How long does a water filter last?

Water filtration systems are an important part of the household. There are several types of house water filter systems. A whole house water filter system can be installed to keep the drinking water free from harmful chemicals and harmful contaminants. Removing contaminants and giving clean water is the primary function of water filters.

Whether you have refrigerator water filters or fridge filters, carbon filters, pitcher water filters, shower filters, or under-sink water filter systems- any water filtration system has a lifespan for how long the water filter lasts. A proper cleaning routine or investing in the best replacement filters is the ideal way to ensure the water filter system is functioning. An unclean filter will give poor-tasting drinking water filled with more contaminants.

In this article, we will discuss how long does a water filter last and the importance of maintaining the water filter system. Let us get started!

What is the average lifespan of a water filter?

Most manufacturers have a lifespan mentioned for the water filter in the water filtration system that you have installed. Some advanced types of water filtration systems also come with replacement filter change reminders. It is important to understand that despite the time period the manufacturer provided on when the replacement filter or water filter needs to be replaced, you must watch out for signs if the filter is needing replacement sooner or later.

What is the average lifespan of a water filter

The lifespan of water filters is measured in gallons. The number of gallons of water that can be passed through the filter type (or simply put the water usage) to provide clean filtered water will determine how long the filters last. The average lifespan mentioned for how long water filters last is 4 months to 6 months, with an ability to give 100 gallons of filtered water. Each filter type usually comes with a different lifespan. This can depend on the water quality and the filter stages present in the particular filter type. Therefore water usage and how much water the filter works on are important factors that determine how long the water filters last.

Here is an average estimate of how long the common water filters last.

Under sink water filter- 3 months to months

Countertop filters– 6 months

Faucet water filters– 2 months to 3 months

Reverse osmosis membranes– 2 years

Refrigerator water filters– 3 months to 6 months

Shower water filters– 3 months to 6 months

Sediment filters– 6 months to 12 months

Carbon filters– 6 months to 12 months

Post filter cartridges– 1 to 2 years

How do you know when a water filter needs replacing?

How do you know when a water filter needs replacing

There are a few signs that will point out if the water filters need to be replaced in the water filtration system that you have installed at home. If you notice any of these changes in the drinking water, tap water, or any other type of filtered water, act immediately to replace the filter. A badly maintained water filter or a filter that does not function as expected anymore will continue to trap fewer contaminants as time goes by, defeating the very purpose of having a water filtration system.

* Decline in water flow rate

Keeping track of the water flow rate from day 1 is helpful to identify how the filters last with water usage. How much water is being filtered by the system and how long it takes can help you estimate the flow rate. Despite the filter type and the filter stages that it contains; be it an under-sink water filter, refrigerator water filter, or water pitcher filter- it is common to observe a gradual decline in the water pressure and the water flow of the water supply as time progresses.

However, this time taken to provide a glass of filtered water (drinking water, tap water, or sink water), will indicate how the water supply is via the whole house water filter system or the individual water filter system. If the time taken for the water supply to be generated is three or four times slower than what it used to be, this is a clear sign that you need to replace the filter.

Decline in water flow rate

* Unpleasant taste in water

Most drinking water filter systems are designed to ensure that the water tastes better. By removing the harmful chemicals and harmful contaminants, the unpleasant taste of water can also be reversed. On the contrary, when the water filters are unclean and the trapped contaminants are released back into the filtered water, you will have poor-tasting drinking water. Rather than extracting contaminants, the cartridges in the water filtration systems will being to release more contaminants into the water.

If you have poor-tasting drinking water from your filter (the same applies to unpleasant taste coming from tap water), you need to replace the water filter at the earliest. This will protect you from consuming contaminants.

Unpleasant taste in water

* Unpleasant odor

The next maker is the unpleasant odor. If the water tastes bad or smells bad, it is a clear indicator that the water filters need to be replaced.

What are the 3 things that affect the durability of water filters?

There are certain factors that have a direct impact on how long water filters last. Paying attention to these factors can help you increase the water filters’ longevity, making full use of them until the manufacturer’s recommended lifespan. Maintaining the filters will also ensure fewer contaminants are passed through the water, even if the water isn’t 100% pure.

1. Water usage

The amount of water passing through the water filter system has an impact on the lifespan of the filters. Frequent use of the filters definitely extracts work from them. If you have a whole house water filter system installed and the amount of water the system filters on an everyday basis is at the higher end, there are good chances that the filter will need to be replaced sooner than expected, especially if the filters are being overworked.

Water usage

2. Type of water filters

The type of water filter used will also determine how long the water filters last in the system. Certain water filters last longer than others and require less maintenance than others.

Type of water filters

Sediment filter– A sediment pre-filter that is installed in a whole-house water filter system needs to be replaced once every few months.

Carbon filter– A granular activated carbon filter or post filter that is carbon-based installed in reverse osmosis water filtration systems is known to last up to 2 years.

Water pitcher- Pitcher water filters need to be replaced once they are through 20 gallons of water.

Despite these average lifespan figures, it is recommended that you strictly follow the advice from the manufacturer on when the water filter needs to be replaced.

3. Water quality

Did you know that the existing water quality in your home also has an effect on how long the water filters last? A water supply that is clean and contains only very minimal contaminants will not tamper with the provided lifespan of the water filters.

Water quality

On the contrary, water quality that is poor, filled with more total dissolved solids and harmful volatile organic compounds will increase the pressure on the water filters. This diminishes the lifespan of the water filter. It is therefore important to replace the filter as and when required when you have poor water quality.

Another point to remember while changing the water filter is to remove the old filter without any residue, to prevent damage to the cartridge of the new filter and the plumbing.

Which is the most long-lasting water filter?

There are many choices to choose from when it comes to water filter systems. The best in the market that can work seamlessly and ensure the water is kept free from contaminants is the Frizzlife RO Reverse Osmosis Water Filtration System.

Frizzlife RO Reverse Osmosis Water Filtration System

Frizzlife Water Filter

The Frizzlife reverse osmosis filtration system is designed to make sure your water is free from contaminants, is healthy, and tastes good. It can effortlessly balance the alkalinity of RO water and adjust the PH to more than 7.5. The tankless design of Frizzlife PD600 makes it a compact and sleek filter system that can save space and storage.

The Frizzlife reverse osmosis filtration system is built with advanced water-saving technology. This feature not just enhances the efficiency of the unit, but can save your water up to 450% when compared to the other designs available in the market. This makes the Frizzlife PD600 water filter system an economical and eco-friendly choice.

Do the features built into the Frizzlife PD600 meet your expectations from an RO filter? If yes, hurry now to purchase this advanced water filtration device to keep your home’s water supply healthy and pure.

Why is it important to invest in the right water filter?

Investing in the right water filter is crucial. Even a water dispenser is an important product that must be purchased after careful consideration of the quality of the RO membrane, shelf life, features like water pressure, and more.

Why is it important to invest in the right water filter

Investing in the right water filter system is the only way to keep the water supply free from contaminants and protect your family’s health. It is therefore important to invest in high-capacity osmosis membranes, durable activated carbon filters, etc. Make sure the filtration system meets all the requirements of your home.

How to test your water filter at home?

A digital TDS meter tester is a simple and state-of-art device that can be used to test the performance of a water filter at home. It is also possible to test the water quality, hardness, and other factors of influence.

Frequently Asked Questions:

1. Do Brita filters expire?

Brita filters have an indefinite lifespan. An unused Brita filter that is sealed and packed has an indefinite shelf life. However, the instructions will mention that the filter must be used right away once they are opened. Leaving an open Brita filter unused will cause moisture and bacteria to enter the filter eventually making it unfit to be used.

2. What is the healthiest way to filter water?

There are several ways followed to filter water. The most trusted and highly recommended method is Reverse Osmosis.

3. Is it better to filter or boil water?

Boiling water is capable of killing microorganisms that are harmful to one’s health. However, it can also increase the depositing of minerals that take place while boiling hard water. Boiling water is also not going to remove the total dissolved solids or larger contaminants.

A water filter that can combine all the benefits of the filtration process is the better way to ensure you consume pure and healthy water.

4. How long does a whole house water filter last?

It is advised that you replace the whole house water filter once every three to six months. Different parts of the water filter last different lengths of time.

Pre-filter- 3 to 6 months.

Carbon filter- 12 months.

Post filter- 12 months.

5. How long does a carbon water filter last?

A carbon water filter lasts up to 18 to 24 months. A carbon filter that is needing replacement will emanate a sour, acidic, or chemical smell.

6. How long do under-sink water filters last?

It is recommended that you must replace your under-sink water filter once every 4 to 6 months. It is best to follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer on how often the filter must be changed and the signs to watch out for when the water filter needs to be replaced.


That’s a wrap on the article. We trust you were able to fully understand the importance of replacing water filters and how long water filters last. Remember never to comprise on the quality of the water filters that you use to make sure that you only consume water that is free from hazardous contaminants. Invest in the best and the right filter for your filtration system to enjoy pure and good-tasting water.

About The Author

Our Web Producer

Judith— a passionate water treatment specialist — is a waste water management enthusiast, clean drinking water advocate, and someone with deep personal experience and knowledge about various water equipments. Her work was mentioned in countless notable water associations. Previously she was an editor at Water Alliance.