11 Types Of Water Filter In The Market

Chances are you probably have done some research on various types of water filters. It is quite confusing which type should you choose right?

Sometimes you will be caught out with the low initial cost followed by a hefty price tag on the maintenance fees or running cost.

In this post, we will talk about 11 different types of water filter that is available on the market with detail explanation.

Sink With Water

3 Water Filter Categories

All of the water filters on the market can be categorized into 3 different categories based on their functionality.

iSpring Reverse Osmosis System

Drinking Water Filter

The water purifier was first introduced to solve contamination in drinking water. Drinking water has a direct impact on our health because it flows in us.

If you have a limited budget for buying a water treatment system, your priority should be on drinking water filters.

Remember this phrase, “Whatever is not filtered by the system, is filtered by you.” 

Whole House Water Filter

Your next priority should be making sure that all the water entering your house is free from pollutants.

The reason that this is the second priority is that the water that its filter will not consume into our bodies.

Most people install this filter firstly to remove contaminants and secondly to remove hard water.

Hard water will have a serious impact on the pipe and home appliances as it will clog the internal piping of your house and those devices.

This purifier is normally installed at the inlet of the pipe outside of the house or inside the garage to prevent

Other Categories

For anything that is not related to the two categories above, we include it in the other categories. It includes shower filters and refrigerator filters.

The two of them are not that important as compared to both drinking and whole-house water filters. But it is still a nice-to-have tool if you can afford it.

11 Types Of Water Filters

Let’s take a look at all 11 types of water filter that is available in the market.

1. Filtered Water Bottle

Kor Nava Bottle Picture

Category: Drinking water filter
 Small, handy, stylish, easy to use
Filter Contaminants: Usually chlorine taste and smell.
Filter Capacity: Approximately 40 Gallons for a single cartridge
Price Range: $10 – $50
Cost Per Gallon: $0.10 – $0.80 per gallon

As written in the title, it is a water bottle that comes with filtration capability.

It is suitable for leisure outdoor activities such as running, indoor sports or a day to day commutes bottles.

It is only suitable for filtering urban water sources which often have a strong taste and smell of chlorine.

NOTE: It is not suitable for extreme outdoor activities such as hiking, camping, and survival trips as it doesn’t remove bacteria.

Check out our water filter bottle guide for more information.

2. Backpacking Filter

Katadyn Hiker Pro Filter

Category: Drinking water filter
 Compact, light, handy, and great for handling bacteria.
Filter Contaminants: Heavy metals, viruses, E Coli, protozoa
Filter Capacity: up to 100,000 gallons
Price Range: $30 – $100
Cost Per Gallon: $0.10 – $0.30

Backpacking filter is specialized in providing clean filtration while you are in extreme outdoor activities such as camping and hiking.

It is one of the portable filtration systems which removes various bacteria and viruses available in lakes and streams.

The filtered water bottle is not as good as the backpacking filters as they have more comprehensive filters.

There is a straw-type filter which you can drink the water directly from the water source and a pumped-type filter which filters water from one end of the tube to the other end with a filter in between.

3. Faucet Mounted Filter

Pur PFM400H Filter

Category: Drinking water filter
 Compact, easy to install, no tubing attached, filter on the go
Filter Contaminants: Chlorine taste and smell, some will remove organic contaminants such as lead mercury.
Filter Capacity: Approximately 40 – 200 gallons for a single cartridge
Price Range: $20 – $50
Yearly Replacement Cost: $10 – $80

The faucet water filters are one of the compacts yet a great piece of invention.

Imagine that when the time for you to unbox the filter is the time that you use to install it on your faucet. Twist and turn!

No tubing and drilling is needed for installation. Perfect for people who are renting homes.

Some of them can filter as fine as 0.5 microns and reduce contaminants such as lead, mercury, arsenic and other heavy metals.

Check out our best faucet water filter guide now for more information on the top faucet filters that is available in the market.

4. Water Pitcher & Dispenser

Brita 12 Cup Stream Filter

Category: Drinking water filter
 Pre-filled water jugs, portable and small, some with a filter-on-the-go feature, alkaline remineralization
Filter Contaminants: Chlorine taste and smell, mercury, lead and heavy metals
Filter Capacity: Approximately 40-150 gallons for a single cartridge
Price Range: $20 – $70
Yearly Replacement Cost: $30 – $200

Talking about water pitchers, it is widely used among college students and young working adults that are renting rooms.

I know! It is a great jug that can perform filtration and at the same time refrigerate it.

The size and portability of the pitcher make it easy to bring along and store in the fridge without taking up a lot of space.

Most of the pitchers do remove chlorine taste and smell, but only a handful of them have the capability to remove other contaminants such as lead, mercury, fluoride and heavy metals.

Well, I could say that it is one of the cheapest alkaline remineralization filters among all drinking water filters. (Only on some pitchers)

It is cool that you don’t need to spend thousands of dollars getting a water ionizer to produce tasty alkaline water.

We would recommend the Aquagear water pitcher if you decided to get one. It removes a wide range of contaminants which is pretty impressive. Alternatively, you can read our Brita filter vs PUR comparison guide for budget choice.

To increase the pH of water without breaking the bank, check out our best alkaline water pitcher guide,

5. Countertop Water Filter

Home Master TMJRF2 Counter Top Water Filter

Category: Drinking water filter
 Portable, multi-stage filtration
Filter Contaminants: Chlorine, fluoride, heavy metals.
Filter Capacity: 3 to 12 months
Price Range: $60 – $300
Yearly Replacement Cost: $50 – $120

This type of water filter is considered an entry model that will be considered by homeowners. There are some models which are attached to the faucet and some with gravity-fed filters (similar to dispenser filters) .

Well, tenants should also consider it due to its flexibility and portability of this system.

You can literally remove the faucet adaptor and bring it over to your new house easily and effortlessly.

It removes way more filters as compared to the pitcher, faucet, and filter bottles.

One of our favorites is the portable reverse osmosis system by APEC. It removes 99% of the contaminants leaving clean filtered water.

Discover our guide on the best countertop water filter that we suggested to look for the model that is most suitable for your home!

6. Under Sink Water Filter

Aquasana OptimH2O Undersink Installation

Category: Drinking water filter
 Excellent filtration, bulky but comprehensive multi-stage system
Filter Contaminants: Capable of removing up to 99% of contaminants.
Filter Capacity: 6-12 months
Price Range: $150 – $450
Yearly Replacement Cost: $50 – $150

If you are a homeowner, you need to invest in this type of water filter. Why?

Under-sink water filters are more comprehensive and effective in removing contaminants from drinking water.

It comes with different filtration techniques, but generally, a reverse osmosis water filter is always our number 1 recommendation for under-sink filters.

Reverse osmosis filters remove up to 99% of contaminants. The semipermeable membrane is normally 0.0001 microns which is the best way to prevent contaminants from entering to filtered water.

In addition, some of the basic RO machines have an affordable replacement cost. Some of them are even cheaper than the replacement cost for the water pitcher.

Due to the general perception that it is huge in size, it can be packed with 7 individual filters in one system.

Want to find out more about under-sink water filters, check out our best under sink water filter guide where we go through a thorough review of 11 under-sink water filters.

7. Water Ionizer


Category: Drinking water filter
 Expensive, adjustable alkaline water filter
Filter Contaminants: Basic filtration and
Filter Capacity: One year
Price Range: $650 – $5000
Yearly Replacement Cost: $50 – $200

A water ionizer is known for using the electrolysis process to alter the pH of the filtered water.

It can change the pH to either acidic or alkaline depending on the pH you set on the machine.

Generally, a water ionizer will have a pre-filter, normally carbon filters to perform the usual contaminant removal process before supplying the water to the water ionizer.

Besides pH, oxidation-reduction potential (ORP) is one of the common measurements for the quality of water, i.e reducing agent.

A low pH will be on positive ORP which contains some oxidizing substances, while a high pH will have a negative ORP will consist of anti-oxidant substances.

However, these machines are quite expensive. Most of them are selling in the thousand range because they are in a multi-level marketing (MLM).

The profit margins are high so that they can pay their sales personnel a hefty commission.

Check out the latest guide on water ionizers.

8. Whole House Filtration


Category: Whole House Water Filter
 Bulky, long-lasting, high-capacity filter.
Filter Contaminants: Sediments, chlorine, heavy metals, microorganism.
Filter Capacity: 1-10 years
Price Range: $40-$2000
Yearly Replacement Cost: $20 – $260

Outdoor filtration systems normally happen at the beginning of the pipe going into your house.

There are normally 3 different stages to complete the system. This includes:

  • Sediment Pre-Filters: Removes large particles and sediments such as rust, sand, and dust.
  • Carbon Filters: Removes chlorine, pesticide, and some organic materials.
  • Additional Stage: Post filters or UV lamps which kill bacteria and viruses in the water.

Depending on your water conditions, you can decide to opt out the carbon filters and additional filters if sediments and particles are your main concern.

One of our recommended sediment filters is the Dupont Heavy Duty filter. It can couple with the carbon filter which only costs you less than $100.

Otherwise, you can go for our best pick, the Home Master Series. They are considered one of the best whole house water filters in the market.

9. Water Softener

Aquasana Rhino and Simplysoft.

Category: Whole House Water Filter
 No maintenance is required for unsalted softener
Filter Contaminants: Hard water minerals, calcium, magnesium
Filter Capacity: 6-10 years
Price Range: $700 – $2000
Yearly Replacement Cost: $150 – $300

From the title of it, you should know what this filter is doing. This is mainly for people who are having very serious hard water.

Hard water creates problems such as pipe clogging, damage to home appliances, water scales and hair damage.

While not everyone will need this filter, it is better to install it to ensure your house is protected from problems in the long run.

Water softener comes in two different types, salted and unsalted softeners.

Salted softeners required frequent replacement of salt in order to ensure that the hard water is dissolved. Whereas unsalted softener uses a natural softener media to break the binding of calcium and magnesium molecules into smaller pieces.

Check out our recommended whole house water softener in this guide.

10. Shower Water Filter

AquaBliss Shower Water Filter with Shower Head

Category: Others
 Soften hard water, added vitamin C.
Filter Contaminants: Chlorine, calcium, magnesium and heavy metals
Filter Capacity: 6-12 months
Price Range: $20 – $60
Yearly Replacement Cost: $30 to $50

It is self-explanatory in the name. This type of water filter is meant for showering.

It comes in two different types, one is pure filtration while another one comes with a showerhead.

Shower water filters are mainly created to remove contaminants as well as add beneficial minerals such as Vitamin C which can nourish our skin and hair.

Not all shower filters remove heavy metals, but most of them are able to filter chlorine, calcium, and magnesium which translate to soft water.

One of our recommendations is the AquaBliss shower filter. It has a great filtration system that removes chlorine, heavy metals, and softens the water.

Check out the latest best shower filter.

11. Refrigerator Filter

Woder Fridge Water Filter

Category: Others
 Single canister filtration.
Filter Contaminants: Mainly chlorine and sediments, but some can filter up to 99% contaminants.
Filter Capacity: 500 to 10000 gallons.
Price Range: $20 – $100

As technology became more advanced, refrigerators now are connected to a water source for the ice maker and automated chilled water.

This type of water filter is designed to protect you from dirty water while you enjoying your ice-cold drink.

The majority of them just primarily remove chlorine and sediments, there are some great ones that will remove heavy metals, the hardness of water, and even mercury.

Check out our top recommended refrigerator water filter.


As you can see that there is a trend where filters that are expensive on initial investment are often the same or cheaper to maintain compared to others.

In addition, you will enjoy full coverage of contaminant removal if you invest in a better filtration system.

I hope this clears your doubt about all the types of filtration systems available in the market. Leave a comment below if you have any questions.