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Best Faucet Water Filters of 2021

Updated
Combat unwelcome bacteria and improve the taste of your tap water with one of these faucet filters.

Have you ever used the faucet to get a drink of water and felt immediately turned off by the smell? Nobody wants to drink water that tastes and smells like treatment chemicals. And yet, it’s vital we drink water.

Luckily, some filters attach right to your faucet to eliminate the unwelcome substances you’d find in regular tap water. In this article, we give you the low down on everything you need to know about the best faucet water filters.

Our Top Picks

Real Talk: Sensible Digs earns a commission through the following independently chosen links at no additional cost to you.
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Model
Product Comparison Table
Features
Product Image of the Engdenton Faucet Water Filter Stainless-Steel Reduce Chlorine High Water Flow, Water Purifier with Ultra Adsorptive Material , Water Filters for Faucets-Fits Standard Faucets
Coolest Design
Engdenton Stainless Steel
  • Long-lasting
  • Stainless steel design
  • High flow rate
Product Image of the PUR Faucet Mount Water Filtration System, Small, Gray
Best Lead Reducing
PUR Classic Faucet Mount Filter
  • Save money
  • Easy installation
  • Easy to use
Product Image of the Waterdrop WD-FC-03 NSF Certified 320-Gallon ACF Water Faucet Filtration System, Faucet Filter, Reduces Chlorine, Harmful Contaminants Metals & Sediments-Fits Standard Faucets,1 Filter Include
Best Customer Service
Waterdrop Long-Lasting
  • Additional benefits
  • Works with a charity
  • Instant access to pure water
Product Image of the Culligan FM-100-C Faucet Mount Water Filter with Life Indicator, Chrome Finish
Easy to Know When to Change
Culligan FM-100-C Faucet
  • Convenient light indicator
  • Free installation help
  • Aesthetically pleasing design
Product Image of the Aibika Water Faucet Purifier System, 304 Stainless Steel housing Faucet Water Purifier, Upgraded Tap Water Mount Filters-Double Outlet Water Faucet Design to Improve Hard Water for Home Kitchen
Easiest to Use
Abika Water Faucet Filter
  • Double outlet system
  • Great for aesthetics
  • Eliminates harmful contaminants
Product Image of the Brita Tap Water Filter System, Water Faucet Filtration System with Filter Change Reminder, Reduces Lead, BPA Free, Fits Standard Faucets Only - Basic, White
Crowd Favorite
Brita White On Tap Faucet Water Filter
  • Easy filter replacement
  • Filter indicator
  • Value for money
Product Image of the 320-Gallon Water Filter for Faucet| Water Purifier, Water Filter Faucet Mount Reduces Lead & Chlorine | Home Water Filtration System Fits Standard Faucets, Filter (One Filter Included)
Best Bang for Your Buck
SJ Wave Faucet Water System
  • Budget-friendly
  • CE and ROHS certified
  • Eliminates taste and odor

How Water Filters Work

It’s a pretty simple concept — water filters remove impurities from your water. But what if we told you there’s more than one type of filter? Before you get overwhelmed, we’re here to clear up any confusion.

There are four different types of water filters:

Activated Carbon

Activated carbon filters are among the most popular and use charcoal to pull out any impurities from your water. It does this through adsorption — i.e. when molecules bind to the surface of a compound.

These filters are best for removing unwanted chemicals and impurities. However, they won’t be able to rid your water of limescale, nitrates, and other “hard” factors.

While they’ll need periodic replacement as impurities clog the pores, they’re a good option for anyone looking for a natural and clean way to filter their water. Not to mention, they’ll last a significant amount of time.

Reverse Osmosis

Osmosis is the passage of water through a semipermeable membrane, from a lower concentration of dissolved solutes to a higher concentration (1). During osmosis, the liquid is working to reach equilibrium. Reverse osmosis, on the other hand, uses pressure to reverse this process and completely separate a substance from the liquid, rather than finding an equilibrium.

Reverse osmosis filters are a good option because they remove just about any harmful contaminants from your water supply.

Ion Exchange

When water comes into contact with the ion exchange filter, a chemical reaction occurs. This removes dissolved ions from your water and then replaces them with ones of a similar charge (2). Ion exchange is best for dissolving sodium and magnesium from water.

Ion exchange water filters are also very effective in softening your water. This can really come in handy if you’re dealing with hard water stains that need removal.

These filters, however, require periodic use of a particular unique salt to keep from mineral build-up in the unit. If you want something with minimal maintenance, this may be inconvenient.

Distillation

Distillation is like advanced boiling. After the water is boiled, steam is trapped from the water in a separate container. The trapped vapor then condenses back into water form. Distillation is the least common of the four household water filtration systems, but can still be very effective (3).

This method can prove to be very effective in eliminating harmful bacteria and other contaminants, including both organic and inorganic compounds. However, it’s a time-consuming process

Why You Need a Faucet Water Filter

Before water reaches your sink, it goes through quite a journey, traveling through a long series of pipes before making it to your home. On the way, dirt and other contaminants can land up into your drinking water.

Those bacteria and other microscopic organisms can make you sick (4). With a proper filtration system, you can eliminate those harmful organisms and improve the taste of your water.

Here are some of the significant benefits of using a faucet water filter:

  • Filters remove sediment: Nobody wants to taste soil or clay in their water. While it isn’t an immediate health risk, it can lead to bad-tasting water.
  • Reduce mineral levels: Minerals are important for the body, but only in very small doses. Minerals like iron and magnesium can also cause a metallic taste in your water.
  • Get rid of pathogens: Filters are useful for keeping unhealthy bacteria from reaching your body. However, you’ll want to be sure to get a filter listed as micro, ultra or nano.
  • Reduce chlorine levels: Most water treatment facilities use chlorine to kill bacteria before they reach the pipeline. Bad tasting water can be a result of this. Chlorine can also react to produce hazardous materials when passing over certain metals.
  • Removes lead and chemicals: Filters are also very useful in removing lead and pesticides from drinking water.
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Things to Keep in Mind

Before jumping into purchasing a faucet water filter, there are things you’ll want to bear in mind. Perhaps the most important thing is to figure out the type of filter you need.

The Right Filter

To find out the best filter for your needs, consider where you live and what kind of contaminants are in your city’s water supply.

Consumer Confidence Reports (CCR)

By July 1st, every year, you should receive one of these reports, more commonly known as your “annual water quality report.” In it you’ll find where your water comes from and everything that it contains.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) offers a way for you to find the CCR for your area (5). You can search by just your state, or you can get more specific by providing your city or county.

Keep in mind, though, that this report tells you what’s in the city’s supply. It won’t be able to tell you whether or not you have lead or other contaminants in your pipes.

Water Testing Kits

The best way to tell which type of filter you need is to test your water supply. Water supply test kits are available at most home improvement stores, but it’s worth asking your local health department for one. In many cases, the health department will give them to you for free (6).

Test Your Water

To get the most accurate reading, you should send your sample to a certified lab. You can find an accredited lab by asking your local water department, checking the EPA’s list of labs, or by calling the EPA’s safe water hotline at 800-426-4791.

NSF Certification

Different filters work to eliminate different particles in the water. Search the packaging for an NSF (National Science Foundation) certification for what you want to be filtered out.

When a product is NSF-certified, it assures you that the company follows strict standards with their products (7). Plus, rather than receiving a one-time certification, products must be tested regularly to maintain their certification.

Cost and Maintenance

You should also bear in mind the initial cost of the filter along with any maintenance costs that come with it. All filters will need periodic replacing so if you’re into low-maintenance, you may want to find one that boasts long-lasting use.

Some faucet water filters may also come with replacement parts, which can help alleviate extra costs.


The Best Faucet Water Filter Reviews of 2021

Now that you know everything you need to about faucet water filters, it’s time to put your knowledge to work. We’ve made it easier for you by compiling seven of the best faucet water filters on the market.

1. Engdenton Stainless Steel Water Filter

Best Designed Faucet Water Filter

If your kitchen appliances are stainless steel, this faucet water filter will fit nicely with your kitchen aesthetic. The system is made of high-quality food-grade stainless steel and is super durable and crack-proof.

It uses activated carbon fiber to filter your water and can eliminate dirt and other organic compounds. It also works to inhibit bacterial growth. However, it’s unable to filter out any total dissolved solids as these still pass through an activated carbon filter.

The filter can swivel 360 degrees and should last you roughly six months, or through 320 gallons of water.

Why We Love It

Long-Lasting

A long-lasting filter is going to save you time and money. You won’t need to worry about replacing any parts until around six months of use. This can come in handy if you live a busy lifestyle.

Stainless Steel Design

Not only is stainless steel easy to clean, but it has a sleek design, too. It leaves less room for corrosion, which reinforces its long-lasting features. Other benefits of stainless steel include fire and heat resistance and impact resistance.

High Flow Rate

A high flow rate comes in handy, especially if you want a glass of water right away. This filter will give you 0.5 GPM (gallons per minute), so you don’t need to worry about waiting forever for your glass to fill up.

Keep In Mind

Doesn’t Fit All Faucets

The only major downside to this filter is that it doesn’t correctly fit all faucet shapes and sizes. Because of this, people commonly complain of leaking from the faucet as well as water spraying everywhere. Keep in mind the design of your faucet before choosing this product.

Additional Specs

Gallons Per Minute 0.5 GPM
Filter Type Activated Carbon
Compatible Faucets Standard
Filter Lifespan 320 Gallons
Additional Features Stainless steel

2. PUR Classic Faucet Mount Filter

Best Lead Reducing Water Filter

For cleaner, filtered water — the PUR Classic Faucet Mount Filter is the one. It reduces lead and 70 other water contaminants including mercury and pesticides.

PUR’s tests showed it reduces contaminants more than other brands. This was based on a year’s worth of comparing their product to bottled water.

How does it work? The activated carbon and ion exchange reduces the contaminants in the water. Then MineralClear core releases water with a crisp and refreshing taste. With this water filter, you can drink water, stay healthy and hydrated, without consuming contaminants.

Why We Love It

Save Money

This water filter is a budget-friendly product. Over time, you will save up to a thousand dollars a year depending on how much bottled water you buy. Now, you can cut down on unnecessary spending and plastic waste since you can drink straight from the tap.

Easy Installation

Within a few minutes of the product arriving, it will be installed and you’ll be enjoying your fresh, clean water. It has a one-click attachment — no tools required. It works with most faucets, but not pull-out or hand-held ones.

Easy to Use

This water filter has an on/off option. So when you’re ready to use it, simply switch it on. No hassle at all. The best part is, though, when the filter needs changed, this unit will tell you! A little green indicator light will blink and that means: time for a new filter. This should occur roughly every three months.

Keep In Mind

Leaky

Some customers have noted that the unit leaks, especially when you turn the faucet up to the highest water pressure. This tends to happen from the top of the adaptor and to the side of the filtered water hole. The issue with this is, you don’t know if the leaky water has been filtered yet or is safe to drink. So therefore, you might have half a glass with clean, crisp water and half is unfiltered contaminated water.

Slow Release

You might find the water comes out pretty slow. Slower than your normal faucet anyway. This is fine for a glass of water, but if filling up the whole sink — it can be pretty frustrating. Keep this in mind before purchasing this unit.

Additional Specs

Gallons Per Minute 0.52 GPM
Filter Type Activated carbon and ions
Compatible Faucets Most, except pull-out or hand-held faucets
Filter Lifespan 100 Gallons
Additional Features Reduces 10x more contaminants than Brita (and other brands)

3. Waterdrop Long-Lasting Filtration System

Best Customer Service

If you’re into helping others and you believe everyone deserves clean drinking water, this is the filter for you.

For every filter purchase, an entire day’s worth of clean drinking water is donated to one of two African primary schools.

This model also comes with a 30-day satisfaction guarantee as well as a one-year limited warranty.

Why We Love It

Additional Benefits

One of the most frustrating things about buying anything is when the product doesn’t live up to your expectations. This product is excellent because you have both a 30-day satisfaction guarantee and a one-year limited warranty.

Works With A Charity

This filter also partners with The Water Project and specifically helps Ematsuli and Shiru primary schools in Africa. We appreciate this company’s transparency.

Instant Access to Pure Water

The system gives you 0.5 gallons per minute, which means instant access to pure water. This is awesome when you need a drink but don’t want to wait for the filter to kick in.

Keep In Mind

Leaks May Occur

This filter comes with eight threads, while many faucets have fewer. If yours only has five, you can solve this by sanding down the adapter that comes with the filter.

Additional Specs

Gallons Per Minute 0.5 GPM
Filter Type Activated Carbon
Compatible Faucets Standard
Filter Lifespan 320 Gallons
Additional Features 30-day money-back guarantee

4. Culligan FM-100-C Faucet Mount Filter

Easy to Know When to Change

The convenience of this filter is excellent. It has a life indicator that will shine a red light when it’s time to change out the filter. Each filter cartridge can purify up to 200 gallons of water for you before it’s time for a change.

It’s also very compact, making it an excellent option for anybody who doesn’t want to compromise on looks. The cartridge is easy to replace and comes in both white and chrome finishes.

Why We Love It

Convenient Light Indicator

The life indicator comes in handy because life can get busy, and we can’t always tell when it’s time to change a filter out. We like that this one has a light indicator because it can alert you when it’s time to switch filters. This can help prevent possible health issues that may arise from a clogged filter.

You’ll probably notice the change in taste when the filter has run its course, but it’s still good to be prompted when a change is needed.

Free Installation Help

Culligan offers free help to anyone who calls the company’s toll-free number. They encourage customers to call with any questions regarding installation or other issues and help you work through the problem.

Aesthetically Pleasing Design

The filter is very compact and blends in nicely with just about any color and design. We know what it’s like when you take pride in how your kitchen looks — any appliance that doesn’t match makes us cringe!

Keep In Mind

Issues With Leaking

Some people have experienced issues with leaking and with the plastic adapters. Because hot water expands plastic, keep in mind not to use your hot water for prolonged amounts of time. This will help avoid most leak issues.

Additional Specs

Gallons Per Minute 0.5 GPM
Filter Type Activated Carbon
Compatible Faucets Standard
Filter Lifespan 200 Gallons
Additional Features Life indicator light

5. Abika Water Faucet Filter System

Easiest to Use

Here’s another stainless steel option that won’t stick out like a sore thumb in your kitchen. It comes in a sleek design and fits any standard kitchen sink faucet.

We like this one because not only is it easy to install, but it’s also easy to use, and swivels ergonomically.

The filter utilizes a five-layer system to purify your water and allows you to switch between filtered and non-filtered water. It’s recommended to change out your filter once every 3-6 months to maintain quality.

Why We Love It

Double Outlet System

This filter can easily switch between filtered and unfiltered water. All you have to do is flip a switch, and you can use whichever setting you prefer.

Great for Aesthetics

We’re big fans of this model since it doesn’t make you compromise on your kitchen or bathroom design. The stainless steel exterior matches any faucet design, and its cylindrical shape is sleek and easy on the eyes. An excellent choice for both kitchen and bathroom faucets indeed.

Eliminates Harmful Contaminants

Top marks go to this filter for the number of contaminants it filters out. Not only does it improve your water’s taste, but it inhibits bacterial growth, softens water, and removes asbestos.

Keep In Mind

Doesn’t Fit All Faucets

The only downside to this one is that it doesn’t fit every faucet. There are adapters available to avoid this issue, but they aren’t subtle and may look unattractive. Obviously, this isn’t a huge problem if you’re not bothered by how it looks — this is still a filter that’s darn good at what it does.

Additional Specs

Gallons Per Minute 1.6 GPM
Filter Type Activated Carbon
Compatible Faucets Standard
Filter Lifespan 320 Gallons
Additional Features Convenient filter switch

6. Brita White On Tap Faucet Water Filter

Crowd Favorite

This filter uses a multistage water filter to eliminate parasites and reduce chlorine, as well as other impurities. Its technology helps improve water quality, and it has a filter replacement indicator, which gives you a heads up when you need to change the filter for continuous safe water access.

The filter is long-lasting and made to be compact and requires no tool during installation.

Why We Love It

Easy Filter Replacement

These filters are a godsend for anybody who wants low maintenance and easy installation option for their home.

Filter Indicator

Some water faucet filters are not equipped with replacement indicator which would be a hassle for busy individuals. The filter is the most important part of the system and to obtain optimal performance, a filter indicator would come in handy to remind you of filter replacements.

Value for Money

This company gives good value for your money by improving the quality of your own water without breaking the bank.

Keep In Mind

Faulty Indicator

While this filter will get the job done, one customer noted that the indicator signaled somewhere in between green and red even after a few days of installation.

This isn’t the end of the world but can be an inconvenience for some.

Additional Specs

Gallons Per Minute N/A
Filter Type Multistage Filter
Compatible Faucets Standard
Filter Lifespan 100 Gallons
Additional Features Space-saving design

7. SJ Wave Faucet Water System

Best Budget Faucet Water Filter

For anyone who is looking for cleaner water without breaking the bank, this is undoubtedly an option to consider.

Despite its budget-friendly price, it still manages to offer most of the same features as other filters on our list. It uses activated carbon and equipped with another layer of filtration to soften and filter impurities out of your water. It almost always fits standard faucets at home.

Why We Love It

Budget-Friendly

Cost is an essential factor for any home improvement purchase, regardless of how big or small it is. This filter made our list specifically for its budget-friendliness. It offers much of the same benefits as other water filters while giving you a price that doesn’t hurt to look at.

Easy to Install

Installation for this one is straightforward. It doesn’t require any tools for installation and fits most standard faucets. Keep in mind, though, it won’t fit any other unconventional type of faucet.

Eliminates Odor

Have you ever turned your faucet on to be greeted by foul-smelling water? We have, and it isn’t pleasant. This filter is convenient because it eliminates those unwelcome odors that sometimes come from unfiltered tap water.

Keep In Mind

Awkward Sizing

The main concern we’ve found with this particular filter is that some people have had fit issues even with their standard faucet. However, this can be avoided by measuring your faucet and comparing it to see if the filter will fit properly prior to purchasing.

Additional Specs

Gallons Per Minute 0.5
Filter Type Activated Carbon
Compatible Faucets Standard
Filter Lifespan 320 Gallons
Additional Features Post-filtration layer

Faucet Water Filter Comparison Chart

Product Best For gal. p/m Filter Type Compatible Faucets Filter Lifespan
Engdenton Stainless Steel Water Filter Design 0.5 GPM Activated Carbon Standard 320 gal.
PUR Classic Faucet Mount Filter Lead Reducing 0.52 GPM Activated Carbon Standard 100 gal.
Waterdrop Long-Lasting Filtration System Customer Service 0.5 GPM Activated Carbon Standard 320 gal.
Culligan FM-100-C Faucet Mount Filter Changing Filter 0.5 GPM Activated Carbon Standard 200 gal.
Abika Water Faucet Filter System Ease of Use 1.6 GPM Activated Carbon Standard 320 gal.
Brita White On Tap Faucet Water Filter Crowd Favorite N/A Multistage Filter Standard 100 gal.
SJ Wave Faucet Water System Budget Friendly 0.5 GPM Activated Carbon Standard 320 gal.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do You Install a Faucet Water Filter?

Faucet water filtration systems will come with the system itself as well as an adapter for your faucet. While installation methods vary depending on the brand and product, they’re all installed in a similar way. The adapter will need to be screwed onto your faucet and connected to your system.

What’s the Correct Way to Use Them?

Again, systems vary. Some filters don’t require any extra work once they’re installed. However, there are others that come equipped with a switch. This switch will allow you to go from unfiltered to filtered water. You’ll want to make sure your filter is on the right setting if yours comes with a switch.

Will My Filter Fit My Faucet?

When shopping around, you’re going to want to know the number of threads your faucet has. You should make sure the thread number from the filter matches the thread number on your faucet. For example, if your faucet has eight threads, you’ll want to find a filter that also has eight threads.

What Are Faucet Threads?

Faucet threads are the grooves on the end of your faucet. These look very similar to what you would find on the spout and cap of a plastic bottle.

How Often Should I Clean and Replace My Filter?

Depending on the shelf life of the filter, one can last up to nine months. However, most companies recommend changing their filters out every three to six months.


Clean Drinking Water for All

Just because your water comes out clear from your faucet, doesn’t mean it’s pure.

While water does get treated in water treatment plants, that doesn’t stop pipe residue and other nasties from getting into your water. Faucet water filters are an excellent tool for filtering out unwelcome contaminants like chlorine, dirt, and even harmful substances like lead.

Have you tried any of the filters on our list? Which one is your favorite? Let us know in the comments section below

Headshot of Peter Gray

About the Author

Peter Gray

Peter has been a homeowner for 35+ years and has always done his own repair and improvement tasks. As a retired plumber, Peter now spends his time teaching others how they can fix leaks, replace faucets, and make home improvements on a budget.

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