Countertop Water Filters versus Under-Sink Water Filters
Drinking water filters are a good addition to any household that wants safe, clean, good-tasting water to drink and to use in cooking. People and pets alike benefit from having a cleaner water supply. Among humans, children need well-filtered water even more than adults, but all ages gain improved health from drinking this fresher liquid. Assuming that you use a point of use filter, your choice is between countertop or an under-sink water filtration system.
Each type of filter has its own pros and cons. Which you choose ultimately depends on what you expect out of a filter, how large your filter budget is, and your personal tastes, including your idea of aesthetics.
Countertop water filters stand next to the sink on the counter, and have several different configurations. Most make use of a diverter valve, which attaches to the faucet in place of the usual aerator. A simple mechanical switch is then used to either direct water from the faucet through the filter – providing clean drinking or cooking water – or to bypass the filter and come out unfiltered, as for example for washing hands or dishes.
Some of the pros of countertop water filters include:
- Countertop water filters are usually cheaper than under-sink filters, so they are better for those on a limited budget.
- They are readily accessible for maintenance, such as changing the filter cartridge.
- They can be attached in a few seconds, using no tools other than the hands.
- Water can be diverted through the filter or can come out unfiltered to your option.
Cons of countertop water filters are:
- The filter is out in plain sight, and some may find this aesthetically displeasing.
- They are sometimes not as sturdy as under-sink filters, though this varies greatly depending on the specific model of filter.
- Countertop water filters cannot be used with pull-out faucets.
An under-sink water filter, by contrast, mounts to the side of the cabinet underneath the sink, carrying out its functions out of sight. The pros of under-sink water filters include:
- The water filter is kept neatly out of sight, creating a less crowded look on your counter and freeing up room for other work also.
- These filters are usually very sturdily made out of metal, and last for many years, and sometimes decades or a lifetime.
- Under-sink filters are often a bit larger and more complex than countertop versions, making their filtration even more thoroughgoing.
This type of water filter does have some disadvantages also, though:
- Under-sink filters are often quite a bit more expensive than countertop filters. They are also more difficult to install and may require professional help for installation.
- You cannot easily move the filter to a new location, and it cannot be used conveniently in temporary lodgings, such as a hotel room or an apartment rented for a vacation trip.