Buyer's Guide: Countertop Water
In This Buyer's Guide:
to Install a Countertop Water
- Which Contaminants
Water Filters Reduce?
- Reasons to buy a
- Reasons not to buy a
- Our Recommendations
How to Install a Countertop Water
a countertop water filter is relatively simple, and does not require
any changes in plumbing. Simply place the filter on a convenient place
on your countertop close to the sink. Remove the aerator from your
faucet and replace with the diverter valve that is included with the
filter. When you turn on the water, it will flow through your sink's
faucet as usual. Turn the diverter valve handle to redirect the water
through a line attached to the filter.To stop the flow of water through
the filter, simply turn the diverter valve handle off or turn off the
water at the faucet (See Fig. 1).
Fig. 1: Countertop Water
Which Contaminants Do Countertop
Water Filters Reduce?
on the type of filter your system uses, countertop water filters may
reduce some or all of the following contaminants: chlorine, cysts,
organic chemicals, parasites, particulates, bacteria, rust, sediment,
lead, mercury, copper, cadmuim, and benzene.
Reasons to buy a countertop water
- Less likely to clog than pitcher or faucet-mount filters
- Allows you to filter large amounts of water
- No changes in plumbing required for installation
- Longer filter life (approx. 6 months to 1 year)
Reasons not to buy a countertop
- Limited counter space
- May not always dispense ice-cold water
- Requires some installation
- Will not reduce as many contaminants as other types of
filter systems (i.e. reverse osmosis)
- More expensive than pitcher or faucet mount filters
Good: The Omnifilter OCT2 Countertop Water Filter
reduces chlorine taste and odor, rust, sediment, and, depending on the
type of filter cartridge used, may also reduce cryptosporidium and
giardia cysts. Compatible replacement filter cartridges are
separately and should typically be replaced every six months to a year
(See Fig. 2).
Fig. 2: Omnifilter OCT2
Better: The Cuisinart CleanWater WCH-1000 Countertop
Filter system employs a gravity replacement filter
that reduces many contaminants including: chlorine taste and odor,
lead, mercury, benzene, cadmuim, copper, dirt, sediment, rust and more
(See Fig. 3).
Unlike most conventional countertop filters, this does not need to be
attached to your sink's faucet. It has a convenient flip-top lid for
easy filling and dispenses both chilled and room-temperature water. A
blue LED light shows when the water has been chilled to 44 degrees
Fahrenheit. The 3-month/12-week filter timer reminds you when it's time
to change the filter. This particular system holds up to 1.5 gallons of
water; however, the Cuisinart CleanWater WCH-1500
model holds up to 2 gallons and is able to dispense hot water (up to
194 degrees Fahrenheit) as well (See Fig. 4).
Fig. 3: Cuisinart
WCH-1000 1.5-gal. Countertop Filter
Fig. 4: Cuisinart WCH-1500 2-gal.
Best: The Doulton HCPS-UC Counter Top Filter System
comes with an UltraCarb Ceramic Filter Candle
that effectively reduces chlorine, lead, Class I particulates, as well
as cryptosporidium and giardia cysts. This filter should be replaced
every six months (See Fig. 5).
Fig. 5: Doulton HCPS-UC
Featured: The Filtrete Water Station
(a.k.a. the 4-bottle water filter) lets you enjoy the convenience of
bottled water without the added expense and plastic bottle waste.
Similar to the Cuisinart Countertop models, this filter does not need
to be attached to the sink. Simply pour tap water into the top of the
filter and watch it simultaneously fill the four reusable bottles that
are attached at the bottom. The Filtrete water station replacement bottles
are BPA-free and dishwasher safe and may be stored in the fridge and
retrieved later for an ice-cold refreshing beverage when you're
on-the-go (See Fig. 6).
Fig. 6: Filtrete Water