Countertop Water Filter Systems: The Ultimate Guide for 2017

https://pixabay.com/en/mineral-water-lime-ice-mint-glass-1532300/Everyone knows that water is good for you.  But when you get a big whiff of chlorine or other undesirable odors from your tap, it’s tempting to want to skip your daily H2O.

Before you forego your next glass of water, think about giving countertop water filters a shot.

In previous articles, we’ve discussed the basics of water filters and the reverse osmosis process. Afraid to channel your inner plumber?   In this article, we’ll take a look at a low-commitment option for water filtration–that won’t require you to wield a pipe wrench.

Why Choose a Countertop Water Filter?

These filters can remove a number of pollutants and make your water taste and smell great. This can give you peace of mind that heavy metals and other contaminants in your water source will end up in the filter, and not in your body.

The overall level of pollutants removed by countertop systems is less than those of under sink reverse osmosis systems and complex combination filters.  But if your goal is to reduce chlorine and improve the overall taste of your water, a countertop filter is a great option for you.

Don’t feel like dropping some cash on a plumber for installation?  You won’t need to with these systems.  And if you’re not the handiest person at home, rest assured that you won’t be grappling with a system of pipes under your sink.  This is also a bonus if you’re an apartment dweller and not permitted to alter plumbing in your unit.

Clean Water Today has done all of the work to help you compare features from 5 of the top filters on the market today.  We compare water filters below to help you find the best system for your home:

Top 5 Countertop Water Filters

Big Berkey

This is a multiple filter system that includes four filtration components. Removes over 99% of bacteria and viruses.  Also removes parasites and cysts.  Reduces lead, mercury, herbicides, pesticides, chlorine, volatile organic compounds, odors, taste, and more.

  • Manufacturer: Berkey, Model Number BB4X2-BB.
  • Size: 8.5 x 21”
  • Capacity: 2.25 gallons.  
  • Flow rate: 3.5 gallons per house using 2 filter elements.  7 gallons per house using 4 filter elements.  Designed for city water, well water and untreated natural source water.
  • Filters: Comes with 2 purification elements and 2 fluoride filters.  The elements utilize micropore filtration and ion exchange to remove contaminants.  Fluoride filters work in conjunction with the elements to remove   A total of 4 elements may be used in the system to increase flow rate.  Using the 2 filter elements included, the elements have a 6,000 gallon life. Each set of fluoride filters has a 1000 gallon life.
  • Warranty and Return Policy: 6 month warranty related to manufacturer defects.  Purification elements have a 2-year prorated warranty.

Clean Water Today Tips:  Largely considered the top filter of its class, the stainless steel Big Berkey is both a functional and attractive addition to your home.  Whether you’re hoping to remove fluoride from your municipal tap water or packing the family up for a weekend camping trip, this system has something to offer you.  The Big Berkey was designed for family home use, work settings, and travel outings.  A neat feature of this system is the option to use it for camping or trips abroad, where the only water sources are rivers or ponds.  The Big Berkey is incredibly versatile and easy to use, which is reflected in the rave reviews by system owners. 

Royal Berkey

This is a multiple filter system that includes four filtration components. Removes over 99% of bacteria and viruses.  Also removes parasites and cysts.  Reduces lead, mercury, herbicides, pesticides, chlorine, volatile organic compounds, odors, taste, and more.

  • Manufacturer: Berkey, Model Number RB4X2-BB.
  • Size: 9.5 x 24”
  • Capacity: 3.25 gallons.  
  • Flow rate: 4 gallons per house using 2 filter elements.  8 gallons per house using 4 filter elements.  Designed for city water, well water and untreated natural source water.
  • Filters: Comes with 2 purification elements and 2 fluoride filters.  The elements utilize micropore filtration and ion exchange to remove contaminants.  Fluoride filters work in conjunction with the elements to remove   A total of 4 elements may be used in the system to increase flow rate.  Using the 2 filter elements included, the elements have a 6,000 gallon life. Each set of fluoride filters has a 1000 gallon life.
  • Warranty and Return Policy: 6 month warranty related to manufacturer defects.  Purification elements have a 2-year prorated warranty.

Clean Water Today Tips:  The Royal Berkey countertop water filter has as much to offer as its relative, the Big Berkey, plus an extra gallon of capacity.  The stainless steel model looks lovely in your home or workplace.  It can offer additional filtration to city and well water AND purify untreated raw water from lakes, rivers, and water sources from developing countries.  This versatile system is a favorite among countertop filter users and is a great option for larger families or groups.  Not to mention it’s our favorite–we just can’t get enough of the Berkeys.

APEC Water – Countertop Reverse Osmosis Water Filter

This is a combination reverse osmosis (RO) system, with sediment filter, activated carbon filters, and a reverse osmosis semipermeable membrane.  Removes up to 99% of dissolved solids, arsenic, lead, copper, fluoride, chlorine, volatile organic compounds, odors, taste, and more.

  • Manufacturer: APEC, Model Number RO-CTOP.
  • Size: 14 x 6 x 6.5”
  • Capacity:  No holding tank.  
  • Flow rate: Produces up to 90 gallons per day at pressure of 60 psi. Requires 30-90 psi feed water pressure.  Designed for city and well water.
  • Filters: 4 stage system.  First stage is sediment filter.  Second stage is coconut shell activated carbon.  Third stage is the TFC reverse osmosis membrane.  Fourth stage is coconut shell activated carbon.  Recommended replacement frequency of every 6-8 months for pre-filters in stages 1 through 2.  Recommend replacement frequency of every 3-5 years for RO unit membrane and final stage.
  • Warranty and Return Policy: 1 year warranty related to manufacturer defects.

Clean Water Today Tips:  No longer must you sacrifice high levels of filtration if you’re traveling or living in a rented home.  This system offers the excellent pollutant removal of the reverse osmosis process without requiring complicated plumbing work.  If you’re an apartment dweller or traveling across the country in an RV you can easily hook this system up to your water supply.  This portable system hooks up to an existing faucet in seconds.  Students, travelers, and home renters sing the praises of this system.

Brondell H2O+ Cypress Countertop Water Filtration System

This is a 3-stage countertop water filter system coupled with “Nanotrap” technology. Attached to existing faucet.  Removes over 98% of chlorine taste and odor and 99% of volatile organic compounds.  Reduces sediment, pesticides, herbicides, microorganisms, odors, taste, and more.

  • Manufacturer: Brondell, Model Number H630.
  • Size: 3.75 x 10.5 x 13.5”
  • Feed water pressure: Must be within 20-120 psi.
  • Flow rate: 0.5 gallons per minute.
  • Filters: This is 3-stage system with 3 individual filters.  The first stage is a composite plus filter.  The second stage the nanotrap technology filter.  The third and final stage is a carbon block filter.  The composite plus and carbon block filters require replacement every 6 months.  The nanotrap filter requires annual replacement.
  • Warranty and Return Policy: 1 year limited warranty.

Clean Water Today Tips:  This filtration system is quick to set up, users claim it takes only 10 minutes.  The start/stop button for water dispensing is also a plus.  Although this filter removes less contaminants than the reverse osmosis and Berkey systems, it could be a cost effective option if you need a simple water filter for your home.

Santevia Alkaline Gravity Water System

This is an 8-stage filtration system and alkalizer with a series of natural filters. Reduces sediment, bacteria, parasites, heavy metals, herbicides, pesticides, chlorine, volatile organic compounds, odors, taste, and more.

  • Manufacturer: Santevia, Model Number s101B.
  • Size: 12.5 x 23.5”
  • Capacity: 3.9 gallons.  
  • Flow rate: Approximately 1 gallon per hour.
  • Filters: 8-stage system.  Stage 1 is a 0.3 micron ceramic pre-filter.  Stage 2 is granular activated coconut carbon and a KDF filter.  Stage 3 is volcanic mineral zeolite.  Stage 4 is a Maifan mineral stone infusion.  Stage 5 contains pH mineral balls, which add calcium, magnesium, and other trace beneficial minerals.  Stage 6 contains minerals balls with mineral oxides.  Stage 7 contains mineral balls with ionized calcium, magnesium, iron, potassium, zinc, and other trace minerals.  Stage 8 is magnetic energy provided by the spout.  The Stage 1 ceramic pre-filter requires replacement every 12 months.  Recommended replacement frequency of the mineral balls is every 2-3 years. Recommended replacement frequency for 5-Stage filter is every 6 months or every 396 gallons.
  • Warranty and Return Policy:  90 day warranty for the full system. 30 day warranty for filter media.  Warranty relates to manufacturer defects.

Clean Water Today Tips:  The Santevia countertop gravity system offers filtration and also the benefits of remineralization and raised pH.  This is a convenient, portable system for an individual or small family.

 

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