You want clean, safe drinking water, but what’s the best filtration method for your home? Not everyone can afford massive reverse osmosis machines, or the energy spent on distilling. Is there a simpler, cheaper way to get the same effect?
Absolutely. The best water filter pitchers are effortless to use and an affordable means to getting purified drinking water. We recommend our eight favorite models, with some tips on choosing the right one to suit you.
- Great-tasting water
- Fast filtration
- Low maintenance
- Increases water alkalinity
- Removes heavy metals
- Filters fluoride
- Two filtration technology
- Blocks pathogens
- Break-resistant glass
- 10-cup capacity
- Made from BPA-free plastic
- Stylish design
- Five-layer filtration
- Easiest to use
- Water quality meter included
- Triple-capacity, 5-stage filter
- Retains water hardness
- Has a sticker filter chart
- No digital components
- No-fuss filter
- Has built-in spigot
- 18 cup capacity
- Has an electronic indicator
Why Should You Buy a Water Filter Pitcher?
Everyone deserves clean, pure water, but not everyone has access to it. The United States has a reputation for some of the highest quality tap water in the world. However, that doesn’t mean that every citizen benefits from it.
It’s worth noting that our water is 93 percent safe, but that number is on the decline and circumstance dependant (1). More and more people are turning to home purification, and water filter pitchers are the perfect way to start.
If you’re interested in buying one but aren’t sure if it’s worth it, here are some facts that might help.
1. They’re Effective
The most important factor to water filter pitchers — or any water filter — is how well they clean your supply. So how do water filter pitchers hold up? Do they really work?
Yes, and better than you might realize. Most water filter pitchers use activated carbon filters. These are extremely efficient at removing toxins and contaminants from water. They’re capable of filtering heavy metals, chemicals (like chlorine) and germs from your supply.
In fact, one study concluded that water filter pitchers can even remove arsenic from your drinking water (2).
2. Some Soften Water
Most carbon filters can’t remove calcium or magnesium from your supply, but some water filter pitcher brands will. It’s the presence of these minerals that gives water its hardness factor.
The sort of filter used will determine if the softening is possible. When it is, there are many benefits to softer water. Hard water does have inherent benefits too, especially considering our bodies require calcium and magnesium.
3. Your Water Will Taste Better
This is a direct and wonderful consequence of our first two points. Microbes, toxins, and minerals often affect the taste — and sometimes even the odor — of your water. For example, hard water has a somewhat “dirty” taste to it, while chlorine has a chemical hint.
It goes without saying that if you filter out the contaminants, you won’t sense them in your supply. As a result, drinking water will be a more pleasant experience. Since it tastes better, you may even end up drinking more, and be healthier for it.
4. Save Money
You’re spoiled for choice when it comes to residential water purification. Consumers tend to recommend larger systems under the assumption that they’re more effective. Whole house filtration systems and reverse osmosis machines have gained popularity, but they come with a price — literally.
In the case of reverse osmosis systems, they use sophisticated designs, filters, and technology, so they won’t come cheap. Whole-house filtration is thorough, but you’ll pay for the product and the work that goes into installing them.
Water filter pitchers are simply jugs, so they’re priced accordingly. They’re much more affordable than larger systems, and maintenance costs are low (4).
5. No Installation Necessary
In the cases of reverse osmosis machines and whole house filtration, they take up quite a bit of room. You’ll have to connect them to a water source, and with the latter, professional installation is required.
Water filter pitchers are a tabletop solution. There’s no building, mess or fuss needed to get them up and running. You’ll save even more money because of this, and you’ll have time and effort to spare.
6. One Size Fits All
Another problem with larger filtration systems is that not every home can accommodate them. Since whole house systems demand a professional service, you may not have the authority to install one. As for reverse osmosis machines, they have their benefits, but they’re cumbersome.
A water filter pitcher will suit you regardless of whether you live in a mansion or a cardboard box. They take up almost no room at all, so you won’t have to make space for them or rearrange your home to fit them.
Purified water is more accessible because of their compact size, and everyone — no matter your standard of living — can benefit.
7. Low Maintenance
Pitchers are small and can be easily dismantled for cleaning or filter replacement. Compared to larger filtration systems, maintenance is a breeze.
When taking care of your pitcher, all you have to do is treat it as you would any other dish. Wash it with dish soap and clean water, and replace the filters every six months or so. That’s all!
8. It’s Not Rocket Science
You don’t need any understanding of chemistry, plumbing or technology to use filter water filter pitchers. There aren’t any faucets, complicated buttons or intricate settings to work around.
All you have to do is fill them with water. They take care of the filtration without any further intervention from you. Use them and maintain them well, and beyond that, you won’t have to think about them at all.
How to Choose the Best Water Filter Pitcher
They might not be much more than jugs, but you don’t want to settle on any old pitcher. We’ve compiled a checklist for you so that you won’t go wrong when you shop for one.
Check Its Capacity
You might think that the higher the capacity, the more value for money you’ll receive, but this disregards its weight. The higher its capacity, the heavier it’ll be when it’s full!
Be sure to buy one that suits you. It should be easy to pour from, but try to go for one that isn’t too small, either.
What’s It Made Of?
There are pros and cons to each material your pitcher is made of, and what’s best for you is a matter of preference.
Plastic and metal pitchers are safer and more durable, but they must be BPA-free. If they’re not, they’ll be redundant as the pitcher itself will contaminate your water. Glass pitchers, on the other hand, don’t carry any risk of BPAs, but are fragile and often heavier.
What Does It Filter?
Ask yourself why you’re interested in a water filter pitcher and then make sure your pick matches. Different pitchers, with different filters, will purify your water in different ways.
Not all pitchers will filter out every single heavy metal, while others might not filter out chlorine. It depends solely on the individual brand or product, so pay extra attention to these specs.
Will It Soften Your Water?
Not all models are capable of softening water, so you’ll have to do some research if you see one you like.
Keep in mind that it’s unlikely that you’ll find a true water-softening pitcher. Rather, check for ionizing filters that change the alkalinity of your supply. Softer water will occur naturally alongside this.
Is It NSF-Certified?
The easiest way to determine if your water pitcher is legitimate is to look for the National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) seal of approval. This body regulates which filters are good for use, to guarantee safe water in your home.
Doing this takes almost no time, as this organization has a handy database. You can look up the brand or model of your choice if you’re uncertain (5).
It’s not to say that water filter pitchers without this seal should be avoided. It’s simply a bonus that’s nice to have.
Consider the Filter Costs
Maintenance costs are generally low for water filter pitchers, but you still want to pay attention to the cost of replacement cartridges.
Although activated carbon filters are the norm, double-check which filters your pitcher takes. You don’t want to run into trouble later on if the filters are specialized, rare or expensive to replace.
Remember that you’ll have to replace them at least twice a year, so go for filters that are easy to acquire and affordable.
Does It Have Special Features?
Some water filter pitchers have advanced features that you can make use of. A common one is an indicator of when your filters need refreshing.
These extras aren’t necessities and have nothing to do with the pitcher’s efficiency. They can make life a little easier, though, and increase the value for money. Don’t be surprised if you pay a little bit more for one.
Make the Most of Your Water Filter Pitcher
There are some steps you can take to ensure that your pitcher will last you as long as possible. Keep the following in mind for fresher, better water:
- Don’t let it stand: In the case of carbon filters, you should replace them if you’ve left them open and unused for two weeks or more (6).
- Cold water only: Most manufacturers warn against using their pitchers for warm water. This can damage the filtration and ruin their effect. Some say to only use disinfected water, but in the USA your faucet water probably already is.
- Flush your pitcher: Before you use your water filter pitcher for the first time, you’ll have to rinse it. When filters are packaged or shipped, they’re at risk of contamination. Flushing your pitcher will get rid of dust and debris, and it kicks the carbon inside your filter into gear.
- Prioritize manufacturer instructions: Though it’s recommended to replace your carbon filters at least twice a year, manufacturer guides overrule this. If the manual says to maintain yours every month, follow that instead of generalized suggestions.
- Fridges are fine: Almost all manufacturers recommend storing your pitcher in your fridge. Though this has nothing to do with its effect, it’s handy in summer and will provide more refreshing water.
Before You Buy a Water Filter Pitcher
We’re big fans of water filter pitchers, and we recommend them based on their cost, effort to use and maintain, and effectiveness. Still, there are only a few considerations to keep in mind before you settle on one.
They Take Long to Run
If you’re desperately thirsty and your water filter pitcher is empty, you might want to reach for the faucet instead. One of the biggest drawbacks to water filter pitchers is that they can take up to 15 minutes to fill up. It’s a good idea to fill them beforehand.
Water filter pitchers have the upper hand in many ways, but they don’t work on large amounts of water. Their compact size and ease of use are worth it, but they’re best for drinking water. If you want purified water to bathe in, for example, you might want to invest in a bigger system.
They Don’t Disinfect
Pitchers are excellent at filtering out a range of contaminants, but they may not protect against certain pathogens. They’ll pick up bacteria too, so it’s vitally important to maintain them.
The Best Water Filter Pitchers of 2022
The pros far outweigh the cons when it comes to water filter pitchers, so we highly recommend them as a filtration option.
Our best water filter pitcher lits is based on effectiveness, specs, and customer feedback.
1. AquaBliss Water Filter Pitcher
Best Quality Water
You’ll get excellent value for money with this product, and customers are highly satisfied with it. It’s large, durable and efficient, and compared to some other brands, the water quality is fantastic.
This water filter pitcher works much faster than others do. It gives you purified water in less than three minutes, which is an impressive feat. AquaBliss claims that it lasts twice as long as competitors’, with maintenance only required every four months.
As for its filtration, it’ll clear your supply of heavy metals, organic pollutants, and toxins. These include mercury, copper, zinc, sediment, and chlorine. It removes odors as well, so your water will taste heavenly.
Customer feedback is almost perfect when it comes to the quality of the purified water. There’s no aftertaste from running through the filter, and every hint of chlorine or other contaminants is removed. The resulting water is crisp, fresh and of a high quality, which is everything you need from a water filter pitcher.
It Works Fast
This product knocks other brands out of the park in speed. While most other water filter pitchers take ages to fill, this model gets the job done in only a minute or two. Some users even noted that it filled within thirty seconds.
You don’t have to wait to drink up with this one, and the quality and efficiency aren’t compromised.
Four months might fall under the general rule of six, but this model still does better than its competitors. The filters are designed to last longer to lessen the maintenance required. You’ll save money too, as there will be fewer replacements needed.
Complaints of Flimsiness
The filters of this product are strong and durable, but the pitcher itself isn’t always seen as sturdy. It’s made of a decent grade BPA-free plastic, but a number of buyers complained about the bottom seal coming loose.
Users also note that the lid isn’t very strong, and in some cases doesn’t fit as well as it should on the pitcher.
Keep It Filled
One more thing customers take note of is that the filter is positioned a little bit too high. If you don’t keep the pitcher filled, what’s left won’t make contact with it. This isn’t so frustrating, considering how fast it works.
|Heavy metal purification?||Copper, zinc, mercury|
|Capacity||10 cups/2.3 liters|
|Special features||Rapid gravity filtering system|
2. Invigorated Water pH Restore Pitcher
Best for Water Hardness
If you don’t mind hard water, give this model a try. Not only does it purify all sorts of toxins, but it also increases the alkalinity of your supply. This pitcher gives you antioxidant water with added calcium, too.
This product can purify heavy metals including copper, zinc, arsenic, and lead. It also clears chemical toxins like chlorine, chloramine, and to a lesser degree, fluoride. Don’t worry about organic pollution; this product removes rust, sand, and sediment as an added benefit.
Water is deemed “hard” as the alkalinity increases. Mineral water is healthier to drink as it is, but this pitcher goes the extra mile. It adds calcium and selenium, has antioxidizing properties, and lowers the acidity of your water.
A great advantage is that this pitcher can tackle lead, among other heavy metals. It takes care of all the toxins you’ve been warned about, which adds to its health benefits.
Not all water pitchers can purify your water of fluoride, so it’s excellent that this one can. It takes care of everything: heavy metals, chemicals, and organic pollution. It’s a well-rounded pitcher that customers praise.
This pitcher does its job well, but some customers note that the resulting water has an unpleasant taste to it. It’s subjective, as the majority of customers have no complaints regarding this. Note that since it adds minerals, it’s likely that the taste will be affected, even if it’s only slightly.
Quality Is Lacking
A few customers mention that the quality of the pitcher and its lid could be better. There are no complaints regarding the filter or the pitcher’s efficiency, though. Some users reported easy breakages or defects upon delivery.
|Heavy metal purification?||Copper, zinc, arsenic, lead|
|Chemical purification?||Chlorine, chloramine, fluoride|
|Water softening?||No (hardens water)|
|Capacity||14.7 cups/3.5 liters|
|Special features||High negative oxidization reduction potential, adds calcium and selenium|
3. LifeStraw Premium Water Filter Pitcher
Best for Filtering Germs
Here’s another that will suit you if you prefer mineral water. This pitcher uses activated carbon + ion-exchange filters that do a lot more than just clean your water.
Its most important quality is that it removes not only pathogenic microorganisms but also gets rid of harmful chemicals and other heavy metals.
A cool feature is that the membrane microfilter can last for up to a year or once it reaches 264 gallons. The filters are durable and designed to remain stable and unclogged for longer.
We like that this pitcher has an easy-fill lid.
Two Filtration Technology
What caught my attention with this pitcher is its dual-filtration system. Firstly, the membrane microfilter gets rid of harmful pathogens like bacteria and parasites which are present in unfiltered water. On the other hand, activated carbon + ion-exchange filter is responsible for sieving not only heavy metals such as lead and mercury but also chemicals such as PFAS, pesticides, and herbicides. Additionally, it preserves magnesium and potassium in the water which is some of the important electrolytes needed by our body. While the membrane microfilter needs a single replacement annually, the activated carbon + ion-exchange filter requires you to change it every two months.
Unlike the product displayed above, this one gives you softer water. It retains magnesium and potassium in the water- electrolytes that are vital in bodily function. You get the best of both worlds: gentler water that also has some much-needed magnesium and potassium.
The use of membrane microfilter gives this pitcher antibacterial property. Other water filter pitchers fall short in this department, so it’s an excellent choice for fighting not only germs but also parasites. As a result, you’ll drink some of the cleanest water you can get your hands on.
Made of borosilicate glass, this is extremely helpful for families living with toddlers. Furthermore, its material composition and shape make cleaning a breeze.
Information Is Lacking
We know that this pitcher filters out several pathogens and heavy metals, but there is no information needed on how to clean and maintain the filter for longer usage.
|Heavy metal purification?||Lead, mercury, chromium, cadmium and copper.|
|Chemical purification?||Chlorine, pesticides and herbicides, dirt, sand.|
|Capacity||7 cups/1.65 liters|
Activated carbon + ion exchange filter
|Special features||Easy-fill lid.|
4. Brita Grand
Best for Your Budget
Brita is a consumer favorite in home filtration, and this product doesn’t disappoint. It brings you the best of Brita, at a lower cost.
So how does it weigh up against others?
This pitcher filters out cadmium, copper, mercury, and chlorine. In doing so, the taste and odor of your supply will be improved. It has a 10-cup capacity and is made of BPA-free plastic.
There are some cool features, too, which add to its value. The lid is easy-fill and locks into place, and an indicator and soft-touch handle are included.
Though this pitcher is a budget choice, it’s not lacking in any features. Its design is streamlined, there are nifty features and it has the standard 10-cup capacity. Brita has proven itself once again and saves you money with an effective product.
We like the easy-fill lid that’s made even better by its lock. The design of this pitcher, from its build to its lid, is fantastic. Using it is easy, and the chances of spills or other mishaps are reduced.
You can choose from a range of colors, if this is important to you, which adds a touch of style to your kitchen. Just because it’s a water filter, it doesn’t mean it can’t look good.
The lid locking into place is both a blessing and a curse. Many customers note that putting this pitcher together is simple, but taking apart is frustrating. There’s a learning curve to get it right, and your first run with it might be a hassle.
Buyers mention that you should handle this pitcher with care as it’s not that durable. There are reports of unprovoked cracking and breakages. Be careful not to drop it.
|Heavy metal purification?||Chromium, copper, mercury|
|Capacity||10 cups/2.6 liters|
|Special features||LED display, easy-fill lid, lid lock, soft-touch handle|
5. ZeroWater ZD-018 Water Filter Pitcher
Largest Capacity Water Filter Pitcher
This water filter pitcher uses five-layer filtration to get rid of heavy metals in your supply. It can remove chromium, perfluorooctanoic acid, fluoride, mercury, aluminum, and lead. Your water will improve in quality and taste as a result.
It’s built with BPA-free plastic and has a 23-cup capacity. We like that there is a TDS Meter. This way, you have the peace of mind that this pitcher is really doing what it’s supposed to do by measuring the total dissolved solids in your water before and after using this pitcher. How cool is that?
There aren’t many water filter pitchers that boast the removal of fluoride, but this one does. It also clears chlorine and limescale from your supply. The water you’ll get from it will be of excellent quality, and somewhat purer than competing brands.
Easiest To Use
I for one, hate refilling water from time to time. I like that this has a 5.4-liter capacity and would take me a few more hours before re-filling the pitcher.
Water Quality Meter Included
One feature that makes this water filter pitcher stands out from the rest is that it has an included water quality meter. This gives me an assurance to check about the water quality prior to drinking it.
A few customers mention that the pitcher height is too tall to fit a standard fridge configuration at a height of 1.5 inches.
|Heavy metal purification?||Lead, chromium & PFOA/PFOS|
|Chemical purification?||Fluoride, chlorine, iron|
|Capacity||23 cups/5.4 liters|
|Filter||5-level filtration: ion exchange|
|Special features||TDS meter|
6. Aquagear Water Filter Pitcher
Best High-End Model
If you’re willing to spend more on a water filter pitcher, this product is well worth the money. Its quality cannot be questioned. NSF-approved, product tests were run in Flint, Michigan, to prove its efficiency.
This pitcher incorporates triple-capacity, five-stage filters designed to last longer and filter better than competitors do. We like that it filters out the usual heavy metals, as well as lead, chloramine, chlorine, and fluoride.
It retains your water’s hardness for healthier hydration. A great bonus is that you get a lifetime guarantee upon purchase.
Beyond what’s expected, this water filter pitcher cleans your water more effectively. It filters out lead, chloramines, and fluoride — something not all pitcher filters are capable of.
This product won’t only purify your water, it’ll keep its goodness as well. Some other brands may attempt to alter your supply’s hardness or alkalinity, but this one doesn’t. It won’t strip any of your water’s minerals away.
We like that this water filter pitcher checks all the boxes. It’s BPA-free, recyclable, and both NSF and FDA-approved. It was tested in Flint, Michigan for copper and lead removal, so you know it’s the real deal.
It’s incredible in its function and effect, but you get what you pay for. The costs are significantly higher than those of our other recommendations. While it’s worth every cent, it’s not a budget choice.
More than a few users note that the lid wasn’t designed well and that spills are inevitable. If the water overflows, it will recontaminate what’s already been filtered. Keep a close watch on this pitcher if you have the time.
|Heavy metal purification?||Chromium, copper, mercury, lead|
|Chemical purification?||Chlorine, fluoride|
|Capacity||8 cups/1.8 liters|
|Filter||Triple capacity, 5-stage|
|Special features||Premium food-grade build, NSF and FDA-approved, recyclable|
7. Brita Everyday Pitcher
Best Starter Pitcher
For those of you who prefer simpler pitchers without the bells and whistles, we recommend this Brita model. This model is simple, easy to work with, and doesn’t lack any of the features that you need in a water filter pitcher.
It’s BPA-free, has a sticker filter chart for easy reference, and has a 10-cup capacity. It filters copper, cadmium, mercury, and chlorine.
There’s not much more to it! This is a no-fuss filter for those of who you seek healthy hydration without any effort or knowledge of pitchers. It’s simple and effective, and that’s all you need.
No Digital Components
Don’t get us wrong, we’re huge fans of LED indicators, but not everyone appreciates them. If you’re technologically disadvantaged, or just don’t want the hassle of deciphering a screen, this model is a good option. There is still a filter indicator, but no batteries are required.
To the Point
This product isn’t pretending to be something it’s not. It’s a straightforward water filter pitcher with no complicated specs. If you want a pitcher that does a simple job, this one does it well.
Ease of use is a big deal with this product. So much so that your children or elderly relatives who aren’t accustomed to technology can make sense of it.
Though this one isn’t the most affordable Brita on the market, it will still save you some money. It’s intended for effortless everyday use, and won’t burn a hole in your wallet.
This pitcher is a strong contender in low budget water filter pitchers, without compromising on effectiveness.
To fill this pitcher, you have to remove the entire lid. This is not a massive problem, but the extra hassle is annoying to users. Regardless, buyers are satisfied with this model overall.
Another hassle that comes with this product is that its filter tends to pop out of place. Buyers also say that the lid comes loose easily, and might cause a few spills. We recommend checking that everything is connected before you use it.
|Heavy metal purification?||Chromium, copper, mercury, lead|
|Chemical purification?||Chlorine, fluoride|
|Capacity||8 cups/2.6 liters|
|Special features||Filter indicator sticker|
8. Brita Ultramax Dispenser
Are you looking for something a little more snazzy and unconventional? This product has a handy little spigot built in, so you don’t have to fuss with pouring the water.
At 18 cups, it has a higher capacity than every other recommendation of ours. It’s an excellent choice for larger families or those of you who consume higher amounts of water. You’ll spend less time on refills too.
This tabletop dispenser can filter cadmium, copper, mercury, and lead, as well as chlorine. It also has a handy electronic indicator.
18 cups is a fantastic capacity, especially in a busy home. What’s great is that since it’s got the spigot, you don’t have to worry about heavy lifting when you drink. You’ll save time on maintenance, and your filters will last longer.
You’re not paying more for the special features of this product. This model comes at a fair price that’s in league with other pitchers. You get more value for money as a result.
We love that it has a higher capacity than others and is easier to use. It’s a fantastic alternative to more conventional pitchers that cost more or less the same.
Spills are a common occurrence with water pitchers, but thanks to the spigot, that won’t be a problem. This product functions as both a water filter and a dispenser. It’s easier to handle and is more accessible because of it.
Consider this one if you have children in the house, who may not be able to lift or use a standard pitcher.
Be Careful of Leaks
Be very gentle with the spigot, as it weakens over time. A few customers, though happy with this product, note that it began to leak after a few months. You might have to service it if this occurs.
Customers say that the filters aren’t as durable as they’re meant to be. You’ll have to replace them sooner than what the manufacturer recommends, which adds to both costs and maintenance time.
Remember it’s high capacity though, which we feel balances this issue out.
|Heavy metal purification?||Cadmium, copper, mercury, lead|
|Capacity||18 cups/4.2 liters|
|Special features||Spigot, electronic indicator, easy-fill lid|
|Product||Best||Heavy metal purification?||Water softening?||Capacity||Filter|
|AquaBliss Pitcher||Quality Water||Copper, zinc, mercury||No||10 cups/2.3 liters||Not specified|
|Invigorated Water pH Restore||For Water Hardness||Copper, zinc, arsenic, lead||No||14.7 cups/3.5 liters||Activated carbon|
|LifeStraw Premium Water Filter Pitcher||For Filtering Germs||Lead, mercury, chromium, cadmium and copper||Yes||7 cups/1.65 liters||Membrane microfilter & Activated carbon + ion exchange filter|
|Brita Grand||For Your Budget||Chromium, copper, mercury||No||10 cups/2.6 liters||Activated carbon|
|ZeroWater ZD-018||Largest Capacity||Lead, chromium & PFOA/PFOS||Yes||23 cups/5.4 liters||5-level filtration: ion exchange|
|Aquagear Water Filter Pitcher||High-End Model||Chromium, copper, mercury, lead||No||8 cups/1.8 liters||Triple capacity, 5-stage|
|Brita Everyday Pitcher||Starter Pitcher||Chromium, copper, mercury, lead||No||8 cups/2.6 liters||Activated carbon|
|Brita Ultramax Dispenser||Most Convenient||Cadmium, copper, mercury, lead||No||18 cups/4.2 liters||Activated carbon|
Residential water filtering doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg, nor does it require renovation or hassle. Water filter pitchers are table-top solutions that give you high-quality, safe, and healthy drinking water. They don’t cost a lot of money and will make a big difference in how you hydrate.
There’s something for everyone in our best water filter pitchers. So, what matters is to find one that suits your needs. No two water filter pitchers are equal, so pay extra attention to the specs.
What do you think of our top picks? Do you have a favorite that you’re eager to try? Tell us your thoughts in the comments — we enjoy hearing from you!