Lead in your water supply can affect the health and wellness of your whole family. Unlike other minerals and some contaminants, lead cannot be detected with the human eye or by smell. If you live in a home that was built before 1986, you are more likely to have lead in your water supply.
Installing a water filter for lead can reduce and even eliminate your exposure to lead, but finding the right filter can be a challenge and take all day or more. Check out our top picks of the best water filter systems for lead removal in drinking water as we hope to save you time and frustration in making the right choice for you.
Everyone deserves access to healthy drinking water and filters can be an important step in ensuring the safety of your water. With dozens of water filters on the market that claim to filter out harmful levels of lead, how do you know which filter to trust and which of the systems you choose?
Finding the right lead filter can be difficult and time-consuming. We have done all the research for you, so choosing a filter that you can trust should be easy and put time back into your day. We’re confident that at least one of our recommendations will effectively filter your drinking water, meet your needs, and put your worries to rest.
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- 1 Best Water Filter For Lead Removal in 2020
- 1.1 1. SpringWell Whole House Lead & Cyst Removal System
- 1.2 2. iSpring 6-Stage Reverse Osmosis Drinking Water Filter System :
- 1.3 3. iSpring 3-Stage Whole House Water Filtration System :
- 1.4 4. APEX Countertop Drinking Water Filter :
- 1.5 5. ZeroWater 10-Cup Water Filter Pitcher :
- 1.6 6. PUR Advanced Faucet Filter :
- 1.7 7. Home Master Ultra Undersink Water Filter System :
- 2 Pre-Purchase Considerations
- 3 How Does Lead Affect the Human Body?
- 4 How Does Lead Get into Water?
- 5 How To Remove Lead From Water
- 6 FAQs
Best Water Filter For Lead Removal in 2020
1. SpringWell Whole House Lead & Cyst Removal System
High acidity or low mineral content can corrode pipes and fixtures, causing lead to enter your drinking water. This can potentially be a huge problem because there is no safe level of lead for the human body. The SpringWell Whole House Lead & Cyst Removal System solves this problem by removing 99.95% of heavy metals from your water, while also removing and treating cysts, chlorine, chloramine, and other harmful contaminants.
The 0.5-micron nominal filtration level removes 99.95% of particulate and soluble lead from your drinking water. The system’s binders chemically react with soluble lead, creating an ionic bond that kinetically removes the lead from the water. This system has been tested and certified as required in the NSF/ANSI P473 standard for PFOA/PFOS, along with NSF/ANSI 53 standard for the reduction of lead and cyst. In addition to lead, the SpringWell removes chlorine, chloramine, giardia, and crypto, so you can rest assured that your water is as pure as it can get.
This system also features a real-time dynamic LED system that monitors water and flow rate through color-coded notifications. SpringWell’s Lead & Cyst Removal System includes a 100,000 gallon capacity with the highest water pressure. While the installation kit provides all you need to install this system, you may need to hire a professional if you don’t have plumbing knowledge.
Lead removal is a serious process, and the SpringWell Whole House Lead & Cyst Removal System guarantees optimal, reliable, and durable performance. With over 20 years of experience in water quality and the belief that every family deserves pure drinking water, SpringWell is a company to be trusted.
Read our full review: SpringWell Whole House Lead & Cyst Removal System
2. iSpring 6-Stage Reverse Osmosis Drinking Water Filter System :
The iSpring 6-Stage Drinking Water Filter System is designed for high capacity and fits under the sink. Not only does this filtration system filter out up to 98% of lead from your water, but it also removes over 1,000 contaminants and softens your water at the same time.
- 20 pounds
- 15 x 8 x 18 inches
- 75 gallon/day capacity
- Incoming water pressure: 45 – 70 PSI
- Operating water temperature range: 40 – 100 °F
The iSpring Water Filter System has six filters that all play an integral role in filtering your water and make it safe to drink. The system also softens your water so that you have soft water on demand at the sink.
The first carbon filter, PP Sediment, removes sediment like rust and sand; the filter lasts for up to a year. The second carbon filter, GAC, removes chlorine, odors, and tastes; the filter is effective up to a year. The third carbon filter, CTO, removes harmful chemicals like VOCs and lead.
The fourth filter, the reverse osmosis membrane, produces bottled-quality drinking water and lasts up to 3 years and 75 gallons/day. The fifth filter, post-carbon, removes any residual taste or odors from the tank and lasts up to a year.
The sixth filter is a pH filter and increases the water alkalinity, gives back healthy minerals, and lasts up to a year.
The tank automatically shuts off after filtering and may take up to three hours to fill.
3. iSpring 3-Stage Whole House Water Filtration System :
The iSpring 3-Stage Whole House Water Filtration System is designed to remove iron and lead from all water sources, unlike under-the-sink filters that only treat one source. Not only does the system filter out iron and lead, but it also removes sediment and other contaminants.
- 45 pounds (not very heavy)
- 8 x 28 x 21 inches
- 15 GPM
- 100,000-gallon capacity
The iSpring 3-Stage Whole House Filtration System may be an ideal choice for homes with well water or for those who are tapped into a public water supply.
Not only will the whole house system treat your drinking water but will also reduce any lead or iron residue that may build up on your appliances, such as a washing machine or dishwasher. The iSpring system effectively treats your water without removing healthy and essential minerals.
The first filter is a sediment filter, the second is a carbon block filter (which uses coconut shell carbon), and the third filter is designed specifically for the removal of lead and iron. The lead filter reduces lead to below 15 ppb, which is the EPA standard for safe drinking water.
The 3-stage system has a capacity of 100,000 gallons of water, which supplies (on average) one year of water for a household of four. The filters are easy to switch out and replace.
4. APEX Countertop Drinking Water Filter :
The APEX Countertop Drinking Water Filter is a convenient and economical way to filter the lead and other contaminants from your water. The filter connects directly to standard household kitchen faucets and eliminates the need for drinking bottled water.
The filter lasts for about a year and is easy to replace.
- 85 pounds
- 12 x 4.5 x 4.5 inches
- Filters up to 750 gallons of water
The APEX Countertop Filter is one of the most convenient filters on the market. There’s no need to fill a pitcher or change out filters regularly. The filter will effectively remove 99 percent of substances found in tap water, such as chlorine, sodium, and lead, for up to 750 gallons.
The alkaline water filter adds calcium, magnesium, and potassium to your water, which is known to balance pH levels in the blood, help detoxify the body, and improve health overall.
APEX follows the guidelines on drinking water from the Nation Safety Foundation (NSF) and the FDA. APEX also offers a 30-day-money back guarantee with a limited one-year warranty.
The filters are easy to replace, and the filter is easy to install if you have a standard faucet. The Apex water filter comes with a housing wrench, instruction manual, diverter valve, and two faucet adapters.
5. ZeroWater 10-Cup Water Filter Pitcher :
There are dozens of water filtering pitchers on the market, but not every pitcher is able to filter out lead and chromium like the ZeroWater Water Filter Pitcher.
The filters in the pitcher have a unique five-stage filtration design to safe, clean, and good tasting water. The pitcher is NSF certified, and some of the ZeroWater filters are compatible with other brands of water pitchers.
- 28 pounds
- 6 x 11.8 x 5.9 inches
- 10-Cup Pitcher
- Water quality meter included
The ZeroWater Water Filter Pitcher is designed and works like many of the other popular filter pitches on the market, but the filters are designed to remove lead and other contaminants in five stages (or layers) within the filter. The filter removes 99.6 percent of total dissolved solids.
The first stages help to make your tap water clearer by removing suspended solids like rust and other sediments. The second stage continues to remove any solids that are suspended.
The third stage on the filter removes organic contaminants, pesticides and herbicides, and others like mercury and chlorine. This third stage also prevents bacteria from growing.
The fourth stage removes metals, nonmetals, and radiological contaminants, which are inorganic. The final stage removes any suspended solids and holds the resin in place.
The ZeroWater filters fit in many brands of filter pitchers, so if you have a favorite pitcher (or don’t want to throw out a pitcher), you can purchase the filters separately.
We recommend this product because it comes with a water quality meter and the dual spigot/spout design is convenient and easy to use.
6. PUR Advanced Faucet Filter :
If you’re limited on counter space, refrigerator space, or are just looking for a filter that is convenient and simple to use, the PUR Advanced Faucet Water Filter is a good option.
The faucet filter, which uses carbon and ion exchange, attaches directly to your faucet to filter lead, mercury, and over 70 contaminants. An LED indicator light tells you when it’s time to replace the filter.
- 15 pounds
- 2 x 7.3 x 7.7 inches
- Filters up to 100 gallons of water
- Back up faucet adapters and washers
- An on/off filter switch
There are several faucet filters on the market, but few filters out up to 99 percent of lead, 92 percent of pesticides, and 96 percent of mercury from your tap water.
Through activated carbon and ion exchange, the PUR faucet filter improves the taste of your water, eliminates order, and reduces over 70 contaminants.
The PUR faucet filter is easy to install, and no tools are needed. The filter life LED indicator lets you know when it’s time to replace the filter, so there’s no guesswork. The filter effectively filters up to 100 gallons of water, which is about two to three months of average use.
If you don’t want to filter your tap water, you can control the filter by using the on/off switch. With four back up adapters and washers, the filter fits almost any faucet.
7. Home Master Ultra Undersink Water Filter System :
The Home Master Ultra Undersink Water Filter System uses reverse osmosis and six stages of filtration to remove up to 99 percent of iron, lead, and other heavy metals and contaminants and contamination from your water. The filter system works efficiently with well water or with public water supplies.
In addition to removing, this filter model also uses UV light to destroy nearly 100 percent of germs, bacteria, and other microorganisms that may be in your water. The filtration system is convenient and doesn’t take up too much space under your sink.
- 35 pounds, not too heavy
- 12 x 16 x 20 inches
- Non-electric permeate pump
- Temperature range of 40 to 100 F
- Spout height: 8.25 inches
- Spout reach: 6 inches
- 5-year warranty and good email support
The Home Master Ultra Undersink Water Filter System uses a non-electric permeate pump to improve the system’s efficiency. The filter system reduces water by up to 80 percent and increases water production by up to 50 percent.
This filter system including six stages of filtration, purifies, and sterilizes to give you clean, odorless, and safe drinking water. Unlike some reverse osmosis systems, the Home Master system has a faster flow rate and easy-to-change filters.
You can expect to enjoy 75 gallons of filtered water per day. The filter lasts for up to 3,000 gallons before you need a replacement.
We’re confident that at least one of our top recommendations will remove lead from your water. Let’s take some time to discuss some things to consider before you purchase a water filter for lead and why it’s important to filter lead out of your water supply.
Unlike other minerals, like iron, lead is virtually impossible to detect in your water and filtering your water can keep you and your family healthy.
While we’ve done the research and reviewed six great water filtration options for removing lead, there are still some things you should think about before you buy a water filter for lead.
1. Type of Filter:
Removing lead from your drinking water is important, but the type of filter for lead that you choose may depend on the space you have in your home. If you have a small kitchen or limited counter or cabinet space, a filtered water pitcher faucet filter may be your best option.
Depending on how much water you drink or use can also help you determine which type of lead filtration system is best for your home. If you have other contaminants that you worry about, other than lead, such as iron, you may prefer a whole house filter system or one that uses reverse osmosis. It’s also a good idea to check for industry certification like that from NSF and choose the right model for your needs.
2. Replacing Your Filters:
How frequently you need to replace your filters will greatly depend on how often you use filtered water. If you are trying to find a more cost-effective filtration system, the cost of a filter pitcher (and replacement filters) may end up being roughly the same as a countertop or faucet filter.
Before you buy a water filter for lead, you want to make sure that replacement filters are readily available to ensure that your drinking water remains free of lead. Also pay attention to the day interval between replacement to account for your effort and expense.
3. Installation: DIY or Professional?
A filter pitcher is the easiest filtration system to install, but if you want a whole house system or one that fits under your sink, you need to decide if you want to install the system yourself or hire a pro.
All of the systems that we recommend are designed to be installed by homeowners with minimal effort and most hardware or tools are included. Many of the manufacturers also offer good email support.
Ultimately, it will depend how much of your day is available to install a system and if it’s better to just have the convenience of having it installed by a pro.
4. Test Your Water:
Removing all traces of lead from your drinking water is beneficial to you and your family. Before you purchase a filter for your drinking water, it’s always a good idea to test your water.
If your lead levels are higher than recommended you filtering your water may not be enough to keep you safe, but most filtration systems are effective for low levels of lead.
How Does Lead Affect the Human Body?
While drinking water may not be the main source of lead poisoning, approximately 20 percent or more of lead exposure comes from drinking water. Infants who drink formula may be more at risk if their water supply contains lead.
Lead has many ways of entering our body, which includes contaminated air, soil, paint, dust, and in the water we drink. Everyone who consumes water with lead is at risk of health issues, but infants, young children, and pregnant women are most at risk for serious health problems which may even be fatal.
Since lead is difficult to detect, lead poisoning can be nearly impossible to recognize until health problems become more severe. Signs and symptoms to watch for, which may indicate lead poisoning, include (but are not limited to) developmental delay, seizures, weight loss, hearing loss, and extreme fatigue in children.
Infants may be exposed to lead before birth or shortly after and can result in issues like premature birth, low birth weight, and stunted growth. Pregnant women, who have lead in their body, may miscarriage or experience stillbirth.
Lead poisoning in adults can result in high blood pressure, joint and muscle pain, headaches, abdominal pain, reproductive issues, and mood disorders. Since the symptoms of lead poisoning may be similar to other physical or mental health issues, it’s important to have your water tested and have your blood tested for lead.
The best way to avoid lead exposure through drinking water is to drink filtered water and only to consume cold water from the tap. Hot water typically contains higher levels of lead and boiling will not remove lead from water. It is safe to bath in water which contains lead, as it doesn’t absorb into the skin, but you should always use caution to make sure babies and children don’t drink unfiltered water while bathing.
If you want to eliminate as much lead from your water as possible, particularly when doing dishes or bathing, you may benefit from a whole house water filtration system rather than one that fits beneath the sink and only filters one water source.
How Does Lead Get into Water?
Although the amount of lead in drinking water has greatly reduced in the last two or three decades, (thanks to the Safe Drinking Water Act and EPA’s Lead and Copper Rule) issues with lead contamination are still prevalent.
While most water sources are not severely contaminated with lead, as we see in Flint, Michigan, some water sources may have more lead than what is considered to be safe.
If your home was built before 1986, when the Safe Drinking Act was enacted, you may have larger amounts of lead in your water supply. Lead in your water can come from metal water taps, the pipes inside your home, and the pipes that connect your house to the main water supply in the street.
The water becomes contaminated when the older pipes become corroded or the solder, which connects the pipes, begins to corrode. Even when water sits in lead pipes for a short period, it can affect your water supply.
According to the EPA, the amount of lead in your water not only depends on the age and condition of your pipes, but also how long the water stays in the pipes, and the temperature or acidity in the water.
How To Remove Lead From Water
Updating the pipes in and to/from your home can reduce the lead in your water, but for many people that is an expensive solution. Filtering the lead from your drinking water is the most effective way to remove lead from your water, particularly if you use filters that are designed for lead removal.
You can also reduce the amount of lead in your water by cleaning the aerator (faucet screen) and flushing your pipes before using or consuming water.
In this comprehensive guide, we want to provide you with as much information as possible about water filters for lead removal and the effects of lead. Feel free to email us if you have a question we didn’t already answer.
1. What Does Lead Water Taste Like?
Unlike iron and other chemicals like chlorine, lead has no taste, so many people who have lead in their water supply are unaware until they have their water tested. The best way to find out if lead is in your water is to have it tested and filtering your water will reduce your exposure. A blood test can tell you if you have any lead in your body.
2. What Does Lead in Water Look Like?
Lead doesn’t discolor water or cause staining in your appliances or fixtures. Lead is not seen by the human eye and it doesn’t have an odor either.
3. Can Lead Water Cause Dementia?
Lead can cause developmental delays in small children and results in numerous other health problems in individuals of all ages.
Lead affects major organs, which include the brain. Some research suggests that lead exposure from water may contribute to dementia later in life, but since dementia is still somewhat of a medical mystery, there are many factors that can contribute to memory loss.
There’s no definite answer that lead exposure is directly related to dementia, but it may play a role.
4. Can Water Filters Make You Sick?
High-quality water filters are designed to filter out the contaminants, like lead, that can make you sick, but if you fail to clean or replace your filtration system, you may start to feel sick. Expired filters will not effectively filter out contaminants and depending on what you are filtering out; you may start to fill the negative effects.
Water pitchers and other filtration systems are sensitive to light and should stay out of direct light to avoid mold or algae from growing. Cleaning your filtration system (such as a pitcher) and replacing your filters regularly can keep you from having headaches or digestive issues.
5. What Water Filters Remove Lead?
There are a number of water filters that remove lead (we reviewed six great options), but it’s important to note that not all water filters will remove lead as effectively as others. Most carbon filters will remove lead from your water, but it’s important to read the packaging.
Don’t buy a filter unless it says that it filters lead. If the filter claims to remove contaminants, you should not assume that lead is included.