There is no single best way to filter water that’s drawn from a well. Instead, it’s all about using the right tools and devices for the type of water at hand.
What is a whole house well water filter?
Often, the best whole house water filters for well water use systems that include several filter stages. These include a sediment filter to remove small undissolved matter, organic contaminant filters to remove metals and chemicals, and purifiers to ensure that no bacteria or viruses reach your tap.
Why use one?
While public water systems are monitored and maintained by federal and state organizations, private wells receive no government protection. Because many harmful contaminants can dissolve into water without any noticeable taste or smell.
It’s important, therefore, to test water every 6 to 12 months, without simply relying on your senses when judging your drinking water quality.
How do well water filters work?
Each filtering method in a well water filter operates in a different way, which is why they’re able to capture different types of contaminants.
- Sediment filters contain material that works as a screen or mesh, sieving out undissolved particles while the rest of the water flows through.
- Carbon filters absorb dissolved organic contaminants to their surface, literally pulling them from the water as it passes.
- Reverse osmosis filters harness existing water pressure to push water through membranes with tiny holes, small enough to catch unwanted molecules.
- Ultraviolet filters shine high-energy light through the water, disrupting the DNA of bacteria, viruses, and other microorganisms to render them safe to drink.
What makes a good well water filter?
With so many different system configurations, there is no single set of criteria for what makes a good well water filter.
However, all high-functioning filter systems tend to contain multiple stages and are designed to match the specific water quality in a particular well. At a minimum, this usually means a pre-filter or sediment filter, which helps protect appliances and later stages, alongside a filter for dissolved contaminants.
Beyond filtration stages, a good filter should have reliable casings and fittings. Because they fit into the main water line, these systems are required to handle several gallons per day and deal with constant water pressure, so any weaknesses in the construction can result in a leakage nightmare.
Flow rate is another simple metric that separates good from bad well water filters. With so much source water to process, it’s important that a system doesn’t drastically reduce flow, or make you wait a frustrating amount of time to fill up a glass.
Which well water filter stages are the best?
Again, the type and level of contamination in a well go a long way to determining which filter stages are the best. In other words, what counts as best depends upon your needs.
For most wells, a stage that removes iron is a must, as this common contaminant can give water a rusty color and metallic taste, as well as creating the conditions for iron bacteria. Most wells will also need a stage that removes microorganisms, whether that’s achieved with chemical disinfectants or UV lights.
So which whole house water filter is the best?
In the US, several well-known home filter brands produce products that can be combined into highly effective whole-house well water filters. Manufacturers like SpringWell, Aquasana, and Pelican all have long standing repudiations for protecting homes from common contaminants.
Our advice for choosing a filter is to first thoroughly research your own well and local environment to find out exactly what contaminants you’re up against. This will help you determine your ideal filtration stages.
Once you know which stages you need, it becomes easier to take a look at the catalogs of brands like SpringWell and Pelican, and compare different configurations on important points like price and flow rate.