Best Water Filtration System

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Updated January 24, 2023

Choosing the best water filtration system could mean the difference between contaminated and fresh, bacteria-free water out of the tap. Our evaluation focused on reverse osmosis vs. RO purifiers, filtering capacity, the number of filters, remineralization capability, cartridge longevity, and percentage of contaminants removed. We also explored auxiliary features such as design and value. If you’re looking for more home products, then check out our best prices on appliances.

After more than 18 hours of research and testing, our best water filtration system goes to the iSpring RCC7AK 6-Stage Water Filter System. It offers a 6-stage system capable of clearing 75 gallons a day for larger households, along with mineral add-ons for a fresher taste and a generous 3-year warranty. Keep reading to learn more about the iSpring RCC7AK 6-Stage Water Filter System and six others that made the cut.

Top 7 Best Water Filtration System

 #1  iSpring RCC7AK 6-Stage Water Filter System

Award: Top Pick

WHY WE LIKE IT: This is the best water filtration system for home, featuring a 6-stage alkaline filtration and a 75-gallon capacity that provides a natural taste. This is a great option if you live in a large household with 4+ people.

  • Best for home
  • Best quality & natural taste
  • Great for large households
  • Steep learning curve to install
  • So-so PH filter
  • Bulkier than comparable models

We love this water filtration system’s 6-stage filtration process, which uses different filters to remove particles, bad odors, bacteria, and more than 1000 other contaminants from the mix. Its Stage 6 filter is where the magic happens, helping balance pH by restoring alkalinity and adding minerals such as calcium and magnesium, which makes water taste better.

Related: Check out our best wax melts guide.

Aside from the iSpring name, this best water filter faucet comes with a three-year limited warranty and a one-year money-back guarantee. Unlike other filters on the list, it comes with transparent first stage housing to quickly visually inspect and learn when it is time to change the filter. This proved really helpful in our testing. Since we are speaking of water, if water in the basement is an issue, the best sump pump will solve the problem.

 #2  APEC RO Water Filter System

Award: Honorable Mention

WHY WE LIKE IT: This under-sink water filter features filtration to remove 99% of contaminants and an up to 12-month filter life. It is an excellent option for those who want to filter tap water for large households and change filters less often than our #1 pick.

  • Gold award from WQA
  • Long-lasting filters
  • Excellent looking faucet
  • Below average 2-year limited warranty
  • No remineralization stage
  • Hard to replace filters

Thanks to its 5-state filtration system, all the bad guys are taken care of, including bacterial, lead, fluoride, bad odors, and 1000’s of other contaminants. Water flows pretty quickly, about the same as normal faucet pressure. An alkaline filter also helps balance out pH levels for better tasting water.

This water filtration system has a higher output than our #1 pick at 90 gallons a day. We also really appreciate its WQA Gold Seal certification, which uses a testing protocol to guarantee quality, including audits of their manufacturing plants. It is made in the U.S.A. The best water filters are about more than just good tasting water, it is also about the healthiest water.

 #3  APEC Top Tier 75 GPD 6-Stage Water Filter System

Award: Best Whole House

WHY WE LIKE IT: This water filter comes with a 75 gallon per day capacity and a remineralization filter.

  • Removes 99% of bacteria
  • Great tasting water
  • Efficient wastewater pure water ratio (3:1)
  • 1-year limited warranty
  • Slow to fill
  • Difficult to replace filters

This pick’s remineralization filter works by raising pH levels for a more alkaline concentration. Added minerals have been proven to be good for your health. Its filtration power is outstanding, using 6-stages of filtration to remove up to 99% of contaminants, which include fluoride, copper, and lead.

Thanks to its 3:1 wastewater pure water ratio, it is very efficient, saving water in the long term. This helps save on water bills and keep your budget sane. However, it does have a 4-gallon tank capacity and a 75 gallon per day output, which makes it great for larger households. But what about for situations outside of the house? Well, the best water purifiers for camping will make sure you have clean water during your outdoor adventure.

 #4  Express Water Reverse Osmosis Water Filtration System

Award: Easiest to Use

WHY WE LIKE IT: This affordable water filter uses a 5-stage filtration process and has 50 gallon a day capacity. This makes it an excellent choice if you live in a smaller household (1-3 people) and on a budget.

  • Includes 1+ year of filters
  • 3:1 wastewater to pure water ratio
  • 0.8-gallon per minute flow rate
  • Lower than average 50-gallon capacity
  • Hard to open membrane housing
  • Some users reported a metallic taste

Like some of our picks, this water filter trap uses 5-stage filtration, which removes up to 99 percent of lead, bacteria, and more. Its fifth stage filter applies a carbon layer to get rid of bad odors and improve your drinking water’s taste. Our test revealed great tasting drinking water – we lapped it up!

We really love how easy this filter is to install. Each cartridge and casing are color-coded, making swaps easy. Different filters have different expiration dates (six months to 2 years), so this is very helpful. A leak stopper also prevents leaks by restricting water flow when the tank is full. Bonus points to go its 0.8-gallon per minute flow rate is fast so that you can quench your thirst in no time. And lastly, this water filter includes additional filters at no extra cost allowing you to enjoy clean water for well over a year. Another filter worth mentioning is the Whirlpool WHESFC Pro Series Water Softener/Whole Home Filter Hybrid. This product filters hard water minerals and other contaminants like lead, sediments, chlorine taste, etc. to give you soft, filtered water without having to purchase two separate systems. You also don’t have to invest in water filter pitchers if you have this convenient and effective hybrid system.

 #5  Home Master TMAFC Water Filter System

Award: Easiest Filter Replacement

WHY WE LIKE IT: This water filter system uses seven stages of filtration and an ‘all-in-one’ filter design that is not reliant on canisters. It is an excellent choice if you want a low maintenance system.

  • Once a year filter change
  • All-in-one design
  • Long-life filters
  • Poor cost to gallons per day ratio
  • Poor wastewater to pure water ratio (4:1)

This pick does a fantastic job of filtering water with standard removal of 98% of contaminants. However, where it really shines is its remineralization system, which processes water twice to adjust levels and increases alkaline content for better taste. Our testing saw no metallic taste, and it tasted delicious!

Thanks to its ‘all-in-one’ design, there is no need to replace canisters throughout the year. Simply change out the entire filter after one year and replace it with another one. Canister-based filters can accumulate biofilm and other bacteria over time, which can cause them to leak, so this is very useful.

 #6  APEC Top Tier 5-Stage Filter System

Award: Best Filter Life

WHY WE LIKE IT: This water filter is a high-quality product with a 5-stage filter capable of producing up to 75 gallons a day. It is an great option for safe and dependable drinking water for small to mid-sized households.

  • Most efficient
  • Great video tutorials
  • Good capacity
  • One year limited warranty
  • Takes a while to fill
  • Ugly chrome faucet

As most of our 6-stage water filters, this pick uses a sixth filter to balance out pH levels and increase alkaline levels. Its wastewater to pure water ratio is 3:1, which is very efficient, compared to lesser models, which could waste ten or more gallons for the same amount. Our favorite feature is its filter life, with 2 of the five filters needing to be changed every 2 to 3 years.

Though its waste to pure water ratio and filter life is above average, we feel its drab-looking faucet could use a redesign with its chrome finish and too thin a shape. An empty water tank also fills a little longer than average, with PSI as low as 40 (we prefer 85 PSI or higher).

 #7  Frizzlife Under Sink Water Filter System

Award: Best Budget

WHY WE LIKE IT: This budget water filtration system makes our list thanks to its two-stage filter (removing 99% of contaminants), simple single filter maintenance, and slim design for refrigerators and icemakers.

  • 2-year filter life
  • High 1.5 GPM flow rate
  • Slim design
  • Only two filters

This pick removes up to 58 contaminants while preserving minerals. Although it removes far fewer contaminants than our top 6 picks, it makes up for it with a slim and quick twist design, fitting to your refrigerator and icemaker to switch up your water source from time to time. Bonus points go to its quick uninstall times, done in less than 3 minutes with no plumbing needed.

We love its 1.5 RPM flow rate, highest flow rate on our list, perfect for people who are constantly on the go. It is less bulkier than other units as well. However, the trade-off is its 2-stage filter, which should provide more than enough filtration for most people. Another one of the best water filters that goes under the sink is the iFilters Well Water Whole House Filtration System. This under-sink filter is easy to install and does a thorough job filtering harmful contaminants including dirt, silt, rust, sand, heavy metals, etc. so that you can get clean, filtered water straight from the sink and not have to invest in a water filter pitcher.

How We Decided

Choosing the best home water filtration system opens you up to a world of clean and better-tasting water with every faucet pour.

In determining the best drinking water filtration system to buy, you should consider its water pressure, filtering capacity, number of filters, remineralization method, and cartridge longevity. Water pressure 40 PSI or higher offers an acceptable wait time to fill up a single pitcher of water without going nuts. A filtering capacity of 50 to 70 gallons a day is sufficient for small to mid-sized households. For larger families of 4+ people, you may consider the iSpring RCC7AK 6-Stage Water Filter System, our highest capacity unit (75 gallons) on the list.

Frequency of filter changes and cartridge longevity is fundamental. With multi canister options like the APEC Water System and the Express water, different filters have a different shelf life from 6 months to 2 years. Others, like the Frizzlife and the Home Master TMAFC, are ‘all in one’ solutions with a greater shelf life.

Water Filtration System Buying Guide

The Most Important Features to Consider

  1. Filtering Capacity and Flow Rate
    Looking for a filtering capacity of 50 to 70 gallons for small to mid-sized households and 70 gallons or greater for larger households. We also recommend a flow rate of 0.8 gallons per minute or higher, which we feel is an appropriate wait time to fill a pitcher without losing patience.
  2. Cartridge Life
    Look for systems that have a minimum of 6 months shelf life on cartridges and a year for all-in-one filters. However, all water filters will require filter swaps, though maintenance should be minimal with any of these systems.
  3. Wastewater to pure water ratio
    Look for a wastewater to pure water ratio of at least 3 to 1. 4 or 1 or worse could result in higher than average water bills.

Water Filtration System FAQs

Are water filtration systems worth it?

Yes, water filtration systems are definitely worth it. Tap water is full of contaminating substances such as lead, rust, heavy metals, and fluoride, which could affect your health. This is especially true with older homes that have degrading pipelines.

How does a water filtration system work?

Water filtration systems work by removing small and large particles from your water using different filters. As water passes through one filter to the other, more impurities are removed. Each filter specializes in removing different contaminants or work to add minerals (previously lost) back into the water for added taste. This is especially true with carbon filters, which absorb "pollutant molecules' that cause bad odors.

How do I install a water filtration system?

Each water filtration system comes with its own set of instructions. Under sink filters require turning off the water supply, cutting/modifying the pipe, attaching fittings, and installing the filter. This process should take no more than 30 minutes for someone with basic technical skills.
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