Why We Need a Water Filter
A water filter is a necessity in some geographical areas, especially where the water quality is poor, and it needs extra filtration. In some cities, the municipal filtration system needs upgrading, and the water is not 100% safe to drink. Even for good quality tap delivered water, sometimes there are accidents with filtering systems, and you might get bad water. The water quality monitoring works fine but you still have to hear in time about possible problems.
The biggest problem with water, even in the "clean water areas", is the amount of chloride added in order to sanitise it. Not everybody is sensitive to chlorine in tap water, but some, like me, are. Hence the need of a water filter. Using a home water filtering system will also dramatically improve the taste of the water, by removing most of the chlorine and Zinc, which are responsible for the bad taste.
Mavea Elemaris XL Water Filtration Pitcher
The Mavea features a great filter design, wider than all the competitors, that allows fast filtration from the day one until the last day of use.
A feature that is pretty great if you ask me is the micro-screen, to reduce the black bits that come out of the filter without presoaking. This is an annoying problem with other filters, because I forget sometimes to soak the filter before using it, and the black powder in the water is just not looking good.
This unit is made in Germany, and all materials and the design are great quality, and is BPA free.
The capacity is 9 cups, which makes it large enough for an average family use.
The pitcher is certified by WQA and not by NSF.
We Need Clean Water
If you are lucky to live in an area with clean water coming through the pipe, you shouldn't worry about filtering. Normally, spring water is naturally filtered, and it is as clean as it gets, but not all cities have enough springs, and some don't have at all. Sometimes, even well water gets tainted, and it needs filtering. So do we rely on city's water filtering system, or we take all the necessary steps to make sure we drink clean, unpolluted, decontaminated water. I chose to drink filtered water.
Here is a list with the drinking water contaminants, if you need to be a little more scared than you are. If you don't need, don't bother to read it, you won't be drinking water anymore after this.
Brita Everyday Water Filter Pitcher, 10 Cup
The Brita pitcher is a large one, with a 10 cups capacity, and it is transparent. The unit has a sticker filter indicator to help you track the time for replacement. This is a great product easy to use, and it doesn't have any design flaws like other Brita products.
The filter is rated for filtering about 40 gallons, (approximately 150 liters), of water, that is around two months of use for an average family.
The pitcher can be taken apart in pieces for cleaning up, it is BPA free, and best of all it gives you great tasting water.
Brita Filter Video Review
Which Brand of Water Filter Pitcher Is the Best
Zero Water vs Brita, vs Pur, vs Mavea
The pitcher is the most convenient type of water filter, because you only use it when you need it, you don't have mount it on the faucet, and you won't destroy the filter accidentally because you forgot it on, and filtered while doing the dishes. The pitcher is not expensive, the filters are also cheap, and the pitcher is easy to use, while holding a lot of water.
When I looked to replace my existing Brita pitcher, (which cracked after a few years of use and abuse), I wanted to make sure that I choose the best water filter pitcher.
These days we have more options than ten years ago and I was a bit puzzled when I found a lot of alternatives on the market. Choosing between various manufacturers was confusing because I didn't have all the data at hand. I made my research as thorough as I always do, and I wanted to share it. So, here is a comparison of the most popular water filters. I included in the comparison Brita, Zero Water, Mavea, and Pur, which are the major competitors in the segment.
PUR 7 Cup Pitcher
Pur is the filter that removes the most contaminants of the water; it is actually the double of any of the competitors.
The pour through system holds only 7 cups, which is the smallest among the competition, but if you live in an area with bad water, this is the best choice.
The thorough filtration of Pur comes with a price, the unit will filter slower than any other similar system, but for this type of water quality amelioration this is a standard.
In other words, if your tap water is not so bad, Pur is probably too efficient. But if effective filtration is what you need, this is your best pitcher.
PUR 18 Cup Dispenser with One Filter
The Best Filter
This is not exactly a pitcher, but I prefer it because is more convenient. This countertop dispenser is better than the pitcher, because it holds a lot of water, up to 18 cups, and since Pur filters are slower dripping than others, it is a great idea to store a bit more water. The filter removes around 95% of the harmful mercury, and traces levels of pharmaceuticals in water.
If I wasn't clear before, here is where Pur shines: it has an outstandingly effective filtration system, that removes most pollutants from water.
Zero Water Pitcher Filter
Zero water are also on top of the consumers' preference, and for a reason. The filter is based on a patented 5-stage filtration system. The filter is Certified for removing chromium, lead, and mercury. So if the water in your area is known to be polluted with these contaminants, you are certain that the Zero Water will remove them.
The pitcher has an 8-cup capacity reservoir, and it is very easy to operate, with a one-hand pull and pour button.
People also like the space saving design, the jug can fit in a corner of your counter easily, without taking up too much space.
ZeroWater ZD-013 8-Cup Pitcher
What Are the Best Filters?
One problem with filters is that they leave some elements unfiltered, so you have to know which one to pick. To make sure you are buying a product that actually reduces the contaminants as advertised, look for an NFS Certified filter. The pitchers I looked for in my research are all certified by NFS, or WQA, so whatever they claim to be removed from water with their filter is actually true.
- The Brita cartridge reduces Chlorine, to remove the odor and specific taste, Copper, Cadmium, Mercury, as health contaminants, and Zinc to remove the metallic taste.
- ZF-201 for Zero Water jugs removes Chlorine to improve the taste and odor, Hydrogen Sulfide, Lead, Copper, and Mercury.
- The Mavea Maxtra filters reduce Chlorine to improve taste and odor, reduce heavy metals to make water safe to drink, (Mercury, Cadmium, Copper), and also a lot of industrial and agricultural pollutants. What makes the Mavea replacement filter special, is the special shape to ensure consistent flow rate until the end of life. The tubular shaped cartridges will have a slow flow rate at the end of their life.
- Pur 2-Stage filters are the ones to reduce most of the contaminants from the NSF list. Their product is certified by NSF to reduce the following elements to make the water healthier to drink: 2,4-D, Atrazine, Benzene, Cadmium, Carbon, Tetrachloride, Copper, Cyst Reduction, Mercury, Simazine, Tetrachloroethylene. Their filter also reduces chlorine and Zinc for better tasting water.
If you want to see the NSF certifications for any filter, check their database here: Water Filter Certifications.
As a conclusion, Pur 2-stage, (made by Kaz USA), are the best, because they reduce a lot more contaminants than the other three. According to the NSF certification, based on the standard 53, (health effects), Pur removes 12 contaminants, Zero Water 4, Brita 3 contaminants, and Mavea is certified by WQA to reduce 3 health concerning contaminants.
ZeroWater Replacement Patented Ion Exchange Filter ZF-201
Mavea Maxtra Replacement Filter for Mavea Water Filtration Pitcher
Dorian Bodnariuc (author) from Ottawa, Ontario Canada on April 02, 2015:
Thanks for pointing that out. I need to edit my hubs. Sigh!
Kristen Howe from Northeast Ohio on February 24, 2015:
Great hub. I did notice that you did repeat the last sentence in the Brita capsule twice. Was that a typo or for affect? I've been using Brita for years and will need to get a box of new filters this weekend.
Shelly Sellers from Midwest U.S.A. on July 22, 2014:
Thanks for the review on the best water filters!
georgepmoola2 on April 06, 2014:
A terrific lens. Not everyone is aware that drinking water is so full of crap, so this is a valuable set of reviews.
Dhookraj Singh on April 06, 2014:
I think its worth the investment to have clean water, and with chlorine and zinc removed too.