Last Updated on November 22, 2020
If you have a refrigerator with a water outlet or ice maker, then the correct filtration system is essential to ensure that you’re getting the cleanest and best quality water possible. Choosing the right filter is important to this process, as the quality and type of filter you choose will make a massive difference to your water quality.
Water filters will usually last around 6-10 months, depending on how much and how frequently water passes through it. These filters will typically remove contaminants like chlorine, heavy metals, chemicals, and debris, so the frequency of filter changes will also depend on the quality of water going into the filter. Not all filters are made equal, and some are more suited to remove specific contaminants than others, so it’s a good idea to know about your water source and what exactly you are attempting to filter out.
There are many water filters with different uses on the market, so it can be challenging to find the right one. We’ve done all the heavy lifting and put together this list of in-depth reviews to help you narrow down the options and choose the correct one for your unique needs.
A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites
|Best Overall||AQUACREST DA29-00020B||
|Best Value||GE MWF Refrigerator Water Filter||
|Premium Choice||Samsung Electronics HAF-CIN||
|Frigidaire ULTRAWF PureSource||
|ICEPURE PRO UKF8001||
The 10 Best Refrigerator Water Filters — Reviews 2021
1. AQUACREST DA29-00020B Refrigerator Water Filter — Best Overall
This DA29 filter from Aquacrest has effortless installation and is our top choice overall. It has three certifications from NSF international: NSF 53, reduces contaminants like lead, cysts, and VOCs; NSF 42 certified, reduces chlorine, taste, and odors; and NSF 372, certified lead free. The filter will work with up to 300 gallons of water or for around six months of regular use. The filter is also guaranteed to not affect water flow while staying leak-free, and many users report that the water tastes better through this filter than the original factory-installed filter they were previously using.
Some customers report a sandy residue left at the bottom of their water from the filter and a slow GPM rate of water output. A few also report a plastic taste inside the water or ice.
2. GE MWF Refrigerator Water Filter — Best Value
The best refrigerator water filter for the money according to our tests is the GE MWF from Best. It is inexpensive and will make your water taste great. It will filter out algae, cysts, chlorine, and mold, with a 100% lifetime money-back guarantee. It is extremely easy to install and will last for six months of regular use. It is NSF 42 certified, giving you peace of mind and chlorine-free hydration.
Several users report that this filter dramatically slows down water flow, sometimes even to a trickle. This filter is not NSF 53 certified and thus, is not proven to filter out harmful microbes, pesticides, or herbicides. It will make your water clear and taste good but will not provide much filtration for certain harmful pollutants. This is not much of an issue if your incoming water is already good quality, but this keeps this filter from our top position.
3. Samsung HAF-CIN Refrigerator Water Filter — Premium Choice
The HAF-CIN water filter from Samsung uses a high-grade carbon block that removes 99% of harmful contaminants, including taste and odor from chlorine, heavy metals like lead, chemicals, and microbial cysts. It is NSF 42 and NSF 53 certified, ensuring clean, safe, and great-tasting water. The unit is easy to install, with no leaks, fussy screws or latches, or extra tools required. While this filter is pricey, you get what you pay for, and in this case, it’s a snugly fitting filter that works the way it is supposed to.
Several users report that these filters clog quickly, which will greatly affect the speed of the water output. Of course, this will depend on your water source too. While the packaging and advertising may describe “genuine Samsung product,” this is actually an aftermarket filter. That and the high price keep this filter from our top two positions.
4. Frigidaire ULTRAWF PureSource Refrigerator Water Filter
The ULTRAWF PureSource water filter from Frigidaire is a carbon-based filter that is designed to remove the taste and odor of chlorine and thus encourage more water drinking. It removes common impurities found in tap water, such as chlorine, lead, and pesticides, and has a simple lock-and-release installation. The filter is certified by the Water Quality Association for sustainability and is NSF 42, 53, and 401 certified. The filter will last up to six months or for 200 gallons of water, whichever comes first.
Some users report that the water coming from the filter is cloudy and doesn’t settle over time. These filters will also take a great deal of priming or purging before the water runs clear, and they still have an extremely slow flow rate.
5. ICEPURE PRO UKF8001 Refrigerator Water Filter
This water filter from Icepure is tested to reduce 99.6% lead, 90% mercury, and 99% chlorine for worry-free hydration. The filter has NFS53, NFS42, and NFS372 certifications, which together, will remove commonly found metals, molds, chlorine, bacteria, and over 20 other contaminants from your drinking water. Not only will your water taste and smell better, but it will also be safer for you and your family to drink, all for an inexpensive price. The unit is easy to install and has a leak-free operation.
Several users report problems with the filter fitting, even on compatible models. This could potentially damage the water system in your fridge. Some also reported a distinct discoloration of the filtered water, accompanied by a strange taste.
6. Whirlpool 10383251 Refrigerator Water Filter
The Everydrop water filter from Whirlpool will reduce up to 28 contaminants in your water, including 99% of lead, plus chlorine, pharmaceuticals, waterborne parasites, and pesticides. It is NSF 401, 53, and 42 certified to guarantee safe, clean, and great-tasting water. It is the only water filter brand approved by Whirlpool, Maytag, Amana, KitchenAid, and JennAir and can be used for up to six months or 200 gallons of water.
This filter has been said to leak, and several customers report a “hammering,” noisy operation and low water flow output. Users also reported a metallic taste coming from the filter, even after flushing it.
7. LG LT700P Refrigerator Water Filter
LG is a trusted name in the electronics world, and the LT700P water filter lives up to the brand’s reputation. The filter is NSF 42 and 53 certified and will remove contaminants like pesticides, detergents, and chemicals, plus 99% of cysts, 99% of asbestos, and almost all metals, like lead and mercury. Not only does the filter remove 90% of these potentially harmful contaminants, but it will make your water taste great too, with no chlorine odor, taste, or discoloration. The filter is easy to replace and can be fitted in minutes, with no specialized tools required.
Several users report that the filter stopped working well before the stated 200-gallon limit. The water had sediment settling at the bottom, and the water had a strange metallic flavor and odor.
8. Genuine Kenmore Elite 9081 Refrigerator Water Filter
The Elite 9081 water filter from Kenmore has NSF 42, 53, and 401 certifications to ensure clean and great-tasting water every time. It will reduce lead and other metals, chlorine, molds, and some pharmaceuticals and pesticides. The filter is also highly affordable, considering its impressive specifications, and is easy to install.
Many customers report a “chattering” sound after installing the filter, followed by a rapid slowing down of the water flow rate. They also report that the water will not taste great until the filter is flushed out, which may take a few gallons of run through. This filter is also prone to get clogged easily, which then slows the water flow even further, and may leave sediment in the filtered water.
9. Culligan IC 1 Refrigerator Filtration System
Designed for a staggering 3,000 gallons of use, the Culligan IC 1 will give you clean and tasty water for years to come. It will reduce the bad tastes and odors from chlorine with its NSF 42 certification. It is designed to be easy and quick to install with Quick Connect fittings and a twist-on, twist-off mechanism, which negates the need for extra tools, buckets, and time-consuming fiddling. It comes with all the necessary mounting hardware required too.
The filter cartridge itself is prone to breaking easily, which will cause leaking and water flooding out your fridge. It is also prone to clogging and causing a low water flow output, with not much change in the taste of the water, as reported by some users. If you are using the filter exclusively for an ice maker, you will need to purchase extra fittings that are hard to find. Plus, while this filter may remove bad taste and odor, it is only NSF 42 certified, which means metals and chemicals will likely still come through.
10. Woder WD-10K Refrigerator Water Filter
The Woder WD-10K has both NSF 42 and NSF 372 certification and is designed to eliminate bad odors and tastes, plus heavy metals, detergents, pesticides, chlorine, and other chemicals. It will remove 99% of contaminants, while still leaving behind beneficial minerals inside your water, like sodium, potassium, and calcium. The installation will take only a few minutes, without the need for additional tools or experience.
This filter doesn’t last long compared to other filters on the market, and your water will start to taste bad and slow to a trickle far quicker than some other models. Some users report a bad taste and odor intermittently coming from the filtered water from day one, which may be caused by a slow build-up that periodically releases, pointing toward a bad design. Some refrigerators may require extra fittings to install this filter correctly.
The first base to cover when buying a replacement water filter for your refrigerator is to make sure that the filter fits your make and model of refrigerator. The filter maker will usually list the machines that the filter is compatible with, so you can be sure before purchasing.
Once you know the correct model, there are a few other factors to be aware of before diving in and buying a filter. These factors will all make a huge difference in the quality of water coming from the filter, and your choice will largely depend on exactly how much filtration you want or need and what type of filtration you need. If the water going into your filter from the tap is already clean and safe, you may just want to remove the odor and taste that can sometimes be caused by the cleaning and purification process. However, if the water coming from your tap is questionable, a more thorough and powerful filter is in order. The main points to take into consideration when purchasing a filter are the following.
Filtration ability. It’s a good idea to find out the quality of water that is being supplied to your home, and once you know what you are dealing with, you can choose the correct filter accordingly. The filtration abilities of different models vary widely, from reducing bad taste to removing heavy metals and chemicals. You may have a good incoming water source and only need the former, and the latter can be a great deal more expensive. Generally, the higher the price tag, the better the filtration capability of the filter.
Lifespan. The vast majority of filters on the market are rated at around six months or 200-300 gallons of water before changing is required, whichever comes first. However, inline filters have a longer lifespan, as do filters that aren’t doing much heavy lifting. If your filter is only reducing bad odor and taste, it will usually last longer than heavier duty filters.
NSF certification. Most filters on the market will have one or more NSF certifications. There are three varieties of certification usually found with commercial water filters. NSF 42 is the most basic requirement for water filtration, which will reduce the taste and odor of contaminants like chlorine commonly used in the purification process. NSF 53 certification will reduce or remove contaminants with known health risks, like bacteria and molds, and an NSF 372 certification will remove or reduce lead content in the water.
Benefits of having a refrigerator water filter
Now that you’ve had a look at the different types available and what they can do, here are a few advantages to having a good filtration system in your refrigerator:
- Great tasting water. The first benefit is the great-tasting cold water, always on tap, to help promote adequate hydration every day.
- Improved health. The reduction of contaminants and metals will lead to an overall improvement in health.
- Environmentally friendly. If your tap water doesn’t taste good or is not safe to drink, you are more likely to buy bottled water for drinking. Plastic bottles are highly detrimental to the environment, and a filter will save you buying hundreds of plastic bottles that may eventually end up in landfills.
- Money-saving. Bottled water is not cheap, and the low expense of a simple refrigerator water filter will help reduce your shopping costs dramatically.
The best refrigerator water filter overall according to our tests is the DA29 from Aquacrest. It has quick and effortless installation and three certifications from NSF International and will work with up to 300 gallons of water, or around six months of regular use.
The best refrigerator water filter for the money is the GE MWF from Best. It will make your water taste great and filter out algae, cysts, chlorine, and mold, plus it has a 100% lifetime money-back guarantee.
Clean, safe, and tasty water is essential to good health. The better the water tastes, the more likely you are to drink it and stay adequately hydrated, and a water filter in your fridge is a great way to do this. There are a ton of options out there, though, and choosing the right one can be a challenge. Hopefully, our in-depth reviews have helped you navigate this maze and find the best refrigerator water filter to suit your unique needs.
David Slone runs the TapIt Water blog. He first learned about water filtration and the impact it has on the world in college. Ever since that day he has worked towards making the world a better place. He writes to inform you about water filtration, the consequences of plastics, bottled water, and how we can do things better.
He loves to spend time with his beloved wife, 3 kids, and dog when he’s not writing.
- 1 A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites
- 2 The 10 Best Refrigerator Water Filters — Reviews 2021
- 2.1 1. AQUACREST DA29-00020B Refrigerator Water Filter — Best Overall
- 2.2 2. GE MWF Refrigerator Water Filter — Best Value
- 2.3 3. Samsung HAF-CIN Refrigerator Water Filter — Premium Choice
- 2.4 4. Frigidaire ULTRAWF PureSource Refrigerator Water Filter
- 2.5 5. ICEPURE PRO UKF8001 Refrigerator Water Filter
- 2.6 6. Whirlpool 10383251 Refrigerator Water Filter
- 2.7 7. LG LT700P Refrigerator Water Filter
- 2.8 8. Genuine Kenmore Elite 9081 Refrigerator Water Filter
- 2.9 9. Culligan IC 1 Refrigerator Filtration System
- 2.10 10. Woder WD-10K Refrigerator Water Filter
- 3 Buyers Guide
- 4 Conclusion