Clean Water Hacks ® - May 19 - 13 min read
5 Best Whole House Water Filters for Well Water : Reviews & Buying Guide
Updated: August 20, 2021
The whole house water filtration systems seem to have taken everyone by storm, and for the right reasons. The increasing popularity of whole house water filters comes from their ability to draw out commonly found impurities from well water and provide high-quality water for consumption and daily use. We all know that a myriad of contaminants and excess minerals present in well water make it unsafe and hazardous to human health in its natural form. Therefore, you need to process it properly to eliminate these elements. This is where a water filtration system can come in handy. This article will serve as your guide to the best whole house water filtration systems for well water to opt from.
So, let’s cut to the chase - see below for best well water filter reviews:
🥇 Springwell Whole House Well Water Filter System
CWH Score ®
1,000,000 gallons per year
Removes iron, hydrogen sulfide, and manganese
The first on our list of best whole house water filtration systems is SpringWell, particularly effective in treating well water to maintain its quality. The filter works by running the water through various phases to yield hygienic and safe water for everyday use and ingestion. Moreover, the filtration system also includes UV filters and a salt-free water softener that binds extra minerals and ensures a safer and healthier supply of water.
The filtration system is aimed at providing optimal results without requiring extensive care. The unique up-flow mechanism and the specialized double-tank body of this filtration system facilitate longer water processing in the water filtering resins. Besides, it inhibits the clogging of the filtration unit that might lead to reduced water flow.
How it works
After entering the filtration unit, the well water gets processed by going through different stages. The process initiates from the water passing through the sediment pre-filter and then moving to the salt-free descaler, mineral stone, activated carbon filter, sub-micron post-filter, and finally the UV filter. Different contaminants and toxins get removed at each step of the filtration process.
The 20-inch sediment pre-filter in this filtration system is twice as effective as a 10-inch pre-filter used in mainstream whole house filtration systems. This filter helps to prevent the buildup of rust, mud, and other residues. Similarly, the salt-free conditioner or descaler keeps the water free from mineral accumulation. Additionally, the copper-zinc and mineral stone aids in scaling down heavy metals as well as limits the growth of bacteria and fungus.
Chemical substances, pesticides, and herbicides are removed when the water goes through the activated carbon filter. The sub-micron filter wipes out the residual elements. Lastly, the UV filter is responsible for making sure there are no germs, bacteria, and viruses in the water.
The unit has a capacity of 1,000,000 gallons of water.
What makes this filtration system the best whole house filter is the fact that it doesn’t require back-flushing or draining and doesn’t add contaminants back to the water. The tanks of the filtration system are very durable and the filters are also easy to replace.
🥈Aquasana Rhino® Well Water Whole House Filter & UV
CWH Score ®
Up to 125 PSI water pressure
There is a reason this filtration system made to our selection of the best whole house water filtration cartridges. This system is also aimed at providing you with clean and safe well water. What makes it so special is its 6-stage filtration process that ensures the highest-grade drinking and usage water for you and your family. It’s also designed with a UV filter and a salt-free conditioner that give it incredible filtration power.
The filtration unit gives the maximum output and doesn’t need consistent upkeep and regular repairs. The dual-tank built and unique upflow allows the water to remain in the filtration resins for a lot longer, enhancing its contaminant removal effect. It also hinders the blockage of the filtration unit, so the water flow remains steady. The heavy-duty water tanks and easy-to-change filters make it an ideal choice for your house.
How it works
The six-stage filtration process involves the well water going from the sediment pre-filter to the salt-free scale reducer, copper-zinc, and mineral stone, activated carbon filter, sub-micron post-filter, and then to the UV purifier. All of these filtration steps serve to eliminate various harmful elements and contaminants, providing you healthy and freshwater every time.
The components of this pro-grade water filtration system comprise 20-inch pre and post-filters, descaler tanks, filter tanks, bend supports, shut-off valves, and brass fitting for ¾-inch and 1-inch pipes.
The 20-inch pre-filter offers two times greater filtration results than ordinary filters and keeps the pipes free from all sorts of buildups and corrosion. The salt-free conditioner/descaler filter averts mineral blockage while the copper-zinc and mineral stone assist in removing heavy metals, scale, and chlorine in addition to averting microbial development. The high-performance activated carbon filter removes harmful compounds without stripping water completely of healthy minerals. The UV filter guarantees a germ-free supply of water.
The filtration system has a storage capacity of 500,000 gallons of water.
It is easy to maintain with no need for draining or back-flushing. You can effortlessly change the pre and post filters after a few months like a pro.
Video Product Walkthrough
🥉Express Water Heavy Metal Whole House Filter
CWH Score ®
Ready to install with 1” inch standard connections
Remove dangerous heavy metals from home
The Express Water Filtration System involves a three-phase water-purifying process to clean your heavy, polluted, and metal-ridden well water. This is known to be one of the heaviest and fastest stainless steel whole house water filters for well water that provides a flow rate of 0.25 GPM.
The unit is easy to maintain without spending a lot of time or money on it. The simple and easy-to-manage design allows stress-free and fast replacement of the filters. You can keep a check on the condition of the sediment filter through its transparent covering.
How it works
The course of the three-stage filtration process starts with well water entering the sediment filter which purifies the water of rust, dirt, and sediment. In the next stage, the water passes through a KDF filter, containing ionically charged copper and zinc in addition to catalytic carbon. At this stage, heavy metal compounds are removed from the water. The third and last stage consists of using the activated carbon filter that eliminates a number of toxic chemicals (like pesticides and herbicides) and reduces smell, turbidity, and odor in the water.
The average capacity of the system is 100,000 gallons of water, which is ample for approximately 6 to 12 months of use.
The pressure release buttons of this stainless steel whole house water filter make it convenient to change the filters without any difficulty. The only drawback of using this filter is that the water flow slows down greatly as the water enters the KDF filter at the second stage.
Video Product Walkthrough
iSpring 3 Stage Whole House Water Filter System
CWH Score ®
1 year warranty
Coconut shell carbon filter
Up to 15 gallons/min flow rate
Yet another three-stage water filtration unit that treats contaminated well water and provides you with great-tasting and safe water for use. The metal and excess mineral removal with this filtration cartridge doesn’t just improve the taste of water but also ensures your wellbeing and prolongs the life of your home appliances. Make sure to set up the unit at the entry point of well water to your house to get a clean water supply throughout the house.
How it works
The first stage of water filtration includes the water running through a polypropylene sediment tank that draws out large particles, such as dirt, rust, sand, and sediment from the water. The next stage uses a CTO carbon block filter made with top-quality coconut shell carbon for optimum filtration and longer life of the filter. It gets rid of various chemical agents that affect the taste and smell of water, like chlorine, pesticides, and VOCs. These two filters are designed according to the NSF/ANSI guidelines to deliver you the top-notch filtration process. The third stage involves the carbon filter removing heavy metals, particularly lead and iron, to provide safe water for drinking and other home use. These filters don’t rob the water of healthy minerals so you get the health benefits of essential minerals as well.
This whole house water filtration system has a storage capacity of 100,000 gallons of water and is the best choice for you if you are a family of four.
The maintenance of this filtration system is not time or money-consuming and doesn’t require any professional skills either. However, some users found the installation process hard.
Pelican Iron & Manganese Water Filter
CWH Score ®
Best in class against iron and manganese
600,000 - 1,000,000 gallons/year
This water filtration system is best for you if you notice orange or red stains on your toilet, sink, laundry, crockery, or appliances due to the well water you use at home. These spots are an indication of high amounts of iron and manganese in the water and need a solution. Luckily, Pelican has the answers to your woes. The advanced technology used in the production of this water filter specifically targets and reduces the concentration of iron and manganese in the water. It eliminates iron up to 10 PPM from the well water, making it the best whole house water filtration system for removing iron and manganese. Whereas commonly found iron and manganese removal filter in the market remove around 7 to 8 PPM iron from the well water. The Pelican water filter removes odor and enhances the taste of water. The only downside of getting this filtration system is that the chlorine injecting process makes annoying click noises.
How it works
The non-electric system of this filter for treating well water comprises four stages of filtration. The first sediment filtration stage removes particles of dirt, sand, rust, and debris, etc. using a 5-micron filter. Other than harming your appliances and health, these impurities can affect your plumbing connections and decrease the water flow. In the second stage of filtration, water moves through a chlorinator installed in your water supply line. The chlorination mechanism of this filter doesn’t run on electric power like most others available in the market. It runs on water pressure instead that helps to pull the required volume of chlorine. The concentration of chlorine acquired depends on the volume of water entering the tank, not the pressure of water. The third stage is where iron is eliminated from the water using a high-duty greensand-plus filter. All the iron is drawn out of the well water through the backwashing system of the filter. The final stage of carbon filtration facilitates the complete removal of chlorine added to the water for disinfecting it. Other toxic substances, such as VOCs and chloramines are also removed during this phase.
The filter comes with two flow rate options; 10 GPM and 15 GPM. The capacity of the Pelican water filtration system is between 600,000 to 1,000,000 gallons, enough for approximately 5 years.
The installation process is easy to follow and anyone can install the system using the installation guide provided with the product or available on the brand’s website.
Video Product Walkthrough
🧭 Whole House Water Filters for Well Water Buying Guide
If you’re not familiar with what well water is, let’s help you understand. Well water comes from the ground, hence, also called groundwater. People have long been using wells to get water from the ground on their land. There are many water supply companies and towns that are now getting their water from deep wells, bored into local aquifers. Water obtained from deep wells usually doesn’t require as much treatment as surface water.
Well water is basically stored in a threshold under the ground. A structure, known as well, is built to tap into it and supply groundwater to homes or other buildings for use. The process works by drilling a hole into the ground and using a pump to deliver fresh water from the well. Unfortunately, the water obtained from the ground is filled with various types of pollutants and minerals, known to be unsafe and detrimental for personal and household use. The most common contaminants found in well water are chlorine, magnesium, chlorides, and a number of other impurities. These toxins are not only harmful when in high concentrations but also make the water smell and taste bad.
Why do you need a water filter for well water?
In many regions around the world, especially rural areas, groundwater is a necessity. Besides, it’s a cheap and never-ending source of obtaining fresh water. Although, it’s highly crucial that you don’t compromise on the quality of the water supplied to your home and only use clean and toxin-free water for drinking and other purposes. Since well water comes from under the ground and contains innumerable contaminants that can be hazardous in a number of ways. The bad odor of well water alone is a result of bacterial development in the water. This is the reason you need a whole house water filtration system to get rid of all kinds of harmful agents, smells, and odors from the well water. Selecting the best whole house water filter cartridge is the most effective way of procuring safe and clean water all the time in your home as well as convert hard water into soft water.
Why do you need a whole house water filter?
Better Tasting Water
No More Rotten Egg Smell
No More Orange & Black Staining
Cleaner & Better Tasting Food
Water You Can Trust
Removes Contaminants With NO Maintenance
No Drop in Water Pressure
Better Water, Better Cooking
Types of Well Water Filter Systems
If you want to purify well water, you can choose from 5 primary methods. Basically, the water purification systems use a combination of mechanical filtration, UV light, activated carbon, KDF, and air injection oxidation.
Air-Injection Oxidation Filtration
In this method, a powerful pump is used for injecting air into the well water. This process oxidizes different types of minerals in the water, such as hydrogen sulfide, iron, and MN. Since these oxidized metals don't dissolve in water, the media in the system gets collected in the tank.
The beauty of this system is that they can filter iron non-stop, but they will work on hydrogen and manganese if the pH level of water is high enough. This is the reason some systems come with a mechanism to correct the pH level.
Over time, the media continues to filter oxidized metals and becomes clogged. Therefore, it needs to be flushed out or it will backwash. Although this process can generate a little wastewater, the wastewater generated by other filtration systems is relatively much higher.
Primarily, KDF is made of zinc and copper. In a water filtration system, this media is responsible for transferring electrons between different elements. In this process, the oxidation of different types of soluble metals and chemicals takes place.
Besides, this media is bacteriostatic. Therefore, it can help prevent the growth of different types of microorganisms including bacteria. Besides, it also has a backwash system for filtering debris.
Charcoal or activated carbon goes through processing to make sure every particle has a lot of spores to capture impurities in water. So, when water flows through the carbon particles, the media continues to trap tiny particles, such as VOCs, chlorine, sediments, and other types of organic chemicals, such as herbicides, pesticides, and pharmaceuticals.
Apart from this, this media can also trap bigger particles. Therefore, your well water becomes purified at the end of the process.
Although UV light is not a filter, it can help kill microorganisms that can contaminate your water. Some examples of these contaminants include protozoa, viruses, and bacteria. These elements are damaged using ionizing radiation.
The beauty of UV light systems is that they can eliminate more than 99.9% of these microorganisms.
Mechanical filtration is the simplest filtration system. In this system, there is a filter with tiny holes in it. When anything bigger than these holes tries to pass through the filter, it gets trapped.
Based on the size of the pores, mechanical filters come with their ratings. The majority of filters designed for well water have a rating of 5 microns, which means they can blog all of the particles that are over 5 microns in size.
What type of Filter do You Need to Remove Iron from Well Water?
As far as filtering iron is concerned, two types of filters are the most effective: KDF and AIO. The former is an inhibitor of iron-loving bacteria. If you are looking for this filter, make sure that you go for one that has high capacity. You also need to consider the PPM of iron in your well water.
What type of Filter do You Need for filtering Coliform Bacteria?
California bacteria is found in the environment and the digestive tract of many animals, especially mammals. Although this is a common contaminant, it may cause health problems in people who have weak immune systems.
You can use UV light and chlorine to disinfect and eliminate this type of bacteria. For best results, you can go for an RO filter or a gravity-fed filter.
Water Softeners vs water filters
Although conventional water softeners can help remove minerals from water, such as calcium and magnesium, water softeners are designed for aesthetic purposes. By contrast, water filters cannot remove TDS. Instead, they are designed to filter different types of contaminants from wild water.
What should you Keep in Mind When choosing a Well Filter?
Before you get a well filter, make sure you know the type of contaminants in your water. If you don't consider this factor and go for any filter, it won't work for you. for this purpose, you can purchase water testing kits. They can help you identify the type of metals chemicals, minerals, and other contaminants found in your well water.
You also need to consider the installation location for your filter. Make sure you install it in a location where you can access it easily for changing settings and performing maintenance. Besides, you need to install it close to your main line. Lastly, you also need to purchase a compatible filter for the system.
How to Choose the right sized filter?
Generally, water filters are designed for one to three bedrooms. You can get a bigger unit that can be good for four to six bedrooms. You need to check these ratings on the unit before you make your purchase. Apart from this, you may also consider the flow rate of the unit. Given below is the description of the average flow requirements for your home fixtures and appliances.
Clothes washer: 1.5 GPM
Dishwasher: 1.0 GPM
Shower: 1.0 GPM
Kitchen Faucet: 0.5 GPM
Bathroom Faucet: 0.5 gPM
If you want to choose the right type of filter, you need to figure out the flow rate you would need after running all of the fixtures and appliances at the same time. This figure will tell you the maximum amount of flow rate required. So, if you get a filter that comes with a high enough flow rate, it will be enough to cover your needs.
Is it Easy or difficult to Install and Maintain a Well Water Filtration System?
Based on the type of system you choose to install, the installation and maintenance will be there easy or a bit time-consuming. For example, larger systems require the expertise of professionals. On the other hand, if you go for a basic system, you can install it yourself by following the instructions given by the manufacturer.
Similarly, if your system uses sediment filters are carbon-activated filters, they will require frequent maintenance
How To Remove Iron From Well Water
In well water, iron appears in the ferrous and ferric form, which refers to soluble and insoluble respectively. You can’t smell or see ferrous iron as it dissolves in water completely. But ferric iron appears as reddish-brown cloudiness in water. It tends to stain faucets and fixtures over time.
Since iron is a harmful contaminant, it may cause health issues if ingested in a large amount. Therefore, you may want to have your well water tested for iron and take action if you find an excessive amount of iron in your tap water.
Well water can be filtered in many ways. An easy is to use an iron filter that can do this job for you. In the first stage, the oxidization process turns iron into a ferric form. In the next stage, you can filter iron with the help of different types of iron filters.
For instance, manganese greensand uses potassium permanganate as an oxidizer. This helps trap the particles of ferric iron, which are flushed out of the system upon regeneration. This process repeats when water passes through the system. Iron is oxidized and flushed out constantly.
Another type of filter uses an oxidizing agent to turn iron into ferric and collect it in the media. In most cases, this filter is made from KDF media and carbon. This KDF media is a special type of material that helps create an oxidizing chemical reaction for the conversion of iron.
If you go for the best water filtration system, it can filter up to 50 PPM of iron, including ferrous iron. This type of system is designed specifically for the treatment of high levels of iron in well water.
Water softeners vs well water filters
It’s important to understand the difference between water softeners and well filtration systems. Although the contaminant removal process in both systems is quite similar, the purpose of designing the systems is different.
You can clean your well water to make it safe using a water softener. The function of a water softener is to filter minerals, such as calcium and magnesium from well water. In other words, these systems help treat hard water and make it safe for consumption.
These minerals create the problem of scaling in your house appliances and plumbing. If not treated, the minerals may damage your appliances and reduce their lifespan.
Generally, water softeners use a process called iron exchange for replacing the minerals with sodium. If you have this system of system installed in your house, make sure you keep it stocked with salt. This system requires back flushing for high performance.
You can also go for another type of salt-free softener that can modify the minerals’ structure, which prevents the minerals from sticking to the surface of faucets. Unlike ion-exchange water softeners, they require less frequent maintenance and don’t require salt for proper functioning. However, you need to replace the conditioning media after about 8 years.
Water softeners can’t filter other contaminants, such as manganese, heavy metals, bacteria, and viruses. They are not designed to eliminate biological contaminants found in tap water as this process requires a one micron filter.
Although both water softeners and water filtration systems have their own purposes, you can’t use them in place of each other.
Hard Water vs Soft water?
The presence of excess heavy metals and minerals can make well water hard. A whole house water filter is useful in filtering out these impurities and keeping the water supply to your home well cleaned. If you have never heard of the terms ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ water, here’s how they’re defined:
Hard water is known as containing an appreciable percentage of dissolved minerals, like chalk, limestone, magnesium, dolomite, iron, and calcium. Though these minerals are not considered to be hazardous for drinking and domestic use when consumed in small quantities, their high amount in water can have negative impacts. Besides ruining your water pipes, they can impair your health, hair, and skin. Due to the high concentration of minerals, hard water strips the skin and hair of their essential moisture and leaves them dull, dry, and lifeless.
After the removal of extra minerals that turn the water hard, the resulting water is called soft water. Soft water is considered better in terms of taste and uses for other purposes, such as laundry, washing dishes, and bathing, etc. It doesn’t have any adverse effects on you or your plumbing. The only ions left in soft water after filtration are sodium ions that naturally eliminate the hardness of well water. As hard water contains calcium and magnesium, it reacts with soap and reduces its effectiveness in cleaning properly. Soft water ends this problem produces bubbly and rich foam. The only thing to bear in mind is that sodium may be harmful to plants in your home, so avoid using this water for gardening.
The most expedient, cost-effective, and trouble-free way of treating hard water and getting food-grade water is to install a whole house water filter in the house. Whole house water filtration systems work the best to ensure safe water for the entire home when installed between the main water entrance and the faucet that opens the water supply to all the taps in your home.
Things to Consider Before Buying a Whole House Water Filter
It’s a no-brainer that clean and safe water is an essential part of our daily lives. However, various research studies have recently highlighted the issues related to the quality and safety of water used for drinking and home use. This is why now more than ever people are paying attention to ensuring that the well water delivered to their homes is free from all kinds of harmful elements.
Test Your Well Water
The first thing you need to know is the quality of water provided to your home. This step will assist in recognizing the contaminants in the water and pave your way to the kind of filtration system you need to buy. The appropriate filtration system will be useful in purifying the water of these specific impurities more effectively. For those using well water, a whole house water filter would be more apt as compared to other filters in the market. If you have access to the internet, it will make the task of assessing the kind of contaminants found in the water a lot easier. You can use find water quality reports online and identify which toxic materials, minerals, and metals are present in the water supply of your home.
Use the Filter that you need
Another thing to keep in mind is to know which type of filter a filtration cartridge comprises. Let’s make one thing clear that all the filters are designed to remove some basic impurities, nasty smells, and bad taste from the water. However, water filters aimed at processing well water are different in their functioning. These filters also have the ability to remove excess minerals, heavy metals, and other contaminants.
Requirement for Water Flow
Another important factor to think through is your requirement for water flow. It’s imperative that you install a filtration system that meets your daily need for water. A filter having the capacity of at least 10 to 15 gallons per second is sufficient to accommodate bigger houses. The relatively higher cost and difficult installation method are the only cons to keep in view while making a decision regarding whole house water filters. Cost is undoubtedly one of the most important points to think about when looking for the best whole house water filtration system. It might not be possible to get the best whole house water filter without having to spend a fortune.
Furthermore, keep in mind that you’ll also have to bear the cost of capacity and replacing the filters to keep your filtration system giving the best output. Last but not the least, always look for a filtration unit that fits the available space and storage for the installation of the system at your home.
How can you find out about the type of contaminants in your well water?
An easy way to find out is to have your well water tested and get a detailed report of the type of contaminants in your well water. This report will help you go for the best water purification system.
Another approach is to buy a water testing kit online to test your water source. These kits can help you test your water for different types of contaminants, such as chlorine, lead, manganese, iron, bacteria, and protozoa.
But these kits can’t give you a detailed report and they can only be used for a specific group of water contaminants.
Can you use a filter to remove bacteria from well water?
The short answer is, no. Most of well water filters can filter only iron, manganese, and sulfur. In addition, they can filter different types of pesticides and herbicides. If you want to eliminate bacteria in your well water, you can install a UV lamp. The role of UV light is to modify the bacteria DNA so it doesn’t cause harm or multiply fast inside your body. You can install a whole house UV filtration system to eliminate bacteria, such as E.Coli as they can multiply fast and produce toxins in your body. As a result, you may fall sick.
Should you go for a system that uses injection technology or filters?
Your choice depends upon what you are looking for. If you invest in a whole house water filtration system, you can filter a wide range of contaminants. But if you go for a system based on the injection technology, it will help remove other contaminants, such as iron, manganese, and sulfur. Plus, these systems don’t require any maintenance, unlike other problems that require regular filter replacement.
Can you install a water filtration system outside?
Although some filters may work outside, most of them won’t work well when exposed to extremely low temperatures in the cold season. Most whole house water filters are installed at the point of entry of water into a home. So, make sure you keep this in mind when looking for a system that can be installed outside.
Should you install a softener system for your well water?
If you have hard water issues like scale formation and slow water flow, you should have our water tested for hardness. Typically, a high level of water hardness can’t be treated even if you install a high-end well water filtration system. For this purpose, you should install a separate whole house water softener.
Can you install a reverse osmosis system to treat your well water?
The short answer is, yes. In fact, a reverse osmosis system is the most effective whole house water filtration system. Generally, this system contains a sediment pre-filter, a reverse osmosis membrane, an activated carbon filter, and a post-filter. So, this system can filter your well water most effectively. Also, RO systems can’t treat water that’s too hard as magnesium and calcium may cause the RO membrane to deteriorate much faster. The good news is that RO systems can be a good choice if you want to treat water with a low level of hardness as these systems are quite efficient.
📰 As Seen In
The Bottom Line
If you’re tired of the unpleasant taste and smell of water or it leaves your clothes, dishes, sink, and bathtub with unsightly spots, a water filter can make all your worries go away. It can help you protect your health, skin, hair, home, and appliances. Just remember that no filter is built to filter all types of impurities, so take your time and do some digging before making the final choice. The key is to pay attention to what you want out of your filtration system. Start by determining the quality of water at your home, search for the filters to treat the water, be sure to install a unit that meets your usage requirement, and keep your budget and cost of installing and maintaining the filtration system in view. We hope the information shared above will help to make the process of finding the best whole house water filter system easier for you. So, say goodbye to smelly, polluted, and bad-tasting water and get your unlimited supply of fresh, clean, and safe water with the product of your choice from above today.