The 5 Best Water Filters
It's important that people drink water. Without getting into the nitty-gritty science of it all, consuming water is essential to our survival. But that doesn't tell us just how we should consume our daily dosage of H2O. While the portability and convenience of bottled water may be attractive, in reality it is no cleaner than tap water, it produces an extremely large amount of plastic waste, and it's significantly more expensive. Having said that, even if you are committed to drinking tap instead of bottled water, there are still chemical contaminants in regulated tap water that need to be dealt with. The best way to do that is through the use of a water filter. (See also: Shopping Calendar: The Best Time to Buy Anything)
What Is a Water Filter?
A water filter is any device that serves to remove impurities from water. While there are a number of different methods and types of filters, point-of-use filters are most applicable when talking about personal and at-home water purification. However, even within this category there is a wide range of filter types. What we'll do in this article is briefly discuss the most common types and list the top product recommendations for each.
Best Water Filter Pitchers
Water filter pitchers are probably the most accessible and easy-to-use form of water filtration device. These take the form of large pitcher with a carbon filter inside; all you need to do is pour water into the pitcher and let it run through the filter, and out the other side is clean water.
Clear2O CWS100AW Water Filtration Pitcher
Recommended by Consumer Reports, this Clear2O outperforms other well-known water filter pitchers such as Brita when it comes to removing lead and organic compounds. Its carbon filter has the ability to clean 50 gallons of water, making last longer than other carbon filters. Also, a favorite feature among users is the filler hose that attaches to your faucet, which serves to push water through the filter, whereas other filter pitchers rely on gravity to do the job. Currently $21.10 on Amazon.
ZeroWater ZD-013 Pitcher
The ZeroWater ZD-013 water filter pitcher is a model that is recommended by both Consumer Reports and Good Housekeeping. This water filter pitcher utilizes a five-stage filtration process that completely removes dissolved solids from your drinking water. The ZeroWater also includes a "TDS meter," a small device used to measure the total number of dissolved solids in your water, with the manufacturer's guarantee that every test will yield "000" — no dissolved solids. The meter is also handy for letting you know when it is time to replace your filter. Currently $32.88 on Amazon.
Best Faucet-Mounted Water Filter
For those who are looking for a more permanent solution to their water purification needs, a faucet-mounted water filter may be a better alternative. A faucet-mounted filter would serve households that need more water than a water filter pitcher could provide or if the quality of tap water is bad enough that it disrupts things like cooking or other tasks.
Culligan FM-15A Faucet Filter
The mostly highly-reviewed faucet filter on Consumer Reports, the Culligan FM-15A performs very well at filtering out lead, chlorine, and other contaminants as well as improving the odor and taste of your tap water. The Culligan can be installed in minutes as long as your faucet does not require a special adapter to fit the filter. The filter lasts for 200 gallons, and it can easily switch between filtered and unfiltered water. Currently $16.79 on Amazon.
Best Undersink Water Filters
Undersink water filters are for those that are really serious about purifying their tap water. Undersink filters filter out a larger degree of contaminants and typically last longer than other forms of water filters. However, the higher level of filtering generally requires professional installation, space underneath your sink, and a higher price tag.
Multipure MP750SB Undersink Water Filter
Recommended by Consumer Reports, the Multipure MP750SB delivers high-performance and clog-free filtering of lead and organic compounds. With a capacity of 750 gallons, the filter can continually deliver clean water for approximately one year. Also, the included faucet has a better flow rate than other water filters of this type. Currently $442.95 on Amazon.
Aqua-Pure AP-DWS1000 Undersink Water System
Another undersink water filter recommended by Consumer Reports, the Aqua-Pure filters out lead and other contaminants with carbon block cartridges that sends water through increasingly tighter pores to reduce particulate. The filter has a capacity of 625 gallons and a built-in shut-off feature that stops the system once its capacity has been met. Currently $294.74 on Amazon.
And that is our overview of the most popular at-home water filtration methods and some of the best products of each category. As always, before making a purchase, think carefully about your specific situation and needs in order to decide which product is right for you. And remember to check out the Wise Bread Shopping Calendar to find the best times and ways to buy just about everything!