It is true that Brita water filters are quite popular with people who are sensitive to the quality of the water they use. A big reason for their popularity is that, compared to other water treatment alternatives, they are quite cheap to buy.
There are two types of Brita water filters available now. One is a faucet filter and the other is the through-type jug.
The question is: Are they really profitable? In other words, considering their total cost of ownership relative to their effectiveness in removing contaminants from tap water, are they really better than their competitors?
In this article, I will walk you through a little analysis that I did. Please note that all performance and pricing statements were taken from the manufacturer’s website, literature, and certified statements.
First, let’s talk about cost of ownership, which includes both your initial purchase cost and maintenance cost – that is, the money you spend on cartridge replacement over the life of the filter.
As for the initial cost, as I already mentioned, it is relatively low. Just to give you an indication, a Brita pitcher costs around $ 25, while the faucet filter type has a sticker price of around $ 35. In comparison, for a high-quality home water filtration system , you may have to prepay around $ 130.
However, when we consider ongoing cost, the story is different. As for the jug type, the suggested retail price for a single filter cartridge is $ 7.99 and the manufacturer recommends replacing it every 40 gallons of water. That brings the cost per gallon to about $ 0.20.
The single tap-type filter cartridge has a suggested retail price of $ 18.99 and lasts for 100 gallons. That brings the cost per gallon to about $ 0.20 as well.
When you compare these figures with corresponding costs published by other leading manufacturers of water filtration systems, you will see that ongoing costs per gallon range from as low as $ 0.09 to a maximum of approximately $ 0.15.
Now, let’s do some math: If we say that an average four-member household drinks about 2 gallons of water per day, then in one year this household’s total drinking water consumption will be 730 gallons. Putting all of our figures (upfront costs and cost per gallon) for Brita water filters on one side and those for another water filtration system on the other side as stated above, then it is estimated that in approximately eleven months to one year of daily time use, the cost of ownership will be the same.
This means that after the first (maximum) year of use, it will be more expensive to use Brita water filters than to use their main competitors.
When estimating effectiveness – that is, how many contaminants they can remove and how efficiently they can – Brita water filters are clearly no better than average.
Take chlorine, the widely used disinfectant that has been linked to cancer and atherosclerosis, the leading cause of heart disease. In its performance sheets, the manufacturer of Brita claims that it removes 99% of chlorine for the tap type, while only 75% for the jug type.
When it comes to the very harmful by-products of chlorine, the manufacturer of Brita claims that none of the products are capable of removing them.
The same applies to VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds), while cysts and cryptogia (common pathogens) cannot be removed with the Brita pitcher type.
In general, the Brita faucet type filter works better than the pitcher type. However, the faucet type still does not perform better than average.
To conclude, it is clear that while Brita water filters seem attractive due to their low initial cost, they are not as competitive in the long run. Especially when you consider that they underperform than you bought them in the first place, that is purifying your water!
If you are serious about choosing a high-quality, cost-effective water filtration system, visit my website for more information and to see what I personally use and recommend in my home.