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How to Size a Water Softener in 5 Easy Steps

How to size a water softener like the AFWFilters WS48-56sxt10 Fleck water softener

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Water is a basic requirement for living. What you may not realize is that the quality of your water can affect the quality of your life as well. If you have hard water, you may be spending more on detergents, lotions, and even appliances and maintenance costs. A water softener may provide the solution you need. Read more to discover more about softeners and how to size a water softener properly.

What Are the Benefits of a Water Softener?

Tier1 48,000 Grain High Efficiency Digital Water Softener for Hard Water

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Before you size a water softener, let’s discuss the benefits of a water softener. As many as 85% of homes in North America are affected by hard water. Water containing calcium, iron, and magnesium can cause a variety of issues in your home. You may have clogged shower heads that require frequent cleaning to remove mineral deposits or replacement of shower heads. You could also have stains on tubs, showers, sinks, and toilets which can be difficult to remove. You may see mineral buildup on pipes, which decreases the flow of water. You may notice the inefficiency of the hot water heater as caused by mineral buildup, leading to increased utility bills or frequent replacement of appliances. Finally, you may observe the inefficiency of your washing machine, leading to more detergent used and therefore, increased spending.

Common Signs of Hard Water

Before you size a water softener, let’s discuss how you know if you have hard water. If you live in an area where water is supplied to you from a municipality (this could be a city or a county), you can call your local water district and ask about the hardness of your water. If your water is supplied by a well, you can have your water tested by a professional, or you can buy a testing kit to do it yourself. These tests are available at many hardware stores, big box stores, and online. Here are some other signs that you may have hard water in your home.

  • Dishes that are hazy or often spotted
  • Stained sinks, tubs, toilets, and showers
  • Appliances that require frequent replacement
  • Clogged pipes
  • Dry skin
  • Clothing stained yellow or with a grey tint, even after washing

How Does a Water Softener Function?

Before you discover how to size a water softener, let’s discuss how a water softener works.

  1. Hard water containing minerals like calcium, iron, and/or magnesium enters the water softener treatment tank.
  2. Resin bonds with the minerals.
  3. Water is processed through a resin bed.
  4. Water is strained and resin is trapped.
  5. Soft water travels through the softener.
  6. Soft water exits the softener to the home for use.

What Exactly Is Water Softener Regeneration?

Before you explore how to size a water softener, let’s discuss the term “regeneration.” You may hear or see this term when shopping for water softener systems. As the water softener system works, the resin bed becomes covered in hardness particles. To rid the system of these particles, the water softener must perform a regeneration cycle. The regeneration cycle allows water to be mixed with salt and particles to be removed from the bed. Now the water softener is ready to process the next batch of hard water and create more soft water for use in your home.

How to Size a Water Softener 101

Now we are ready to calculate how to size a water softener for your home. To do this, we need to determine the daily softening requirement. The daily softening requirement must be calculated using your water hardness and water consumption.

Step 1: What Is My Water Hardness?

The first step in figuring out how to size a water softener for your home is to determine the water hardness. Your water hardness is determined by the amount of calcium and magnesium in your water. Water hardness may be measured in milligrams per liter (mg/L), parts per million (ppm), or grains per gallon (GPG). GPG is the most common way to report water hardness. However, some tests measure water hardness in mg/L or ppm, so you must perform a conversion by dividing the measurement by 17.1 to get the GPG measurement.

You must know the hardness of your water to properly program the water softener system. In addition, water hardness is a factor in determining the size of the system that is needed for your family.

What about Iron?

The presence of iron in your water is also a factor in determining hardness. If iron is present in your water, you must perform an additional calculation. For every mg/L (or ppm) of iron present in the water, add 3 GPG of hardness to the hardness value. Some experts recommend adding 4 GPG of hardness to be on the safe side in your calculation.

Step 2: What Is My Water Consumption?

The second step in figuring out how to size a water softener is to determine the water consumption of the home. You can view your water bill to determine your water usage. Most water utility companies bill this service monthly. If this is true in your case, your bill will reflect the usage for members of the family living in your household for the month. Remember to divide your monthly usage by the number of days in the month to get your daily requirement. If you have a well that supplies your water or you do not have access to your water bill, you can calculate an estimate of your daily usage. Multiply the number of people living in your household by 80 gallons per day. This is a conservative estimate for gallons per day usage of water. Some experts recommend using a 100-gallon per day usage estimate if you like to take long showers, for example.

Step 3: How Do I Calculate My Daily Softening Requirement?

The third step in figuring out how to size a water softener is to determine the daily softening requirement. Multiply the hardness level found in Step 1 by the daily water consumption found in Step 2 to get the daily softening requirement. This calculation tells you the number of hardness grains per day that need to be removed from your water by the water softener.

Step 4: How Do I Calculate My Total Grain Capacity?

The fourth step in figuring out how to size a water softener is to determine the total grain capacity. The water softener removes the hard grains until it reaches their capacity and must regenerate. Regeneration must occur because all the resin inside of the water softener has saturated and can no longer bind to any more mineral ions. The regeneration process removes the minerals and recharges the resin. Most water softeners must perform the regeneration process every 6 to 7 days. To calculate the total grain capacity, you must take the daily softening requirement obtained in step 3 and multiply it by the 7 days required for each regeneration process.

Step 5: What about the Efficiency of the Salt?

The fifth step in figuring out how to size a water softener is to consider the efficiency of the salt you are using. Simply put, you want to perform a partial regeneration of the water softener resin bed rather than 100 percent regeneration because it is more efficient to do the partial regeneration. Doing a full generation would require a lot more salt (which would cost more money), and the efficiency per pound of salt is lower. One way to determine the efficiency of the salt is to look at the rating of the water softener. This number is a rating that shows how many hardness grains a water softener can remove with the least salt under real-world circumstances. Many experts recommend looking for a water softener with a National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) certification rating.

Sample Calculation

Here is a real-world example of the calculations discussed above. In this example, the water hardness is 120 ppm.

Step 1a:

Find water hardness. 120 ppm / 17.12 = 7.00 GPG

Step 1b:

Account for iron in the water (if necessary). 2 ppm iron X 4 = 8 GPG 7.00 GPG + 8 GPG = 15 GPG

Step 2:

Find water consumption. 4 people X 80 gallons per day = 320 gallons per day

Step 3:

Calculate daily softening. 15 GPG X 320 gallons per day = 4,800 hardness grains per day

Step 4:

Calculate total grain capacity. 4,800 hardness grains per day X 7 days = 33,600 grains per week

Step 5:

Consider salt efficiency. View a chart with grain capacities and water softener tank sizes to determine the correct size water softener for you.


Hard water can wreak havoc on the systems in your home. It can lead to frequent appliance replacement due to minerals on the appliance mechanisms. It can cause a buildup on pipes that restricts the flow of water. It can also lead to stains in your bathroom and kitchen. It can cause mineral accumulation on your dishes and glasses, leaving an unattractive film. It can also affect the condition of your skin and hair, causing dryness, itchiness, and mineral buildup. Installing a water softener system is a very easy way to control the minerals in the water used by your family members every day and increase the longevity of your household appliances.

Clack Water Softener Review: Is It Worth Buying?

ABCwaters Clack Water Softener

It’s probably safe to say that most of us don’t appreciate how much we depend on having regular access to clean water. Of course, we need it to drink, but it’s also crucial to our showers and toilets, dishwashers and washing machines, and everything from mopping the floors to watering the lawn. It’s also crucial for a lot of industries and commercial businesses. Hard water doesn’t perform the way we need it to, and water softeners are the answer to this problem. The Clack water softener valve makes your softener, and your water, work better for you.

What Is Hard Water?

Hard water is fresh water with lots of minerals in it; particularly calcium and magnesium. Hard water gets that way from absorbing these minerals in the aquifers it drains into after it falls as rain. Hard water can be a nightmare to deal with. It’s not unhealthy or dangerous, but it will cost you money, whether you need softened water for your home, commercial building, or industrial use.

What’s the Problem with Hard Water?


Image via Pixabay 

Hard water is tough on appliances. The minerals in the water can gum up the works in a dishwasher, hot water heater, washing machine, or anything else that needs water, shortening the useful life of every machine that uses it.

Hard water also builds up in faucets and pipes. Water flow becomes restricted over time, making everything less efficient. You’ll need to replace all these pipes and fixtures more often if you have hard water.

Hard water also makes cleaning a pain. Anything you try to clean, wash, rinse, or wipe down with hard water never seems to come clean as it should. And hard water can make it impossible to use local water for industrial applications.

​The Solution

Having a water softener can protect you from all this. However, it may not always be necessary to have a water softener running day in and day out. In that case, having a metered valve like the Clack water softener valve allows you to get the most efficient use possible out of your softener, saving water and salt while still getting the softened water you need.

​​Replacing a Water Softener Valve

If you’ve just gotten a Clark water softener valve, here are the basic steps involved in replacing your old valve:

  • Shut off all water
  • Disconnect the old valve start with power, then brine tubing, then drain hose, and finally in and out water lines
  • Unscrew the old valve
  • Remove the distributer tube from the resin tank
  • Put a new distributer tube into the resin tank so it is touching the bottom
  • Glue the new tube and wait for it to dry
  • Twist your new tube into place on your new valve
  • Screw the new valve onto the resin tank
  • Attach a bypass yoke pipe
  • Reconnect water lines, then drain line, then brine line, then power
  • Turn the water on
  • Start up the valve
  • Set the valve to the correct date and time
  • Allow the system to regenerate for 10 to 15 minutes

What Is a Clack Water Softener?

Clack water softeners are a series of controls and valves that come in different units suitable for controlling water softeners in any type of application. You can get them small enough for an apartment or single-family residence all the way up to sizes large enough for commercial buildings or even industrial applications.

Product Specs

Clack water softener meters let you automate control over water flow, calculate how much water you’re using, and run regeneration cycles so you can avoid wasting water and the salt used to soften your water.

Most models have self-diagnostic displays, which takes the guesswork out of troubleshooting if things aren’t working the way you want. Water softeners fitted with Clack water softener valves tend to use a lot less salt than other models. Once you’ve been softening your water for a while, the Clack “look ahead” feature helps you estimate how much salt you’ll need going forward and whether there are patterns to your usage that you can plan for in advance.

Finally, the Clack water softener valve has a backup power supply that keeps it running for two hours if the power goes out. It can retain the memory of your settings for several weeks even without power.


Prices for water filtration systems are going to vary depending on how much you need or want to filter at once. You’ll pay anything from $200 to a couple thousand, depending on what volume of water you need to be able to soften. Most residential valves will run between $300 and $700.

How It Compares

In addition to the Clack water softener, we’ve taken a look at four other popular valve units:

  • Fleck 5600 Metered Water Softener
  • Fleck 9100sxt Digital Control Valve
  • 762 Logix Electronic Control Meter
  • Hankscraft Digital Metered Softener Valve

Ease of Use

Using the Clack water softener valve is nearly effortless. Once you automate it, the valve will regulate each filtration and softening cycle and can be set with nine different injector sizes with varying draw rates. This should manage nearly any filtration/softening job you need done.

Assembly Time

The Clack water softener valve is quite easy to install if you’re even just a bit handy. It’s also simple to repair, and finding replacement parts is not difficult.


The Clack water softener is one of the most efficient on the market; it uses less salt and wastes less water than nearly anything else you can get.


You get a 5-year warranty on all Clack softener and filter controls. This covers material and workmanship under normal use. This warranty is fine, but you can get better with other units.


  • Very efficient
  • Easy to control
  • Ideal for regulating your filter use
  • Programmable


  • Can be hard to find replacement parts
  • Expensive

Fleck is another big name in the water softener valve world. They have been around a long time and have earned their reputation for dependable quality. This unit can handle 48,000 grains, has a flow rate of 12 GPM, and weighs just under 100 pounds. The LCD display has two days of backup power, and you can choose from four different operational modes or continuous flow.

Ease of Use

This is as easy to use as anything you could buy. Once it is fitted to your system, it’s not something you need to think about. There’s very little maintenance required, and what is required is simple to do.

Assembly Time

This one is fairly easy to do by yourself. With a bit of skill, you should be able to do it in two hours or less. It has its own bypass valve, which saves you at least one expense in installation.


This is one of the most efficient systems on the market for a medium sized household or smaller business operation.


Fleck offers a 10-year warranty on their tanks and a 5-year warranty on their control heads, which is one of the best offers you’ll get in the industry.


  • Quality materials
  • Easy to install and program
  • Durable


  • Bit bulky and heavy
  • Must constantly replace salt pellets

This is a Fleck unit that will work for larger water volumes and is made to run night and day, if necessary. The advanced micro-processor in the control valve has a 48-hour backup power supply in case you lose power. This one can be a bit more complicated to program than some other units, and for best results in programming it, you’ll need to know the precise details of what’s in your water.

Ease of Use

Once it’s up and running, this is easy to use; but programming takes some time and knowledge that you might not have. You’ll also need to keep on top of when to rinse and refresh it.

Assembly Time

On the one hand, installation isn’t really hard for the generally handy person. You don’t need specialized plumbing knowledge to do it. On the other hand, you’ll need to get some extra parts in order to finish installation, which is a bit of a pain.


You’ll get plenty of use out of this machine, and it can handle between 10 and 25 gallons per minute with very little waste.


Fleck offers a 10-year warranty on their tanks and a 5-year warranty on their control heads, which is one of the best offers you’ll get in the industry.


  • Durable
  • High-capacity
  • Easy to program
  • Regenerates as needed


  • Very heavy
  • May need extra parts for installation

This meter comes with a distributer, bypass adaptor, distributor piping, an elbow joint, and a barb elbow to make installation easy. It can be used both indoors or outdoors, and the single motor means you don’t need solenoids to run it.

This one has a rather unique design with no dynamic seals. That means there’s very little that can wear out and start leaking. You can adjust it to run five or eight cycles, and it features excellent precision sensors so you can know exactly what’s going on and plan for the future.

Ease of Use

Many people love their Autotrol because it’s fairly easy to use: but most of all because it’s easy to fix. It has more moving parts than the Fleck, which means things can go wrong. But it also is a lot simpler and cheaper to repair.

Assembly Time

The Autotrol are pretty standard and easy to install.


Autotrol does the job, but with more moving parts it’s more likely to give you a problem at some point than some of the other brands we’ve considered.


You get just a one-year warranty against defects under normal use with this product.


  • Simple to use
  • High capacity flow
  • Easy to install


  • Very heavy
  • Short warranty
  • More moving parts than some

Hankscraft’s design offers metered demand control and programmable cycle times. It will default to the typical industry standards, but you can easily program any and every detail to get the performance you want from it.

This unit is lighter than other units with comparable flow rates and is exceptionally easy to program. It has auto reset, a 72-hour battery backup, and a special quick disconnect drain. It is highly energy efficient.

Ease of Use

This is a very simple design that offers complete control over your softener and every setting. The controls are intuitive but will also give you excellent performance even if you don’t adjust them.

Assembly Time

This is a simple set to install, and since the company has been around a while it’s pretty easy to find replacement parts.


This unit doesn’t work quite as efficiently as some of the others. It doesn’t have the same sensors as the Fleck or Clack that ensure you’re never wasting water or salt.


You get a 5-year warranty on this unit and all its parts.


  • Very inexpensive
  • Programmable
  • Easy to use
  • Easy to find parts


  • Not as efficient as others
  • Less durable than some


For a long time, Fleck and Autotrol have been considered the industry leaders when it comes to water softener valve meters. Clack is the new kid on the block; but there are some good reasons to prefer it.

In many ways, the Clack water softener valve has the best of all the others. It has few moving parts, is cheap to repair, and is extremely reliable. In comparison with all the other valves on our list, we give the Clack 4.5 out of 5 stars.


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Is Flavored Water Good For You? Here Is What To Know

A man drinking bottled water on a sunny beach

Health experts often encourage us to drink ample amounts of water because of its amazing health benefits. However, some people are ambivalent to drink plain water because of its bland taste. Therefore, for these individuals, flavored water seems like a more appealing alternative. Flavored water is any bottled mineral, spring, or purified water containing fruit, spice, or herbal flavors. Is flavored water good for you? We wanted to find out, so we conducted our own research and here is what we know.

The Importance Of Water

A scoop water on a person's hand

Image Source: pexels.com

Water helps us to regulate the body’s temperature, and it is vital for proper circulation of nutrients within the body. When dehydration occurs, fatigue, low energy, and sleepiness set in.

Is Flavored Water Good For You?

The standard bottle of flavored water contains water, 13 grams of sugar, natural or artificial sweeteners, and flavorings. This means consumers are drinking water saturated with lots of sugar. Individuals suffering from kidney disease may find these types of water to be harmful to their health.

Functional water is also a form of flavored water with ingredients such as botanicals, vitamins, minerals, and oxygen added to it. If flavored water is sodium-free and sweetened with artificial sweeteners, it will have fewer calories. It may be a better beverage option for children regarding weight management. Although soda has mostly water content, it contains far more sugar than flavored water.

An important negative aspect of flavored water is the fact that it causes tooth erosion and dissolves tooth enamel. To avoid dental issues, dentists recommend consuming beverages quickly, avoiding direct contact with teeth. Or, brushing teeth right after having flavored drinks to deter loss of enamel. Drinking flavored water chilled and with a straw eases the possibility of damage to teeth.

Most water manufacturers sweeten flavored waters with some form of sugar. Whether it is high fructose, corn syrup, cane sugar, agave syrup, or artificial sweeteners, the sugar content renders flavored water without nutritional value. It is still better to drink than soda which causes morbid obesity. Even waters with zero calories have artificial sweeteners such as sucralose and aspartame.

The best type of flavored water to look for are those with zero calories, zero sugar, zero sweeteners, zero preservatives, no artificial flavors, colors, or dyes. Is flavored water good for you when it has zero calories, zero sugar, and zero sweeteners? Absolutely, these are the flavored waters you do not mind exchanging for regular water.

The Truth About Flavored Water

A pouring water from bottle to a glass

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There has been so much conflicting information concerning flavored water that we seriously pondered and researched the question, “Is flavored water good for you?” According to the Food and Drug Administration, they consider flavored water to be soft drinks. The sugar alternatives in these beverages such as saccharin, manitol, sorbitol, lacticol, and xylitol make these waters dangerous. The sugar substitutes cause health issues like gastric distress and yeast overgrowth in the body.

Clinical research has determined that flavored water has the potential to create serious side effects in individuals suffering from mood disorders, depression, and bipolar disorder. Some other side effects caused from drinking flavored waters regularly are vision problems, chronic fatigue, insomnia, stomach cramps, hives, convulsions and seizures.

What Are The Benefits Of Flavored Water For The Body?

How is flavored water good for anyone when there is sufficient research confirming the dangers of drinking them frequently? Flavored water promotes weight loss because it has fewer calories. It is a good way to get children and adults interested in consuming more water. It tastes better than regular water, decreases food cravings, flushes toxins from the body, enhances the appearance of the skin and complexion, fights infection, and prevents heart disease and arthritis. Flavored water is diabetes-friendly.

Ingredients In Flavored Water

Flavored water contains potassium, phosphorous, sodium, caffeine, fructose, electrolytes and small traces of vitamins.

What’s The Difference Between Flavored Water And Sparkling Water?

Compared to flavored water, sparkling waters are made with carbonated water or seltzer. They have greater quantities of sodium, which in the long run may not be good for health.

Is Sugar-Free Flavored Water And Flavored Water The Same?

Sugar-free water contains aspartame and the preservative sodium benzoate. Aspartame is also sweeter than sugar but has fewer calories. There are some flavored waters which have sugar alternatives but there are a few that have none, nor do they have preservatives.

Plain Water vs. Flavored Water

It is safe to consume water daily since plain water has no calories or artificial sweeteners. Most flavored waters have artificial sweeteners and sugar, making them a health hazard for everyday consumption. Plain water makes the body feel full and hydrated which is beneficial for losing weight. Flavored water makes the body crave sugar which leads to unhealthy food choices. Plain water quenches the thirst while flavored water does not satiate the body, nor does it ease thirstiness. Flavored water with sugar is only an occasional beverage alternative.

Where flavored water has negative side effects, plain water does not. Is flavored water good for you and is it a good substitute for plain water? The answer is yes as long as you consume it in moderation.

Infused Water vs. Flavored Water

Infused water is a beverage which has no sugar and is free from chemicals and preservatives. It is made by adding water to fruits, vegetables, herbs, or spices. It is then put in the refrigerator to chill for several hours or overnight before consuming.

How Is Weight Loss Achieved By Drinking Flavored Water?

How is flavored water good for you regarding weight loss? The flavored water makes it possible to lose weight when dieters switch out their 150-calorie bottles or cans of soda for flavored bottles of 5-calorie or no-calorie water.

Healthy Brands Of Flavored Water

A man holding a bottled water in a store

Image Source: flickr.com

Here are some of the flavored water brands we highly recommend:

  • Cascade Ice Organic Sparkling Flavored Water – it has zero calories, zero grams of sugar, no sweeteners, zero carbs, is sodium-free, and gluten-free
  • Viva Fruit Flavored Sparkling Water – it has zero sugar and zero calories, and includes vitamins and antioxidants
  • Core Water – it has 5 calories per serving, less than 1 gram of sugar, is gluten-free, kosher, vegan and loaded with antioxidants
  • Verday Chlorophyll Water – it includes wheatgrass, arugula, and spinach; it has zero calories, is non-GMO, has no artificial sweeteners and no artificial colors
  • Hint Flavored Water – it also has zero calories, zero sugar, zero sweeteners, zero preservatives, and no artificial flavors

Is flavored water good for you when the brand is organic? Yes, because it usually means there are no harsh chemicals, sugar substitutes, or preservatives.

What Are The Harmful Effects Of Sugar Substitutes In Flavored Water?

Is flavored water good for you even though it contains sugar substitutes? Sugar substitutes in flavored water cause migraines, memory loss, dizziness, cancer, hypothyroidism, breathing problems, lung problems, toxic liver, toxic kidneys, diarrhea, eczema, bloating, nerve damage, nausea, phobias, multiple sclerosis, fibromyalgia, birth defects, depression, irritability, and decreased vision. Because of these pressing health ailments, one should only consume sugar substitutes once in a blue moon.

How To Make Your Own Flavored Water

It is by far healthier and more economical to make your own flavored water. Adding herbs, vegetables, and fruits such as cherries, raspberries, mango, lemon, lime, mint, sliced cucumbers, jalapenos, ginger, vanilla extract, and pineapple is a perfect way to make flavored waters more nutritious. There are certain herbs, that when added to water, give it healing properties. For instance, cinnamon bark lowers LDL (bad cholesterol levels), and improves motor functions within the body.

Basil water is beneficial to people with diabetes, arthritis, and asthma. It lowers blood sugar and relieves sinus congestion. Vanilla extract in water soothes nausea and calms anxiety and stress. Lemon water detoxifies, sage water creates feelings of calm and serenity, and cucumber water reduces cancer risk and heart disease and is very hydrating. Orange water is immune-boosting while mint is soothing. Is flavored water good for you when used with natural fruits, herbs, and spices? Yes, because it has natural sugars instead of artificial sweeteners. Is flavored water good for you when it is homemade? Yes, because the ingredients are more natural.


A person drinking a bottled water

Image Source: pixabay.com

In conclusion, flavored waters are part of the beverage marketing trends to make water more palatable to generate more revenue. Therefore, creating and planning these waters to appeal to beauty afficionados, the fitness-conscious, and the health-obsessed makes monetary sense. These waters are expensive since they have become fashion statements or confirmation of healthy living and affluent lifestyles.

The fact of the matter is, compared to pure water, their weight loss benefits are marginal and they are seldom beneficial towards health goals. Those who are health-conscious should continue to drink their daily allowance of water remembering they are also fulfilling their hydration quota by considering other beverages such as water from food, teas, coffee, and fruit juices to suffice their water intake.

For years they told us 8 glasses of water per day would keep us healthy, alert, and bright. Yet, there are so many drawbacks to drinking too much water. For instance, too much water consumption can lead to low sodium levels, a condition called hyponatremia which is fatal. An over-hydrated body may experience confusion, water intoxication, brain fog, stomach cramps, nausea, bloating, and organ failure.

For satisfying thirst, allow your body to be your guide. The new recommended daily allowance for water consumption is 15 cups and this includes the water we consume from fruits, vegetables, and other drinks besides water.

Whether one consumes plain water, flavored water, sugar-free water or sparkling water, the goal should always be to drink more of which is better for our health. According to our findings nothing is better than pure water. Although health concerns may be our focus, occasionally it makes meal times more interesting when we change our water intake to include other drinks such as flavored waters and seltzers. Have we solved the question “Is Flavored water good for you?” It is good to not be too concerned about caloric intake and stay mindful not to overindulge.

The Search for the Best Water Filter Pitchers of 2019

Best Water Filter Pitcher

Finding the best water filter pitcher can be difficult because there are so many, and the features can be confusing and hard to compare. We rank and review 10 of the top water filter pitchers of 2018 to enable the consumer to make an informed decision when purchasing one for the home.

Product FAQs

  1. What are water filter pitchers?

Water filter pitchers strain water through a reservoir containing a charcoal filter to remove impurities. Sometimes they are known as “pour-through pitchers.”  They usually hold anywhere from 6 cups to a gallon of water and are best for home use.

  1. How does a water filter pitcher work?

Water filter pitchers use a filter to remove chemicals and contaminants. The process by which it does this is known as adsorption. The use of activated charcoal is good for removing chlorine and some other impurities but cannot remove lead or fluoride. The charcoal can’t make hard water softer, remove microbes or heavy metals, so some pitchers use other means of adsorption. This is a partial list of things that most water filter pitchers will remove, depending on the type and how often the filter is changed:

  • Chlorine
  • Zinc
  • Nominal Particulates
  • Hydrogen Sulfide
  • Cysts
  • Turbidity
  • Trace pharmaceuticals
  1.  Why use a water filter pitcher?

A water filter pitcher is a great option for those looking to remove chemicals and contaminants that are easily removed by charcoal and other filters. Having the water tested before choosing a water filtration system is wise to ensure the best option is chosen. Other options include reverse osmosis and other types of whole house filtration systems.

  1. Where can a good water filter pitcher be purchased?

Good water filter pitchers can be found online at stores such as Amazon. Some Target stores carry them as well as Walmart.

  1. How do these chemicals get into our water?

Tap water is generally safe to drink. Municipal water treatment plants add chlorine and other chemicals to river, lake and underground aquifer water to remove harmful bacteria and viruses that might be in it to make it safe for human consumption.

How We Reviewed

We based our reviews on customer comments, features available and price.

Top Ten Water Filter Pitchers

[amazon link=”B011M7AQPS” title=”Invigorated Water pH RESTORE Alkaline 3.5L Water Filter Pitcher” /]

[amazon box=”B011M7AQPS”]

The Invigorated Water pH RESTORE Water Filter Pitcher produces alkaline water, which is supposed to be better for a person’s health by raising the body’s pH. The benefits of alkalinity aside, this is a great pitcher, producing 264 gallons of water per one filter.


  • The pitcher is comfortable and has a slim outline, perfect for fitting in an overcrowded fridge.
  • It produces alkaline water which has a health benefit.
  • The package includes two filters, each lasting three months.
  • The filter actually puts minerals back into the water such as selenium, calcium and


  • warranty

90 days from the date of purchase with a 100% satisfaction money back guarantee during that period.

[amazon link=”B078QBSH53″ title=”ZeroWater 12-Cup Ready Pour Water Filter Pitcher” /]

[amazon box=”B078QBSH53″]

The ZeroWater Water Filter Pitcher is our number two pick for several reasons. It uses a deionization process, which removes heavy metals, unlike standard charcoal filters alone. The taste is crisp, clear and fresh. In fact, some users that are familiar with the taste of the chemicals in their water found it unusual because it removes flavors associated with the chemicals as well.


  • It’s a comfortable and sturdy pitcher with two pouring options (one from the top and one from the bottom for pouring while it is filtering).
  • There is a paid recycling program for returning filters through ZeroWater.


  • It is slow to fill, probably one of the slower filters at 1 minute 50 seconds per cup of water.
  • warranty

90 days from the date of purchase.

[amazon link=”B016LLLXJS” title=”Aquagear 8 cup Water Filter Pitcher” /]

[amazon box=”B016LLLXJS”]

The Aquagear Water Filter Pitcher does an amazing 150 gallons per filter and boasts of being able to remove the most fluoride, which most filters simply can’t get out very well.


  • One of the most effective at removing 90% of fluoride which can usually only be done previously with reverse osmosis or a whole house system.
  • The filters on this system are also recyclable and able to be sent back to the manufacturer using preprinted labels.
  • This filter leaves good minerals such as calcium, magnesium and selenium in the water.


  • This pitcher is also very slow to fill.
  • It doesn’t have any notice as to when to change filters, which can be frustrating.
  • warranty

It holds a lifetime warranty, and a user can request a new one for a break, chip or crack.

[amazon link=”B06XJ4XLCQ” title=”PUR LED 11 Cup Water Filtration Pitcher System” /]

[amazon box=”B06XJ4XLCQ”]

This filtered pitcher rids the water of 22 contaminants over 1-2 months of use, filtering 40 gallons on one filter. It’s BPA-free, and both the filter and pitcher are recyclable.


  • The pitcher is very good at removing pharmaceuticals and many contaminants, which many pitchers are not.
  • It has a very efficient filtration system.


  • It has very slow filtration, and again, is one of the slowest.
  • The pitcher leaves fluoride in the water, which is something many people want to filter
  • warranty

90-day warranty.

[amazon link=”B01CGT22VM” title=”Seychelle Pitcher Water Filter Pitcher” /]

[amazon box=”B01CGT22VM”]

The Seychelle Pitcher uses two filters making it much faster at filtering than a pitcher with just one filter. It removes 99.99% of usual contaminants, making it one of the most effective filters around.


  • The filters work incredibly fast, especially compared to some of the slower models out there.


  • The filters on this model clog easily, meaning well or salty water shouldn’t be used in these pitchers and should only have municipal water in them to avoid clogging them.
  • The pitcher and filter aren’t able to be used for hard water. The hard water can clog the filters as well.
  • warranty

90 days from the date of purchase.

[amazon link=”B01N5ERFRI” title=”Reshape Water Alkaline Water Filter Pitcher” /]

[amazon box=”B01N5ERFRI”]

The Reshape is an unusual looking pitcher that again is an alkaline one. It comes with two filter cartridges, so they will last about 2-3 months before another purchase will need to be made. The filters for the Reshape are amongst the most complex available today. They use an ion-exchange filter, an activated carbon one, FIR balls, and then negative potential particles to remove all the impurities in the water.


  • This filter pitcher has an antioxidant effect by producing negative ions in the water.
  • It also can put minerals back in such as calcium, selenium and zinc, which many cannot. It comes with replaceable parts, which is unusual but helps reduce cost by replacing sections instead of the entire pitcher.


  • The filter is difficult to change. Luckily, it doesn’t have to be done often, so it isn’t a deal breaker, but it is a concern if arthritis is a problem.
  • There isn’t a gauge to tell the user when to change filters. The user tells by how slow the water is flowing.
  • It is very slow to filter.
  • warranty

90 days from the date of purchase.

[amazon link=”B07GJXH68Z” title=”Brita – 10-Cup Everyday Water Pitcher” /]

[amazon box=”B07GJXH68Z”]

Brita, one of the best known names in the industry, comes in at number 7 on this list. BPA-free, as most of them are, it has an indicator to tell the user when to change the filter. It’s very comfortable to use and takes out most impurities in the water.


  • It has a comfortable hande, which is important as this is a larger-sized pitcher.
  • Brita is a well-known name and deemed reliable by consumers.


  • This pitcher doesn’t filter as many contaminants out as the other pitchers on our list do.
  • warranty

90 days from the date of purchase.

[amazon link=”B01L9VICWQ” title=”DRAGONN 3.5 L Alkaline Water Filter Pitcher” /]

[amazon box=”B01L9VICWQ”]

This model is one of the largest pitchers on our list and has one of the most complicated filters. It softens the water by raising the pH, treats it with infrared energy, and removes contaminants. All of this is very impressive for the price.


  • This water filter both remineralizes and alkalizes the water. Both are significant health benefits.


  • The filters clog easily.
  • The filters only last 1-2 months.
  • warranty

90 days from the date of purchase.

[amazon link=”B00HEYRLO8″ title=”Brita 6-Cup Atlantis Water Filter Pitcher” /]

[amazon box=”B00HEYRLO8″]

Brita, again, is a very popular system and having two on the list is telling. The company uses a sticker system for filter change reminders or email reminders are a choice, too.


  • Brita has a fast filtering system, making it very popular for families with young children who don’t want to wait for fresh water.
  • The filters are very easy to change.


  • This pitcher is very small, so it will have to be refilled often.
  • warranty

90 days from the date of purchase.

[amazon link=”B01N6QN4WP” title=”Alexapure Water Filter Pitcher” /]

[amazon box=”B01N6QN4WP”]

Another BPA-free pitcher, this one removes 99.99% of contaminants, but again, the user can only put treated municipal water through it. Fluoride is reduced by 90%, which is the same as some of the other top pitchers. The filters are a bit on the expensive side so check the prices before buying the pitcher.


  • This pitcher filters 99.99% of contaminants.


  • Expensive filters
  • warranty

45 days on unopened products.

Comparison Table

[amazon link=”B011M7AQPS” title=”Invigorated Water pH RESTORE Alkaline 3.5 L Water Filter Pitcher” /]

[amazon fields=”B011M7AQPS” value=”thumb” image_align=”center”]

Capacity: 96 gallons per filter (1-2 months)​

[amazon fields=”B011M7AQPS” value=”button”]

[amazon link=”B01K8YALOC” title=”ZeroWater 12-Cup Ready Pour Water Filter Pitcher” /]

[amazon fields=”B01K8YALOC” value=”thumb” image_align=”center”]

Capacity: 79 gallons of water per filter (1-2 months)

[amazon fields=”B01K8YALOC” value=”button”]

[amazon link=”B016LLLXJS” title=”Aquagear 8 cup Water Filter Pitcher” /]

[amazon fields=”B016LLLXJS” value=”thumb” image_align=”center”]

Capacity: 150 gallons per filter (2-3 months)

[amazon fields=”B016LLLXJS” value=”button”]

[amazon link=”B00IK5A68I” title=”PUR LED 11 Cup Water Filtration Pitcher System” /]

[amazon fields=”B00IK5A68I” value=”thumb” image_align=”center”]

Capacity: 40 gallons per filter (1 month)

[amazon fields=”B00IK5A68I” value=”button”]

[amazon link=”B01CGT22VM” title=”Seychelle Pitcher Water Filter Pitcher” /]

[amazon fields=”B01CGT22VM” value=”thumb” image_align=”center”]

Capacity: 200 gallons filtered water per filter (3 months)

[amazon fields=”B01CGT22VM” value=”button”]

[amazon link=”B01N5ERFRI” title=”Reshape Water Alkaline Water Filter Pitcher” /]

[amazon fields=”B01N5ERFRI” value=”thumb” image_align=”center”]

Capacity: 79 gallons per 1-2 months of use

[amazon fields=”B01N5ERFRI” value=”button”]

[amazon link=”B07GJXH68Z” title=”Brita – 10-Cup Everyday Water Pitcher” /]

[amazon fields=”B07GJXH68Z” value=”thumb” image_align=”center”]

Capacity: 80 gallons per 1-2 months of use

[amazon fields=”B07GJXH68Z” value=”button”]

[amazon link=”B01L9VICWQ” title=”DRAGONN 3.5 L Alkaline Water Filter Pitcher” /]

[amazon fields=”B01L9VICWQ” value=”thumb” image_align=”center”]

Capacity: 80 gallons per 1-2 months of use

[amazon fields=”B01L9VICWQ” value=”button”]

[amazon link=”B00HEYRLO8″ title=”Brita 6-Cup Atlantis Water Filter Pitcher” /]

[amazon fields=”B00HEYRLO8″ value=”thumb” image_align=”center”]

Capacity: ​60 gallons per 1-2 months of use

[amazon fields=”B00HEYRLO8″ value=”button”]

[amazon link=”B01N6QN4WP” title=”Alexapure Water Filter Pitcher” /]

[amazon fields=”B01N6QN4WP” value=”thumb” image_align=”center”]

Capacity: 80 gallons per 1-2 months of use

[amazon fields=”B01N6QN4WP” value=”button”]


The Invigorated Water pH RESTORE Alkaline 3.5 L Water Filter Pitcher is our winner. The slim outline, remineralization and inclusion of six months of filters puts it at the top of our list. Despite being a little pricier than some of the others, this price is easily made up in filter cost. This makes it number one in our book.

The Best Water Purification Tablets to Have in Case of Emergency

best water purification tablets

Clean water is a given for life, but certain circumstances may call for purification of one’s water source. The average adult cannot last more than a few days without enough clean water—the EPA recommends half a gallon of clean, fresh water a day, and no one wants lead, arsenic, bacteria, or other toxic contaminants in his or her canteen of drinking water. Tap water, municipal water, lake water, and bottled water are all at risk for contamination. If clean water accessibility and pollution issues concern you, then this article is for you and will prepare you for whatever emergencies may arise using the best water purification tablets available.

We have researched several brands of purification tablets in the paragraphs below. This article will review each of the best water purification tablets focusing on price, how the tablets work, how long it takes before purification finishes, and where to purchase each brand of water purification tablets. We’ll first mention a few commonly asked questions and the different water purification chemicals used in products to get you started.

[amazon box=”B000H3DNF4,B005NCYKMY,B077737MBN,B0009I3T3S,B019KZ0GVI” template=”table”]

Product FAQ for the Best Water Purification Tablets

1. What Are Water Purification Tablets?

Whether you’re hiking in the mountains, enduring a drought, visiting a third-world country for humanitarian aid, or surviving a water crisis in your hometown, you’ll need a convenient and accessible way to safeguard your water source from pathogens. Carrying around a heavy water filter isn’t ideal. Fortunately, there are ways to ensure your water is the best it can be: the best water purification tablets available for both you and your family.

Militaries initially used purification tablets to save time versus boiling water, as was done in the old days. With the advent of water purification tablets, providing drinkable water became a lot easier and faster for an army.

Water purification tablets contain harmless chemicals and additives that react with water upon contact. When applied, the chemicals destroy harmful pathogens and parasites and neutralize toxins. The result is a clean, crisp taste with maximum hydration. The added chemicals from the solution are harmless and dissipate after a brief amount of time, so you don’t have to worry about any residue chemicals in your water.

2. What Situations Are Appropriate for These Tablets?

One of the handy aspects of the best water purification tablets is their versatility. You can apply them in a wide variety of scenarios and stay healthy and hydrated. Here are examples of circumstances that warrant the use of the tablets:

  • Emergency/survival scenarios during a hurricane, mass flooding, drought, and other natural disasters
  • Humanitarian projects in third-world countries where clean water is scarce
  • Military campaigns that require large amounts of potable, clean water to fuel its troops
  • Outdoors backpacking, camping, hiking, or other sports-related activities
  • Traveling long distances across the country where clean water may not be abundant
  • Caring for someone who is seriously injured and dehydrated in a remote location—in need of quick, clean water
  • Hospitals who have patients with special hydration needs

As you can see, there are plenty of uses for water purification tablets including some scenarios that may save a person’s life, be it your family member, a friend, or your own.

3. How Do You Apply the Tablets to the Water?

The tablets are easy to use. Place a tablet into a container of water, as per the directions of the product, and allow the tablet to dissolve or react with the water. You may have to shake the beverage gently to maximize the tablet’s effects. Remember to wait for the designated period as specified by the product’s packaging. Some purification products involve drops instead of tablets that react with the water.

Be sure to strain the water first if there are visible particles or debris in the beverage. Warmer water purifies faster and better than cooler water, which is something else to remember when you’re in an arid, hot region. Never drink the treated water until enough time has passed.

4. What Are Some Additional Benefits of Purification Tablets?

Not only are the best water purification tablets convenient to use for a wide variety of situations, but they are also lightweight, easy to carry in bulk, and inexpensive. Each tablet is perfectly measured, so you don’t have to fiddle with measuring cups or other chemistry tools. You just pop the tablet into the water and wait for the substance to complete its cleansing of the water.

What Types of Water Purification Products Can Be Used?


Iodine works surprisingly well as an antiseptic, and it’s also a necessary nutrient for the human body. After applying this substance, the wait time for purification is thirty to sixty minutes. Iodine is effective against bacteria, viruses, and parasites, like Giardia. Warmer water works better for iodine. Water applied with iodine will have an iodine-like taste; this is normal, although some products may remove the awkward taste. Most iodine purification tablets last for up to six years on the shelf.


Chlorine in the pool

Image by Adriano Gadini from Pixabay 

The wait time for purification is thirty to forty-five minutes. Like iodine, chlorine is effective against bacteria, viruses, and somewhat effective against Giardia. Most chlorine purification methods will be droplets rather than tablets. Chlorinated water has a bleach-like smell which will dissipate in the open air. The average shelf life is five years.

Chlorine Dioxide

This method of purification requires about four hours but kills a broader range of bacteria that other substances won’t. Chlorine dioxide does not alter the taste or smell of the water once the purification process is complete. Chlorine dioxide is especially potent against parasites like Giardia but takes longer to have a full cleansing on a batch of water. The shelf life is four years in a dry environment.

How We Reviewed the Best Water Purification Tablets

After careful research of the best water purification tablets on the market, we’ve constructed a comprehensive list of products that are both affordable and effective for consumers. We reviewed the following products based on price, accessibility, the chemicals used to purify water, and how long they last.

Overall Price Range

[amazon fields=”B0009I3T3S ” value=”thumb” image_size=”large” image_align=”center” image=”2″]

The higher priced products come with a longer shelf life, no aftertaste from purification, and no chemical residues. The more economical products may not cleanse the water compared to the more expensive tablets. Some products offer larger deals or multiple sets of tablets at a better price.

What We Reviewed

Below are five products our research suggested to be the best water purification tablets on the market.

  • Katadyn Micropur MP1
  • Aquamira Chlorine Dioxide Water Purifier Tablets
  • Aquatabs AQT100
  • Potable Aqua Water Purification Tablets
  • TAC-H2O

[amazon link=”B000H3DNF4″ title=”Katadyn Micropur MP1″ /]

[amazon box=”B000H3DNF4″]

About the Product

This product is chlorine dioxide-based with a five-year shelf life. Twenty tablets come in a package, and only one tablet is needed for purification of one liter. Wait time is thirty minutes for most pathogens—up to four hours for a complete cleanse. The tablets don’t leave an aftertaste in the water, unlike with iodine or straight chlorine. This product meets EPA standards for microbiological water purification.

The Manufacturer

Katadyn is an American company that produces reliable water filters and chlorine dioxide tablets. They have a strong reputation among hikers and backpackers with their Katadyn Micropur MP1 tablets in particular.

[amazon link=”B005NCYKMY” title=”Aquamira” /]

[amazon box=”B005NCYKMY”]

About the Product

This product is chlorine dioxide-based with a five-year shelf life. Twenty tablets come in a package—only one tablet for purification, equating to twenty liters cleansed. Wait time is, again, thirty minutes for most pathogens—up to four hours for a complete cleanse. The tablets don’t leave an aftertaste in the water after the four-hour mark, unlike with iodine or straight chlorine; but the Aquamria will smell before the purification process is complete because of its potency.

This product can work with an Aquamria filter to remove any dirt or other visible solids in the beverage. This is an EPA registered water purifier. Product weight is 0.2 ounces. Dimensions are 5 x 5 x 5 inches.

The Manufacturer

Aquamria is a water purification company with international recognition for its humanitarian projects and quality products since the late 20th century.

[amazon link=”B077737MBN” title=”Aquatabs AQT100″ /]

[amazon box=”B077737MBN”]

About the Product

This product is chlorine-based with a five-year shelf life. A hundred tablets come in a package—only one pill for purification, equating to two-hundred liters cleansed. Wait time is only thirty minutes for a complete cleanse. These tablets will kill most pathogens and parasites within thirty minutes. Unlike most chlorine tablets, the Aquatabs does not leave residual taste or odor after the full thirty minutes. Someone can use this product for a variety of water sources, from rainwater, lakes, rivers, and cisterns. Compared to other brands, Aquatabs is a fast-acting product.

The Manufacturer

For over twenty years, NGOs and other emergency companies have relied on Aquatabs and their products—treating three billion gallons per year. Aquatabs has an international reputation for its quality products.

[amazon link=”B0009I3T3S” title=”Potable Aqua Water” /]

[amazon box=”B0009I3T3S”]

About the Product

This product is iodine-based with a four-year shelf life unopened—one-year shelf life opened. Fifty tablets come in a package—treating twenty-five liters of water. Wait time is thirty-five minutes for a complete cleanse. These tablets will kill most pathogens and parasites within thirty-five minutes but are not effective against Cryptosporidium. This product is unaffected by colder temperatures, but has a distinct iodine taste and smell to it.

The bottle is EPA registered for water purification. The dimensions are three inches by one inch, weighing 1.4 ounces.

The Manufacturer

Potable Aqua is a trusted brand for militaries and emergency organizations across the globe. Hikers and campers are also fond of Potable Aqua and their fast-acting and convenient to use iodine tablets.

[amazon link=”B019KZ0GVI” title=”LLC TAC-H2O” /]

[amazon box=”B019KZ0GVI”]

About the Product

This product is chlorine-based with a five-year shelf life. A hundred tablets come in a package—only one pill for purification, equating to five-hundred liters cleansed. Wait time is just thirty minutes for a complete cleanse. These tablets will kill pathogens and parasites like dysentery, cholera, and typhoid within thirty minutes. Unlike most chlorine tablets, the Aquatabs do not leave residue taste or odor. TAC is a globally EPA approved product because of its active chemical designed for long-term water drinkability.

The Manufacturer

Tac-Bar Tactical Food Rations is a humanitarian organization that sells prepper goods and water purification globally. They were involved in supplying aid during Hurricane Matthew in the Bahamas during 2016.

The Verdict

Our Pick for the Best Water Purification Tablets

After a careful examination of our research, we have concluded that the Katadyn Micropur MP1 performs the best as far as quality and taste. The TAC-H2O comes in second for its price and the number of tablets that purify five-hundred liters per product. The Katadyn Micropur MP1 will perform better, but we recommend the TAC for those seeking a more economical choice.

The Aquatabs, Aquamria, and Potable Aqua brands did not meet our research’s standards because of residue odor and taste issues, price per tablet, and insufficient information provided by the wholesaler.


Water purification is now one of the most important facets of life on this planet. Proper purification ensures health for both you and your family members, wherever you may be in the world, providing a convenient and lightweight option for clean water. Because of their flexibility and ease of use, water purification tablets are used worldwide by military and campers alike.

Our research suggests the Katadyn Micropur MP1 for the best quality water with taste, which is ideal for a camping vacation or hiking venture. The TAC-H2O is better for a cheaper, long-term option like an international trip to a third-world country or a military campaign.

We hope this article has helped you with your water purification questions. Remember to choose the best water purification tablets that suit your needs and stay hydrated.Featured image via Amazon