Big Berkey Vs Brita Water Filter, Which Is Better?

You have finally decided to purify your drinking water at home. Or you want to replace an existing water purification system. However, you can’t decide on the water filter system. YouYuou wonder which unit has the best water purification and filtering capability. You are stuck on the question: Which is the better water filter: Brita or Berkey?

You’re at the right place!

Berkey and Brita water filters get rid of contaminants from your drinking water. The two brands produce better-tasting water free from sediments, odor, and hardness.

Brita vs Berkey

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Big Berkey Filter

Berkey is the outright winner in the Berkey vs Brita contest, with a removal rate of 99.999% of viruses and 99.999999% of bacteria and pathogens. In addition to ultrafiltration, Berkey effectively removes fluoride, arsenic, and other harmful chemicals from water. The stainless steel is durable and requires low maintenance too.

Though pricey, Berkey filters are known for their loftier designs, large capacities, and long-life filters. Comparingly, Brita filters are competitively cheaper, low capacity, slower, and require filter replacements regularly.

Both Brita and Berky are superior quality filters, but the former is portable and less expensive. The latter has not only a longer lifespan but also removes more impurities from your drinking water. But, you’ll have to part with more money. So, if you are looking for a quick filter that fits your budget, take the pitcher. But, if you’re after a high-end quality filter that stands the test of time, the latter wins!

Let’s dive into the finer details of each of these filters to compare them objectively!

Who Are Berkey and Brita Water Filter?

Brita water filter unboxed on a white surface

These water filters by the Colorado-based New Millennium Concepts Ltd, Berkey, are ideal water filter systems for purifying drinking water worldwide. In a market battleground with so many water filters, the Berkey filters stand out as the most durable and long-lasting products.

Cost-wise, they require a deeper pocket, but their sleek design and filter capacity makes them win the contest. And, reviews rate it as the most popular countertop water filter system.

Brita filter comes in the form of a small pitcher. The portability feature makes the filter outstanding as you can use them outdoors and during travels. Cost-wise, the filters are affordable but require regular replacement. Check out our full Brita Pitcher review for more details about the water filtration systems.

To test the difference, we will be comparing the filters to reveal their filter quality, lifespan, maximum filtering capacity, and other special features.

Big Berkey Vs Brita Filters Comparison Table

Are you in a hurry? Here’s a summary table comparing different features of the pitcher and water filtering systems?

Image PRODUCT/ Features Rating  
WinnerBerkey Filters	Big Berkey Filters Filter Quality: Removes 203 contaminants, including 99.9% of pathogenic bacteria, hazardous contaminants like chlorine, and heavy metals. It also removes arsenic, fluoride, and petroleum impurities, and other common contaminants.
Filter lifespan: 6000 Gallons
Annual maintenance costs: $20

Capacity and flow rate: Up to 2.25 gallons
Warranty: 6 months
Brita Filters Brita FiltersFilter Quality: Removes 5 contaminants including chlorine, reduce heavy metals, pesticides, and bad odor, among other contaminants.
Filter Lifespan: 40 gallons, or 60 days
Annual maintenance costs: Up to $20 per year

Capacity and flow rate: 10 Cups
Warranty: 90 days

Key Features of Berkey And Brita

What Contaminants Does The Filter Remove?

When looking for a filter, one of the prominent features you will get into detail is the contaminants it removes. The two are incomparable when it comes to filtering impurities.

Berkey: “The filter removes 99.9% of pathogens, including viruses and bacteria. Other than the pathogens, the model gets rid of other impurities like;

  • Lead
  • Mercury
  • Volatile Organic compounds and solvents
  • Remove fluoride – 95%
  • Coloring matter”

Brita Water filter: “With Brita water filter system, you will sift through several contaminants, including;

  • Certain pharmaceutical contaminants (reduces the percentages)
  • Fluoride
  • Reduces chlorine taste and color

Winner: Berkey Filters

When it comes to this water filter, its filtering capabilities are varied. It removes germs and gets rid of most contaminants in tap water.

On the other hand, Brita reduces harmful substances such as hard metal and chemicals from the drinking water. However, it does not remove all pathogens, including cysts, bacteria, fungi, and viruses.

The water system will turn your impure tap water into fresh drinking water. It will also protect you and your loved ones from contaminated water.

Designs And Available Models

Depending on the brand, water filter designs and models vary. Let’s now compare the Brita with Berkey and see what designs and models are available for the contest.

Berkey Water filter: “ The Berkey system has several models of water filters available in the market. These depend on their capacities, the number of filters, and flow rate, among other factors. The available designs include;

  • Crown
  • Royal
  • Big
  • Light
  • Ravel

Brita: “Like Berkey filters, the Brita brand has several filters, including Aluna, Marella, Elemaris, Fjord, and Maxtra.”

Winner: Berkey and Brita

When it comes to the winning designs and models, both the units share the spoils. Brita has sleek designs that fit on your fridge door.

Likewise, Berkey designs countertop models that give you lots of clean drinking water for everyone at home.

The Flow Rate Or Capacity

Water filter designs and models depend on flow rate per hour, filters, and the holding capacity. Here are the available models:

The Black Berkey Purification Elements are bigger than the largest Brita Pitcher filters. The unit also holds more water in its upper chamber and the lower chamber.

ModelHolding Capacity (gallons)Number of filtersFlow rate per hour (gallons)
Crown Berkey filtersSix gallons616.5
Royal Berkey filters3.2548.0
Berkey Light2.7547.5
Big Berkey water filters2.2547.0
Ravel Berkey water filters1.522.75

Like the Berkey water filter system, this German brand is not lagging and comes in multiple pitcher sizes. It has got its designs and sizes, all of which can fit nicely on your fridge door.

ModelHolding capacity (Gallons)Flow rate per hour(Gallons)
Brita Marella0.920.63
Brita Aluna0.920.63
Brita Elemaris0.920.58
Brita Fjord2.60.4

Winner: Berkey Filter

Black Berkey filters models’ flow rate per hour ranges from 1.5 to 6.0 gallons, while the Brita models range from 0.4 to 0.6 gallons. A large capacity filter is excellent, especially when you have several guests in the house. With Brita models, the limited holding capacity is an inconvenience. That alone makes the Berkey water filter system the winner.

Certification and Compliance to Standards

Independent organizations are entrusted to conduct rigorous tests on tap water filter systems and give certifications. The certifications depend on the country where you live. The body in charge of certifying water filters in the U.S is the Water Quality Association (WQA).

WQA tests the integrity of the materials used to make the filter, its safety, and contaminants reduction or removal. The body then awards NSF certification to the manufacturers. Many countries globally accept NSF certifications.

In addition, WQA makes sure that the clean water filter systems manufacturers meet NSF/ANSI Standards 42 and 53. Let’s compare the two filters and reveal their certifications:

Berkey Water Filter

Berkey water filters do not meet the NSF certification standards. The bitter truth is that Berkeys filters may be high quality and can filter up to 99% contaminants, but they have no relevant certifications, especially in California. Though the manufacturer claims to exceed the required NSI-53, that remains a subject of discussion.

Brita water filter

All Brita water filter systems have the NSF certification from the corporations. According to NSF, the filters meet the NSF-53 and are therefore certified as safe for use. In addition, they reduce impurities such as lead, chlorine content, and pharmaceutical contaminants.

Winner: Brita

Brita wins this contest by the fact that it is certified by water regulation bodies in the country. Consumers are cautious nowadays regarding the type of appliances they use at home, a water filter.

When it comes to drinking water, all the users want is a trusted and certified brand that guarantees safety. Certainly, there’s a solid reason Brita features as a top-quality water filter pitcher in our review.

Filter Lifespan And Annual Maintenance Cost 

Getting a water filter requires cost consideration and the lifespan of the appliance. While the initial acquisition costs matter, maintenance costs may pile up and exceed your budget.

Some filters are cost-effective while buying, but they do not last long. Others are dear, but they last many years. So let’s collate between Berkey and Brita then see their lifespan and maintenance costs annually.

Berkey water filter

Rated 4.3 stars in our comprehensive Big Berkey review, is most celebrated for its speedy filtration process, filter longevity, and its filter capacity at a go. With up to half gallons holding capacity and 16.5 flow rate per hour, this is one of the largest and most effective kitchen countertop filters around.

Berkey water filter also claims to filter all contaminants from your water, including color and heavy metal. All these come with cost implications. Berkey is a dear filter. Cost-wise, the filter requires a deeper reach into your pocket. It is tenfold more expensive than Brita and other regular brands.

While prices differ depending on features like the holding capacity and flow rate per hour, Berkey water filters come to you with a filter that stays intact for 11 years. You will not require replacements, meaning you will filter thousands of gallons before you order for another. Unless the filter breaks down (this is rare), there are no annual maintenance costs for the Big Berkey filter system.

Brita Water Pitcher

Brita has very pocket-friendly water filters. In addition, the cost is tenfold less than Berkey water filters. That is to say, if Berkey is selling their water filters at $360, Brita will sell at $36. Sadly, Brita requires filter replacements every six to eight weeks, depending on the impurities in the water.

The more the impurities, the more frequent you will change the filter. Brita filters have a short lifespan. The water filter replacement cost is low since you only do it once, twice, or thrice depending on the water impurities.

Winner: Berkey Filter

If handled with a lot of care, black Berkey filters have no annual maintenance costs. Once you purchase the filter, you will replace it after a decade. That pulls the costs to zero.

Brita is cheap, but the filter replacements up to three times a year surpass Berkey’s costs by far. It is also an inconvenience to walk around looking for water filters every other month.


The most unfortunate thing about these two water filters is that they lack a warranty. Both Berkey and Brita do not give written guarantees to their purchaser.

Furthermore, they do not promise to repair or replace the filter in case of breakdowns. Therefore, warranties are essential aspects of taking care of the manufacturer’s fault over a specified time.

Winner: none

What if you buy the appliance and the filter begins to leak on day one? You have to go ahead and purchase another filter or incur repair costs. Sadly, there is no provision for repair replacement of the appliance at the manufacturer’s expense.

Stand Out Features

Berkey’s Water Filtering Capability

The reason why you are shopping for a water filter is to remove impurities from your drinking water. If a filter will not remove a wide range of impurities, it is not worth any coin from your pocket. The Black Berkey filter removes a list of contaminants, including 99.99999% of all pathogens found in water, plus heavy metals, and chlorine.

Brita filters will only reduce pollutants on the flip side, meaning that your drinking water will not be 100% free from pathogens, heavy metals, and harmful chemicals. Lower concentrations of toxins pile up in the body and cause harm, just like high concentrations.

The difference is the timeline that the toxins will take to damage your body severely. Therefore, the filtering capability must be an essential feature when choosing between Berkey and Brita water filters.

How berkey water filter looks when detached

Which Filtered Water Is Cleaner? Berkey Vs Brita Pitcher

Berkey and Brita are excellent water filters that take care of your regular drinking water efficiently. However, as discussed in this guide, your choice depends on several factors: filtering elements, cost, lifespan, and others.

Use Black Berkey Filters if
+ The budget allows.
+ You want to get rid of 99.999% of contaminants from your regular drinking water. That’s far above the detectable limits!
+ You want a large capacity filter.
+ Want a filter that will last for 11 years without replacement.
+ You want to upgrade the ordinary UltraMax filtered water dispenser.
Use Brita Filters if
+ You want an economy filter.
+ The filter fits on your fridge’s door.
+ You have a small family unit.
+ You want to upgrade the ordinary dispenser filter.

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