Review: ZeroWater Filter Pitcher (10-Cup Ready-Pour ZD-010RP)

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The ZeroWater 10-Cup Ready-Pour Water Filter Pitcher aims to improve drinking water quality by reducing TDS (close) to zero.

Besides, it has two NSF certifications, an average filter life of 20 gallons, and an easy-to-assemble setup.

Does that mean it’s a good buy? Let’s find out!

ZeroWater 10-Cup Ready-Pour 5-Stage Water Filter Pitcher

ZeroWater 10-Cup Ready-Pour 5-Stage Water Filter Pitcher

Price: $$
Filter Process: Carbon, KDF, Ion Exchange Resins, Sediment Filtration
Filter Life: 20 Gallons
Storage Volume: 10 Cups
Annual Cost: ~$190-225

Overall Rating: 4.0/5.0 ⓘRating based on filtration performance, filter life, price and yearly cost, NSF testing/certification, customer support, product warranty, our testing/experience, user feedback, and other factors.

ZeroWater 10-Cup Ready-Pour 5-Stage Water Filter Pitcher – All Specs

  • Model: ZD-010RP
  • Annual Maintenance Cost: ~$190-225
  • Filter Media/Process: Activated Carbon, KDF, Ion Exchange, Sediment Filtration
  • Filtering Capacity: 20 gal
  • Storage Capacity: 10 Cups
  • WxHxD: 5.5”x11”x10.25”
  • Weight: 3.1 lb.
  • NSF Certifications: Standard 42, 53
  • Warranty: 90 Days

ZeroWater 10-Cup – Key Features

The ZeroWater 10-Cup Ready-Pour Water Filter Pitcher is a 5-stage filter. The 5 stages are:

  1. A coarse filter: This removes sediments and other floating particles.
  2. Carbon + KDF filter media: This second stage traps chlorine and organic contaminants, and prevents bacteria and other germs from growing in the filter cartridge.
  3. A media distributor: This stage maximizes contact time with the water for the next stage.
  4. Ion exchange resin: Removes inorganic compounds, including metals and non-metals. It’s a mixed bed for trapping both positive and negative ions (cation and anion resin bed).
  5. A non-woven membrane: This last stage removes finer particles.

All in all, the system’s filtration process aims to reduce water TDS levels to zero, hence the name ZeroWater – we will discuss whether or not this approach is truly effective further below.

What’s more, the pitcher comes with a free TDS meter for measuring TDS levels after filtration, and there’s a space on the pitcher lid to store the meter.

Filter life is 20 gallons which is really short (more on this soon) and water storage capacity is 10 cups which is pretty average.

ZeroWater ZD-010RP Filter Pitcher Pros

First, the ZeroWater 10-Cup Ready-Pour Water Filter Pitcher is affordable at purchase.

We also like that it’s easy to set up and use. The design allows you to dispense water through the spigot even while water is being filtered, so you don’t have to wait until the top reservoir is empty before you drink.

The pitcher also has two NSF certifications clearing it for contaminant removal.

What Contaminants Are Being Removed?

The ZeroWater ZD-010RP removes up to 99.6% of total dissolved solids. ZeroWater provides the following reduction rates:

  • 94.9% PFOA/PFOS
  • 99% antimony
  • 98% arsenic 5
  • 99.9% barium
  • 97% cadmium
  • 99.6% chromium 6
  • 95.9-99.7% lead
  • 96.0-96.7% mercury
  • 99% asbestos
  • 97.5% chlorine
  • 99% fluoride
  • 98% nitrate
  • 99% nitrite
  • Few other metals and non-metals

ZeroWater 10-Cup Ready-Pour 5-Stage Water Filter Pitcher

The ZeroWater 10-Cup Ready-Pour – learn more on

Assembly and Filter Priming

As mentioned, the ZeroWater ZD-010RP is easy to assemble; it only takes four steps. But before you get started, clean the lid and water reservoir with warm water or soapy water.

Please consider these instructions as a general guideline. Always make sure to check and follow your user manual before getting started.

To install:

  1. Separate the lid and reservoir from the pitcher. Then, unwrap the filter.
  2. Fix the filter firmly beneath the reservoir. Make sure it seals in tightly.
  3. Add your water to the reservoir and cover it with the lid.
  4. Wait for the water to go through the filter, then dispense your filtered water.

The Package (Parts)

  • ZeroWater ZD-010RP Water Filter Pitcher
  • ZeroWater Filter Cartridge
  • TDS Meter


While this ZeroWater pitcher may be cheap to purchase, maintaining it is rather expensive.

It has a short filter life of 20 gallons, so you need to replace cartridges regularly. Plus, ZeroWater recommends replacing whenever water TDS goes above 6.

We estimate you’ll spend about $190-225 yearly on filter replacements.

That said, replacing the filter is easy. Here are the few steps involved:

  1. Remove the system’s lid and reservoir.
  2. Detach the old filter from the reservoir.
  3. Fix the new filter to the bottom of the reservoir.
  4. Place the reservoir back in the pitcher and add tap water to resume filtration.


Here is a link to the official manual:

NSF and Other Certifications

The ZeroWater 10-Cup Ready-Pour 5-Stage Water Filter Pitcher has two NSF certifications: NSF 42 and NSF 53.

  • NSF 42 certifies the system for the reduction of chlorine, taste, and odor.
  • NSF 53 confirms that the filter reduces chromium-6, lead, mercury, PFOA, and PFOS.

Earlier Product Versions

To our knowledge, there are no earlier product versions.

ZeroWater Filter Pitcher Cons

Our main issue is the too-short filter life. Replacing your filters every 20 gallons or when the TDS level exceeds 6 is a lot of work. Plus, you spend a lot of money – $190-$225 yearly, depending on if you buy filters in bulk. We also read complaints about some filters only lasting 10 gallons (half of the estimated filter life), meaning you may need to replace them even more often and spend twice as much. That’s discouraging.

Also, filtration can be painfully slow.

And the system only has a 90-day limited warranty, which is short compared to other water filter pitchers.

Some users further complained about the water taste worsening after a short while and the filter leaking. Many also had issues with the filter’s design.

One last but major problem is ZeroWater’s approach of judging drinking water quality based on the TDS level. We don’t think it’s ideal. TDS includes healthy impurities (like calcium and magnesium) and unhealthy contaminants. So TDS does not differentiate between them. Your water could have a high TDS level simply because it contains certain minerals which is not a health issue at all. Meanwhile, there are lots of harmful water contaminants that do not contribute to TDS levels. What if your water contains them? You’d have a low TDS reading, but your water would still be unsafe to drink.

In order to judge drinking water quality, we prefer thorough lab analysis.

ZeroWater 10-Cup Review: Our Verdict + Best for

So, how do we rate this ZeroWater filter pitcher?

Well, we have activated carbon, KDF, and ion exchange resins, so a mixture of potent filter media. We also have high contaminant reduction rates tested/certified against NSF standards. The biggest con is certainly the extremely low filter life, which means frequent replacements required, and costs that really start to add up. We also don’t like the “0” TDS marketing approach. We find it a bit misleading.

All in all, 4 stars.

Our Rating in Detail:

  • Filtration Performance: 4.0/5.0
  • Filter Capacity (Life): 2.0/5.0
  • Purchase Price: 5.0/5.0
  • Annual Cost: 3.5/5.0
  • Overall: 4.0/5.0

Comparison to Other Water Filter Pitchers

Let’s see how the ZeroWater ZD-010RP Water Filter Pitcher measures against the Clearly Filtered pitcher and the Epic Pure and Epic Nano water filter pitchers.

Clearly Filtered Water Filter Pitcher

Clearly Filtered

Price: $$$
Filter Process: Carbon + Composite Shell
Filter Capacity: 100 gal
Total Storage Volume: 17 Cups
Annually: ~$150

Overall Rating: 5.0/5.0 ⓘRating based on filtration performance, filter life, price and yearly cost, NSF testing/certification, customer support, product warranty, our testing/experience, user feedback, and other factors.

Get 10% Off! Use Code: WELCOME10

Epic Pure Water Filtration Pitcher

Epic Pure

Price: $$$
Filter Process: Carbon Block, Ion Exchange Resin
Filter Capacity: 150 gal
Total Storage Volume: 14.8 Cups
Annually: $90-135

Overall Rating: 4.5/5.0 ⓘRating based on filtration performance, filter life, price and yearly cost, NSF testing/certification, customer support, product warranty, our testing/experience, user feedback, and other factors.

Get 20% Off! Use Code: BOSEpic

ZeroWater 10-Cup Ready-Pour 5-Stage Water Filter Pitcher

ZeroWater 10-Cup Ready-Pour

Price: $
Filter Process: Carbon, KDF, Ion Exchange, Sediment Filtration
Filter Capacity: 20 gal
Storage Volume: 10 Cups
Annually: ~$190-225

Overall Rating: 4.0/5.0 ⓘRating based on filtration performance, filter life, price and yearly cost, NSF testing/certification, customer support, product warranty, our testing/experience, user feedback, and other factors.

The Clearly Filtered pitcher (review here) is certainly a premium model. It’s been NSF-tested to remove over 365 contaminants from water, which is unheard of, and has a long filter life of 100 gallons or four months. It uses activated carbon and proprietary media to remove contaminants like arsenic, lead, pesticides, VOCs, PFAS, fluoride, chlorine, and chloramine.

Plus, it has a total storage of 17 cups and a filtered water storage of 10 cups. It’s 100% BPA-free, built in the USA, and easily refillable with a removable lid. And while ZeroWater only offers a 90-day warranty, Clearly Filtered provides a limited lifetime warranty and a 30-day satisfaction guarantee.

Finally, the Clearly Filtered pitcher is more affordable to maintain than the ZeroWater but more expensive at purchase.

Epic Pure and Nano pitchers are budget-friendly but still powerful options. ZeroWater may remove more dissolved solids, but Epic pitchers target more different contaminant types. Both filters use a blend of activated carbon and ion exchange to remove over 200 pollutants, including chlorine, nitrate, arsenic, lead, pesticides, VOCs, and more. They have NSF testing against standards 42, 53, 401, P473, and — for Nano only — P231.

By the way, Epic Pure and Nano filter cartridges are interchangeable, so you can swap them later. The Epic Pure is designed for tap water with fluoride, while the Nano is for well water containing bacteria and other microbes.

Other nice features are a 150-gallon filter life (longer than ZeroWater and Clearly Filtered), a built-in timer for filter replacement, and a 14.8-cup storage capacity. Also: BPA-free and 100% made in the USA, lifetime warranty, and smooth return policy.

Epic runs a recycling program where you can get a free filter in exchange for four used ones. They also provide discounts for teachers, medical staff, military personnel, first responders, seniors, students, and owners and employees of non-profit organizations.

Lastly, the Epic Pure and Nano are the cheapest to maintain, although buying costs are a bit higher than with the ZeroWater.

In a nutshell, the best choice here is the Clearly Filtered, but it’s also the most expensive. Epic Pure/Nano is budget-friendly and still effective. ZeroWater is the cheapest to buy, but you’ll spend more to maintain it, and it has the lowest filter life. We’d pick the Epic over it.

This completes our review of the ZeroWater 10-Cup Ready-Pour 5-Stage Water Filter Pitcher. If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to leave a comment below!

About the Author Gene Fitzgerald

Gene Fitzgerald is one of the founders of BOS and currently head of content creation. She has 8+ years of experience as a water treatment specialist under her belt making her our senior scientist. Outside of BOS, Gene loves reading books on philosophy & social issues, making music, and hiking.
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