Does Clearly Filtered Remove PFAS? (What You Need to Know)

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Clearly Filtered sells a range of popular water filers that are known for their ability to remove hundreds of contaminants – often massively outcompeting their competitors. 

We know that the Clearly Filtered filters are capable, but can they remove PFAS? And which Clearly Filtered products are tested for PFAS removal?

We’ve shared everything you need to know in this guide. 

🚱 How Do PFAS Get Into Drinking Water?

Before we discuss the Clearly Filtered water filters’ ability to reduce PFAS, let’s look at how these chemicals even end up in our water supplies in the first place. 

There are a few ways that PFAS enter the environment, where they’re likely to eventually pollute our water:

  • Through industrial release to soil, water, or air
  • Through leaching from landfills
  • Through discharges from wastewater treatment facilities
  • Through runoff from certain fire-fighting foams

Although PFAS are no longer used widely in the US, these chemicals are still imported into the country, and they’re present in many consumer products in our homes

So, PFAS still end up in our landfills, and they linger in the environment for decades (that’s why they’re known as “forever chemicals”). That means even the PFAS that polluted our soils and land years ago are capable of traveling into our water supplies today. 

But wait – isn’t public water treated to make it safe to drink?

Yes, but most water treatment plants don’t provide comprehensive or thorough filtration that entirely eliminates PFAS. That’s why public drinking water supplies around the country still contain traces of these dangerous chemicals. 

Products that contain PFAs

🩺 What Are the Potential Health Risks of PFAS?

There’s a lot that we still don’t know about how PFAS may affect our health, and we only have limited research and information that applies to the most common types of PFAS (like PFOS, GenX, and PFOS).  

A 2021 review of the research into the health effects of PFAS reported that PFAS exposure was linked to an increased likelihood of: 

  • Suppressed immune function
  • Developmental and reproductive outcomes
  • Testicular cancer
  • Thyroid cancer/disease
  • Liver and kidney cancer/disease
  • Dysregulation of lipids and insulin

As we continue to research the human health effects of PFAS, it’s likely that more concerning data will emerge in the coming years. 

🧪 How Can I Test for PFAS in My Water?

If you’re serious about testing your water for PFAS, we strongly advise using a certified laboratory water test kit for the job. 

A laboratory test provides the level of detail and accuracy you’ll be looking for if you want to get a clear understanding of the types and concentrations of PFAS chemicals in your drinking water. 

As you’d expect, this sort of testing doesn’t come cheap. There’s a free alternative if you’re on a municipal water supply: check your water utility’s most recent Consumer Confidence Report. This should list the PFAS that your supplier has tested for, and the concentration of PFAS detected in the testing. 

Water testing with tap score

🤔 So, Does Clearly Filtered Filter Out PFAS?

Clearly Filtered sells a variety of water filters, including pitchers, water bottles, under-sink systems, and inline fridge filters. 

Of these filters, the following can reduce or remove PFAS: 

  • The Clearly Filtered Under-Sink Filtration System
  • The Clearly Filtered Water Filter Pitcher
  • The Clearly Filtered Inline Fridge Filter

The Clearly Filtered water bottle filter is the only system that hasn’t been tested to reduce PFAS. Clearly Filtered says this filter can remove PFAS, but testing hasn’t yet been completed

Clearly Filtered shares handy data sheets that display the test results for each of its water filter systems. You can use these sheets to determine which PFAS chemicals are removed by which filter, and at what percentage of removal. 

Removable top of the Clearly Filtered pitcher

🔎 What Types Of PFAS Does Clearly Filtered Remove? 

Clearly Filtered is one of the best water filter brands for PFAS removal because it doesn’t just tick a box by testing its filters to remove PFOS and PFOA, as many other manufacturers do. 

The Clearly Filtered water filters have been tested and deemed capable of removing a range of PFAS chemicals. We’ve listed the types of PFAS removed by each Clearly Filtered water filter below. 

PFAS TypeClearly Filtered
Under-Sink System
Clearly Filtered
Water Pitcher
Clearly Filtered
Inline Fridge Filter
EPFB95.0%
NFBS95.0%
GenX99.4%
Fluorotelomer alcohol 8:299.8%99.8%
Perfluorobutane sulfonate (PFBS)99.8%95.0%99.8%
PFDAPerfluorobutanoic acid (PFBA) 95.0%
Perfluorodecanoic acid (PFDA)99.6%99.6%
PFHA95.0%
Perfluorononanoic acid (PFNA)99.6%95.0%99.6%
Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS)99.8%95.0%99.8%
Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA)99.6%95.0%99.6%
Perfluorohexane Sulfonate99.8%99.8%
Perfluorohexanoic acid99.6%99.6%
Polytetrafluoroethylene99.8%99.8%

The contaminant removal range for these chemicals is >95.0%-99.8%, depending on the filter type and the chemical in question. 

⚗️ How Does Clearly Filtered Remove PFAS?

According to Clearly Filtered, its Affinity Filtration media is mainly responsible for reducing PFAS. This media is proprietary, and Clearly Filtered hasn’t disclosed exactly what it’s made of. 

Below, we’ve discussed what we do know about Clearly Filtered’s water filters, and how these design elements may enable PFAS reduction. 

The Clearly Filtered water filters are made from coconut shell granular activated carbon (GAC) media and other proprietary filtration media.

Carbon media – particularly GAC media – is endorsed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as being one of the best water treatment technologies for reducing PFAS in drinking water. 

When water flows through an activated carbon filter, certain contaminants are pulled into the media, while water molecules pass through the pores. This process is known as adsorption. 

Although not disclosed by Clearly Filtered, we think the brand’s filters also use ion exchange resin (likely the “heavy metals” filter media), which is also deemed capable of PFAS reduction by the EPA. Anion exchange resins have a positive charge and attract negatively charged contaminants, including PFAS. 

Clearly filtered affinity filtration filter

🚰 Other PFAS Water Filters

We recommend the Clearly Filtered Inline Fridge Filter, Under-Sink Filtration System, and Water Pitcher Filter as the best filters for anyone looking specifically at these filter types. Clearly Filtered offers a superior contaminant removal performance, and you won’t find many other filters that can remove as many PFAS chemicals – not to mention hundreds of other contaminants. 

However, if you’re keen to keep your options open and you want to know how else you can reduce PFAS in your water, we recommend: 

  • Reverse osmosis filters – Remove around 90-95% of PFAS
  • Water distiller units – Remove up to 99% of PFAS

Reverse osmosis systems filter water more comprehensively than any of the Clearly Filtered systems. They’re considered the most effective at PFAS removal, but at a price – they also waste water and remove healthy alkaline minerals from water. 

Water distillers are another effective water purification method, but they’re very slow to produce even a small batch of water, and they also remove healthy minerals and ions. 

❔FAQ

Can the Clearly Filtered water filters remove GenX?

Only the Clearly Filtered water filter pitcher has been tested to remove GenX. That suggests to us that the Clearly Filtered under-sink and inline fridge filters aren’t capable of reducing this chemical. 

Is Clearly Filtered certified for PFAS removal?

Yes, the Clearly Filtered pitcher filter is certified by the WQA to remove up to 99.5% PFAS from drinking water in compliance with NSF Standards. That means you can rely on the filter to do what it’s advertised to do. 

  • Brian Campbell
    President & CEO, CWS, CWR

    Brian Campbell, a WQA Certified Water Specialist (CWS) and Certified Water Treatment Representative (CWR) with 5+ years of experience, helps homeowners navigate the world of water treatment. After honing his skills at Hach Company, he founded his business to empower homeowners with the knowledge and tools to achieve safe, healthy water. Brian's tested countless devices, from simple pitchers to complex systems, helping his readers find the perfect fit for their unique needs.

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