride in it, but at very low levels that would not make an impact in preventing tooth decay.  Some communities may add fluoride to the water to the optimal level that is known to prevent tooth decay—you can contact your water utility provider to find out if your town or city does this.

If you prefer to remove fluoride from your water, you’ll need to find a water filter that does just that. Just keep in mind that many common household filters do not specifically remove fluoride, so you’ll want to read the label or product information to find out if fluoride is one of the elements that will be filtered.

Who We Are

Maya Polton is a freelance writer for Better Homes & Gardens. To make this list, she researched a variety of water filters, keeping in mind each pick’s flow rate, filter type, and water type. She also consulted Craig Hoffman, chief technologist and founder of Atla Water System and a former nuclear engineer managing water chemistry for the U.S. Navy.

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