Refrigerator water filters take the benefits of regular filtered water and add that oh-so pleasing chill to your eight daily glasses. Whether they pair with an ice maker, run through the internal workings of the fridge, or sit in a pitcher in the fridge shelf, these devices turn your tap supply into a premium product, rivaling bottled spring water.
Which means that, if you are currently keeping a supply of bottled water inside your fridge, there’s really no reason not to switch over to a fridge filter. The benefits even extend to the environment, by encouraging less consumption of single-use plastics, while also helping you avoid the growing worries over the health risks of microplastics.
So, here are the best refrigerator water filters available online right now!
Hygiene and maintenance
Spend some time researching refrigerator filters online, and it won’t be long before you come across conversations concerning the hygiene of refrigerator filters.
Because most refrigerators hiding the tubing and inner workings of a filter inside their casing, it can be hard to access filters for inspection or cleaning. Plus, fridges consistently rank among the most suspect appliances when it comes to sources of bacteria in the home. A 2013 survey by the NSF (the leading water filter certification board) on household germs found that refrigerator water dispenser rank first among the ‘germiest’ kitchen devices—with other components of fridges, such as the meat draw, also making the top 10!
These kinds of waterborne contaminants can make their way into a refrigerator’s filter system and pass through a carbon component. Leaving food to mold will obviously increase this risk—as will leaving expired filter cartridges inside the filter.
Most refrigerators use a light indicator to signal when it’s time for replacements, but the indicator is usually a simple timer. This makes indicators helpful guides, but not necessarily always correct. Instead, use the indicator, along with an estimate of how much you’ve been using your filter, along with how contaminated your water source is, to judge when’s the best time to change the filter. This Consumer reports ‘You Test’ app for refrigerator filters can help you to make that judgment.
To see how refrigerator filters stack up against other types of home filtering in categories such as maintenance and usability, read our guide on Comparing the different types of home water filters.