Water is such a crucial part of our everyday lives, from drinking to cleaning to bathing. When it comes to drinking water, more and more people are investigating safer water sources. Unfortunately, tap water can potentially harbor harmful contaminants that may pose a health risk and contribute to a funky taste. Bottled water doesn’t always solve the problem either, as some bottled water is just tap water, and bottled water adds an additional environmental issue because most bottles are not properly recycled and can take years to break down.
For these reasons, we turn to in-home water filters to improve the taste and quality of our tap water. Water filters that hook up directly to your sink tend to be the most powerful at removing contaminants and don’t need to be replaced as frequently.
We’ve rounded up some of our favorite sink water filters, and have also included a buying guide at the end to help you make the right choice.
The Best Sink Water Filter
The iSpring under sink model claims to remove 99% of over 1,000 different contaminants, including lead, chlorine, fluoride, and more. It utilizes a 5-stage reverse-osmosis filtration system which helps remove more contaminants than traditional carbon filters. The system fits under a standard kitchen sink and is a DIY installation project, with helpful instructions and videos included. The good news is that once the system is installed most parts last for years, and the parts of the filter that do need to be replaced more often are in clear housing so you can easily see when they need to be replaced - and what they’re removing from your water!
- Improves not only drinking water, but water you use for cooking, cleaning, and more
- Parts and installation last for years
- Stronger filtration system removes even more contaminants from your water
- If installed properly the system is leak-free
- Will take up storage space under the sink
- 5-stage reverse-osmosis filter system
- Under sink mounted, fits under most standard sinks
- Includes a European-style brushed nickel faucet
- Removes up to 99% of over 1,000 contaminants, including lead (removes up to 98% of lead), chlorine, fluoride, arsenic, asbestos, calcium, sodium, and more
- Brand: iSpring
- Weight: 25 pounds
- Dimensions: 15 x 8 x 18 inches
This unique under sink filter hooks directly up to your cold water line, making installation quick and easy. It is not a reverse-osmosis filter like many under sink models, so it won’t impact the hardness of your water or filter out hard minerals like calcium and magnesium. However, the 3-stage filtration system does remove chlorine, heavy metals (such as lead), herbicides, pesticides, sediment, and other undesirable contaminants. The filter system is not susceptible to mold or bacteria growth like some other carbon filters for additional peace of mind. The filter only needs to be replaced every 50,000 gallons or 5 years, so it’s a good investment to add to your kitchen.
- Easier installation compared to other under sink systems
- Slimmer design won’t take up as much storage space
- Filter needs to be replaced less frequently
- Removes most major contaminants
- Cannot be used with well water, which typically warrants a water filter system
- Only adds filtration to your cold water
- Does not soften hard water
- 5 year pro-rated warranty and a 90 day satisfaction guarantee
- Only for use with municipal water, do not use with well water
- Connects directly to your cold water line
- 3-step filtration system removes heavy metals, pesticides, and other contaminants
- Filter needs to be replaced every 50,000 gallons or every 5 years
- Brand: CuZn
- Weight: 8 pounds
- Dimensions: 4.5 x 4.5 x 15 inches
The APEC under sink water filter is a powerful reverse-osmosis system that can remove more than 1,000 contaminants from your water. The system features a designer faucet and food grade installation tubing to ensure safety at all levels of the device. This APEC filter also features leak-free quick connect fittings to help protect your home against leaks from the filter system. Like other under sink models, installation is more involved, but APEC provides helpful videos and instructions to make it as easy as possible. If you want all the water you use in your kitchen to be safe and clean, the investment in a system like this is worth the extra cost and time to install.
- Long lasting, chemical free parts
- Reverse-osmosis filtration removes more contaminants
- Features that help guard against leaks
- Provides clean water for drinking, cooking, cleaning, etc.
- Installation takes time and some familiarity with plumbing parts
- Removes up to 99% of contaminants including arsenic, chlorine, lead, fluoride, heavy metals, and up to 1,000 total contaminants
- 2 year extended manufacturer warranty with registration
- System Capacity: 50 gallons per day @ 60 psi, 30 gallons/day @ 50 psi
- Features a lead-free faucet and food grade tubing
- Brand: APEC
- Weight: 25 pounds
- Dimensions: 16 x 5.2 x 17.5 inches
The Frizzlife under sink filter connects directly to the water hose under your sink to deliver filtered water in minutes. The two-stage filtration system removes 99% of lead and also eliminates or reduces other harmful contaminants including heavy metals, chlorine, mercury, and more. Although it’s powerful at reducing contaminants, it does leave other essential minerals in your water - the result is clean water with no odor or strange taste. We especially like that when it’s time to change the filter you just need to replace the filter cartridge within the plastic container instead of the whole container, which is a money saver.
- Replaces the need for bottled water
- Easy installation - should only take a few minutes and no special tools are required
- Filter cartridge replacements are less expensive than some other brands
- Removes harmful chemicals, including 99% of lead
- Filter cartridges need to be replaced more frequently
- Only filters your cold water
- 2-step filtration system removes 99% of lead
- Directly connects to the cold water line under your sink
- Doesn’t remove essential minerals like calcium and potassium
- Filter cartridges can be used for 1,600 gallons or 2 years, but it is recommended to replace them every 6-8 months for better water quality
- Brand: Frizzlife
- Weight: 4.2 pounds
- Dimensions: 13.9 x 5.6 x 5.4 inches
Our Sink Water Filter Buying Guide
A sink water filter system may not be for everyone, but with increased concerns about contaminants in drinking water and waste from plastic bottles, you may be considering adding one to your home. Before purchasing a water filter it’s important to think about usage, filter type, and installation. We also recommend familiarizing yourself with different filter types, as some filters are stronger than others and remove more contaminants and trace chemicals from your water.
Under sink options tend to be the most expensive and the installation can be time consuming and tricky for those who are not familiar with plumbing parts. However, the benefit of under sink or screw on faucet options is that all of your tap water will be filtered, so not only will you have better tasting and cleaner drinking water, but you’ll also notice a difference with your coffee, tea, and more.
In addition to these filter types, you can also find water pitchers and even portable water bottles that include filters. Note that these filters will be less powerful than some of the other methods recommended here.
If your refrigerator has a water tap, you will need to regularly replace the water filter. We also reviewed the best refrigerator water filters to help make buying easy!
To remove all of those pesky contaminants it’s important to check the filtration system to see if it’s powerful enough to remove the chemicals and heavy metals that concern you. Some of the simpler and easier to install under sink filters are carbon-based and may utilize microparticles to reduce contaminants. This filtration type does help with reducing common contaminants and heavy metals. The more powerful under sink models utilize reverse-osmosis, which is a more powerful multi-step process that guarantees removal of a vast majority of contaminants.
For all under sink models, some level of installation will be involved. Some of the under sink models we reviewed connect directly to the water lines under the sink and installation should only take a few minutes. Larger capacity reverse-osmosis under sink models have a lot more parts and will require more involved installation, so if you go that route check to see if the model provides video tutorials, or enlist a handy friend or family member to come help you get it all set up.