Whole House Water Filter System – Should You Get One?
The benefits of filtered water go beyond the benefits associated with drinking it. Cooking, bathing, cleaning and washing are activities that can all benefit from filtered water.
But drawing filtered water from a single tap for all your household activities can be difficult. This is where whole house water filter systems come in, which allow you to draw filtered water from any tap in your home.
There is a common misconception that whole house water filters are much more expensive than their under-sink counterparts, and while a whole house water filter may indeed be more expensive than an under-sink water filter, it also does much more than a simple point-of-use filter.
But are whole house water filters worth the hassle of installation? Or should you stick to a point of use filter?
When Should You Install a Whole House Water Filter?
Whole house water filter systems are designed for larger households, with higher than usual water consumption. If you live in a small apartment, a whole house water filter may not be a worthwhile investment for you.
Here’s when you should consider buying a whole house water filter:
✓ Your tap water has contamination issues that you want solved
Whether it’s sediments, chlorine or fluoride you need removing from your tap water, a whole house water filter can tackle various contamination issues at once. Most whole house filtration systems are multi-stage, which means that each stage contains different filter media, or a blend of filter media designed to deliver a thorough filtration.
✓ You live in a large household
Installing a whole house water filter in a small apartment would not necessarily prove to be a good investment. In a small household with up to 2 people you may get away point-of-use water filters (e.g. undersink water filter + shower filter or countertop water filter + shower filter).
✓ You want filtered water in your kitchen, bath and other water outlets in your home
If you’d like filtered water at every water outlet in your home, installing a water filter at every point of use would not be feasible. A whole house water filter will filter all the water entering your home, which means you get filtered water at every water outlet.
Are Whole House Water Filters Worth It?
Compared to their undersink counterparts, whole house water filters are superior in many respects. For starters, whole house water filters make sure to supply your entire home with contaminant-free tap water. This means that you can not only drink chlorine-free tap water, but you can also bathe in chlorine-free water.
When considering a water filter system for your home, you should take into account various factors. The questions you should ask yourself are:
- What contamination issues do I need to solve?
- What type of water filtration system is capable to solve my tap water contamination issues?
- What are my daily water consumption needs?
- Do I need filtered water throughout my entire home?
- Can I maintain a water filter system on my own?
- What are the maintenance costs associated with a whole house water filter?
The price of a whole house water filter can vary greatly, however, there are a few factors that can determine its price:
- Filtration efficiency (If it’s a simple chlorine and sediment removal filter, it tends to be comparable in price to undersink water filters. If it’s a high-efficiency multi-stage water filter that can tackle hundreds of contaminants, the price will usually be higher.);
- Filter lifetime and quality (High durability filter cartridges and cartridges that contain complex blends of filter media tend to be on the pricier end of the spectrum. Filters with higher service lives usually involve lower maintenance costs per year.);
- Filtered water output (Whole house water filters outrank undersink water filters when it comes to filtered water output);
- Branded filters cost more (Filters manufactured by famous water filter brands may cost more than their non-branded counterparts. If you opt for a non-branded water filter system, make sure it meets all safety and quality standards.).
Depending on the contaminants it’s designed to remove or reduce, and filter quality, the price of a whole house water filter system can range anywhere between £90 and £700+.
A great advantage of whole house water filters compared to undersink water filters is that should a change occur in a quality of your tap water (e.g. you detect the presence of a new type of contaminant), you can adjust your level of filtration by replacing the filter cartridges in a single system.
A whole house water filter is a worthwhile investment if your filtered water needs extend to all household activities and if you live in a larger household.
Advanced Whole House Water Filters Recommended by Us
If you’re looking for a high-efficiency whole house water filter, the filters reviewed below will not disappoint:
Advanced water filters are not always expensive, and the Osmio Pro-II-XL filter system proves that. This WRAS and NSF certified whole house water filter system comes with two high-efficiency water filter cartridges: An active ceramics filter and a carbon block filter.
Active Ceramics Large Whole House Filter
Using a patented blend of active ceramics, this filter can target various contaminants including toxins, heavy metals, chemical disinfectants, fluoride and hormones. The filter is also proficient at killing and containing bacteria, including E-Coli and Pseudomonas.
Besides its efficiency at removing contaminants, the active ceramic filter in this system increases the pH level of water by adding healthy minerals, making water more alkaline.
The ceramics filter is the main filter cartridge in the system and has an impressive filter life – it can last up to 3 years or 300,000 litres.
At the end of its service life the ceramic spheres can be taken out from the cartridge, and you can use them to fertilize your garden and improve soil drainage.
5-Micron Coconut Shell Carbon Block Filter
The second filter cartridge is a coconut shell based carbon block cartridge that filters contaminants down to 5 microns. The coconut shell carbon in this filter reduces chlorine and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) all the while eliminating any bad tastes or odours that may linger in your tap water.
Thanks to the coconut base in this filter, your tap water will have a more pleasant taste. The filter is rated for 46,000, which means that you should replace it every 6 months.
The Osmio Pro-III Ultimate water filter system is a 3-stage water filter system with the following filter configuration:
- Active Ceramics Whole House Filter (filter life: 3 years or 300,000 litres);
- Carbon Block Filter (filter life: 6 months or 46,000 litres);
- Granular Activated Carbon and KDF Process Media Filter Cartridge (filter life: 12 months or 152,000 litres).
The first two filters in this system have the same features as the two filter cartridges making up the Osmio Pro-II-XL filter, thus, ensuring that the Osmio Pro-III will remove bacteria, chlorine, VOCs, toxins, hormones, heavy metals, fluoride, and a wide array of other water impurities.
The third filter cartridge – the GAC & KDF cartridge – is designed to reduce bad tastes and odours, chlorine, remove pesticides, rust, organic matter, nickel, lead, chromium, cadmium, mercury, calcium, hydrogen sulphide, it kills fungi and algae.
The filter works well in low pressure environments as well, and it’s ideal for medium to large homes.
This whole house water filter system is a one-up from the Osmio Pro-II-XL in that it comes with an extra Granular Activated Carbon and KDF process media cartridge. This filter is designed to tackle a variety of contamination issues including bacterial, chemical, and contamination with organic chemicals.
The other two filters in this cartridge – the active ceramics filter and carbon block filter – remove chlorine, bacteria, fluoride, heavy metals, and many other contaminants, making this filter a reliable system for most contamination issues faced by homeowners.
Budget-Friendly Whole House Water Filters Recommended by Us
The following whole house water filters are budget-friendly alternatives to the advanced whole house water filters reviewed above. These filters feature a two-stage or three-stage filtration process that will address various tap water problems.
2-stage filter system that comes with an active ceramics filter and a carbon block filter.
✓ Removes chlorine, heavy metals, toxins, hormones, fluoride;
✓ Filters down to 5 microns;
✓ Long filter life – 3 years for the active ceramics and 6 months for the carbon block filter;
✓ Raises pH level of water;
✓ Adds healthy minerals to water.
The Pentek Premium is suitable for both medium to larger homes, and delivers a two-stage filtration thanks to the 1 micron pleated cartridge and the Pentek Bituminous 5 Micron Carbon Block filter cartridges.
✓ Removes chlorine, chloramine, their by-products, VOCs, taste and odour issues, and others;
✓ Pleated filter removes sediments, rust, silt, dirt and other suspended solids down to 1 micron;
✓ Durable filters with 12 to 18 months service life.
The Watts Pro is designed for chlorine reduction, taste and odour improvement, and the reduction of various other chemical contaminants. The systems includes three separate filter cartridges: 100% coconut shell carbon filter and two Watts Flow-Max Pleated Cartridges rated 20 and 5 microns.
✓ Up to 99% chlorine reduction;
✓ No channeling, low pressure drop;
✓ Reduction of sediments down to 5 microns;
✓ Affordable and easy maintenance.
Whole house water filters are your best option if you need or want filtered water throughout your entire home. If the quality of your tap water does not warrant the use of an advanced whole house water filter, you can always opt for sediment and chlorine removal whole house water filters, which are as affordable as an undersink water filter.
A whole house water filter does not exclude the possibility to install a point-of-use water filter should you need to customize the level of filtration at a water outlet in your home. Thus, it’s possible to install a chlorine and sediment removal whole house filter, and then add an under-sink water filter to polish your tap water even further.
Other whole house filters that may interest you: