home filter system cost

How Much Do Home and Whole House Water Filter Systems Cost? (*Latest Prices)

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    How much does a home water filtration system cost? There is more than one answer to this question which we are going to cover in great detail on this page. So without further ado…


    What Type of Water Filter Are You Looking For?

    There is more than just one type of water filter that you can buy. The selection ranges from small and inexpensive pitchers providing drinking water for a single person only to more pricey whole house systems that can treat all the water entering your home. So the question really is what type of filter do you want or need?

    Because not every model is capable of removing all the potential contaminants that might be lurking in your water supply. While basic activated carbon filtration will reduce chlorine content to at least some extent, fluoride, lead and chloramines require a more sophisticated approach.

    Thus you should think about conducting a water quality test first. Several test kits are available online and at your local home improvement store. They don’t cost much, somewhere between $20-40.

    Anyway, these are the different filter types you can choose from:

    • Whole house water filters are point-of-entry (POE) systems. This means that they connect to the main line and treat all water entering your home so you can use filtered water in the shower, kitchen, your bathrooms and even for your laundry. Whole house systems are mainly to remove chlorine and larger particles to improve water aesthetics and increase the longevity of your plumbing system and appliances. A whole home system is also what’s needed if you are on a private well. Our favorites? Check out the BOS whole house water filter guide!
    • Reverse osmosis systems provide the most thorough filtration process for drinking water that’s almost pure H2O. They can easily remove up to 99% of dozens of contaminants and install under your kitchen sink for point-of-use (POU) applications. There also are whole house reverse osmosis systems which can get really expensive as they are much more complex – they usually require a large storage tank + delivery pump.
    • Regular under sink systems filter water on demand right before it comes out of your kitchen faucet or wherever you install one. In most cases they provide water that not only tastes great but is also safe for drinking.
    • Both countertop and faucet mounted filters can be attached to your kitchen faucet in minutes and without the need to make any permanent changes. Both types feature a more basic treatment process and usually allow you to switch between filtered and unfiltered water. The main goal here is to improve taste & odor and eliminate some of the more harmful pollutants such as lead.
    • Filter pitchers are probably the most popular type as they are affordable to buy and so easy to use. The downside is that filtration speed is slow and cartridges are prone to clogging. And again, we only have a basic treatment process focusing on aesthetics.
    • Refrigerator and shower filters are somewhat special and probably not what you are looking for right now. Still, we wanted to add them to our list for sake of completeness.

    shower head

    How Much Does a Water Filtration System Cost?

    TypePrice RangeProsCons
    Whole HouseUsually between $300 to $1,000 and moreFiltered water everywhere in your home, increase lifespan of appliances and plumbing systemMore likely to require installation by a professional, do not remove smaller impurities
    Reverse Osmosis$150 – $500Provide healthy drinking water 100% safe for consumption, produce relatively large volumesProduce wastewater, strip away minerals, may require installation by a professional
    Under Sink$50 – $200Cost effective, most provide water safe for drinkingMight require installation by a professional
    Countertop$50 – $120Simple to use and clean, portable, no permanent installation required (great for renters), attach within a couple of secondsNot always the most thorough filtration, take up space on your counter, don’t fit pull out sprayers, flow rate can be slow
    Faucet Mounted$20 – $50Simple to use and clean, portable, no permanent installation required (great for renters), attach within a couple of secondsTake up space above/in your kitchen sink, might not be compatible with your faucet, not the most thorough filtration, flow rate can be slow
    Pitcher$20 – $50No installation required (great for renters), can be stored in refrigerator for cooling, simple to use and clean, portableDo not remove the majority of potential contaminants, filters need frequent replacements, low flow rate, limited storage volume

    Too costly? Want to learn how to build your own water filter?

    Installation + Maintenance Cost

    Let’s say you just purchased a new water filter. Now unless you bought a pitcher or a unit that simply connects to your kitchen faucet, the next step would be to have the system installed in your home.

    How much does that cost? Again, there is no definite answer because it depends on how complex the system is (check table below). The higher the complexity, the more costly the installation is likely going to be. By the way, you might be able to do the installation yourself.

    Basic labor includes mounting the unit, installing a shut-off valve, making the plumbing connections and verifying that everything works as intended and without leaks. Additional tasks are installation site preparation and cleanup.

    To this we have to add the cost of materials and supplies such as tubing, connectors and fittings if not included with the filter itself.

    If modification of your home’s existing plumbing is required, the total cost will increase by another $1,000 to $2,000.

    pipe wrench

    Most plumbers also offer to remove and dispose of old appliances and installation debris if need be. Of course this is optional and costs somewhere between $50 and $120.

    On a side note: In our opinion, if you are handy with tools there is no reason not to try to hook up your new reverse osmosis or whole house water filter DIY-style. For under sinks units, installation typically requires cutting into the drain line and drilling a hole into your countertop for the second faucet. Whole house systems require proper plumbing at the main water line.

    Bonus Tip

    If you want to make sure that the plumber you call will provide excellent service of the highest quality, check for licensing and insurance. A plumbing company recognized by the Better Business Bureau is always a great indicator.

    In addition, use sites like Yelp and Angie’s List to compare online reviews from past clients.

    Lastly, insist on a price estimate in written form upfront to avoid unpleasant surprises.

    As for maintenance, all water filter systems require filter (and membrane) replacements for optimum performance every once in a while. This adds to the cost.

    Systems with multiple filtration stages like RO units will turn out more expensive compared to simple single-stage devices – think faucet filters.

    TypeInstallation CostLaborAnnual CostTotal Cost (First Year)
    Whole House$100 to $500 and more2 – 4 hours$100 – $300$500 to $1,800 and more
    Reverse Osmosis$100 – $3001 – 3 hours$60 – $200$310 – $1,000
    Under Sink$100 – $3001 – 3 hours$20 – $150$170 – $650
    Countertop$70 – $130$120 – $250
    Faucet Mounted$20 – $40$40 – $90
    Pitcher$60 – $150$80 – $200

    Wait a Minute, What About Well Systems?

    For any reputable source providing information on water filters it is impossible to predict how much it will cost you to have a suitable well treatment system installed in your home without thorough analysis of your situation.

    What you have to know is that there are so many possible conditions that you might be facing, from high iron, sulfur and manganese content to excess hardness or harmful microorganisms. These conditions all require special treatment by specialized systems.

    In other words: You have to be certain that what you purchase makes sense for you if you don’t want to end up wasting thousands of dollars. Your first step has to be to have extensive testing done on your water.

    Bottom Line

    Most (whole) home water filtration systems are not exactly cheap. However in our opinion, the benefits that you get well justify the price. After all, the health of your family is worth much more than a couple of hundred dollars.

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    If you have any questions about home or whole house water filtration system cost, please don’t hesitate to leave a comment below!

    About the Author Gene Fitzgerald

    Gene Fitzgerald has been with BOS since the very beginning. She is head of content creation and has fully immersed herself into the home water treatment industry only to become an expert herself. Outside of BOS, Gene loves reading books on philosophy & social issues, making music, and hiking.
    Learn more about Gene and the rest of the BOS Team.


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