best under sink water filter

Whether your tap is giving off a funky flavor or you want to be proactive about the quality of your H2O, an under sink water filter is a must. These systems are designed to remove the contaminants that infiltrate our water sources (more often than you think) to improve the taste and make it safe to drink from the faucet once again.

Not sure where to start? I’ve got you covered. Below are the best under sink water filters on the market, compiled based on customer satisfaction levels, certifications, and my own research.

My top picks

You shouldn’t have to worry about your water quality—and with an under sink water filter, you won’t have to. The systems below have powerful filtration systems, easy installation, and high-level certifications so you can drink up in peace.

1. BEST OVERALL: Aquasana 3-Stage Max Flow Claryum System

With fast water flow and powerful filtration, this system will have you wishing you installed it sooner.

Aquasana 3-Stage Max Flow Claryum Under Sink Water Filter System

Product Specs 

  • Capacity: It can filter up to 800 gallons of water.
  • Filter Lifespan: Filters need to be replaced every 800 gallons or every six months.
  • Size: Its dimensions are 12×4.25×12.88 inches.

It may be a first-world problem, but there’s nothing more annoying than waiting for the excruciatingly slow drip of your refrigerator’s water dispenser to fill up your glass. With the Aquasana 3-Stage Max Flow under sink water filter, you can enjoy fresh, clean water and peace of mind—at lightning speeds. This system has a flow rate of up to 0.5 gallons per minute, which is much faster than the average under sink water filter.

In addition to speedy performance, the Aquasana 3-Stage Max Flow also has a hefty filtration system, removing up to 99% of 77 different contaminants. These include lead, mercury, asbestos, pesticides, VOCs, pharmaceuticals, and more.

Installation is a breeze, too. This filter comes with everything you need, including a lead-free faucet and clear instructions. If you’re looking for an under sink water filter that does it all—and does it well—the Aquasana is the way to go.

Pros

  • High flow rate of water
  • Removes a lot of contaminants
  • Reviewers mention great, fresh taste

Cons

  • More expensive upfront costs
  • Takes up cabinet space

2. BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Waterdrop 15UA Under Sink Water Filter System

Clean drinking water isn’t just for the rich—with this affordable under sink water filter system, anyone can enjoy fresh H2O on a budget.

Waterdrop 15UA Under Sink Water Filter System

Product Specs 

  • Capacity: It can filter up to 16,000 gallons.
  • Filter Lifespan: Filters need to be replaced every 16,000 gallons or every 24 months.
  • Size: Its dimensions are 3.6×3.9×16.7 inches.

You don’t have to shell out hundreds of dollars to get an under sink water filter that does its job well. The Waterdrop 15UA is proof of that. This system may be budget-friendly, but it still packs a powerful punch, removing stuff you don’t want swimming in your water like lead, chlorine, heavy metals, chemical iṁpurities, and sediment.

Reviewers loved not only the low cost—getting a filtration system under $100 is a steal—but also the easy installation, which supposedly takes less than three minutes. It even has a longer filter life than some of its more expensive counterparts, lasting for up to 24 months or 16,000 gallons before it needs to be replaced.

If you’re looking for an under sink water filter to improve your water quality without breaking the bank, the Waterdrop 15UA is a terrific choice.

Pros

  • Great size for tight cabinets
  • Priced lower than most systems
  • Long lifespan for filter replacement

Cons

  • Doesn’t filter out all contaminants
  • Slower flow rate than others

3. BEST COMPACT: Multipure Aquaversa Drinking Water System

If you’re tight on cabinet space, this mountable filter will give you the clean water you crave without taking up valuable real estate.

Multipure Aquaversa Model MP750 Drinking Water System

Product Specs 

  • Capacity: It can filter 750 gallons of water.
  • Filter Lifespan: Filters need to be replaced every 750 gallons.
  • Size: Its dimensions are 5.8×5.8×8.5 inches.

Most water filters are bulky and hard to fit in between everything else that lives under your sink. The Multipure Aquaversa Drinking Water System is different. This under sink water filter can be mounted inside the walls of your cabinet to save space.  No more wrestling with a huge filtration system—the theMultipure is small and unobtrusive.

Even though it’s compact, this NSF-certified system still does a great job of filtering out contaminants like chlorine and chloramine, lead, disinfection byproducts, and pharmaceuticals, leaving you with delicious, clean water. 

Reviewers raved about the taste and filtration power but cautioned that installation could be a bit tricky. Some even needed to hire a plumber to help get the job done. So if you don’t have the budget to get outside help, this may not be the under sink water filter for you.

Pros

  • Small and compact size
  • Ability to be wall mounted
  • Leaves a great taste

Cons

  • On the expensive side
  • Smaller capacity for water
  • Slower water flow rate

4. BEST WITH FAUCET: Aquasana 2-Stage Under Sink Water Filter System 

With a strong, 2-stage filter and multiple faucet finish options, your tap is about to become your new best friend.

Aquasana 2-Stage Under Sink Water Filter System

Product Specs 

  • Capacity: It can filter 500 gallons of water.
  • Filter Lifespan: Filters need to be replaced every 500 gallons or every six months.
  • Size: Its dimensions are 8.25×4.25×9 inches.

Some under sink water filters attach to your current kitchen faucet, while others come with their own separate spicket. The Aquasana 2-Stage Under Sink Water Filter System falls into the latter category, giving you the option to choose between three different faucet finishes—brushed nickel, chrome, and oil-rubbed bronze—to perfectly match your kitchen’s aesthetic.

This 2-stage filtration system removes up to 99% of 77 contaminants like lead, herbicides, asbestos, chlorine, and VOCs, which instantly transforms your water’s taste and smell. And with a no-fuss install and filter life of up to six months, this under sink water filter is a low-maintenance option that’s sure to please.

Pros

  • Stylish second faucet options
  • Removes a lot of contaminants
  • No-plumber-required installation

Cons

  • Has a slow flow rate
  • Takes up a lot of space
  • On the expensive side

5. BEST REVERSE OSMOSIS: Waterdrop G3 Reverse Osmosis System

Easily one of the most powerful filtration systems on the market, the Waterdrop G3 makes for some of the purest water you’ll ever drink.

Waterdrop G3 Reverse Osmosis System

Product Specs 

  • Capacity: It can filter 400 gallons of water.
  • Filter Lifespan: Filters need to be replaced every 400 gallons.
  • Size: Its dimensions are 18.12×5.67×17.72 inches.

Reverse osmosis doesn’t play around. Unlike traditional filtration systems, which use a filter to remove contaminants from water, reverse osmosis forces water through a semipermeable membrane that traps impurities and flushes them away—and the Waterdrop G3 Reverse Osmosis System gets rid of them all.

Not only does its 8-stage filtration remove the usual nasty water culprits like rust, particles, chlorine, odor, and heavy metals, but it also reduces TDS (Total Dissolved Solids) by up to 91%. Many of these models don’t reduce TDS at all.

Although this under sink water filter is on the pricier side, reviewers say it’s worth every penny and that it’s “the best water money can buy.” Installation requires a little bit of effort and some basic handyman skills, but once it’s up and running, you’ll have clean, delicious water for years to come.

Pros

  • Smart display that measures quality
  • Flow rate of 400gpd (gallons per day)
  • Eight layers of filtration

Cons

  • It’s on the expensive size
  • Lower water capacity than most
  • Hard to install for some

My verdict

If you’re looking for the best under sink water filter for your kitchen, I recommend the Aquasana 2-Stage Under Sink Water Filter System or the Waterdrop G3 Reverse Osmosis System. Both systems are incredibly effective at filtering out contaminants, and they will vastly improve your water’s quality.

How I chose the best under sink water filter

When you’re improving your water’s quality, health is the number one concern. So I looked for systems that removed the most toxic contaminants like lead, asbestos, and VOCs. The more nasties it filtered out, the better.

Not everyone is a plumber, so easy installation was also key. Many of these models come with DIY kits, and some take less than a few minutes to set up. 

Finally, I considered the price and value. Some systems are more expensive than others, but the quality of the filtration is often worth the investment when it comes to your family’s health. 

Who this water filtration system is for

Everyone can benefit from on-demand clean drinking water right in their kitchen. But really, under sink water filters are ideal for households that use two or three gallons of water a day. So if you and your family are really staying hydrated and using a lot of water for cooking, under sink water filters can give you some real peace of mind. But if you live alone, a pitcher filter might be a better (and more cost-effective) option.

What to know before you buy a water filter for under your sink

Unlike the cheap Brita that you shared with your college roommates, under sink water filters are a big investment—both financially and in terms of your health. Understanding what key features to look for will help you pick the right model for your home.

Types of filtration systems

Containments make their way into our water supply more than we’d like to believe. Even if your local treatment plant does a good job of filtering out the big stuff, harmful bacteria, chemicals, and other particles can still leak out of your pipes (especially if your home is older). Underwater sink filters are your next line of defense against these invisible nasties by providing an extra layer of filtration and making your H2O safer. But the type you need will depend on the severity of contamination and how much you’re willing to spend both upfront and for maintenance over time. 

Single-stage systems

Arguably the most affordable and common type of under sink water filter, single-stage systems remove larger contaminants using only a single filter medium. The most common methods used are:

  • Sediment filters
  • Granular activated carbon
  • Carbon block filters
  • Catalytic carbon filter cartridges
  • KDF filter cartridges
  • Iron filters
  • Ion exchange
  • Activated alumina

These systems are easy to install, but you’ll only target specific impurities dependent on the filter medium. So you’ll need to know what’s contaminating your water first. 

Multi-stage systems

Need a catch-all under sink water filter? Multi-stage systems are your best bet. These comprehensive filters use a combination of the methods above—usually two or more—to remove a wider range of contaminants. The result is higher-quality water, but the systems tend to be more expensive and require more maintenance.

Reverse osmosis systems

Unlike traditional under sink water filters, RO systems use pressure to force water molecules through a semipermeable membrane. This process removes up to 99% of contaminants, making it one of the most effective filtration methods on the market. The downside? These systems are pricey, and some people complain that it makes their water taste flat.

Testing and certifications

Knowing which system you can trust comes down to certification. Look for under sink water filters that at least have either ANSI or NSF certification, as they are the industry standard. Both organizations have rigorous standards that products must meet to earn the label.

If you really want insurance that your water is clean, the best under sink water filters will have been tested for lead, VOC (volatile organic compounds), and chlorine. Chlorine is particularly important when it comes to taste as it’s usually the thing that makes water from the tap taste “off.”

Installation and maintenance

You don’t have to be a plumber, but some systems are definitely easier than others. The type of filter you get and how your kitchen sink is set up will determine how difficult (or easy) the installation will be. Some sinks have a hole ready for a separate faucet, and others may require drilling into your countertop to create an opening. 

Once you’re up and running, you’ll need to regularly replace the filter cartridges. Every system will come with a recommended schedule that you should follow, and you should expect to spend anywhere from $60 to $300 on replacement filters. 

Filter lifespan

Under sink systems will last for years—so long as you regularly replace their filters. A filter lifespan of six months of heavy use (which equates to around 2 3/4 gallons a day) is the minimum you should look for. Some can go as long as 12 months.

Reverse osmosis systems last much longer than single or multi-stage under sink water filters. The membrane in an RO system can last from 2-4 years without needing to be replaced.

The advantages of owning an under sink water filter

Water is essential for life, but the quality of water from our taps is often far from perfect. If you’re trying to live in a way that’s more in tune with Mother Nature and limit your exposure to harmful chemicals, an under sink water filter is a great solution. Not only do they make your water safer to drink, but they also improve the taste and smell of your tap by removing chloride and fluoride.

Under sink water filters also save you money in the long run. Buying bottled water can quickly become expensive, and you’re also creating unnecessary waste. By investing in a filter, you can get all the benefits of bottled water without the cost or environmental impact.

  • They improve the taste and smell of your water.
  • They save you money on bottled water.
  • They improve the quality of your water and make it safer to drink.

Tips for maintaining an under sink water filtration system

Unfortunately, under sink water filters aren’t set up for you to just set it and forget it. In order to keep your water tasting great and your system running smoothly, you need to commit to a little bit of upkeep.

By far the most important (and really only) part of maintaining your under sink water filter is changing the filters regularly. Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for how often to change the filters, but know that it’s usually every six months. Here are some tips for changing your under sink water filter:

  • Replace the filter at least every six months unless your manufacturer says otherwise.
  • Order replacement filters directly from the manufacturer—not a third party.
  • While you’re replacing the filter, take a few minutes to clean the housing unit.

FAQs

Luckily, you don’t have to have in-depth plumbing knowledge or be a water filtration expert to reap the benefits of fresh, purity-free H2O. But we understand that you might still have some questions or concerns about how under sink water filters work. Below are some of our most frequently asked questions.

How long do under sink water filters last?

An under sink water filter will last years as long as you regularly replace the filters. Change them at least every six months for the best possible quality of water. 

What happens if you don’t replace the water filter?

If you don’t replace your under sink water filter, the quality of your water will decline. Over time, the filter will become less effective at removing impurities.

Are under sink water filters worth it?

Yes, under sink water filters are definitely worth it. They improve the quality of your water and make it safer to drink. They also improve your tap’s taste and smell.

Not to mention, they save you money on bottled water in the long run.


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