How to Change a Zero Water Filter (Easy Step-by-Step Guide)

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Ready to change your ZeroWater filter for the first time? Or have you just bought a ZeroWater product and you want to be an expert on changing your filters from the get-go?

In this Zero Water filters guide, we’ve shared the step-by-step process of changing your ZeroWater filter in pitchers, faucet filters, and showerhead filters. We’ve also shared tips on how to know when you need a new filter, and how often you should change your filter.

🍢 How to Change Zero Water Filters in Pitchers

To change the filter in a ZeroWater pitcher or dispenser, follow these steps:

  1. Remove the lid and water reservoir of the pitcher or dispenser to disassemble it.
  2. Locate the old filter and turn it anticlockwise to untwist it from the bottom of the reservoir. Discard the filter (we recommend recycling it with ZeroWater’s recycling program to save money on future filter purchases).
  3. Unpackage the new filter, place the blue cap on top of it, and twist it straight onto the bottom of the reservoir, turning in a clockwise direction. The filter doesn’t need to be flushed with cold tap water before use; ZeroWater has already done this before shipping the filter to you.
  4. Check for leaks. If you notice water escaping from between the reservoir and silicone ring, tighten the filter to ensure a complete seal.
  5. Re-attach the reservoir to the pitcher or dispenser and fill it with tap water. Put the lid back on and wait for the filtration system to produce a batch of filtered water.
how to replace zero water filter

🚰 How to Change Zero Water Filters in Faucet Filters

To change ZeroWater filters in a Zero Water faucet filter system, follow these steps:

  1. Turn the swivel collar clockwise to detach the filter housing from the rest of the faucet dispenser unit.
  2. Turn the old filter anticlockwise to remove it from the housing.
  3. Unpackage your new filter and slot it into the filter housing, turning it clockwise to form a seal.
  4. Re-attach the filter housing to the faucet dispenser unit and tighten it to the threads by turning it counter-clockwise.
  5. Flush the filter by turning on the water and pulling the valve stem. Allow the filter to flush for five minutes.
  6. You now have access to filtered drinking water from your faucet.
Replacing a zerowater faucet filter

🚿 How to Change Zero Water Filters in Showerhead Filters

Finally, to replace the filters in a showerhead ZeroWater filtration system, follow these steps:

  1. Turn the filter housing clockwise to detach it from the showerhead filter unit.
  2. Turn the old filter anticlockwise to remove it from the filter housing.
  3. Unpackage the new filter and insert it into the filter housing, turning it clockwise.
  4. Turn the filter housing counter-clockwise to reattach it to the filter housing, ensuring the housing is tightened to the faucet threads.
  5. Switch on your shower and allow cold water to flush the filter for 5 minutes.
  6. You now have access to filtered shower water.

πŸ”‚ How Often to Change a Zero Water Filter

Depending on your water usage and the quality of your drinking water, you’ll need to buy replacement filters for your ZeroWater system every two to four months, or every 20 to 40 gallons.

Most ZeroWater products have a built-in TDS meter that tells you exactly when to replace the filter. When you first install the filter, the TDS meter will read 000. Over time, this number will increase to indicate that the filter is allowing some suspended solids into your water as it begins to degrade.

πŸ’‘ You should try to replace your water filter immediately after you notice the TDS meter reading has surpassed 006.

It’s important to change your ZeroWater filter on time to ensure you’re continually protected against contaminants in your water. An old filter may be too clogged to be capable of removing suspended solids. Or, the filter may accumulate mold or bacteria, which could be harmful to drink.

You can find out more about how often to change a ZeroWater filter in this guide.

Measuring water TDS with zerowater TDS meter

πŸ€” How to Know When a Zero Water Filter Needs to be Changed

The best way to know when your ZeroWater filter needs to be changed is to read the TDS meter. Once the TDS meter reads 006, you should buy a new filter for your water system.

Tap Water TDSContaminant LevelDescriptionExpected Capacity
000-001Meets FDA
No known municipalities.N/A
002-050ModerateNaturally occurring in only a few cities.
Can still contain dangerous impurities such as lead.
β‰₯ 40 gallons
051-200Typical RangeMost water in the USA falls into this group.25-40 gallons
201-300HighExpect slightly lower capacity.15-25 gallons
301-400Exceptionally HighMost users will notice shorter filter life.8-15 gallons
401+ExtremeThe highest TDS water. Expect lower
capacity when reducing your water to 00.
≀ 8 gallons

Other ways to know when your ZeroWater filter needs replacing are:

  • Your water takes on a fishy taste – This is a common issue that indicates that the filter’s ion exchange technology is no longer working effectively.
  • Your water tastes acidic or like lemon – This is another indication that the ion exchange resins in the filter have degraded.
  • Your flow rate has decreased – Pitcher water filters have fairly slow flow rates to begin with, but if your flow rate reduces drastically, it’s a sign that the filter media is too clogged to work properly.

🧠 How to Change a ZeroWater Filter: FAQs

How many gallons do you get out of a Zero Water filter?

Most US customers will be able to get 20 to 40 gallons out of a Zero Water filter before the filter media becomes depleted and clogged. The more total dissolved solids your tap water contains, the more quickly the filter will become clogged, and the fewer gallons of filtered water you’ll get before the Zero filter needs to be replaced.

Do you need to rinse Zero Water filter?

No, you don’t need to rinse a Zero Water filter before you use it. The filter comes pre-rinsed and pre-primed, so you flushing the filter under running water or soaking it in water isn’t necessary. You can simply install the filter in the pitcher and start using it straight away.

How often do you replace ZeroWater filters?

You should replace your ZeroWater filter every two to four months, or when the TDS meter reads 006 or more. The quality of your water and how often you use the ZeroWater filter pitcher determine exactly how often a replacement filter is needed.

How do you take the filter out of a ZeroWater pitcher?

You take the filter out of a ZeroWater pitcher by turning the filter anticlockwise until it completely unscrews from its base.

Why does my Zero Water filter take so long to fill?

There are two reasons why your Zero Water filter might take a long time to fill: the filter has a trapped air bubble or your water has elevated total dissolved solids (TDS) levels. If you think an air bubble is the likely cause, try tapping the filter on a solid surface to burst the bubble. Otherwise, if poor water quality is to blame, you may need to consider installing a pre-filter at your water line.

Why is my Zero Water filter not getting any water?

If your Zero Water filter isn’t getting any water, the most likely problem is that the filter has a trapped air bubble that is preventing the water from draining through. To resolve this issue, tap the filter on a hard surface. This should break down the big bubble into smaller bubbles that can escape through the holes. If tapping the filter doesn’t work, try wiggling the underside of the membrane with a small, blunt object.

Related: Why is my filtered water cloudy?

How can I make my Zero Water filter last longer?

The only way to make your Zero Water filter last longer is to use the filter less frequently or install a water filtration system in your home to remove some of the dissolved solids from your tap water. The less frequently you use the filter, the more slowly it will accumulate contaminants. Installing a pre-filter will remove contaminants from your drinking water, so there are fewer contaminants to block the filter media.

How do I know when my Zero Water filter needs to be changed?

You’ll know when your Zero Water filter needs to be changed because your filtered water will take on a fishy or lemony smell, or your filter’s flow rate has become twice or three times longer than it originally was. Another way to know that your filter needs to be changed is to read the TDS meter: a reading of 006 or higher tells you that you need a new filter.

How do you clean Zero Water filters?

You can’t clean a ZeroWater filter cartridge, but you can clean the pitcher by soaking it in hot, soapy water and washing it with a sponge.

  • Laura Shallcross
    Senior Editor

    Laura is a passionate residential water treatment journalist who holds an undergraduate degree in Print Journalism and a master’s degree in Creative Writing. Over a span of 5 years she's written on a range of topics including water softening, well water treatment, and purification processes.

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