The best water filter jugs for 2020 – CNET


A filtered jug is a quick and convenient way to improve the quality and taste of your drinking water. Fill the jug with water from your tap and put it in the fridge while the water flows through the filter into the main tank. Some jugs only take about 30 seconds to filter water, while others take a few minutes.

Regardless, a good filtered jug will help remove some of the contaminants in your normal tap water in a relatively short amount of time. I tested seven top-quality jugs priced between $ 17 and $ 75. Everyone has slightly different specifications, but they all promise one thing: to make your drinking water better. Curious about the winner? Spoiler: It’s not Brita.

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The $ 35 ZeroWater ZP-010 is by far the best filtered water jug ​​in the group. It is affordable, robust and, in addition to the standard spout, has a large can capacity of 10 cups and a tap. Your purchase comes with a 2-pack replacement filter and a TDS (Total Dissolved Solids) water quality tester (I used a different TDS meter in my performance tests; I’ll talk more about the test method in a moment).

The ZP-010 removed most TDS from all seven jugs (a whopping 93%), making it by far our top performer. A two-pack replacement filter costs $ 30 and each is said to hold up to 40 gallons. Brita and Pur, on the other hand, sell each of their filters for just $ 7 – and claim to have the same filter life of 40 gallons. That said, the ZP-010 removed TDS much more effectively and the filter itself is much larger than any of the others I’ve tested.

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At $ 17, the Pur PPT700W Basic is the cheapest of the seven jugs, making it the best budget option – and a jar of solid filtered water overall.

With a lower water capacity of 7 cups and smaller dimensions, the PPT700W Basic is also a good choice if you have little space in the refrigerator. It comes with a filter that should last up to two months – or 40 gallons of water. Replacement filters cost $ 7 each.

It didn’t go as well as the ZeroWater model, but it still removed almost 15% of the TDS in my tap water.

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I’ll talk a little more about alkaline water in my test section below, but in short, the pH values ​​(measurements of how acidic or basic your water is) range from 0 to 14; 7 is a neutral reading.

Despite conflicting research on the subject, some people attribute health benefits to more basic (or more alkaline) water. For this reason, selected companies manufacture water jugs with filters that actually add nutrients as your tap water passes through.

The $ 70 Seychelle pH20 jug I tested measured my tap water from an already basic level of 8.39 to 10.1, the largest increase among the three alkaline jugs in my test group. This jug uses two filters at the same time, but they are said to hold up to 200 gallons. A double pack of replacement filters costs $ 50.

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Another alkaline jug, the $ 53 Invigorated Water pH Vitality, has also done a good job increasing the pH of my tap water from 8.61 to 9.36. It’s also the only non-plastic model I’ve tested of the seven jugs. The pitcher with revitalized water is made of stainless steel and wood and has a capacity of 8 cups.

It’s not a good option if you’re not interested in alkaline water, but the attractive design and lack of plastic clearly speak for themselves. Instead of a standard filter, this jug also has a unique filter bag made up of tiny spheres that are designed to remove contaminants, increase pH and add minerals.

A filter bag costs $ 18 and is said to hold up to 105 gallons.

Talking pitcher

Here is a list of the jugs I’ve tested:

  • Brita 0B58
  • Brita 0B56
  • Clearly filtered
  • Revitalized water pH pH vitality
  • Pur PPT700W
  • Seychelle pH20
  • ZeroWater ZP-010

And here is a more detailed overview of each model and its main specifications:

The specifications

Brita 0B58

Brita 0B56

Clearly filtered

Revitalized water pH pH vitality

Pur PPT700W

Seychelle pH20

ZeroWater ZP-010


$ 30

$ 35

$ 75

$ 53

$ 17

$ 70

$ 35

Estimated filter life (in gallons)








Replacement filter price

$ 17

$ 7

$ 50

$ 18

$ 7

$ 50 (two packs)

$ 30 (two packs)





Stainless steel

white and blue

white and blue


Capacity (in cups)








Dimensions (HxWxD)

10.22 x 10.29 x 5.82

9.65 x 9.65 x 4.57

10.25 x 11.25 x 5

11.73 x 6.1 x 4.8

11.3 x 10.9 x 4.8

10.25 x 11.5 x 5.5

11 x 11.63 x 5.93

Weight in pounds)








An important thing to consider in this table is the estimated life of each jug filter in relation to its cost. The Brita 0B56, Pur PPT700W and ZeroWater ZP-010 all have a lower estimated filter life of up to 40 gallons. While the Brita and Pur models each cost only $ 7, the ZeroWater filters each cost $ 15 (but are sold in a double pack for $ 30).

Pitcher filter

Can you see the ZeroWater filter? It’s the one on the far right.

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As you can see in the picture above, the ZeroWater filter on the far right is massive compared to the others. Of course, this doesn’t automatically lead to better performance, but in this case the ZeroWater filter has massively outperformed the others. ZeroWater also claims that it has a five-stage filter that is supposed to remove particles better while preventing mold from growing over time.

(Note that the filter life depends on the quality of your tap water and essentially how much your filter has to “work” to remove contaminants.)

How we test

To test these filtered water jugs, I washed everyone with mild soap and water – and followed the manufacturer’s instructions to soak, rinse, or otherwise prepare each filter for use. Then I filled a marked mason jar with 16 ounces of tap water and used an Orapxi water quality tester to measure and record the pH and TDS present.

While the results of my tap water varied slightly each time I filled a fresh glass with 16 ounces, the pH of my tap water was always between 8.15 and 8.61 and the TDS was always between 149 and 161 ppm or parts per million. (Read here and here more about TDS or total dissolved solids.)

Then I poured all 16 ounces into a jug, waited for all of the water to be filtered, poured it into a new glass, and took the readings again. With non-alkaline jugs, both pH and TDS can be expected to drop, as impurities and other minerals are removed from the water. I repeated these steps three times in total on each of the seven jugs.


I used this Oraxpi water quality tester to measure pH and TDS.

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For the three alkaline jugs I tested – the clear filtered, revitalized water pH for vitality and the Seychelles pH 20 – the pH and TDS actually increased because they are supposed to add minerals to your water.

TDS measuring devices are not high enough to be decrypted Which Impurities, nutrients and other minerals that each filter removes (or adds in the case of alkaline jugs). For this reason, measuring TDS as an indicator of water quality alone has some limitations. In general, however, we would like to see a decrease in TDS for a standard jug of filtered water. Examples of the most frequently dissolved solids are, according to the US Geological Survey, “calcium, magnesium, sodium, potassium, bicarbonate, sulfate, chloride, nitrate and silicon dioxide”.

Here is a table of my test results. The data represent an average of three test runs for each filter jug.

Test results

pH (% change; negative reflects a decrease in pH)

TDS (% change; negative reflects a decrease in TDS)

Brita 0B58



Brita 0B56



Clearly filtered



Revitalized water pH pH vitality



Pur PPT700W



Seychelle pH20



ZeroWater ZP-010



With the ZeroWater ZP-010, the total amount of solids dissolved in my tap water was reduced by an astonishing 93% from an average initial TDS of 159 ppm to just 11 ppm. The Brita 0B58 Lake Pitcher took second place with a 26% reduction in TDS. As expected, the pH vitality of clearly filtered, revitalized water and the pH of Seychelle20 showed an increase in pH and TDS.

The taste was a little more difficult to measure, but each jar helped reduce the light metallic taste of my tap water. Not surprisingly, the ZeroWater model tasted best for me with no metallic taste or smell.

Overall, the ZeroWater ZP-010 made my job pretty easy – it completely dominated in terms of TDS removal and also happened to have the most robust design with the addition of a faucet. But there are other good options too – the Pur PPT700W is a great, affordable jug that also saves space with its sleek design. The Seychelle pH20 is the best pitcher if you want alkaline water – and the revitalized water pH is a solid option if you want to avoid plastic (and want alkaline water).

An important aspect for me was how heavily filtered water jugs can vary, both in terms of performance and in terms of their key function, as in the case of alkaline jugs. As long as you identify your needs before buying, you need to find the right filtered water jug ​​for you.