Table of Contents
- 🥇 Best Countertop Water Filter
- ⭐ Best Countertop Water Filter Reviews (2021)
- 🧾 Countertop Water Filter Buyer’s Guide
- 🤔 What Is a Countertop Water Filter?
- 👍 What Are the Advantages of a Countertop Water Filter?
- ⚙️ How Does a Countertop Water Filter Work?
- 💭 Considerations Before Buying a Countertop Water Filter
- 🔠 Types of Countertop Water Filters
- 🚰 How Countertop Water Filters Work
- ✔️ How to Select a Countertop Water Filter
- 🔧 How to Install a Countertop Water Filter
- Advantages of Using a Countertop Filter
- Disadvantages of Countertop Filters
- Is a Countertop water Filter Right For Me?
- ❔ Frequently Asked Questions
In the last year, countertop water filters have seen a huge surge in popularity. A 2018 NSF study found that nearly half of the US population filters their water, and with the way the market has been booming recently, I’d hedge that this figure is now more like 60 to 70%.
If you’re interested in countertop filtration, you’re looking for advice on the internet you can actually trust, and rightly so. Countertop water filters are a big investment, so you don’t want to buy something cr*p based off a biased review.
My job is to impartially review every single water treatment solution on the market, so, as you can imagine, I’ve pretty much seen it all.
More than 130,000 people visit my website every month to read up on my advice – and if something’s bad, I will tell you. That’s why you can feel certain that this list of the best countertop water filters features products that genuinely are the best.
In this guide, you’ll learn:
- Which 8 countertop water filters are worthy investments in 2021
- 4 steps for selecting a countertop water filter
- How countertop water filters compare to other popular filters on the market
🥇 Best Countertop Water Filter
- Big Berkey Gravity-Fed Water Filter
- AquaTru Countertop Filtration System
- Epic Pure Water Filter Dispenser
- Aquasana AQ-4000W Countertop Water Filter
- APEX Quality Countertop Drinking Water Filter
- New Wave Enviro 10 Stage Water Filter System
- cleanwater4less Countertop Water Filtration System
- Home Master TMJRF2 Jr F2
|Big Berkey Gravity-Fed Water Filter||Filter longevity: up to 6,000 gallons|
Capacity: 2.25 gallons
Dimensions: 8.5 x 8.5 x 19.2 inches
Weight: 7.45 pounds
Contaminants removed: 200+
👉 Read the full review
|AquaTru Countertop Filtration System||Filtration: 4 stages|
Capacity: 1 gallon, 3 quarts
Dimensions: 18 x 18 x 15 inches
Weight: 22.9 pounds
Contaminants removed: 200+
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👉 Read the full review
|Epic Pure Water Filter Dispenser||Filtration: 1 stage|
Capacity: 10 cups
Dimensions: 12 x 9 x 8 inches
Contaminants removed: 200+
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👉 Read the full review
|Aquasana AQ-4000W Countertop Water Filter||Filter longevity: 450 gallons|
Dimensions: 12 x 7 x 4 inches
👉 Read the full review
|APEX Quality Countertop Drinking Water Filter||Filter longevity: Up to 750 gallons|
Dimensions: 12 x 4.5 x 4.5 inches
👉 Read the full review
|New Wave Enviro 10 Stage Water Filter System||Filter longevity: 1,500 gallons|
Dimensions: 12.2 x 5.4 x 4.6 inches
👉 Read the full review
|cleanwater4less Countertop Water Filtration System||Filter longevity: 10,000 gallons|
Dimensions: 5 x 5 x 9.5 inches
👉 Read the full review
|Home Master TMJRF2 Jr F2||Filter longevity: 3 months or 500 gallons|
Dimensions: 12.3 x 9.4 x 7.6 inches
👉 Read the full review
⭐ Best Countertop Water Filter Reviews (2021)
Big Berkey Gravity-Fed Water Filter
The Big Berkey uses gravity to force water through the filter cartridge to remove contaminants – no plumbing or electricity required!
You fill a top reservoir (similar to a filter pitcher) with water. This means you don’t need to attach the filter directly to a water source, as with other countertop systems.
You can keep the Big Berkey wherever is most convenient. Being easily portable, this is good because the physical size of the filter is actually quite large in comparison with some of its competitors at 19.25″ x 8.5″.
The bottom reservoir holds 2.25 gallons of filtered, clean water.
The Big Berkey filters water just as effectively as a traditional countertop system that is connected up to your waterline. The filters, Berkey Purification Elements as they are dubbed, last up to 6,000 gallons before they need replacing.
👍 What I Like
- Filter elements have impressive 6,000 gallon lifespan
- Does not need to be connected to a water source
- Can be used to filter well water
👎 What I Don’t Like
- Much larger physically than other countertop water filters
- Does not instantly filter water
Read the full review: Big Berkey Review
AquaTru Countertop Filtration System
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The AquaTru Countertop Water Purifier uses a 4-stage reverse osmosis technology to remove fluoride, chlorine, hormones, toxins, carcinogens and thousands of other contaminants from drinking water. This simple-to-use system doesn’t require a plumbing connection or installation, making it one of my top choices in 2021.
This countertop RO filter is convenient for use both at home or at an office and can be set up and ready to use in just minutes. It has been NSF certified for the removal of 83 contaminants, but because it is a reverse osmosis system, it can actually remove up to 99.9% of all total dissolved solids from drinking water.
The digital display will let you know when it’s time to change the filters in the unit. Checking all the boxes for visual aesthetics, the AquaTru has a sleek, modern design.
Because it’s actually a countertop reverse osmosis system, you can expect that there will be some water wasted during the purification process. However when compared to other RO systems, the AquaTru is more efficient, operating at a 1:4 water to waste ratio. This means for every 4 gallons of clean purified water, 1 gallon of wastewater containing leftover contaminants is also produced.
👍 What I Like
- Simple to use
- NSF certified
- No plumbing or installation required
- Digital display & filter change alerts
- The most thorough filtration available
- Long lasting filters
👎 What I Don’t Like
- Requires electricity connection
- Produces wasted water
- Small holding capacity
- No remineralization filter
Read the full review: AquaTru Review
Epic Pure Water Filter Dispenser
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Reducing up to 99.99% of more than 200 contaminants, the Epic Pure Water Filter Dispenser is an affordable, effective countertop filtration option for anyone looking for value for money.
The system costs less than $100, making it a fantastic value for money, given its durable design and high quality of performance.
The Epic Pure filter is tested (but not officially certified) to a number of NSF/ANSI Standards, including 42, 53, and 40. It uses gravity filtration to remove a range of impurities, including lead, fluoride, chloramines, pesticides, herbicides, PFAS, and chromium 6.
Made from BPA-free plastic, the Epic Pure is one of the lighter, more portable countertop units on this list. The opaque plastic design makes it easy to see when the unit needs to be cleaned. While the reservoirs are dishwasher safe, Epic Water Filters recommends soaking them in warm, soapy water instead.
The Epic Pure carbon filter cartridges have a 150-gallon lifespan, and will need to be replaced roughly 3-4 times a year. The built-in filter reminder timer will let you know exactly when you need a new filter.
👍 What I Like
- More affordable option
- Handy filter change timer
- Reduces more than 200 contaminants
- BPA-free plastic design
👎 What I Don’t Like
- No NSF certification
- May be too big for fridge storage
Read the full review: Epic Pure Water Filter Dispenser Review
Aquasana AQ-4000W Countertop Water Filter
The Aquasana Countertop water filter can remove up to 97% of chlorine and is certified by the NSF to reduce another 76 contaminants from drinking water.
This system boasts a high flow rate of 30 gallons per hour, meaning there is not waiting around for your water to be filtered.
This Aquasana system was deliberately designed for easy and fast installation.
Using a 2-stage filtration technology called Claryum®, Aquasana claims this countertop filter can remove 10x more contaminants than the top filter pitcher on the market.
On average the filters will last around 6 months before they will need to be changed.
👍 What I Like
- Very reasonable flow rate allows quick access to filtered water
- Twin cartridge use increases efficiency
- NSF certified to filter 77 contaminants
👎 What I Don’t Like
- Higher price point in comparison to some competitors. You are paying for the NSF certified quality.
- Filter life span is on the shorter side
Read the full review: Aquasana AQ-4000W Countertop Water Filter
APEX Quality Countertop Drinking Water Filter
The APEX MR10-50 Countertop Drinking Water Filter removes foul odor and taste and adjusts pH of your water.
This countertop system employs a 5-stage filter that effectively removes chlorine and other contaminants. It should be noted this system does not remove fluoride.
The last stage of filtration has a remineralizing element that alters the pH of your water to a more alkaline level between 7 and 8.5.
The filter lasts for about 750 gallons before it will require replacement.
👍 What I Like
- Taste is improved by chlorine removal and addition of pH altering minerals
- Portable and lightweight
👎 What I Don’t Like
- Some people have found it difficult to replace the filter
- Lifespan of filter is relatively short
- Does not remove fluoride
Read the full review: APEX MR10-50 Countertop Drinking Water Filter Review
New Wave Enviro 10 Stage Water Filter System
The New Wave Enviro 10 Stage Water Filter System, as the name suggests, boasts an impressive 10 stages of filtration.
This filter removes contaminants such as lead, dirt, rust, chlorine and other heavy metals. If you don’t want to spend extra to get a reverse osmosis system but still want to remove an impressive number of contaminants, this filter is one of your best bets.
After removing contaminants the filter also includes a remineralization phase, which adds calcium back to the water to improve the water’s pH and offers a more enjoyable taste.
The filter itself should last for a year before it needs replacement.
👍 What I Like
- 10 stages of filtration
- Easy to install & change the filter
👎 What I Don’t Like
- The warranty is only good for one year
- Does not remove fluoride
- Effectiveness of replacement filter may not be as good as original
Read the full review: New Wave Enviro 10 Stage Plus Countertop Water Filter Review
Cleanwater4less Countertop Water Filtration System
This countertop system sets itself apart with the fact that you do not need to change the filter throughout the lifespan of the product, lasting up to 7 years (at an estimated 1,500 gallons/ year)
The cleanwater4less countertop water filtration system offers a low maintenance, cost saving alternative to other typical countertop systems that require frequent filter changes. The value proposition is that you use the system and dispose of the whole thing at the end of its long lifespan.
This 5 stage system can filter 10,000 gallons in total during its lifespan, effectively removing chlorine, sediment, organic compounds, unpleasant odor and taste.
👍 What I Like
- No need to spend on replacement filters.
- Extremely easy to install
👎 What I Don’t Like
- Filter may not last the full 7 years as advertised, as this is dependent on usage.
- Not for use with well water
Read the full review: cleanwater4less Countertop Water Filtration System Review
Home Master TMJRF2 Jr F2
The Home Master Jr. F2 is a space saving countertop system with extra long chrome faucet.
If you are looking to remove fluoride from your water, you’re in luck. This filter will do just that, along with removing other contaminants such as arsenic, TOCs, VOCs, chlorine and selenium.
In terms of performance, the filter lifespan is a bit shorter compared to the rest, requiring replacement after just 500 gallons of use. Home Master uses compression disks in between layers of the filter which ensure even, efficient filtration.
👍 What I Like
- Able to remove fluoride
- Filter design is unique, preventing water bypassing the filter
👎 What I Don’t Like
- Short filter lifespan needs to be replaced every 500 gallons or 3 months
- Will not remove TDS
Read the full review: Home Master Jr. F2 Review
🧾 Countertop Water Filter Buyer’s Guide
Once you’ve decided that a countertop water filter is the system you need, we know how difficult it can by narrowing down the right product from the hundreds of choices available.
That’s why we’ve put together the below countertop water filter buyer’s guide to help you understand everything you need to know to make and informed purchase.
🤔 What Is a Countertop Water Filter?
A countertop water filter is a system that’s designed for filtering water for drinking. As the name suggests, this type of water filter is often placed on a countertop in a home or work environment, usually in the kitchen.
Countertop water filters work to immediately filter water whenever you need it. They rarely have a storage or holding tank.
Instead, they’re connected up to your cold water supply, and when you give instruction for producing water, water passes straight from your main pipe, through the filter and into a glass for drinking.
As with all methods of water filtration, some countertop water filters are more effective than others. If you’re looking to get the most filtration benefits out of a countertop filter, look for a best-selling product with good reviews. Make sure to read up on a product description to ensure it’s effective at removing the expected contaminants from your drinking water.
The best countertop water filters can change the way you drink your tap water for life. Filters are designed for durability, helping you to get the most out of a system for years into the future.
Some countertop filtration systems even alkalize your water, adding healthy minerals to your water that can help to improve water taste and even help you to maintain a regular heartbeat and strong bones.
See Also: Gravity Water Filters
👍 What Are the Advantages of a Countertop Water Filter?
If you spend too much money to think about on single-use plastic bottles of water, a countertop water filter can help you to make huge savings month by month, as well as helping the environment!
While you’ll need to bulk-buy bottled water every time you run out, with a countertop water filtration system, you’ll only need to buy the initial unit and the replacement filters every couple of months.
Countertop water filters cost around $50 to $300, depending on the brand of the filter, the filters included, and the complexity of the system. Some filters, like countertop reverse osmosis filters, can be even higher in price, reaching into the thousands.
Whatever filter you’re after, there’s plenty to suit your budget. You won’t need to compromise for a good product, and when you compare overall yearly costs to your yearly costs of buying bottled water, you’ll be more than satisfied by the savings you’ve made.
Better For The Environment
Unfortunately, most people’s solution to great tasting, contaminant free drinking water is not one that’s best for the environment: bottled water. While we can all agree that bottled water is much preferable to water that comes out of most people’s faucets, it’s an option that’s responsible for incredible damage to our planet.
Empty water bottles can be recycled, but plastic doesn’t ever break down properly, instead dispersing into tiny microplastics that pollute our rivers and seas, which are eventually drank by us. Bottled water can also contain toxins like BPA, which leach into the water and are ingested by us when we drink it. BPA has been linked to a number of health problems in children and infants.
In comparison, a countertop water filter is a far safer and environmentally-friendly clean water solution. Most manufacturers encourage responsible recycling of their filters by offering incentives for customers to return used filters directly to them, where they won’t contribute to the widespread plastic pollution across the world.
Unlike most whole household or faucet water filters, a countertop water filter requires virtually no set-up and very little maintenance, making it a convenient option for somebody who would rather avoid a DIY situation.
You’ll be able to get your water filter started with just a few insertions and presses of a button, as most arrive already pre-assembled.
Once your filters are in place, the system is ready to run.
Changing your filters is a simple quick or twist job, and your filter’s user manual will give you clear guidelines on when to replace them. In all, a countertop water filter is one of the lowest maintenance water filter options available.
Don’t Occupy Much Space
Countertop water filters are designed to be compact and space-saving, allowing you to fit them easily in a convenient area near your kitchen sink.
While most under sink water filtration systems are large and bulky, countertop water filters are slim and elegant, and won’t take up too much side or storage space.
Some countertop water filters, like water pitcher filters, are even more space-saving. You’ll be able to store them wherever is most convenient for you, like your fridge, and put them in a cupboard out of sight when you’re not using them.
Easy to Move
Most countertop water filters need to be connected to your faucet to work, but providing you keep it within the kitchen area, you should be able to store your system in the most suitable location.
Once you set it up in one location, it’s easy enough to disconnect and move to a new one. You can even take your countertop water filter on a vacation or in your RV or motorhome for clean, safe drinking water while away from home.
Water pitcher filters, the lowest-cost countertop water filtration solution, are the easiest type of filter to move. They don’t need to be connected to a sink, so once you’ve filled yours with water from your faucet, you can take it to whichever location suits you. The filters will get to work no matter where you choose to store the pitcher.
Many people are hesitant to install an under sink water filter because it feels too permanent. Although you can disconnect this type of filter from your under sink area and reinstall it in another location, it takes more effort to do so.
Countertop water filters, on the other hand, aren’t such a permanent fixture in your kitchen. If you’re planning on moving house soon, you can easily take your countertop water filter with you. Even if, for some reason, you decide that you no longer want to use your filtration system, all you’ll need to do is disconnect it from your faucet and put it into storage.
A countertop water filter can provide you with clean water as and when you need it, but there’s no pressure for you to keep it in one place, or even make use of it, for the rest of your life.
The biggest advantage of a countertop water system for most people is its ability to clean water. There’s no longer any need to go to your nearest store and bulk-buy bottled water, because countertop water filters can provide you with the same (or even better, in some cases) quality of drinking water from the convenience of your own home.
Depending on the type of system you buy, your countertop water filter should, at a minimum, be able to filter out chemicals like chlorine from your water, helping to give it a more pleasant taste.
The best countertop water filtration systems will pull water through several different filters for removing up to 90% of all contaminants and impurities from water. These contaminants might include arsenic, heavy metals, pollutants, viruses, and other TDS (total dissolved solids) found in drinking water.
⚙️ How Does a Countertop Water Filter Work?
A countertop water filter is designed to remove a minimum of 90% of all contaminants and impurities from water. This ensures water is safer, cleaner, and tastier to drink.
Anyone can install a countertop water filter, providing they have some free counter space in their kitchen. With this type of filtration system, you’ll be able to dispense water straight into a drinking glass and benefit from its clean, fresh taste.
Countertop water filters are all slightly unique in design, depending on the manufacturer. Generally, though, you can expect a countertop water filter to work like this:
- You connect your countertop water filter up to your cold water line or your kitchen faucet (we’ll cover more on installation later). This diverts cold water from your main pipe straight to your water filter.
- After clipping your filters in place and switching the unit on, it’s ready to go.
- When you press the button for water, water will flow through a combination of several filters inside your countertop system. This is where you might come across some differences in filter types. The most popular countertop water filters use activated carbon or activated alumina filters that are designed to trap contaminants in them when water flows through them. This stage of filtration will remove chemicals like chlorine, fluoride, arsenic and selenium from the water.
- Some countertop water filters also include a reverse osmosis filter, which consists of a semi-permeable membrane that catches contaminants like heavy metals, pollutants, viruses and other parasites, and prevents them from passing through the membrane with the water particles.
- Finally, your water may flow through an additional remineralization filter that alkalizes the water by re-adding minerals like calcium and magnesium. This can give the water a nicer overall taste that many people prefer.
This filtration process seems quite lengthy and detailed, especially when multiple filters are involved, but most countertop water filters work incredibly quickly to siphon water through their system.
You shouldn’t expect to wait more than a second for water to dispense from a countertop filtration unit after you’ve pressed the button to activate it.
💭 Considerations Before Buying a Countertop Water Filter
Before you buy a countertop water filter, it’s worth making a list of all the things that are important to you in a water filter, or those that may affect your purchasing decision.
Some of these may include:
Know What is in Your Water – Water Test
If you want to buy a countertop water filter that filters out a specific contaminant that your water contains in high quantities, you first need to be aware of what exactly your water contains.
To know what’s in your water, you can get in touch with your local water supplier. Water quality reports are available to the general public, and, in fact, you should receive one in the post or via email at least once a year. However, while this may offer a broader idea of what’s in your local area’s water, your household’s water may differ ever so slightly.
This is where you can do your own water test to find out.
You can buy water testing kits from your local home improvement store or online. These kits usually come with strips that contain reactions, which will change color depending on the contaminants in your water. You should follow the instructions in the testing kit for the best results, but you’ll usually be required to hold a strip under running water for a certain period of time before comparing the color it displays to the color chart provided with the kit.
Different kits test for different contaminants in water. Try to look for a kit that tests for the widest range of elements, like bacteria, lead, nitrates, pH, chlorine and fluoride – not just water hardness.
Once you’ve carried out the test, you’ll be able to determine the quality of your drinking water. This can make it easier to decide what sort of countertop water filter is most suitable for your filtration needs.
Understand Your Use Case
Before you even start looking at the different countertop water filters available, you need to consider which type of filter is most appropriate for you: a faucet water filter or a water filter pitcher.
Here’s a quick summary of each filter type:
Faucet water filter
A faucet water filter is a type of countertop water filter that you connect up to your main water supply via your faucet.
The key thing to note here is that water flows into your system directly from the faucet through a flexible plastic pipe. The countertop water filter then filters water and dispenses it into a drinking glass in real time.
Generally, faucet water filters are a lot more efficient at filtering water. They’re easier to use than water filter pitchers, and you’ll be able to use them as frequently as you need.
Most faucet filters take a matter of minutes to install, requiring only that you connect the unit to your faucet via the faucet’s aerator.
The one issue you may encounter is that it’s much harder to get an idea of how much water has been filtered over time, which makes it more difficult to determine when it’s time to change the unit’s filters.
Water filter pitcher
A water filter pitcher doesn’t need connecting up to your faucet.
With this type of filter, you’ll dispense tap water out of your existing kitchen faucet straight into the pitcher, which then filters the water for drinking.
When you want to take a drink, you’ll just need to pour water directly from your pitcher into your drinking glass. A pitcher will require replenishing with water whenever you run low in supply.
Water filter pitchers usually take between 5 and 15 minutes to filter water, so they don’t offer a solution as immediate as faucet water filters.
They’re also more difficult to use. Children may struggle with the weight of a full pitcher if they want to pour themselves a glass of drinking water.
However, water filter pitchers have their advantages. You’ll be able to take your pitcher to any location in your home once you’ve filled it with water, making it more convenient for use. It’s also a lot more portable than faucet water filters, and you can take a pitcher to work or on vacation fairly easily.
Size and Space Available
You should make sure to look into the different sizes available for countertop water filters.
It’s wise to measure the space near your kitchen sink if you’re planning on buying a faucet water filter. Imagine the frustration of buying a system and discovering it didn’t fit comfortably in your available kitchen space.
If you’re thinking of buying a water filter pitcher, you should also consider size versus space available. Many people like to store their pitcher in the fridge, so you might want to make sure you’re not buying a design that’s too tall or wide to fit properly.
It’s worth knowing the exact elements a countertop water filter can remove from water if you’re looking for specific clean water benefits. While all of the best countertop filters can remove contaminants that give water a bad taste or odor, or reduce the quality of water, not all are created equal.
Some filters are designed to be more efficient at removing chemicals like chlorine than others. Some will be better at removing heavy metals, including lead and arsenic.
Some filters will remove the beneficial minerals from water, while others will keep them in, and others may even remineralize the water with the right amount of these minerals during filtration.
This is why it’s a good idea to know exactly what elements your water contains. Once you’ve used a water testing kit to determine your water quality, you’ll be able to buy a countertop water filter with the appropriate features for filtering out the contaminants present in your water.
Filter Maintenance Requirements
Of course, buying a countertop water filter is only the first step. You’ll need to keep in mind that no matter what type of filter you buy, it will require regular maintenance if you want it to last for a long time.
Different filters have different maintenance requirements, so it’s important that you read a specific filter’s user manual carefully to be certain of what’s needed.
You should know in advance that every filter will eventually reach a point where it will no longer be able to filter your water properly, and you’ll need to buy a new one.
Old filters won’t break your countertop filtration system, but they’ll be completely ineffective, producing water of the exact same quality as the water that comes out of your kitchen faucet.
The filter model you buy will usually determine how long its filters last. Some may require changing after 1 or 2 months of use, while others will last for between 6 and 12 months before they need replacing. It’s not always the case of paying more for a better quality filter, either.
Even the most expensive, high-efficiency filtration systems require regular filter changes.
Some models use more filters than others, which might make a filter change more costly. You’ll need to make sure you can comfortably afford to buy new filters whenever you need them if you want your system to continue to work effectively.
The cost of a countertop water is influenced by a number of different factors.
Sometimes, a filter might simply be more expensive because it’s manufactured by a certain popular brand name, or because it provides a particularly popular method of water filtration. The more complex water filters also tend to be a lot more expensive than the simpler models.
There are hundreds of different filters available on the market, so you should be able to find one that fits your budget no matter what.
Water filter pitchers tend to be on the cheaper end of the scale, costing between $30 and $80.
Standard faucet countertop filters cost slightly more, usually ranging between $150 and $300. Some filters may even come in at over $1000, especially if they use reverse osmosis during the filtration process.
It’s definitely not always the case that the more expensive fillers are the best. If you have a higher budget and are willing to spend a little more on a filter, make sure it’s worth doing so, and you can’t get exactly the same for a better price.
On the other end, don’t be tempted to spend money on a deal that seems too good to be true – it probably is.
Ease of Use
Depending on the design of a countertop water filter, some may be easier to use than others. Faucet water filters require slightly more maintenance than water filter pitchers, as you’ll need to connect the system up to your kitchen sink faucet before use. Following installation, though, a faucet water filter is the easiest filtration system to use. You’ll normally only need to press a button to instantly dispense water into a drinking glass.
Water filter pitchers, on the other hand, become heavy when they’re full, making it more difficult to pour water into a glass. You’ll also need to refill your pitcher manually whenever you want to benefit from clean drinking water. That said, a water filter pitcher can give you more freedom to add fruits, vegetables and other minerals to your pitcher for the best tasting water.
Desired Water Taste
Countertop water filters produce healthier, cleaner drinking water, but not everyone enjoys its taste. You might have become used to drinking hard water out of your tap, and the taste of filtered water could take some warming up to.
Because water countertop water filters remove calcium and magnesium minerals from water, you may also find that water from your system doesn’t taste like the bottled mineral water you’re used to.
A lack of minerals is a sign of a particularly efficient water filter, but it might not be to everyone’s taste.
The best countertop water filters will have either a WQA or NSF International certification to prove that the filter works as advertised by the manufacturer. These certifications can only be obtained through third-party testing, and are fairly rigorous and difficult to achieve.
Water Quality Association (WQA)
The Water Quality Association is an organisation that tests the quality of products manufactured by the water improvement industry. A manufacturer with WQA certification can prove to customers that they have a quality product that has passed rigorous testing.
To obtain a WQA certification, a manufacturer will need to complete the relevant coursework, pass an exam and sign an agreement to abide to the WQA’s Ethics for the Water Quality Improvement Industry.
NSF International is a US-based independent training and auditing body that consults for the food, water, health science, sustainability and consumer product sectors. Achieving certification by NSF International lets customers know that a manufacturer’s product meets the public health and safety standards.
Manufacturers looking to obtain NSF certification will need to submit product information and agree to product testing, reviews, manufacturing facility inspection and product sampling. After this, a manufacturer will sign a contract with NSF and consent to annual plant inspection and retesting.
Water Minerals/ Alkaline Water
Not all countertop water filters will remove minerals like calcium and magnesium from the water, but those that offer a more thorough filtration, like reverse osmosis filters, probably will. Some people would rather these minerals weren’t in their drinking water, but others find that without them, water takes on a slightly acidic taste.
The best countertop water filters remove these minerals naturally with the rest of the water’s impurities, but contain remineralization filters to add a healthy quantity of minerals back into the water before drinking. This gives water a more alkaline taste, which you may prefer.
It is possible to add in your own minerals to drinking water, using an alkaline water filter or trace mineral drops. However, you’d have to factor this into your budget if it was something you were looking to do.
🔠 Types of Countertop Water Filters
Water Filter Pitcher
Water filter pitchers are the lowest-price and simplest countertop water filters available. They’re similar in appearance to a standard water jug, but contain a filter that traps contaminants and removes them from water, making it cleaner and more enjoyable to drink.
It usually takes between 5 and 15 minutes for a water filter pitcher to filter your water. This length of time is determined by factors like filter capacity, the age of the filters, and the quality of your household’s drinking water. Poorer quality water will need more contaminants removing, which will take a filter pitcher a longer time to complete.
Most water filter pitchers can hold up to 8 to 12 cups of filtered water at a time. You’ll need to refill your pitcher with water from your faucet once you run out of filtered water, and wait for it to filter again. Some filter pitchers are particularly large in size, holding up to 4 gallons of water. Note that a larger pitcher might be more difficult to use.
You will need to change the filters in your water filter pitcher as instructed in the product’s user manual. These filters can usually be clipped into place, making it fairly simple to swap one filter out for another. You can clean your pitcher by removing the filters and soaking it in warm, soapy water. Some pitchers are dishwasher friendly, but always check your user manual to be certain.
Faucet water filters are designed to sit on your kitchen countertop near your sink, and are connected via a flexible plastic hose to your faucet.
They’re very simple to install, as they usually come mostly pre-assembled. You’ll just need to connect the unit to your faucet for it to work.
When you press the button on your faucet filtration system for water, water will flow immediately from your faucet, through the filters in the system, and out into your drinking glass. Unlike water filter pitchers, you won’t have to wait more than a couple of seconds for faucet water filters to produce filtered water.
Most faucet water filters are sleek and modern in design, and compact enough to fit on a kitchen worktop without taking up too much space. There are plenty of options to choose from, so you should be able to find a model that matches the interior of your kitchen space.
Check your user manual to be certain of when filters will require changing. Some faucet water filters will notify you with an LED light when it’s time to replace your filters, while others won’t. It’s harder to keep track of how many total gallons of water you filter through a countertop water filter, so it may be best to keep track of time frames instead.
A carbon filter, often known as an activated carbon filter or a coconut carbon filter, is a type of filter that is commonly included in faucet water filters and water filter pitchers. They’re usually employed for removing chemicals and organic compounds like chlorine, which affects the taste and odor of water.
Coconut shell or charcoal filters are both organic activated carbon sources. The filters are “activated”, meaning that their pores are opened up, allowing them to trap as many contaminants as possible, known as adsorption.
While the contaminants are trapped in the pores, water particles are small enough in size to pass straight through the filter media.
A large filter surface area is required to remove chlorine particles from water. The best distribution of carbon across a filter media will allow for the most efficient contaminant removal. These types of filters tend to be better at removing larger molecules.
Similar to an activated carbon filter, a ceramic filter media consists of thousands of tiny pores spread across a wide surface area.These pores are designed to filter larger sediment like sand, dust and rust from water, as well as some bacteria.
Ceramic water filters are made of a natural ceramic media that traps impurities when water flows through the tiny pores. The inside of the filter is sharp-angled, designed to catch any particles that might have made it through the media.
You’ll normally find that ceramic water filters are used in the first stage of water filtration, as they remove the sediment that might damage filters at a later stage. Ceramic filters are best for very fine water filtration.
Ultrafiltration is a membrane filter process that uses pressure to force water through a semi-permeable membrane. This process provides a more thorough removal of contaminants, and it’s normally the case that ultrafiltration countertop filters are more costly than standard filters.
During ultrafiltration, water flows inside of the membrane shell at a high pressure. Larger solids are caught in the membrane material, while water is able to pass through.
This type of filtration can remove some of the largest dissolved contaminants like plastics, proteins, silica, silt and viruses from water.
Ultrafiltration is sometimes confused with reverse osmosis, but the two are slightly different in design. Ultrafiltration membranes have larger pore sizes than reverse osmosis membranes, generally ranging from 1 to 100 nanometers. The main distinction between the two methods is that they remove particles of different sizes from water.
A water distiller is a more unique water treatment method that turns water into steam in order to produce contaminant-free water. Water distillers are designed to remove arsenic, lead, fluoride, viruses and other contaminants from water.
You’ll most likely find a water distiller inside a countertop water system that’s connected to a kitchen faucet. Through a process of boiling and condensation, water distillers can remove even the more difficult impurities, like salt and dissolved solids.
Water distillers work by evaporating water and turning it into vapor, before condensing it back into its liquid state. When water evaporates, contaminants like bacteria are eliminated because they can’t turn into steam. They’re left behind in the boiling chamber when water becomes a vapor. The water is then returned back to the same state as it started out, but no longer contains contaminants.
The majority of water distillers send water through a post carbon filter once it has been condensed. This is because some contaminants can exist as gases, and it will only be possible to eliminate them from water using a filter.
Reverse Osmosis Water Filters
Reverse osmosis filters are more commonly found in under sink water filters, but some more expensive countertop filtration systems may contain them.
Reverse osmosis is a highly efficient method of filtering water, with the potential to eliminate up to 99.9% of all total dissolved solids from water. The process works very similarly to ultrafiltration, with water being forced through a semi-permeable membrane under high pressure.
Reverse osmosis isn’t like a standard method of water filtration, because, unlike most filters, it wastes water. The wastewater to pure water ratio for the average reverse osmosis system is 4:1, meaning that for every 4 gallons of water that are wasted, 1 gallon is produced.
As high as this waste may sound, the reverse osmosis process doesn’t waste any more water than your other water based kitchen appliances. You’’ll need to decide whether you’d prefer a more efficient system that produces water waste, or a less efficient system that filters as close to 100% of the water passing through it.
🚰 How Countertop Water Filters Work
As there are two common types of countertop water filters, faucet filters and water filter pitchers, we’ll look into how the both of them work separately.
Faucet water filters are connected to your kitchen sink faucet, and produce filtered water immediately at the touch of a button. Here is a breakdown of how these filter types generally work:
- Once you’ve set up your new kitchen faucet water filter and connected it up to your faucet, you’ll need to flush the system as per the instructions in the user manual to remove any lingering carbon or sediment from the filters.
- When your system is ready for use, you’ll just need to press a button to filter the water through your system to a drinking glass.
- Water is filtered in real-time, passing straight from the faucet and into the first filter, which usually carries out mechanical filtration. This filter media has tiny pores at around 0.3 microns in size, which remove sediment, dirt, and rust from water.
- If your system has a water softener, this will be the second stage of filtration. Ion exchange is used to replace calcium and magnesium minerals with sodium, making it softer.
- Next up is activated carbon filtration, which you should expect to find in all countertop water filters. This process removes organic compounds, like pesticides, herbicides and disinfectants like chlorine, from water.
- One optional filtration stage in a countertop water filter is alkalization. Some systems use a filter to remineralize water with calcium and magnesium to improve water quality and give it a more enjoyable alkaline taste.
- Countertop filters may also use a KDF filter or a silver filter to eliminate the remaining lead, bacteria, chlorine, viruses, toxins and heavy metals from water.
- Once water has completed the filtration process, it’ll make its way directly into a drinking glass. This process should take a matter of seconds. Your exact waiting time will depend on the number of filters in your system, how old the filters are, and the quality of your household’s drinking water.
Water filter pitchers are portable systems that don’t require connecting to a faucet. Below is a step by step of how this type of filter works:
- After you’ve flushed your filters following the guidelines in your product manual, and clipped them into place in the pitcher, you’re all set to filter water.
- Simply fill your filter pitcher to the marked capacity line with water from your kitchen sink faucet.
- You’ll then need to wait for several minutes for the filters to do their job. It usually takes between 5 and 15 minutes in total, but this varies depending on the quality of the filters and the contaminants in your household’s drinking water.
- When you’ve used all the filtered water in your pitcher, you’ll need to refill it with water and wait again for the filters to produce clean drinking water.
✔️ How to Select a Countertop Water Filter
If you’re unsure where to start with your countertop water filter hunt, follow the steps outlined below to help you towards the right purchasing decision.
Test Your Water
The first stage is to test the quality of your household’s drinking water. To get a general idea about the contaminants in your water, have a look online for your local area’s water quality report. This report will provide a breakdown of all the impurities in the water that flows into your home.
The only issue with these reports is that they don’t factor in the contaminants water may pick up on its way from a treatment centre, like lead and bacteria. This is where testing your own water will come in handy.
You can purchase water testing kits off the internet or at your local DIY home store. Different kits test for different contaminants, but try to look for one that gives you the clearest indication of a broad range of elements in your water.
Most testing kits contain small, paper-like strips that you simply hold under running water at your faucet for a few seconds. The strip will change color depending on the quality of your water, and you can compare it against a provided color chart to determine what your particular shade means.
Once you know the quality of your water, you can make a list of the key elements you’d like your filter to remove. For example, if your chlorine levels are high, it might be your priority to find a filter that removes those. Similarly, if your water is particularly hard, you might want a filter that removes calcium and magnesium minerals.
Determine Your Budget
It’s hard to make informed decisions unless you have an idea of how much money you want to spend on a countertop water filter.
If you’re yet to set a budget, first take a quick look online at the different types of countertop filters available and note down the average cost for each. Then work out exactly how much you can afford to spend, how much you would prefer to spend, and how much you would stretch your budget to if you found a particularly good product.
Note that having a lower budget doesn’t mean you’ll resort to buying a poor quality countertop water filter. You can buy a perfectly capable water filter with as little as $30.
Understand the Contaminants
You probably won’t be able to get the most out of your countertop water filter of choice if you don’t understand the common drinking water contaminants, what they do, and how they might affect water odor, appearance and taste.
Read up on the contaminants in your water before you begin your search for a countertop water filter.
To get you started, you need to know that chlorine, lead, copper and other heavy metals, calcium and magnesium minerals, and bacteria and viruses are some of the most common contaminants in water.
Chlorine is added to water during treatment to disinfect it, and gives water a distinctive taste that some people don’t enjoy. Copper and lead can leach into your water via its delivery pipes, and can also affect taste. Calcium and magnesium are naturally occurring minerals in water that cause limescale and give water an alkaline taste. Bacteria and viruses can enter water at any stage, and may pose a risk to your health.
Identify a Product That Removes the Contaminants
As soon as you know what contaminants your water contains, and how these contaminants affect the quality of your water, you can narrow your search down even more.
Most countertop water filters advertise that they can remove 1, 2 or 3 contaminants in particular, while actually being able to remove up to 15, so always make sure to read a product description carefully.
Some countertop water systems are able to eliminate more contaminants from water. For example, reverse osmosis and ultrafiltration systems remove up to 99.9% of all total dissolved solids, making them the most efficient countertop filters.
Unsurprisingly, these tend to cost more than a standard filter, so if having the cleanest, purest drinking water is important to you, you’ll need to adjust your budget appropriately.
🔧 How to Install a Countertop Water Filter
Installing any countertop water filter is a simple process:
- Place your filter in a convenient location at a suitable distance from your kitchen sink faucet. Note that most units are for cold water use only. Using warm water in your filters may cause irreversible damage.
- Remove the aerator from the end of your faucet. You’ll be installing the water filter here instead.
- If your faucet comes with an adapter and washer, screw them into your faucet and hand-tighten. The washer should fit a standard faucet, regardless of make or brand.
- Attach the diverter valve to your faucet, twisting it to tighten. Check that the gasket is securely positioned between the diverter valve and the faucet.
- Rotate the diverter valve so that it’s pointing in the appropriate direction.
- Turn on your water. It will pass through your faucet as normal.
- Turn the handle on the diverter valve. This will send water from your faucet into your filter.
- Allow the water to run through your filter for 5 minutes to flush out the filters. Use this wastewater for watering plants or feeding to your pets.
- Stop the flow by turning off your faucet or switching your diverter valve back to its starting position. You can now use your system for drinking whenever you want.
Advantages of Using a Countertop Filter
Wallet-friendly Filtration Solution
Countertop water filters are broad ranging in price, but when comparing the average countertop water filter cost with the average under sink water filter cost, countertop filters are a lot cheaper.
You can purchase a highly efficient countertop water filter at as little as $30. Considering these models cost only a fraction of some other models available, they still offer high quality filtration to produce, cleaner, better tasting water.
Fairly Compact and Space Saving
With compact and slender designs, countertop water filters can fit quite easily on a kitchen counter space, without looking too bulky or taking up too much room.
Unlike under sink water filters, which can take up up to half a cupboard’s worth of space, countertop water filters are designed to easily slot into a smaller space on the counter.
As well as being slim and compact, many countertop water filters are modern and trendy in appearance, and come in a variety of different colors and designs. You’ll be able to find a model that fits the design of your kitchen and looks good on display.
Countertop water filters require virtually no installation, and you won’t need a plumber to help you do the job.
Faucet countertop filters need connecting up to your faucet, but this is usually a 10 minute job, with clear instructions from the manufacturer on how to carry out the process. Compared to an under sink water filter, which requires installing a separate faucet and connecting the system up to the cold water pipe in two different locations, installing a countertop filter is a much simpler process.
Even though they’re slimmer and more compact in build, countertop water filters are highly efficient at what they do. The best countertop filtration systems can filter out 90 to 99.9% of all contaminants from water.
Many best-selling filters are NSF International or WQA certified, giving third-party approval of their high standard of performance.
If you’re looking for a countertop water filter that removes a certain contaminant from water, you’ll most likely be able to find it. Some of the key contaminants a countertop water filter can remove are chlorine, heavy metals, pesticides and herbicides, chloramine, and fluoride.
Easy to Maintain
One good thing about the design of countertop water filters is that they don’t need much upkeep once you’ve installed them.
Some filters are designed to last for up to 6 months at a time, although you could get a longer or shorter use out of your filters depending on the quality of your household’s water, and the amount of water you produce on a daily basis.
Sterilizing your filter housing can be done by washing it with dishwasher soaps in warm water every couple of months.
Some countertop water filters are so efficient that they remove minerals from your water that you might prefer to remain.
Calcium and magnesium are the two common hard-water causing minerals that are responsible for the build-up of limescale in your water-based household appliances. However, these minerals also give water a pleasant alkaline taste, which you can find in the majority of bottled drinking waters.
It’s becoming more and more common for countertop water filters to feature a final remineralization filter, which adds calcium and magnesium minerals to water for drinking.
If you enjoy the taste of mineral water, but don’t want to drink the contaminants in your tap water, countertop water filters provide the best solution.
Simple to Flush
There’s rarely any need to fuss about with flushing and priming your filters before use. Most countertop water filters come with clear instructions for how to prepare a filter prior to using it in your system to produce clean drinking water.
The majority of filters require running under cold water for several seconds, then attaching to your filter unit and either filling the system or letting water run through it to flush the filter out. Manufacturers will provide clear instructions on how to do this for the product you have in its user manual.
Disadvantages of Countertop Filters
Slower Rate of Filtration
Countertop water filters are effective at what they do, but not all of them produce as immediate results as some under sink systems.
Water filter pitchers especially take several minutes to filter water ready for drinking. This is because they don’t use pressure to force water through the filters, which would speed up the process. Depending on the quality of your household’s water, and the efficiency of your filters, you might need to wait up to 20 minutes for your filter to produce clean drinking water.
Not as Efficient As Other Methods
As efficient as most countertop water filters are at removing contaminants from water, some under sink systems are designed to be even more so. For example, reverse osmosis membranes are more commonly used in under sink models, and can filter out up to 99.9% of all total dissolved solids in water.
You’ll need a bigger budget to be able to consider these methods of filtration.
Always On Display
No matter how visually appealing a countertop filter might be designed to look, you still may not want it on show in your kitchen.
Unfortunately, if you choose a faucet water filter, you’ll need your unit to sit out on the side at an appropriate distance from your kitchen sink. You might feel the need to narrow your search down to find filters that suit the aesthetics of your kitchen, which could only leave you with costlier options.
Single Point of Use
Many countertop water filters are connected up to your kitchen sink faucet, which is the only location you’ll be able to obtain clean drinking water from, making them POU (point of use) systems.
Most countertop water filters are designed only to attach to a kitchen faucet, so you won’t be able to use one in another location, like your bathroom. Because they’re not connected to your main water system, countertop water filters also won’t affect the quality of your home’s water aside from at the kitchen sink.
Some countertop water filters are less convenient than other filter styles. Water filter pitchers, for example, are heavy to carry when they’re full, and will need to be refilled every time you run out of water. You’ll then need to wait for the water to filter before you can take a drink.
Is a Countertop water Filter Right For Me?
To understand whether a countertop water filter is the best filtration system for you, you’ll need to understand the basics of all the filters that are on offer.
While most filters are designed to do the same thing, there are often clear differences between filter costs and efficiency.
Take a look at the filter options below to get an idea of the most popular alternative choices on the market.
Countertop Water Filters vs Water Softeners
Water softeners function slightly differently to countertop water filters. You can’t use a water softener for removing contaminants like chemicals and heavy metals from your water. They’re designed for the removal of hard water-causing minerals from water, namely calcium and magnesium.
Water softeners are usually installed at a water pipe at the point of entry into your home.
They’re intended for creating soft water for household use. A water softener can prevent the build-up of limescale in your home’s water-based appliances, helping to keep things clean and improve efficiency and durability of appliances.
The aim of a water softener is not to provide clean drinking water. If you want to enjoy soft water benefits in your home, while also filtering your water to eliminate impurities, you’ll need to look into buying a whole house water filter that can remove calcium and magnesium minerals.
Countertop Water Filters vs Under Sink Water Filters
Under sink water filters are, as the name suggests, installed underneath your kitchen sink and connected to the sink’s cold water line. These filters either send water straight to your standard sink’s faucet, or come with their own special faucet that you’ll need to install at your kitchen sink.
There’s not a lot of difference in performance in under sink water filters, although it’s common for them to produce filtered water at a faster rate.
Reverse osmosis under sink systems are able to filter out more contaminants from water. Some people may also prefer the fact that under sink filters are stored out of sight in a kitchen, so there’s less of a need for the filter to look nice.
Under sink water filters require a more thorough installation than countertop alternatives. They usually take around an hour to install, and some users may only feel comfortable having a professional plumber or handyman carry out the job.
Countertop Water Filters vs Whole House Water Filters
Whole house water filters connect to the main water line at its nearest entry point into your house. This gives them the advantage of being able to filter the water that’s used in all faucets and appliances throughout your home, rather than just your kitchen sink faucet.
A whole house water filter can provide cleaner water for use in your sinks, showers, toilets, baths, and kitchen appliances. Many whole house water filters remove calcium and magnesium minerals from water, providing soft water for your home. This means you can also avoid limescale build-up in your home’s appliances.
There’s not much difference between a countertop water filter and an under sink filter, aside from the location of installation. There are different types of whole house water filters available, most of which remove contaminants like chemicals, sediment, metals and pathogens from water.
Countertop Water Filters vs Water Pitchers
Water pitchers are a type of countertop filter that don’t require connecting up to a faucet or cold water line. When you fill a water pitcher with water from your faucet, the filter inside will gradually filter the water over a period of several minutes.
If you’re looking for a lower-cost water filter, pitchers are a good option. They generally cost between $30 and $80, and replacement filters cost $15 to $25.
While you’ll have to wait slightly longer for water to filter, a filter pitcher usually removes the same contaminants from water as a standard faucet countertop filter.
Water filter pitchers can be stored wherever is most convenient for you, including in your fridge. They shouldn’t be used to hold water for periods longer than a day, and when they run out of water, you’ll be required to refill them with water from your faucet.
❔ Frequently Asked Questions
Do countertop water filters work for all kitchen faucets?
Countertop faucet water filters connect to the majority of standard kitchen sink faucets. If you’re unsure whether one will fit your specific faucet type, research into the product and find out if there are any faucets that it can’t be connected to.
Can I connect my countertop water filter to multiple faucets?
No, your filter can only connect to one faucet at a time. If you do want to move from one applicable faucet to another, it won’t take too long to disconnect and reconnect in a new location.
What common contaminants does a countertop water filter remove?
Most countertop water filters can remove chemicals like pesticides, herbicides and chlorine, as well as heavy metals, and some microorganisms. A growing number of countertop water filters include alkalization filters to remineralize water with calcium and magnesium for optimum taste.
Can bacteria grow in my countertop water filter?
Yes. Even though filters are designed to remove bacteria from water, they create cleaner water that’s the perfect environment for bacteria to thrive in.
It’s important to flush your filters for 20 seconds before use to eliminate any bacteria.
The same applies for a water filter pitcher. It’s fine to leave water sitting in a pitcher for up to a day, providing you don’t leave your pitcher in a warm spot or an area of direct sunlight. Store your pitcher in your fridge when you can, and don’t leave water sitting out for longer than a day. Mold and algae could start to grow in your water if you don’t drink from your pitcher at a fairly frequent rate.
My water contains small black particles. Should I be concerned?
No, if you find black particles in your filtered water, it’s usually no cause for concern. These are most likely carbon sediment from your filters, and aren’t harmful to your health. It’s recommended that you flush the filters appropriately, by running water through the system or manually refilling a pitcher 3 or 4 times, before you drink the water produced by your filters.
My water has a funny taste/smell. What’s the problem?
If your water has gradually started to take on a bad taste or smell, it’s most likely that you need to change the filters in your countertop water system.
Check your filter manual and work out how many weeks of use your filters have had so far. Keep in mind that even if you haven’t used your filters for the number of advised months in the manual, it might be that the quality of your household’s water or simply more wear and tear to the filters has shortened their lifespan.
Some countertop water filters have a handy LED light that will alert you when it’s time to change your filters. It’s important that you change them regularly, as an old filter is about as effective at removing contaminants from water as no filter at all.
With that said, you shouldn’t rely on taste and water flow alone as a sign you need to change your filters. Carbon filters in particular can still give out a pleasant taste even when they’re no longer filtering water.
Always follow the guidelines provided by a manufacturer to get the most out of your countertop water system.
Are countertop water filters BPA free?
One of the reasons why you might want to switch from drinking bottled water to filtered tap water is to avoid BPA. Helpfully, most countertop water systems are BPA free. You should be able to find this information clearly presented in a product’s description if it’s applicable, as being BPA free is quite a selling point.
Will a countertop water filter actually fit on my counter?
Countertop water filters are designed to be as space-saving as possible. Even if you don’t have much available side space, you should easily be able to make room for your unit of choice.
If you’re unsure, measure out your side space and compare it to the width and breadth measurements of a filter unit.
Do I need to install a faucet for my countertop filter?
In most cases, no, you don’t. Countertop water filters are designed to attach to a standard kitchen sink faucet. If you’ve read that a faucet water filter requires a separate faucet, you were probably looking at an under sink water filter. Some of these are designed to send water to a separate faucet, which you’ll need to install at your kitchen sink.
How do I find out if my countertop water filter is NSF or WQA certified?
You won’t have to look far to find out if a particular countertop water filter is NSF or WQA certified. It’s a good marketing plug for a manufacturer, so most will mention it in their filters’ product descriptions. NSF also provides an NSF mark, which proves that a product has passed third-party safety testing. You’ll normally find this somewhere on a product’s packaging and online images.
Will I need to buy replacement filters from my unit’s manufacturer?
No, not always. Most replacement filters are universal, and can fit into any countertop water system on the market. The manufacturer will usually list the most common compatible filter systems in the filter’s product description. If you’re not sure, get in touch with the seller before you make a purchase.
It’s sometimes the case that you can get a better deal on your replacement filters from your product’s manufacturer as a customer. Some manufacturers will offer discount deals and offers on filters that are always worth looking into.
Why are countertop water filters better than bottled water?
For two reasons: they’re much more cost-effective, and they’re a lot kinder to the environment.
When you buy a countertop water filter, all you’ll need to pay for is the initial product, followed by the replacement filters every few months or so. Compare this to the weekly cost of bottled water, and you’ve already got yourself a better deal.
It’s no secret that bottled water is bad for the environment, and is responsible for tonnes of plastic waste every year. Countertop water filters are far more environmentally friendly, producing the same great tasting water with no plastic waste.
Filters are recyclable, and lots of manufacturers will offer incentives for returning the filters back to them for repurposing.
Do countertop water filters remove all total dissolved solids?
It depends what filter you go for, but the answer is usually no. If a countertop water filter contains a reverse osmosis membrane or an ultrafiltration filter (which they rarely do), you’ll get drinking water with up to 99.9% of TDS removed.
Most filters can remove the majority of TDS, but not all of them. This isn’t a problem, because in small amounts, many total dissolved solids are good for you. Calcium and magnesium minerals, for example, balance out water pH and give it a more pleasant alkaline taste. Many countertop filters remove the majority of hard water-causing minerals, then actually add a healthy amount back into water using an alkalization filter.
Can I use my countertop water filter in my RV?
Yes, providing you have the side space to store your countertop water filter, you can use it in your RV. The portability element of countertop water filters means that you can easily disconnect them from your kitchen sink faucet at home and temporarily connect them to your RV’s faucet. You won’t need any tools to do the job, and installation takes a matter of minutes.
Water filter pitchers are even easier to take with you on the go. You can use them wherever there is a drinking water faucet, giving you access to clean, better tasting water wherever you may be.
Do countertop water filters store water before drinking?
It depends on the filter type. Faucet water filters produce water in real-time, and don’t store filtered water in a tank before use. When you turn on your faucet, water will travel straight from the pipe, through the system, and out of the faucet.
Water filter pitchers work differently. You’ll need to fill them with water and wait for the filter to get to work. You can then pour water from the pitcher whenever you need a drink. This may mean that water is stored in the filter for several hours before drinking.
What is a UV filter?
Some countertop water filters include a UV filter. These filters use the electromagnetic energy of ultraviolet light to remove bacteria and viruses from water. They attack the DNA of harmful microorganisms, killing them and making water safer to drink.
You won’t find UV filters in all countertop water systems, as generally, the water that comes out of your faucet should be safe and healthy for drinking. However, they can add an extra layer of protection for those who want it.