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10 best water filter jugs for cleaner, fresher tap water

Get great-tasting water at home with our pick of the best water filter jugs.

By Poppy O'Neill | Last updated Sep 22, 2021

Woman drinking a glass of water

While tap water is safe to drink in the UK, many of us opt for a water filter to remove impurities like chlorine and heavy metals. If you live in a hard water area, you’ll know the struggle of a fuzzy kettle full of limescale from tap water, not to mention floaty bits in your tea - yuck. 

Using a water filter can also make tap water taste cleaner, and according to many Mumsnetters, better. Having filtered water ready to use for hot and cold drinks is an added comfort and convenience, especially as so many of us have had to get used to making coffee at home thanks to the pandemic. 

Gone are the days of only one type of water filter jug. Now there are eco-friendly jugs, stylish designs and even filters that will increase the alkalinity of your water. We’ve gone through all the options and whittled them down to the very best the internet has to offer. 

Here are the best water filter jugs to buy in 2021.

1. Best overall water filter jug: Aqua Optima

Aqua Optima water filter jug

Price: £23 | Buy now from Amazon

"I personally prefer the Aqua Optima water filter to Brita for taste and speed of filtering. Cheaper jug, much cheaper cartridges" - SaltyPeanut 

With its bargainous cartridges and fast filtering, we love the Aqua Optima. This jug comes with three cartridges - which are 100% recyclable and will last up to one month each - and is a great price. When it’s time for a new pack, Mumsnetters recommend the Wilko cartridges, which are £15 for a pack of six. 

Thanks to the thorough but speedy filtration system, it’ll make your tap water taste great but won’t leave you tapping your foot waiting to fill the kettle. A brilliant all-rounder for all your water filtration needs. 

Key specs

  • Capacity: 2.8 litres
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes

2. Best budget water filter jug: Wilko 2.4L Filter Jug

Wilko water filter jug

Price: £7 | Buy now from Wilko 

At just £7, this Wilko water filter jug is a total bargain. It comes with one filter cartridge and refill packs are available for a few pounds. 

Its slim design means it fits easily in the fridge, and it’ll give you clean, great-tasting water. It’s not the most robust filter jug out there, so it won’t last as well as the more expensive models with heavy use. But if you’re after a cheap and cheerful water filter that does the job, try this Wilko jug. 

Key specs

  • Capacity: 2.4 litres
  • Dishwasher safe: No

3. Best fridge door water filter Jug: Brita Marella

Brita Marella water filter jug

Price: £21 | Buy now from Amazon

"There isn't a speck of limescale in my kettle ever since I started filling it with filtered water from the Brita jug and not the tap. This was nearly a year ago, to me that means that I've stopped drinking all the horrible white bits from the bottom of the kettle!" - Maraki

Brita is the biggest name in water filter jugs and we love this fridge-door-friendly model. Choosing a filter jug that’ll fit in the fridge is a wise decision as it means you can enjoy a cold glass of water any time, as well as keeping your kettle limescale-free. 

This jug has a little digital display to remind you when to replace the filter and comes with a three-month supply of filter cartridges included in the price. Mumsnetters are partial to the taste of Brita-filtered water and we’re fond of the unusual blue details on this model. 

Key specs

  • Capacity: 2.4 litres
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes

4. Best portable water filter jug: Bobble Bottle

Bobble Bottle

Price: £13 | Buy now from Amazon

"I got mine because the water from the drinking fountain at work is nasty. It vastly improved the flavour both at work and in a holiday home I stayed at. Also good for keeping track of how much you're drinking" - MyNameisWinkly

For filtered water you can carry around, try a Bobble Bottle. The little stick filters the water in the bottle so you get great-tasting water whether you’re on the school run, at the park or on the way home from work. It’ll help you break a single-using plastic water bottle habit quicker than a larger jug, as you won’t have to deal with the hassle of pouring from a big jug into a smaller bottle. 

Bobble Bottles are also great for chucking a few slices of lemon or cucumber into your water, as you get all the flavour without the floaty bits. Replacement filters can be quite pricey, and the manufacturer recommends replacing them after they’ve filtered around 150 litres of water. 

Key specs

  • Capacity: 590ml
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes

5. Best charcoal water filter jug: Black + Blum Carafe

Black and Blum water filter jug

Price: £30 | Buy now from Amazon

"I use the Black + Blum 1 litre glass bottles with the charcoal filters. A bit expensive for the initial layout but the charcoals last 6 months and the water does taste really nice (and I’m in London where the tap water is rank IMO)" - JemimaTab

For an innovative and eco-friendly way to remove nasties from your water, look no further than this cute carafe by Black + Blum. The charcoal attracts contaminants in the water, while releasing healthy minerals at the same time. 

Designed to fit in your fridge door, this dinky glass jug is the perfect size to keep one person hydrated all day. It comes with a glass that fits on the top like a lid, a cork coaster to stop it marking your tabletops, and a charcoal filter that’ll last six months. The shape of the bottle makes it tricky to clean, but it’s dishwasher safe. 

Key specs

  • Capacity: 800ml
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes

6. Best eco-friendly water filter jug: Wanda Carafe

Wanda water filter jug

Price: £30 | Buy now from Wanda

For a water filter jug that cares for the planet while looking stylish, may we present the Wanda Carafe. With a natural bamboo lid and a charcoal filter, it produces great-tasting water without the use of plastic or chemicals. 

The charcoal filter sticks only last a month, and you need to boil and recharge it halfway through that time so it’s a pretty high-maintenance method of filtering your water, compared to other models. 

The jug itself is simple and easy to clean and its borosilicate glass means it can be put in the dishwasher. 

Key specs

  • Capacity: 1.3 litres
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes

7. Best stylish water filter jug: Invigorated Water pH Vitality Water Pitcher

PH Vitality water filter jug

Price: £45 | Buy now from Amazon

The pH Vitality Pitcher Jug’s curvy metal design makes it our pick for best-looking water filter jug and its high alkaline ionising technology gives water a smooth, pure flavour. 

It uses a unique pH filter pouch which works like a tea bag, with an ice-guard to stop the filter bag falling into your kettle. The jug comes with one pouch, and you can buy replacements for around £25 for a pack of three, and each will filter around 100 litres of water before you need to replace them. Because it’s metal, it’ll keep water cool even when left out of the fridge, but keep it out of the sun on hot days to avoid lukewarm water. 

Key specs

  • Capacity: 1.8 litres
  • Dishwasher safe: No

8. Best purifying water filter jug: ZeroWater 10 Cup Water Filter Jug

ZeroWater filter jug

Price: £30 | Buy now from Amazon

ZeroWater removes 99% of impurities from tap water, giving it a clean, pure taste. The jug’s design means you can pour from it even when it’s still filtering water, reducing the time you need to wait to fill up your kettle. 

It’s designed to fit in your fridge door and the display at the top gives lab-grade data on water quality. Because of the high level of filtration, replacement cartridges are pretty steep at around £20 each and reviewers say they last around three weeks. 

Key specs

  • Capacity: 2.3 litres
  • Dishwasher safe: No

9. Best small water filter jug: Phox V2 Water Filter

Phox V2 water filter jug

Price: £40 | Buy now from Amazon

If you’re looking to maximise your counter space, check out this cute glass number by Phox. It features a reusable cartridge which you refill with sachets and the jug comes with three sachets. Replacements are around £14 for a three-month supply. There are two types of filtration sachets: clean, which removes impurities; and alkaline, which also adds minerals and increases the alkalinity of the water. 

The filter jug gives great tasting water but it takes a little longer for water to drip through compared to other styles. 

Key specs

  • Capacity: 2.2 litres
  • Dishwasher safe: No

10. Best large water filter jug: Berkey Gravity Fed Water Filter 

Big Berkey water filter jug

Price: £321 | Buy now from Amazon

"A friend has just got the Berkey and swears by it" - loveyouradvice

"Another vote for Berkey filters here, had ours for a year now.. only wish I had bought one sooner!" - Dremelza

With an 8.5-litre capacity and standing at 50cm tall, this Berkey gravity-fed filter is considerably bigger than the others on our list. It’s designed to provide enough filtered water for 1-4 people every day. 

It works by purifying water using ceramic purification elements, which will last over ten years. The filtration system comes with two elements included, so you’ll be all set for the foreseeable future. It doesn’t need plumbing or plugging in, just top it up with tap water and let gravity do the rest. However, it does require cleaning by hand every couple of months. 

At around £300, it’s an investment, but Mumsnetters are impressed by the taste and convenience of a Berkey. 

Key specs

  • Capacity: 8.5 litres
  • Dishwasher safe: No

How to buy the best water filter jug 

While some water filter jugs can seem like a bargain, the real cost is in the replacement filters. If you’re looking for a traditional water filter jug, it’s best to go for one that takes a universal filter, otherwise you’ll be saddled with an expensive filter cartridge bill every month. It’s worth checking out more eco-friendly filters as these tend to last longer between replacements, as well as being better for the environment. 

A bog-standard water filter jug will keep your kettle from getting covered in limescale, but if you’re looking for great taste or exceptional purity, there are loads of options out there so doing your research will pay off. 

How often should water filters be changed?

Traditional water filter cartridges tend to last about a month before they need changing, but other kinds of filters can last from six months to 10 years. 

Do water filters remove minerals? 

Most water filters use activated carbon, which attracts contaminants while allowing beneficial minerals to remain in the water. 

What is the best water filter to buy?

The Aqua Optima is the best water filter jug to buy. It’s a great all-rounder with affordable filter cartridges, a convenient design and great-tasting water. 

How we chose our recommendations 

Because we know that there’s nothing like a real recommendation, we first headed to the Mumsnet forums to find out which water filter jugs parents were recommending.

We then did some research across the wider web, looking at which water filter jugs had won accolades or been featured in ‘best buy’ lists across websites, and what customer reviews said about them. Having collated all that information, we then narrowed our list down to the top 10 water filter jugs on the market.

Why you should trust us 

We work hard to provide unbiased, independent advice you can trust. We do sometimes earn revenue through affiliate (click-to-buy) links in our articles. This helps us fund more helpful articles like this one.