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Best Countertop Reverse Osmosis Filters

By: David Trinh
Last Updated:
Countertop Reverse Osmosis Filters

Everyone already understands the importance of having access to clean drinking water in our homes.

For those looking for a convenient way to receive highly-purified water, a countertop reverse osmosis water filtration system is ideal.

Countertop reverse osmosis water filtration systems can remove up to 99% of contaminants in your water supply.

In this guide, we’re highlighting the best countertop RO systems to help you with your buying decision.

Top Countertop Reverse Osmosis Filters

IMAGE PRODUCT FEATURES
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#1 Waterdrop Countertop RO System
  • It takes 15 or 20 minutes to fill the 80-ounce water pitcher.
  • It produces one gallon of wastewater for every two gallons it purifies.
  • The filter lasts for up to 12 months.
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#2 Aquatru Countertop System
  • It produces one gallon of water every 12 to 15 minutes.
  • Wastes up to three gallons of water for every gallon it produces.
  • The RO membrane lasts for up to two years.
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#3 AlcaPure Countertop RO System
  • It takes 10 or 20 minutes to process water.
  • Wastes one gallon of water for every gallon it produces
  • The RO membrane lasts between two and four years.
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Best Countertop Reverse Osmosis Filters

We’ve reviewed each of our top countertop RO filters in detail below so you can choose the best device for your home.

1. Best Overall: Waterdrop Countertop RO System

waterdrop

Our overall best pick is the Waterdrop Countertop RO System. We love that it doesn’t have a built-in tank, so there’s no risk of pollutants getting back into your drinking water. This countertop water filter system’s filter life lasts for twelve months, minimizing the replacement costs.

This system features an all-in-one design featuring multi-filtration that can remove up to 1,000 contaminants. This system’s design also doesn’t require a power connection because it doesn’t contain a pump. 

We also love that this reverse osmosis system comes with a large, BPA-free water pitcher. The pitcher is removable, so you can keep it in the refrigerator or anywhere else you want filtered water. This water pitcher’s stand-out feature is that you can rotate it 180° for using it at multiple angles.

A feature that sets this countertop reverse osmosis system apart is its requirement for under sink plumbing connections for its fresh and wastewater. However, unlike with competing countertop reverse osmosis systems, that connection doesn’t interfere with the sink’s faucet. 

Additional features of this countertop reverse osmosis water filter include:

  • Non-electric countertop reverse osmosis water filter system.
  • No pump in this countertop water filter, making it quieter than competitors.
  • A tankless reverse osmosis system complete with 80-ounce BPA-free water pitcher
  • Water pitcher detaches for easy storage and portability.
  • Has five stages of filtration, including a post-filter and RO membrane

Pros

  • The water filter takes between 15 and 20 minutes to fill.
  • It produces a gallon of wastewater for every two gallons it purifies.
  • The filter lasts for up to 12 months or 550 gallons of water.
  • There’s a one-year limited warranty.

Cons

  • You need to drill a hole into your countertop to use these reverse osmosis water filters.
  • This unit isn’t an on-demand system with a high-output level.
  • Not an ideal option for renters due to installation requirement.

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2. Best Portable Countertop Unit: Aquatru Countertop System

Aquatru-countertop-filter

We love the AquaTru countertop system because, in addition to being the first, it’s also the only countertop RO system that’s NSF certified to remove up to 99% of 82 contaminants and TDS. Examples of those contaminants include chlorine, chromium, fluoride, lead, PFAs, and more. That means this countertop unit removes 15 times more than its competitors. 

This 4-stage reverse osmosis water filter system’s stand-out feature is that it’s a plug and play model. That means you don’t have to worry about installation or plumbing to receive filtered water from your sink’s faucet. That makes this countertop reverse osmosis system ideal for renters.

The first stage includes a mechanical pre-filter that removes cloudiness and sediments. During the second stage, an activated carbon filter removes up to 99% of chloramines and chlorine. Stage three is when the RO filter destroys inorganic chemicals, including chromium six and lead. During the fourth stage, the activated coconut shell carbon VOC filter removes toxic organic chemicals. These RO systems also feature an 80% recovery rate, which means there’s only 20% wastewater going down your drain.

Regarding wastewater, the AquaTru countertop system is one of the most efficient on the market. You’ll find this is especially true when comparing this unit to other under the sink designs. A standard system wastes approximately three gallons for every gallon it produces. However, AquaTru only wastes around 25% during its reverse osmosis process.

Additional features of these reverse osmosis systems include:

  • A digital display indicates when filter changes must occur.
  • NSF certified to remove up to 99% of 82 contaminants
  • Can remove dispensary tank to store in the refrigerator
  • No assembly required; just run water from your faucet into this system.
  • BPA-free plastic construction

Pros

  • Produces one gallon of water every 12 to 15 minutes.
  • Wastes three gallons of water for every one gallon it produces.
  • The RO membrane lasts up to two years.
  • This unit has a one-year warranty.

Cons

  • Some consumers believe this countertop water filter is too expensive.
  • Others believe that the plastic construction is prone to too many scratches.
  • Some stated that their systems stopped working after several uses.

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3. Best Zero Installation Purifier: AlcaPure Countertop RO System

alcapure

The AlcaPure water filter is a 4-stage countertop water filter featuring reverse osmosis technology. This faucet water filtration system can remove up to 1,000 contaminants (or 99%) and TDS, including arsenic, chloramine, chlorine, chromium, fluoride, heavy metals, lead, mercury, and radium. 

A stand-out feature for this counter top RO system is its remineralization stage. Because the reverse osmosis process removes all particles of a specific size, including natural minerals including calcium and magnesium. This feature is essential for reverse osmosis filtration because many believe natural minerals are beneficial for their health. 

When adding natural minerals back into filtered water, its pH raises to between seven and eight. That creates more alkaline water. Alkaline water tastes like the “mineral water” that many prefer. Another stand-out feature is that this reverse osmosis water filter uses a low 30-watt power supply and produces a 1:1 filed water to wastewater ratio.

Because this system works just like a coffee maker, it’s easy to get purified water from your home’s faucet. All you have to do to get clean water is fill the unit’s bottom pitcher with a gallon of water. Then, after you press the start button, you’ll have purified water after approximately 15 minutes. When the filtration process is complete, this system shuts off automatically. 

 Additional features for this zero installation purifier include:

  • No installation means it’s easy to set up and use
  • The first stage of filtration uses a 5-micron sediment filter.
  • The second stage uses a coconut shell activated calcium carbonate filter.
  • The third stage includes a RO membrane that removes heavy metals.
  • Remineralization occurs during the fourth stage.

Pros

  • Processing one gallon of water takes ten to 20 minutes.
  • Only wastes one gallon of water for each gallon it purifies, which is substantially less than competitors wasting between three and five gallons.
  • The RO membrane lasts between two and four years.
  • This unit has a one-year warranty.

Cons

  • Some consumers have difficulty locking down the feed tank.
  • Others state that the unit stops working and can’t detect feed water.
  • Some report leakage issues.

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4. Best for Temperature Control: SimPure RO System

simpure

The SimPure RO system is an ideal solution for those living in tight spaces or who want to use this unit at the office. Its five-liter detachable tank and its 1.5-liter internal storage tank make this unit an exceptional choice for those who want to produce more filtered water than its competitors. 

The SimPure RO System is a 4-stage countertop reverse osmosis filter system. This unit includes a 2-in-1 composite filter and a 0.0001-micron RO membrane. There’s also an activated carbon filter that removes up to 99% of over 1,000 contaminants and TDS. Examples of those contaminants include bacteria, chlorine, fluoride, heavy metals, lead, limescale, viruses, and more.

This reverse osmosis water filtration system is the only unit we could find with a temperature setting. You’ll find four settings, including coffee, low-temperature milk, average room temperature, and tea. These settings ensure that your faucet water receives the ideal amount of warmth, whether you’re trying to make a cup of coffee or warm baby formula.

Another stand-out feature that we like is that you don’t need to install this reverse osmosis water filter system, and there’s no need to make any changes to your plumbing. Operating this unit involves merely plugging it in, and then it’s ready to go. You’ll also find an LED display when it’s time to change filters and the water’s quality.

Additional features of this countertop reverse osmosis water filter system include:

  • FDA-approved UV purification system
  • LED display indicates water quality
  • Instant heat with four temperature settings
  • Meets NSF standards
  • 4-stage filtration 

Pros

  • It takes approximately 15 minutes to produce clean drinking water.
  • This unit produces five gallons of purified water for every one gallon it wastes.
  • Removes up to 99% of more than 1,000 contaminants.
  • The five-liter tank is removable.
  • No installation required with plug and play design.

Cons

  • You need to dump out the wastewater.
  • Some consumers believe that the filters don’t last as long as competing models.
  • Other consumers don’t like that it requires electricity to use.

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5. Best Budget Choice: APEC Portable Countertop System

apec

If you’re looking for a portable reverse osmosis water filter, APEC is an excellent option. APEC water systems RO-CTOP-C are installation-free. You can get great tasting water by merely attaching the countertop RO water filter to your sink’s faucet. You can’t use this portable countertop RO water filter with pull-out, spray, or special size designer faucets. 

APEC water systems RO-CTOP-C countertop water filter systems are ideal for anyone living in apartments, condos, motor homes, or anyone who loves traveling. This portable RO water filter system can produce up to 90 gallons per day. 

A stand-out feature of the APEC water systems RO-CTOP-C countertop water filter is that it features four stages. The stages include a sediment filter, activated carbon filter, reverse osmosis membrane, and post-carbon filter. That means the RO filter removes up to 99% of contaminants from your tap water. 

We love that this system’s compact design makes it lightweight, portable, and easy to install. Traditional RO systems take between two and three hours to install. You also need to ensure that there’s enough room underneath your sink for installation to occur. That isn’t the case when choosing this system from APEC. Because it doesn’t take up a considerable amount of room on the countertop, it’s ideal for boats, RVs, and small kitchens. 

The first stage involves water flowing through the 5-micron sediment filter; it removes debris and dust before it reaches stage two. During stage two, the coconut shell activated carbon filter removes chlorine, cloudiness, odors, and VOCs. In stage three, the reverse osmosis membrane removes 99% of TDS (total dissolved solids) before it reaches stage four, eliminating residual tastes.

Additional features of these countertop RO systems include:

  • Produces 90 gallons per day
  • The water pressure requirement is between 40 and 80 PSI.
  • Compatible with a standard faucet
  • Installation-free design
  • NSF certified BPA-free components

Pros

  • Useful for those in dorm rooms or traveling in an RV.
  • Budget-friendly pricing.
  • Hooks directly to your kitchen faucet.
  • Only wastes two gallons of water for every gallon it produces.

Cons

  • You can’t fit these RO systems to any type of water faucet.
  • Some consumers believe the water flow rate is too low.
  • Other consumers don’t like its design.

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6. Best Faucet-Mounting System: RO Revolution Countertop System

countertop portable RO

While the RO Revolution Countertop System looks a lot like the APEC portable reverse osmosis system, there are several notable differences. The first difference is that the RO Revolution filtration system includes five filtration stages instead of four. The second difference is that there’s no case enclosing this reverse osmosis countertop water filter. 

We love this countertop reverse osmosis water filter because it mounts to any faucet in your home to deliver great-tasting water. This portable reverse osmosis filtration system is ideal for apartments, aquariums, homes, RVs, and travelers. 

We also love that these house systems produce between 75 and 100 gallons per day. That means this reverse osmosis water filter system can handle producing water daily for your entire family. The ease of installation is another stand-out feature because you don’t need a plumber to attach these countertop RO systems to your home’s faucet. 

Setting up and installing this system is quick and easy. You’ll also find that it can produce between 500 and 700 gallons of water before the filters need replacing. That equates to approximately five months or 150 days. If you typically spend money on bottled water, switching to this system can save you a considerable amount of money. Because it only takes approximately one hour to produce three gallons of water, this is a cost-effective solution.

Additional features of this countertop reverse osmosis water filtration system include:

  • Produces 75 gallons per day
  • Reduces fluoride to between 85% and 90%
  • Includes a deionizer mixed bed post-filter
  • Includes a two-way chrome diverter for your kitchen faucet
  • You can use these RO systems with laundry or hose pipe.

Pros

  • Five stages of filtration.
  • Removes up to 600 contaminants.
  • No assembly required.
  • The faucet connection makes it easy to travel with this RO system.

Cons

  • High wastewater ratio of 2.8 gallons wasted for every gallon of purified water it produces.
  • Some consumers don’t like the design of this sink reverse osmosis system.
  • Other consumers don’t like that the filters only last for six months.

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What to Consider in a Countertop Reverse Osmosis Filter

It isn’t uncommon to feel overwhelmed when trying to find the best water filters. Aside from ensuring your home has enough water pressure to support a tankless reverse osmosis system, there are some other points you should consider before purchasing these units. The most essential considerations include filtration stages, contaminants removal, certifications, filter capacity, installation, filter life, price, and design.

Stages of Filtration & Contaminants Removed

Most countertop water filters feature four stages of filtration. These stages include carbon and sediment pre-filters, a reverse osmosis membrane, and a post-filter. You might also find other stages for each countertop water filter system, including mineral or UV water filters. Look for systems that remove as many contaminants as possible and at the highest percentage. 

Certifications and Quality

The best countertop system meets NSF standards. These standards guarantee that specific reverse osmosis systems are capable of reducing and removing a considerable amount of harmful contaminants from your home’s water. Look for the following NSF standards:

  • NSF Standard 42 for water aesthetics
  • NSF Standard 53 for water contaminants that affect your health
  • NSF Standard 58 for additional water substances
  • NSF Standard 401 for emerging water contaminants
  • NSF Protocol P473 for the reduction of PFOA/PFOS

Water Filter Capacity

Water production is essential for many, particularly those who have large families. You want to make sure the water filter capacity can produce enough filtered water for your entire family. Look at features like the unit’s gallons per day to determine if its capacity meets your home’s requirements. For example, larger families need up to 90 gallons per day, and small families can work with around 50 gallons per day.

Installation

Typically, a countertop reverse osmosis water filter system uses a standard faucet connection. However, if you have a designer faucet, you might not be able to hook up this countertop reverse osmosis system. If this is your situation, look for countertop water filters that include a faucet adapter or allow you to fill the tank separately.

Filter Lifespan & Durability

When looking for a countertop water filter system, always check for the lifespan of the RO filter, pre-filters, and post-filters. Keep in mind that the pre and post-filters have a different lifespan than the RO filter. While some might have an RO filter that can last for between three and five years, pre and post-filters tend to last around six months.

Price

You must keep in mind that, just because the system features a high price, that doesn’t always mean it’s the best. Budgetary concerns are a reality for many who are looking for filtered water solutions. There are many options available, featuring affordable pricing and high-quality components. It’s also a good idea to search for units that offer incentives like free shipping or other discounts. 

Design

Because you’re probably planning on keeping this countertop water filter system on display for years, it’s a good idea to choose an RO system featuring a design you like. That way, you’re not wasting money picking out another reverse osmosis countertop water filter because you don’t like its design.

Conclusion

Choosing a reverse osmosis system for your countertop doesn’t have to be an overwhelming process when you have the best information in front of you. Receiving high-quality filtered water is possible when you pick a RO system that meets your home’s requirements, includes buying incentives (like free shipping, for example), and has optimal design features.

Our top pick is the Waterdrop Countertop RO system. We love this system because it features an 80-ounce water pitcher that only takes between 15 and 20 minutes to fill. We also love that it has a low wastewater ratio. 

Our pick for the second runner-up is the Aquatru Countertop system. We love that it only takes between 15 and 20 minutes to produce a gallon of water. We also want to mention the AlcaPure countertop RO system for its quick water production and low 1:1 wastewater ratio.

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AUTHOR
David Trinh
David is an expert in all things plumbing, heating, cooling, and water treatment. He got his start in the plumbing business working on fixing all types of home improvement issues including water leaks, broken toilets, appliance installation, and more. Over time, he learned a ton about installing and choosing the correct water treatment products for homeowners. He nows spends part of his time servicing local clients and part of his time educating consumers about water treatment and other household appliances.