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From poor tap water taste to sinks and drains clogged with limescale, there are many reasons to consider whole-home water filters. The best whole house water filter cleans and filters your water for drinking, washing, watering the lawn, and more.

Depending on where you live and what type of water you have (hard or soft), you might need a different level of filtration. Filter systems can remove a lot of impurities, but you need to remove specific ones for the best results.

Deciding on the best option requires sifting through best whole house water filter reviews online—but fortunately, we’ve done the work for you.

In a Rush?

Get This: Express Water Heavy Metal Whole House Water Filter

Express

Overall:

Express Whole House Water Filter

  • 100% High-Quality Food-Grade Materials
  • Drop-and-Go Design
  • At a Low Price
  • For Well Water
  • 3-Stage Filtration System

How we conducted the test:

We got a team of evaluators and tried a number of products from different brands to see which will give peak performances according to specific purposes. We also logged in the number of hours that we spent in testing the models.

19 TESTERS

28 PRODUCTS TESTED

178 HOURS

Top Choices in the Market

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Product

Express Water

Express Water

Benefits

  • 3-Stage Filtration
  • Made From High Quality Materials
  • Drop-and-Go Design

Specs

  • 65 pounds
  • 23.5 x 8.5 x 29.2 inches
  • Flow Rate: 15 GPM
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Aquasana Whole House Water Filter

Aquasana Whole House Water Filter

Benefits

  • Removes 97% of Contaminants
  • 10 Years Filter Life
  • SCM Salt-free Technology

Specs

  • 9.83 pounds
  • 9 x 46 x 44 inches
  • Flow Rate: 7 GPM
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Home Master HMF3SDGFEC

Home Master HMF3SDGFEC

Benefits

  • 3-Stage Filtration
  • Reduced Maintenance Frequency
  • 2-Years Warranty

Specs

  • 48 pounds
  • 24 x 9 x 25 inches
  • Flow Rate: 15 GPM
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iSpring WGB32B

iSpring WGB32B

Benefits

  • 3-Stage Filtration
  • Eliminates Foul Tastes and Odor
  • Retains Healthy Minerals

Specs

  • 45 pounds
  • 8 x 28 x 21 inches
  • Flow Rate: 15 GPM
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GE GXWH40L

GE GXWH40L

Benefits

  • Heavy-Duty Filtration System
  • Eliminates Harmful Contaminants
  • Hassle-Free Installation

Specs

  • 4.1 pounds
  • 16.4 x 8.4 x 7.9 inches
  • Flow Rate: 15 GPM
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Culligan WH-HD200-C

Culligan WH-HD200-C

Benefits

  • Integrated Bypass and Shut-off Valve
  • Filter Life Indicator
  • Stainless Steel Reinforced

Specs

  • 3 pounds
  • 7.5 x 8.3 x 16.3 inches
  • Flow Rate: 10 GPM
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3M Aqua-Pure AP903

3M Aqua-Pure AP903

Benefits

  • Sanitary Quick Change (SQC) Design
  • Carbon Block Technology
  • 100,000 gal Capacity

Specs

  • 10 pounds
  • 6 x 6 x 27 inches
  • Flow Rate: 20 GPM
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7 Best Whole House Water Filter Reviews (Updated 2020)

Express
  • Made from 100% High Quality Food-Grade Materials
  • Housing attached with High Capacity Flow Connectors
  • Drop-and-Go Unique Design
  • 1-Year Warranty
  • Hassle-Free Installation and Replacement

1. Express Heavy Metal Whole House Water Filter

9.3
Rating
15 GPM
Flow Rate

Filter Life: 
Up to 6-12 Months

System: 
3-Stage Filtration Technology

What We Like

Express Water’s whole-house water filter features three-stage filtration that addresses a long list of contaminants. From VOCs to cloudiness and odors, this filtration system works hard to remove everything unsightly from your water.

We like the clear first stage housing, which makes it easy to tell when the filters require replacement. Plus, the system is budget-friendly overall. More on the filters later—but you only need to change them about every six to 12 months or 100,000 gallons.

Express Water also provides a one-year warranty and free lifetime support—so you’re not alone when it comes to navigating any performance issues. Pressure gauges give you real-time feedback if there’s a problem, too.

What We Don’t Like

While the unit itself is economical, the replacement filters are steep in cost. Also, the free-standing frame is a little awkward to handle and install—it is made well, though, and can handle tough conditions.

Conclusion

Express Water’s rugged whole-house filter system removes a long list of contaminants from your water, and it’s easy to see what’s happening with the system. Replacement filters can be pricey, but the affordability of the system overall means your cost-per-use is fairly low.


Aquasana
  • Dual Tank Upflow Design prevents clogging
  • Removes 97% of chlorine and other harmful contaminants
  • Powerful UV Filtration Kills 99.99% of Virus and Bacteria
  • Capacity of 1,000,000 gal

2. Aquasana Whole House Water Filter System w/UV Purifier & Salt-Free Descaler

9.3
Rating
7 GPM
Flow Rate

Filter Life: 
Up to 10 Years

System: 
SCM Salt-free Technology

What We Like

Aquasana’s Whole House Water Filter system lasts a whopping ten years—or 1 million gallons—and filters out sediment, chlorine, and more. It removes 97 percent of chlorine, cuts 99.99 percent of viruses, bacteria, and cysts and reduces VOCs, pesticides, herbicides, and other contaminants.

The filter system features carbon and KDF filtration plus UV purification and a salt-free descaler.

Per Aquasana, you’ll pay an average of $.01 per gallon—making this unit an economical choice when you consider cost-per-use. And, replacement filters are very economical, too.

What We Don’t Like

Aquasana’s whole-house filter presents a significant investment. Though the system will last ten years—a huge perk—the filters need to be changed about every three months.

Also, though the Rhino whole-house model cuts a lot of contaminants, it doesn’t remove all minerals. If you prefer a “cleaner” water taste, you might not like the flavor this system provides.

Conclusion

We love that Aquasana includes everything you need to install this 10-year system. Replacing the pre- and post-filters every three months is a bit inconvenient, but this might be the best option for long-term water filtration for your entire home.

Also, replacing the filters is straightforward—just screw off the old ones, and thread on the new ones.


Home Master
  • Eliminates up to 95% of dirt, rust, and harmful impurities
  • Reduced Maintenance frequency and Improved Flow rate due to its oversized filters
  • Removes the Foul tastes and Odors
  • Capacity of 95,000 gal
  • 2-Year Warranty

3. Home Master HMF3SDGFEC

9.3
Rating
15 GPM
Flow Rate

Filter Life: 
Up to 1 Year

System: 
3-Stage Filtration Technology

What We Like

Home Master’s whole-house three-stage filter system works with both well and city water. It’s a low-profile unit that processes up to 15 gallons per minute, keeping your water flowing fast.

The filters use multi-gradient materials, which means filtration is effective down to one micron. Multiple purification steps remove up to 95 percent of toxins like iron, chemicals, and more.

Filters last about six to 12 months, depending on a handful of factors like flow rate and water quality. Swapping the filters might involve a bit of spillage, but nothing major.

What We Don’t Like

The system is not compatible with chlorinated city water or acidic water. Therefore, the manufacturer recommends checking your well water report or local city information before ordering.

Also, the filter may require replacement sooner, depending on the parts per million of certain toxins. That said, consumers may find that other off-brand filters fit this system quite well, too.

Conclusion

Home Master’s whole-house system offers multiple stages of filtration and delivers peace of mind. The cost-per-use is very low, making this one of the more affordable options for filtering your entire home’s water supply.


iSpring
  • Removes harmful contaminants and other chemicals
  • Retains all the Healthy Minerals in the Water
  • Cartridge designed to extend life of filter
  • 100,000 gal of Capacity

4. iSpring WGB32B 3-Stage Whole House Water Filtration System

9.3
Rating
30 GPM
Flow Rate

Filter Life: 
Up to 1 Year

System: 
3-Stage Filtration

What We Like

iSpring’s 3-stage system addresses sediment primarily, but its carbon filtration also helps reduce other impurities. The first-stage sediment filter can remove particles down to five microns, and the second and third stage carbon block filters use coconut shell carbon for high efficiency.

iSpring promises 100,000 gallons of filtration—up to one year—with this system. You can anticipate the removal of 95 percent of sediment, chlorine, chemicals, and other toxins.  

What We Don’t Like

There’s no mineral removal with iSpring’s unit, and it doesn’t reduce total dissolved solids (the company does offer reverse osmosis systems to address TDS).  

Also, you may need a water pressure regulator for proper installation. Otherwise, the pressure relief valves might leak. Checking your water pressure—and water contents—before installing is a smart idea.

Conclusion

With its multi-stage filtration and focus on eliminating sediment, the iSpring system might be the best whole house filter for well owners or those with high-sediment water. For cutting strong smells and sediment without sacrificing water pressure, consider iSpring’s economic system for your home.


GE GXWH40L
  • Remote Filter Reminder for easier replacement change
  • Reduces sediments, scale, dirt, and other substances present on tap water
  • Easy Installation and Replacement
  • 1-Year Warranty

5. GE GXWH40L Whole House Water Filter

9.3
Rating
15 GPM
Flow Rate

Filter Life: 
Up to 3 Months

System: 
Heavy-Duty Filtration Technology

What We Like

General Electric’s high-flow whole-house filter provides heavy-duty filtration in a small package. The clear sump allows you to view the filter and see when it requires changing. Of course, the magnetic filter reminder light helps prompt you to swap filters, too.

With the mounting bracket it comes with, it probably won’t take you long to install this system. An adjustment valve on top lets you bypass the filter if you want to—which is nice if you need to shut off the unit while changing the filter or for other reasons.

What We Don’t Like

The three-month filter life is a bit of a disappointment. However, replacements are quite affordable, making this an acceptable tradeoff for most consumers. What is frustrating is the unit itself doesn’t come with a filter. Be sure to add one to your cart when purchasing.

Conclusion

When it comes to basic, overall filtration, GE’s high-flow filter is a gamechanger. There’s nothing complicated about installation or filter replacement, and it’s an affordable option for those wanting to clean up with their sediment-filled water—but without targeted filtration for pollutants or heavy metals.


culligan
  • Integrated bypass valve and shut-off valve
  • easier to predict when to change with its indicator
  • stainless steel reinforced
  • Removes silt, sand, dirt, and other unhealthy substance
  • 2-Year Warranty

6. Culligan WH-HD200-C Whole House Sediment Water Filter

9.3
Rating
10 GPM
Flow Rate

Filter Life: 
Indicator Activated 

GRAIN SIZE:
Uses polyphosphates

What We Like

Culligan is another entry-level filtration option that’s convenient and economical. It helps remove sediment, scale, dirt, odors, bad tastes, and chlorine. Multiple cartridge options can enhance the removal of toxins—so check out the choices when ordering.

battery-powered filter monitor keeps tabs on the filter’s performance, alerting you when it’s time for a replacement. Filters are affordable and easy to find on Amazon, too.

Shutoff, bypass, and pressure relief valves make it easy to get around the unit when you need to change filters or perform maintenance. These are helpful features and a trait you won’t even find on pricier systems.

What We Don’t Like

It’s tough to say exactly what level of filtration Culligan offers since the whole-house system is compatible with multiple filter types. So, you’ll need to read the information on each filter to determine what type you need.

Conclusion

If you’re experiencing general odor and cloudiness problems with your tap water, Culligan’s system might be a great fit. The ability to swap out and customize filters is handy, and the filter monitor is a welcome add-on to this entry-level water purifier.


3M Aqua Pure
  • Sanitary Quick Change (SQC) Designed
  • Helps on extending the life of water-dependent appliances
  • Stainless Steel Head comes with 25-year limited Warranty
  • 100,000 gal of capacity

7. 3M Aqua-Pure AP903 Whole House Water Filter

9.3
Rating
20 GPM
Flow Rate

Filter Life: 
Up to 1 Year

System: 
Carbon Block Technology

What We Like

For targeted water filtration, 3M’s quick-change filter system is a smart tool. It’s easy to install, easy to replace, and lasts for up to 100,000 gallons before requiring replacement. The filtration reduces particles measuring up to five microns, too.

Plus, if you’re on a budget, you can’t go wrong with this quick fix. You’ll enjoy up to 85 percent lower chlorine—which improves the water’s taste—and fewer odors, too.

What We Don’t Like

Though this system is handy for many applications, it only reduces chlorine and sediment—that’s it. If you have other known pollutants in your water supply (or suspect contamination), you’ll probably want a two- or three-stage system instead.

Another potential pitfall is that you must replace the entire cartridge when the 100k gallons are up. That means ditching the whole cartridge and purchasing a new one—which can get pricey.

Conclusion

If you suspect (or smell) chlorine in your home’s tap water, 3M’s quick-fix whole home filter might be the perfect solution. It can reduce sediment, clear up smells and funky flavors, and works in the background for six months or more. We don’t like that you can’t swap the internal filters, but it’s a decent tradeoff for basic filtration on a budget.


How to Pick the Perfect One for Your Needs?

Choosing the right whole house water filter system can be a challenge. Knowing what type of filtration you want—and how much you want to spend—are important factors.

Think about the features you want and consider these points before shopping.

Features to Look for

All whole house water filter systems filter every drop of water from each spigot in your home. But they do offer different features, some of which can make it harder or easier to use the system.

Add-on filters for hard water, for example, are a handy feature if your water often has chalky residue or turns your hair green. You might want the ability to add-on more filters later, too.

An easy-install system is another factor; if you don’t want to hire a plumber, make sure to choose a simpler system.

Considerations Before You Buy

There are a few crucial points to consider before you buy a whole-house filtration system.

First, what do you plan to use your water for? Cleansing your water with whole-house filtration can help preserve your plumbing and prevent buildup from rust and limescale in your shower and sinks.

But if you want better-tasting and safer water, you might want extra filtration steps.

Next, what type of filtration is your priority?

Whole-house filtration systems can remove contaminants like:

  • Hard minerals—IE magnesium and calcium
  • Fluoride
  • Sodium
  • Iron
  • Viruses and bacteria
  • Lead
  • Chlorine

However, you’ll need to read carefully to find out what level of filtration the system offers. Not all systems protect against every type of molecule or particle in the water.

Next, consider your budget. Investing in a whole-house filter can be expensive. Fortunately, most brands offer a pricing comparison for per-gallon water costs. These figures can help you determine whether a filter is a good deal.

Knowing how long the filters last is also helpful for planning your finances. The economical most filters last a long time and don’t cost much to replace.

How to Install

Wondering how to install a whole house water filter at home? Follow these steps:

  • Turn off your home’s water while you work.
  • Find your adjustable wrenches and grab a bucket. You’ll likely need a pipe cutter to place the system, too.
  • Open a faucet (at the system’s lowest point) to clear out the pipes as much as possible.
  • Cut the pipe—as necessary—using the template from your installation kit (if the manufacturer doesn’t provide one, measure carefully before cutting).
  • Attach the included filter fittings to the pipe. Use plumber’s tape (Teflon tape) to ensure a leak-free connection.
  • Slide the filter into place. Follow the installation instructions and guides on the product.
  • Turn the water on to check for leaks.

How to Change/Replace

Once your system has been running for a few months (or longer), you’ll need to learn how to change the whole house water filter.

  • Turn off the water to the filter system. If there’s no bypass valve, you might need to turn off the water to the whole house.
  • Place a bucket underneath the filters to catch any spills.
  • Unscrew the filter(s) and remove it.
  • Install (screw in) the new filter(s).
  • Turn the water back on slowly to check for leaks.

For filters that do not unscrew, you will need to follow the installation steps in reverse to swap out your cartridge/filter combination.

Common Problems (& Fixes)

Changing the whole house water filter should go smoothly. But if you run into one of these common problems, we have the solutions.

What if the system leaks? If water is leaking out, check for:

  • A loose seal on the filter(s)
  • Lack of Teflon/plumber’s tape at vital connection points
  • Adjustment on the pressure release valve (as applicable)

The water doesn’t taste better. If your tap water doesn’t meet expectations, you might want to grab a test kit to check pollutant and mineral levels. Remember that not all systems work with all water types, either—so read carefully before buying.

Final Verdict

Express Whole House

Express

In our opinion, the best whole house water filter is the Express Water Heavy Metal Whole House Water Filter. It’s a mid-range option that can run for up to one year on a single set of filters—filtering through an impressive 100,000 gallons in that time.

The one-year manufacturer warranty coverage—plus the overall affordability of the system—makes the Express Water unit an excellent choice. From smells to odd taste to cloudiness, the Express Water filter removes everything questionable from your water and makes drinking tap water a tolerable (and economical) experience once again.