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Are you searching for a high-quality water filter that has been tested and certified to ensure its effectiveness and safety? Look no further than NSF certified water filters. NSF International is a leading organization that sets standards and certifies products in the water treatment industry, including water filters.

In this article, we will be discussing the benefits of using a NSF certified filter and why it’s important to choose one for your home. From reducing contaminants to improving the taste and odor of your water, we’ll explore the many advantages of using a NSF certified filter. Whether you’re looking to upgrade your current filter or are in the market for a new one, this article will provide you with the information you need to make an informed decision.

Many of the most-reputable water filter manufacturers will get their products NSF Certified. So, if you’re lost in a sea of too many filter options, looking for an NSF certification is a great place to start.

When products or services are mentioned, we may use affiliate links that pay us a referral fee. There’s no additional expense to the consumer.

Quick Picks for the Best NSF Certified Water Filter of 2021


All-Time Bestseller NSF Certified Filter

Aquasana SmartFlow™ Reverse Osmosis Water Filter System - High-Efficiency Under Sink RO Removes up to 99.99% of 90 Contaminants, Including Fluoride, Chlorine, and Lead - Oil Rubbed Bronze (ORB) Faucet

  • Drink With Confidence Knowing Your Drinking Water Has Been Purified Through Both Reverse Osmosis & Aqua Sana's Claryum Filtration
  • One Of A Kind High Performance Filter
  • Removes 5x More Contaminants Than Other RO Systems

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Culligan FM-15A Advanced Faucet Mount Filter, 200 Gallon, White

  • FEATURES: Reduces azine, chlorine, lindane, lead, particulates class I, turbidity while removing bad taste/odor;
  • Carbon block filtration method; Flow rate of 0.5 gpm at 60 psi; 30-100 psi pressure range; 40-100°F temp range; Easy installation with no tools

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iSpring RCC7AK, NSF Certified 75 GPD, Alkaline 6-Stage Reverse Osmosis System, pH+ Remineralization RO Water Filter System Under Sink, Superb Taste Drinking Water Filter

  • 6-Stage Alkaline Remineralization Layered Filtration
  • The iSpring RCC7AK water softener includes an additional sixth stage
  • EASY DO IT YOURSELF INSTALLATION

Our Research

 


Our Picks for the Best NSF Certified Water Filters

These selections were made based on a combination of our own testing and research, NSF Certifications, manufacturer specs and third party NSF water filter reviews. Only the best water filters for our readers!

 

Top Overall: Aquasana OptimH2O

Aquasana SmartFlow™ Reverse Osmosis Water Filter System - High-Efficiency Under Sink RO Removes up to 99.99% of 90 Contaminants, Including Fluoride, Chlorine, and Lead - Oil Rubbed Bronze (ORB) Faucet
  • Patented SmartFlow technology provides more pure water, less water waste, and longer filter life. Our ultra-efficient reverse osmosis membrane technology reduces fluoride, nitrates, nitrites, arsenic, PFOA, PFOS, microplastics, and more.
  • System tested and certified in 2023 by WQA to NSF/ANSI Standards 42, 53, 58, 401, and CSA B483.1. Under counter filtration of up to 99.99% of fluoride, chromium+6, TDS, microplastics, PFOA, PFOS, asbestos, mercury, arsenic, chlorine, pharmaceuticals, and lead.
  • Easy Filter Replacements - Simply twist out the used cartridge and replace it with an Aquasana replacement filter for continued contaminant removal. Use only certified, genuine Aquasana replacements.
  • Get ultra-delicious Aquasana filtered water in your home and enjoy more natural flavors and amazing results in the kitchen. Unlike other RO systems, ours includes a Remineralizer that restores beneficial minerals for healthier, delicious water.
  • Includes first set of filters, RO membrane, RO tank, faucet, parts required for under countertop installation, and 2-year limited warranty. Professional installation recommended. Aquasana phone support and service is available at 866-662-6885.

Key Features: NSF Certified for 5 different standards; effective reverse osmosis filtering; removes over 85 different harmful contaminants.

Price Range: $$$

The Aquasana OptimH2O system is a reverse-osmosis filter setup that installs under your kitchen sink. We chose it as the best NSF Certified water filter in 2021 because it’s earned several NSF certifications – meeting standards 42, 53, 58, 401 and P473. Most filters are only certified for standard 42 and/or 53, but this unit goes further to effectively filter out a huge variety of potential contaminants.

For complete peace of mind, it’s tough to beat this system. It’s designed to filter out more than 5x the number of contaminants that most reverse osmosis systems cover. Not only is it designed to be a versatile filtration system – it’s actually third-party certified to be just that!

This unit is more pricey than the others on this list, but it’s also more effective. It comes with everything you need, including a holding tank, reverse osmosis filter setup, and even a stylish faucet! It even has a remineralizer; a type of filter that adds healthy minerals back into the filtered water. That’s why the overwhelming majority of Aquasana water filter reviews from customers are very positive.

Overall, this is the best NSF Certified water filter.

 

Budget-Friendly: Culligan FM-15A

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Culligan FM-15A Advanced Faucet Mount Filter, 200 Gallon, White
  • Provide your family with visibly clean, great-tasting water for drinking, cooking and more
  • FEATURES: Reduces azine, chlorine, lindane, lead, particulates class I, turbidity while removing bad taste/odor; Carbon block filtration method; Flow rate of 0.5 gpm at 60 psi; 30-100 psi pressure range; 40-100°F temp range; Easy installation with no tools
  • COMPATIBILITY: Includes adapters for all standard sink nozzles (does NOT fit drop-down faucets)
  • FILTER LIFE: Up to 2 months or 200 gallons, depending on usage and water conditions
  • CERTIFICATION: Tested and certified by IAPMO against ANSI Standard 42 and 53

Key Features: Very budget-friendly; NSF 42 and 53 Certified; good flow rate; easy to install

Price Range: $

The Culligan FM-15A is a budget-friendly NSF water filter that attaches directly to your faucet. It features an easy on/off switch that allows for easy access to higher-flow, non-filtered water. It’s certified by NSF to meet standards 53 and 42, and it’s effective in removing a wide range of contaminants. It’s well built, with durable metal and plastic construction.

The affordable replacement filters on the FM-15A are designed to last for 200 gallons of filtered water. So, both the upfront cost and the ongoing costs are quite affordable for this unit. It’s made by a trusted brand, and earns solid reviews from customers.

If you’re looking to stick to a budget, or you just aren’t sure if you need a pricey filter, this is a great option. Learn more here.

High-Capacity: iSpring RCC7AK

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iSpring RCC7AK, NSF Certified 75 GPD, Alkaline 6-Stage Reverse Osmosis System, pH+ Remineralization RO Water Filter System Under Sink, Superb Taste Drinking Water Filter
  • Certified to NSF/ANSI 58, 6-Stage Alkaline Remineralization Layered Filtration - Exclusively designed to restore the natural alkalinity and mineral balance of water; this reliable and ultra-safe Reverse Osmosis (RO) water filtration system converts your water into clean, pure and healthy drinking water by removing up to 99% of over 1,000 harmful contaminants like PFAS (includes PFOA and PFOS), chlorine, fluoride, lead (removes up to 98%), arsenic, asbestos, calcium, sodium and more.
  • GREAT-TASTING MINERAL WATER - A standard 5 stage RO system produces slightly acidic water with a pH of 7. 0 or below because the RO membrane removes not only harmful pollutants but also a few helpful minerals. The iSpring RCC7AK Reverse Osmosis water filter includes an additional 6th stage - an Alkaline Remineralization filter which restores healthy minerals and produces a balanced alkalinity, which gives your water a more natural taste than regular 5 stage RO water filter.
  • LOW MAINTENANCE - Transparent 1st stage housing for easy visual inspection. Three extra long life pre-filters to remove large contaminants and protect RO membrane. Ultra fine (RO) filter to remove contaminants down to 0. 0001 microns; fine GAC filter to provide final polishing to the purified water and (AK) filter to finally restore just the right proportion of healthy minerals and a natural alkaline balance. The end result is great-tasting bottled-water quality.
  • EASY TO INSTALL & NO LEAKS - The water purifier is designed for DIY installation and all necessary parts for installation are included. Backed by clear installation manual, instructional videos, and access to lifetime technical support. The entire alkaline system fits nicely under a kitchen sink. For leak-free installation, simply push tubing ½” deep into quick-fitting connectors and lock; no threading pipes needed. Note: Please ensure RCC7AK fits your under-sink area before purchasing.
  • 100% SATISFIED CUSTOMERS - RCC7AK from America’s favorite brand of under sink water filter is the highly rated reverse osmosis systems. Comes with 1-year limited manufacturer warranty upon registration and lifetime personalized support from GA, USA, combined with premium quality components, this water filter is to deliver endless bottled quality drinking water right in your home for many years to come, eliminating plastic waste.

Key Features: Very high capacity; NSF Certified; great flow rate; super easy to install

Price Range: $$

The iSpring RCC7AK high capacity water filters remove up to 99% of over 1000 contaminants, such as lead, chlorine, chloramine, endocrine, endocrine disruptors, fluoride, arsenic, asbestos, calcium, sodium, pesticides, heavy metals, herbicides, viruses and bacteria like e-coli and many more.

It includes an additional sixth stage Alkaline Remineralization water filter, that restores minerals and produces a balanced alkalinity, which gives the water a more natural, fresh, and clear taste than regular 5-stage RO certified water.

This water filter has premium quality components that ensure customers’ reliability and low maintenance for the years to come. With easy, do it yourself installation that fits under a standard kitchen sink iSpring RCC7AK is the best NSF water filter that comes with all parts included, and organized step by step instructions and videos.

Cheapest: Brita SAFF

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Brita Faucet Mount System, Water Faucet Filtration System with Filter Change Reminder, Reduces Lead, Made Without BPA, Fits Standard Faucets Only, Elite, Chrome, Includes 1 Replacement Filter
  • Elite Brita faucet mount water filter attaches to your standard faucet making tap water healthier* and great-tasting; filtration system is easy to install, no tools required
  • Get great-tasting water without the waste of single use plastic bottles; by switching to Brita, you can save money and replace up to 1,800 single use plastic water bottles**** per year
  • Space efficient design with a choice of filtered or unfiltered water; Available in white and chrome color; Height 5.28"; Width 4.8"; Depth 2.26"; Weight .84 pounds
  • Reduce 99% of lead, chlorine (taste and odor), asbestos, particulates, Benzene, and more***; a status indicator lets you know when to replace the filter with an easy 1-click filter replacement
  • Replace every 100 gallons or approximately every 4 months to keep water tasting great*****; this tap water filter fits standard faucets only, does not fit pull-out or spray style faucets

Key Features: Very cheap; NSF Certified; high durability; high capacity

Price Range: $

We present to you one of the cheapest and easy-to-mount water filters – Brita Chrome On Tap Faucet Water Filtration System that filters out impurities for healthier, better-tasting water in a shiny chrome finish. Interested to know what kind of contaminants this water filter removes?

This basic faucet mount removes 99% of lead, reduces chlorine and asbestos contaminants that are found in tap water, also countless other heavy metals and other harsh chemicals. Not only does this water filter work effectively but it’s easy to use, and its space-saving design and small size allow it to be attached easily to the faucet without adding a bulky look on the sink.

One Brita water filter can provide up to 100 gallons of filtered tap water or as we say certified water and includes a built-in filter indicator to signal the need for replacement after approximately 100 gallons or 4 months. This certified NSF water filter is perfect for families and kitchens where meals are cooked and freshwater is needed.

Frizzlife FK99 Under Sink Water Filter System 

If you’re looking for an under counter, versatile, eco-friendly, NSF certified, high-capacity water filter system for your home, then this is the right option for you.

The Frizzlife under sink water filter system is a wide-spectrum under-the-sink NSF-certified water filter that uses the latest filtration technology to eliminate up to 99.9% of contaminants from water. This under-counter water filter system is durable and efficient in removing the build-up of metals like lead and chromium, and chlorine. 

A huge benefit of using the Frizzlife water filter is that it keeps your water clean and still maintains the beneficial minerals. The water filter is high capacity and can produce up to 10,000 gallons of water. Its auto-shut feature allows it to turn off while replacing the filter for maintenance. Maintenance is as easy as installation, and it is quite easy to mount.

This NSF certified filter has a coconut shell carbon filtration that kills germs and bacteria, and is not responsive to mold or bacteria growth. It has a rated flow at 2 GPM @ 60 psi. It is eco-friendly and guaranteed to last up to three years. 

Most Versatile: CuZn UC-200

Frizzlife FK99 Under Sink Water Filter System, NSF/ANSI 53&42 Certified, Remove 99.99% Chlorine, Lead, Bad Taste&Odor, Direct Connect, 0.5 Micron, Under Counter Drinking Water Filter
  • 【Superb Filtration Performance】Frizzlife under sink water filter incorporates advanced filtration technology that extrudes NSF 42&53 Certified filtration ingredients and coconut carbon into a 0.5-micron block filter. Wrapped with PP layer, the composite filter can effectively remove 99% of the harmful contaminants from water(including chlorine, lead, other heavy metals, VOCs, bad taste, and odor) while keeping beneficial minerals.
  • 【Sturdy & Strong】The full water filter system has passed 100,000 times of 600 psi water hammer test for system integrity and pressure resistance. Different from other flimsy systems on the market with plastic housing and fittings, the FK99 water filtration system under counter utilizes lead-free brass fittings. No crack or leakage concerns! The water filter head also uses the auto-shutoff design. You don’t need to shut off the water supply when replacing the filter.
  • 【Ultra-long Filter Life&Eco-Friendly】The inner filter of the undersink water filter system has an ultra-high filtration capacity at 10,000 gallons of water or a recommended replacement period of 12 months. For replacement, you only need to change the inner filter without throwing away the whole plastic housing cartridge. It saves a lot of waste and lowers the replacement cost. Search “PLC10” for the replacement filter. Rated flow at 2 GPM @ 60 psi. Enjoy fresh and clean water from your tap!
  • 【Easy DIY Installation】Compatible with US kitchen sink (3/8” NPT or 1/2”). The kitchen sink filter can be directly connected to your existing faucet. It is super easy to be installed within 5 min following step-by-step user manual and installation video. Thanks to the threaded copper fittings on the system, the water filter system manage to use only one provided hose to finish the connection. More ergonomic and easier installation but fewer leakage points!
  • 【Multiple-Usage】The water purification system can be installed in different places such as the kitchen, office, bathroom, and RV. No drilling hole is needed for an extra faucet. So it is also perfect for a rental apartment. The FK99 water filter can simultaneously serve both your sink and the refrigerator by using the ice maker connection kit IMC-2 (Asin#B07RBMLR26). With dedicated 24/7 customer service, the water purifier is guaranteed for 18 months at maximum. For cold water only.

Key Features: Under counter; NSF Certified; high capacity; made in USA

Price Range: $$

If you have aged water installation and old pipes then this water filter is the best choice that you can make in order to purify your tap water and get the best out of it, because It’s a wide-spectrum under the sink NSF certified water filter that is used for chlorine-treated tap water.

It has an incredible capacity (lifetime) with 5 years per filter, yes guys 5 years and it connects to your kitchen sink’s cold water line plus it is really easy to mount because you’ll only need an adjustable wrench.

The CuZn water filter is a 3 stage filtration system with a micro sediment membrane. Also, it has KDF-55 and Coconut Shell Carbon. The KDF-55 is a way to keep your water safe from harmful chemicals and metals found in your pipes, like lead, mercury, chromium, and other dissolved metals plus it also controls the build-up of bacteria.

Another really great thing is that this water filter purifies your water while it’s not removing all the healthy minerals and what it removes is a range of pollutants including herbicides, pesticides, algae, bad taste, molds, and others all because of the coconut shell carbon filtration that acts bacteriostatic and not responsive to mold or bacteria growth.

Value For Money: Epic Nano Water Filter Pitcher

Epic Water Filters Nano | Water Filter Pitchers for Drinking Water | 10 Cup | 150 Gallon Filter | Gravity Water Filter | Removes Virus, Bacteria, Chlorine | Water Purifier (Navy Blue)
  • Filtered Water Pitcher for Refrigerator: This large water filtration pitcher for refrigerator is easy to pour and refill. This space efficient pitcher fits perfectly on refrigerator shelves and is great for families. Height 10"; Width 6"; Length 10"; Weight: 2.2 pounds. This Nanofiber water purifier pitcher with filter will keep your family drinking filtered water for years to come. Rigorously tested against NSF/ANSI standards 42, 53, 401, P231, and P473
  • Well Water Filters: Virus Water Filter: Filter designed to remove virus, bacteria, cysts. Chlorine Water Filter: Tested to remove chlorine. Lead Water Filter: Tested to remove lead. Pfas Water Filter: Removes the Forever Chemical Pfoa Pfos Pfc. 1,4-Dioxane Water Filter: Tested for the removal of 1,4-Dioxane in drinking water. Haloacetic acids (Haas) Water Filter: Tested for the removal of Haloacetic acids. Microplastics Water Filter: Tested to remove microplastics
  • Water Filtration System: Proprietary American made nanofiber media remove 2000% more contaminants than the leading Water Filter Pitcher including Total Trihalomethanes, Chromium 6, Arsenic, Fluoride and much more. Proprietary Nanofiber tap water filter protects you and your family from contaminants that other filters miss. Smart filter media keeps healthy trace minerals like calcium and magnesium in your water, which a reverse osmosis system will strip out.
  • The Nano Pitcher also comes with a LED timer, which counts down from 90 days, integrated into the lid that reminds you when it is time to change the filter. Never again will you have to guess about your filter. Got well water? Boil Alerts? Then, this is the pitcher for you.
  • Water Purifier Pitcher with Filter: Each premium quality filter of this gravity water filter system produces 150 gallons of fresh, contaminant-free drinking water (lasting 4 times longer than the leading filtered water pitcher. Remove 99.999% of all tap water contaminants. Filters are 100% BPA-free, 100% Approved Food Grade Materials, 100% Recyclable, 100% Vegan. 0% Pretentious, Filtros de Agua Para la Cocina,Filtros de Agua, Purificador de Agua

Key Features: LED Filter timer; NSF Certified; 100% BPA Free; made in USA

Price Range: $

This Epic Water Filter is also designed to remove about 99% of all the water contaminants, the water filter is replaceable and tested to the highest industry standards. This NSF certified water filter has a lifespan of 3-4 months depends of your daily use and the quality of your tap water, so if your municipal water is full with contaminants, heavy metals and other pollutants the filter will try to work his job and try to keep your water clean and that will decrease the lifespan of your water filter.

Once you will start using the Epic pure water filter pitcher, within a couple of days you will notice a huge difference in the freshness within yourself and the level of energy that your body has.

So to wrap it up this water pitcher is like BRITA but on a higher and more hardcore level because it is used by preppers and survivalists and plus the BRITA filter supports 40 gallons of water while this water filter can filtrate through like 200 gallons of certified water. The filter elements are 100% BPA free and the filters themselves are 100% recyclable which means that over the lifetime of the water filter, you will save using 1500 plastic water bottles and we can say that that’s a definitive environmental impact.

AO Smith 2-Stage Under Sink Water Filter

AO Smith 2-Stage Under Sink Clean Water Faucet Filter - Carbon Block Drinking Water Filtration System - AO-US-200
  • Clean Water Straight From A Dedicated Faucet - Connects with included tee to your 3/8 inch threaded cold water supply line to an additional faucet included with the system. Only takes a few minutes. Includes tubing needed for installation - no plumber required.
  • Purifies Water & Reduces 99% of 78 Harmful Contaminants - Advanced filtration while leaving in all essential minerals. Reduces lead, mercury, asbestos, pesticies, pharmaceuticals, chlorine, chloramine & more. System will not reduce TDS.
  • Full System Certified To NSF/ANSI Standards 42, 43 and 401 - Product is WQA tested & certified to NSF performance standards, ensuring the structural integrity & quality of your entire system, not just the filtration media.
  • Long Lasting & Cost Effecient - No water is wasted and no harmful contaminants are added to your water during filtration. Filter lasts for 6 months/500 Gallons. $120 or less in annual maintenance cost.
  • Access To Filtered Water Whenever You Need It - System filters water at 0.5 gallons per minute. Perfect for families of 1 to 4.

The robust water filter by AO Smith comes in a compact size that suits every household. This filter is capable of reducing 99% of the harmful contaminants including as many as 77 known contaminants with its advanced filtration mechanism. This includes chlorine, asbestos, lead, mercury, chloramine, pharmaceuticals, and other contaminants.

The system is certified to NSF and ANSI standards 42, 43, and 401+P473. Besides, IAOMP independently tests each product to ensure the performance meets the standards of NSF. This ensures the quality and structural integrity of the overall system along with the filtration media.

The filter is highly efficient and requires less than $120 in annual maintenance. Each filter is capable of purifying around 500 gallons of water and lasts close to 6 months. With a filtration rate of 0.5 gallons of water per minute, it’s suitable for smaller families. 

The moderately high filtration rate guarantees instant water supply round-the-clock. If you’re looking for an affordable, yet efficient, water filter system then this one’s for you. 

Aquasana AQ-5200.62 2-Stage Under Sink Water Filter

Aquasana 2-Stage Under Sink Water Filter System - Kitchen Counter Claryum Filtration - Filters 99% Of Chlorine - Oil-Rubbed Bronze Faucet - AQ-5200.62
  • Instantly Transform Ordinary Tap Water Into Clean Extraordinary Water - Reduces up to 99% of 78 contaminants including chlorine, lead, pesticides, PFOA/PFOS, microplastics, and more while leaving healthy minerals so you can drink with confidence. This system will NOT reduce Total Dissolved Solids (TDS)
  • High Flow Rate - This system powers through a half-gallon of water every minute. No need to wait for clean water compared to traditional drip filters.
  • Cost Efficient & Long Lasting - The most economical filter on the market at less than 10 cents per gallon filtered. Lasts for 6 months or 500 gallons before a replacement filter is needed.
  • Claryum Filtration - Removes impurities while selectively retaining healthy minerals, including calcium, potassium and magnesium for the healthiest drinking water.
  • Easiest Filter Replacement - Replacements are engineered for ease. No need to disconnect hoses or water lines. Eco-friendly housing easily twists off for snappy replacement.

The water filter by Aquasana effectively eliminates most known contaminants including asbestos, lead, mercury, pesticides, pharmaceuticals, and herbicides. The zero-waste strategy of the manufacturers ensures that no water would be wasted during filtration. Also, the purification process doesn’t involve the addition of harmful chemicals to the water.

At 10 cents a gallon, it records a 12X capacity for the gravity pitcher allowing your family to enjoy cleaner water at a lower cost. Most importantly, the water filter retains healthy minerals like potassium, calcium, and magnesium. This gives you access to healthy, mineral-rich drinking water at an affordable cost. The brand also backs its product with a 1-year warranty. 

The all-metal faucet looks super stylish and can be customized to complement the kitchen décor. The installation is also very easy and doesn’t require an expert’s help. The system is certified to NSF standards 42, 53, 401 +P473 which ensures that the contaminants won’t leak back into your drinking water. 

Easy To Use: ZeroWater ZP-010

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ZeroWater 10-Cup Ready-Pour 5-Stage Water Filter Pitcher 0 TDS for Improved Tap Water Taste - IAPMO Certified to Reduce Lead, Chromium, and PFOA/PFOS
  • Filtered Water Pitcher: The 10 Cup 5-stage Water Filtration Pitcher suits your active lifestyle, with its space-saving design it is perfect fit for compact or small refrigerators. Change filter when included meter reads 006.
  • 5-Stage Filtration: Removes virtually all total dissolved solids (TDS) for the purest tasting water; Total Dissolved Solids are organic and inorganic materials, such as metals, minerals, salts, and ions dissolved in water.
  • IAPMO certified and BPA free: The filter is IAPMO certified to reduce PFOA/PFOS, lead, chromium and mercury. All material is BPA free
  • Including: 10-cup Water Pitcher, 1 ZeroWater 5-Stage Filter with Ion Exchange Technology and a Free TDS Meter
  • Eco-Friendly: Save up to 110 single-use plastic bottles per filter or up to 660 bottles a year while enjoying the purest tasting water

Key Features: Stylish; NSF Certified; compact design; super easy to use.

Price Range: $

At home, on the job or on the road as ZeroWater users are saying, this 5 stage filter purifies water in a unique way. It easily filters out 99% of the total dissolved solids.

They have maybe the best portable water filter that is reliable and easy to use. The 5-stage Zero Water filter is able to get more out of your water and this is possible due to the combination of uniquely structured filters and the special ion exchange resin.

For example, the pour through, gravity-fed filter certified by the NSF to reduce lead and other heavy metals, such as Chromium 3 and 6. This 10- cup pitcher features push and pour spout so you can fill your cup with one hand and on top of that you will know when it’s time to change your water filter as every pitcher comes with a water testing meter, which measures the total dissolved solids in your water that makes it one of the best NSF water filters that make certified water taste like natural spring water.

Filtered Pitcher: AquaGear 

Aquagear Water Filter Pitcher – Lead, Chlorine, PFOA/PFOS, Microplastics Filter, 10 Cup, 120 Gallon Filter Life - Filter Media Made in USA
  • Removes 20X more contaminants than a traditional pitcher. Third-party tested to filter lead, chlorine, microplastics, PFOA, PFOS, and more contaminants other filters miss.
  • Keeps good minerals in. Other filters strip out minerals. Aquagear targets nasty contaminants without removing healthy minerals like calcium and magnesium.
  • Last 3X longer. Each Aquagear filter lasts 120 gallons—three times longer than most standard filters.
  • Filter recycling included. Never throw another water filter in the trash again. We send you a postage-paid label so you can return your filter for recycling and keep it out of the landfill.
  • Filter Media Made in USA. The Aquagear filter media is made in an ISO 9000 facility.

Key Features: Above NSF 42 and NSF 53 standards; Advanced 5-stage filter; guaranteed for life; great reviews

Price Range: $$

The AquaGear Water Filter Pitcher is the above NSF standards 42 and 53 for chlorine reduction, lead reduction, and VOCs reduction but please be aware this product isn’t actually officially certified by WQA or NSF International, the two leading independent certifiers. NSF certified water filter, if you prefer the simplicity of a water pitcher style but want it certified an alternative would be the ZeroWater 10-Cup Round Water Filter. This style of filter requires no installation or prior experience to use – you simply fill it with tap water, keep it in your fridge, and enjoy clean, filtered drinking water all day long!

The AquaGear is NSF 53 certified AND NSF 42 certified, meaning that it meets two of the most important standards that NSF regulates. It’s tested for the effective removal of chlorine, chloramines, lead, fluoride, chromium 6, mercury and more. It uses an advanced 5-stage filter that’s effective in removing or reducing a huge range of contaminants.

This is also probably the most affordable NSF 53 water filter out there – although keep in mind the cost of replacement filters. Bottom line, this is a great product and one of the best NSF water filters out there. Click here to learn more about the AquaGear.


What Does NSF Certified Mean?

NSF International is a public health and safety organization that works to improve global human health. They do this primarily by testing and certifying various products. They are heavily involved in food safety testing, water filtration technology certification, and consumer product regulation.

In the context of water filters, NSF Certified means that the product has met or exceeded the NSF Standards for Water Treatment Systems. These are formal guidelines laid out by the NSF. Manufacturers of water filtration systems will send their products to NSF for testing in order to try and earn the NSF Certified seal.

NSF tests for things like:

  • Build quality and durability
  • Use of approved plastics that won’t leach into your water (i.e. no BPA plastics)
  • Verified manufacturer test results
  • Verified manufacturer claims and labels

So, in short, NSF Certified means that an independent, third-party organization has thoroughly tested the product and found it to meet certain guidelines. It’s a stamp of approval, and gives you some peace of mind knowing that the product has actually been evaluated by a reputable third party.

This helps set some of these products apart from the competition. All water filter manufacturers say that their products will remove X, Y and Z, but few of those claims have actually been verified by a reputable third party. When you get a water filter certified by NSF, you’ll know that industry experts that aren’t affiliated with the manufacturer have actually tested the product and confirmed its effectiveness.

 


What are the Different NSF Standards?

NSF uses a number of different standards to describe filters’ efficacy for various contaminants. Here’s what each standard means:

NSF/ANSI 42 – Filters meeting NSF 42 are certified to reduce aesthetic impurities, such as chlorine and unpleasant tastes/odors.

NSF/ANSI 53 – Filters meeting NSF 53 are certified to reduce one or more contaminants with a known health effect, according to the U.S. EPA. Examples include lead, giardia, VOCs, etc.

NSF/ANSI 44 – Products meeting NSF 44 are certified to help soften water by reducing deposits of magnesium and calcium.

NSF/ANSI 55 – Products meeting NSF 55 are certified to help inactivate viruses, bacteria and cysts through the use of ultraviolet light. This certification has two classes: class A can help kill bacteria and viruses, while class A can reduce non-disease causing bacteria.

NSF/ANSI 58 – Products meeting NSF 58 are certified to help reduce contaminants that are regulated by the EPA and Health Canada. Examples include lead. NSF 58 filters are usually reverse osmosis setups.

NSF/ANSI 401 – Products meeting NSF 401 are certified to help reduce one or more emerging contaminants, which refer to pharmaceuticals or chemicals that are potentially harmful, but are not yet regulated by the FDA or Health Canada.

There are many more NSF standards (full list here), but these are the most common and relevant for home water systems.

 


What About Other Certifications? WQA vs NSF and Others

The world of international standards and certifications is somewhat complex. Unless you’re directly involved in the industry, you don’t really need to concern yourself with too many of the nitty gritty details. Here’s the basic rundown:

NSF and other product testing/certification organizations such as WQA and others, are all essentially very similar. These are organizations that conduct testing on products from various industries.

All these organizations follow certain government regulations and standards, and are accredited by approved organizations. The two largest ones are American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and the Standards Council of Canada (SCC).

So, when comparing WQA vs NSF, there’s really not much of a difference. Both follow public-domain NSF/ANSI standards when conducting their tests.

 


Importance of Water Filtration

Taste – Generally speaking, filtered water simply tastes better than unfiltered tap water! Many contaminants can cause an off-putting taste, but some of the most common offenders are chlorine and iron. By using a filter, you can enjoy cleaner, fresher water – which may also inspire you to drink more and stay more hydrated!

Safety – There are some safety concerns associated with drinking unfiltered tap water. For instance, chlorine has been linked to an increased risk of cancer, while fluoride has even been linked to brain damage. Keep in mind that both chlorine and fluoride are routinely added to drinking water. Other contaminants, like lead and mercury, can cause even more grave health concerns especially from well water. Of course, the safety of your drinking water depends on where you live and other factors – but the bottom line is that drinking filtered water can help minimize the risk of certain health concerns associated with drinking water contaminants.

Peace of Mind – Knowing that you are drinking clean, safe and tasty water can provide significant peace of mind – an invaluable commodity. Even if your water tastes fine and is relatively clean, nothing beats knowing that what you’re drinking is safe and pure.

 


How We Chose 

NSF Certification Standard – NSF International has several different certification standards. Each means something slightly different, and refers to the specific contaminants that each filter is certified to remove. We picked filters that – at a minimum – satisfied standards 42 and 53. You can learn more about NSF standards here.

Reviews – Beyond the seal of approval from NSF, we also paid close attention to what everyday people thought of these products. Reading third party NSF water filter reviews allowed us to get a broader data set for each product’s effectiveness and durability.

Value – We love helping our readers drink cleaner water – particularly when they don’t have to spend much to do so! We focused on finding excellent products at reasonable prices, that offered great value overall.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are expensive NSF-certified water filters the best? 

No, expensive NSF-certified water filters are not the only kind of water filters you can get at top quality. Inexpensive filters can be just as good for certain situations. For example, the Culligan FM-15A is budget-friendly and suitable for those who want simplicity. Although, an expensive sink filter tends to have more features, like the Aquasana OptimumH2O. If you need an easy-to-manage filter for clean water, there are budget-friendly options you can choose. 

What are the top features to look for in a water filter? 

The most important feature to look for is if the water filter has all the necessary certifications, which will ensure it passes all the safety standards to eliminate common contaminants. Another feature a water filter should have is durability. The price, installation, and maintenance of a sink filter can get expensive – it would not be good if your water filter didn’t last a long time, especially after breaking the bank. Also, the product quality will determine its longevity. 

Along with your filter having a long lifespan, you should check the warranty period on the product. Usually, top-quality filters will have a longer warranty period compared to others. Also, check for simplicity. It should be easy to install over the kitchen faucet. It’s easier to maintain a filter with a simple design. 

What’s the best NSF-certified water filter for households?

Water filters like the Aquasana AQ-5200.62, the AO Smith, and the Aquasana OptimumH20, which are NSF-certified, are best for households. All homes require cooking water that has been properly filtered to eliminate contamination, so an under-sink water filter works best. Families use a lot of water, so a filter that can work fast and filter a large amount of water is necessary. 

Where can I use NSF water filters? 

You can use NSF water filters anywhere there’s running water and a tap. Most brands sell separate filters for home and commercial use, while others are versatile. Make sure you pay attention to the labeling before buying. 

How often should I change my water filter?

How often you should change your water filter depends on the environment you’re using it in. For households, changing your filter every year is best, while in a commercial environment, you should change them 2-3 times a year. You need to maintain your filter constantly, and when you notice it isn’t working as efficiently as before, you should change it immediately. 

Are NSF filters a good investment?

Yes, NSF filters are a good investment in the long run. The initial price might be discouraging but buying one will assure you that your household is safe from any potential risk of contaminated water. 

Where can I buy NSF filters? 

You can buy NSF filters on Amazon or the website of the manufacturer. There are also other stores (online and physically) where you can buy NSF filters. The most important thing is to make sure the place you purchase it from is reputable, so you don’t get sold a knockoff.

Austin is the lead water consultant and blogger for Water Filter Data. With 10 years of experience in the water quality industry, Austin can instantly pinpoint the cure and the cause for the water pollutant.