The 7 Best Gravity Water Filters: Reviews & Ultimate Guide

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This is our review of the best Gravity Water Filters of 2022.

We reviewed several gravity water filters and found out that the Big Berkey Gravity Water Filter is the best one overall.

There are several factors to look for when buying a gravity water filter and to make your life easier we spent long hours reading & researching to find out the best overall gravity water filter so that you don’t have to waste your precious time. And because there isn’t a one size fits all because each household and family has their unique situation, we also identified the best option for different situations.

You will find out the best gravity water filters available today, their pros and cons, an explanation of why they are better for specific situations, and a complete buying guide with all the relevant information that you need to know to choose the best gravity water filtration system for you.

Let’s get started!

Our Top Picks for Gravity Water Filters

7 Best Gravity Water Filters Reviewed

After investing our time researching and reviewing several gravity water filters, we identified the 7 best options for different purposes.

We’ve invested the time so you don’t have to:

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  • Best for: Overall
  • Dimension: 8.5 x 8.5 x 19.25 inches
  • Weight: ‎7.35 Pounds
  • Capacity: 2.25 gallons
  • Filter Longevity: 6.000 gallons
  • Flow Rate: 0.03 GPM
  • Material: Stainless Steel

In our opinion, the Big Berkey Gravity Water Filter is the best overall gravity water filter. Berkey is a popular brand that created a stainless steel durable gravity water filter that can remove 99.9% of the water contaminants, has a capacity of 2.25 which is good for a family of four, and great filter longevity of 6.000 gallons.

One of the strongest points of the Big Berkey Gravity Water Filter is its capacity to remove contaminants, as it can remove more than 200 common water contaminants, like chlorine, chemicals, VOCs, pesticides, herbicides, heavy metals, bacteria, viruses, and more.

While this gravity water filter doesn’t have an NSF certification, it is independently tested by third-party labs to ensure that it can remove contaminants as stated by the manufacturer.

The Big Berkey Gravity Water Filter has a capacity for 2.25 gallons of filtered water, which should be enough for a family of 1 to 4 elements. If you have a larger family check our next item on the list, also from Berkey, the Royal Berkey Gravity-Fed Water Filter that is suited for larger families.

Gravity water filters don’t have a flow rate like other types of water filters because they depend on gravity to force the water through the filters. The Big Berkey has a flow rate of 0.03 GPM, which is not bad for a gravity water filter. And one of the good features of this water filter is that you can add 2 extra filters, doubling the flow rate.

And while the standard filters cannot remove fluoride, Berkey can add specific filters to deal with fluoride if this is one of the contaminants you need to remove from your water. If that is your case, just check the Big Berkey BK4X2 Countertop Water Filter with 2 fluoride filters.

The Big Berkey Gravity Water Filter filters are capable of filtering up to 6.000 gallons of water, which is a long lifespan for this type of filter, and making this an economical purchase as the price for filtered gallon water is really low.

Pros:

  • Effective filtration that removes 99.9% of the contaminants
  • Good water capacity
  • Filter longevity
  • Independently tested
  • Durable stainless steel chambers
  • Can add extra filters

Cons:

  • Does not remove fluoride (but you can buy specific filters for that)
  • Some customers complained about leaks
  • Best for: Large
  • Dimension: 9.5 x 9.5 x 23 inches
  • Weight: ‎8.8 Pounds
  • Capacity: 3.25 gallons
  • Filter Longevity: 6.000 gallons
  • Flow Rate: 0.07 GPM
  • Material: Stainless Steel

If you have a large family and need a gravity water filter with a large capacity, Royal Berkey Gravity-Fed Water Filter is the ideal solution. Similar to our top recommendation, the Big Berkey Gravity Water Filter, this one is slightly expensive and has a larger capacity. Apart from that, it has the same great features, like the ability to remove 99.9% of the water contaminants, a good flow rate, and great filter longevity of 6.000 gallons.

As mentioned above for the other Berkey model, the Royal Berkey Gravity-Fed Water Filter is able to remove more than 200 common water contaminants, like chlorine, chemicals, VOCs, pesticides, herbicides, heavy metals, bacteria, viruses, and more, making sure that your water is free from 99.9% of contaminants. 

The Royal Berkey Gravity-Fed Water Filter has a capacity for 3.25 gallons of filtered water, making it the ideal choice for larger families of 4 to 6 people, which need a greater amount of water daily to drink and cook.

The gravity water filter has good filter longevity as it is capable of filtering up to 6.000 gallons of water, making the price per gallon of filtered water low, when compared to other competitors.

Pros:

  • Large capacity
  • Effective filtration that removes 99.9% of the contaminants
  • Good water capacity
  • Filter longevity
  • Independently tested
  • Durable stainless steel chambers
  • Can add extra filters

Cons:

  • Does not remove fluoride (but you can buy specific filters for that)
  • Some customers complained about leaks
  • Best for: Longevity
  • Dimension: 14 x 9 x 9 inches
  • Weight: ‎6.8 pounds
  • Capacity: 2.25 gallons
  • Filter Longevity: 20.000 gallons
  • Flow Rate: 0.03 GPM
  • Material: Stainless Steel

The Alexapure Pro Stainless Steel Gravity Water Filter is a great option if you are looking for a gravity water filter, and the best one regarding the longevity of its filters, as it can filter 20.000 gallons of water. This water filter can remove 99.9% of the water contaminants, has a capacity of 2.25 gallons which is good for a family of four, and is made of durable and rust-resistant stainless steel.

The Alexapure Pro Stainless Steel Gravity Water Filter uses a hybrid ceramic shell with a black core filter that can reduce more than 200 contaminants from the water, like chlorine, VOCs, nitrates, fluoride, bacteria, viruses, etc., removing 99,9% of the water contaminants to ensure that you and your family have access to clean and fresh water.

This water filter has a capacity of 2.25 gallons (8.5 liters) which should be good enough for most families, giving you enough water to cook and drink daily.

The flow rate is not high like in most gravity water filters, it is around 0.03 GPM, enough to filter 2.25 gallons of water (full capacity) in an hour to an hour in a half. But you can add extra filters, up to a maximum of four, which will increase the flow rate.

Each filter of the Alexapure Pro Gravity Water Filters can filter up to 5.000 gallons of water, and if you use the 4 filters, the entire system can filter up to 20.000 gallons of water, which is at the top of the industry.

Pros:

  • Effective filtration that removes 99.9% of the contaminants
  • Good water capacity
  • Filter longevity
  • Durable stainless steel chambers
  • Can add extra filters

Cons:

  • No certification
  • Some customers complained that the filters didn’t last as long as expected
  • Best for: Contaminants Removal
  • Dimension: 9.25 x 9.25 x 22.5 inches
  • Weight: ‎6.5 pounds
  • Capacity: 2.75 gallons
  • Filter Longevity: 2.400 gallons
  • Material: Stainless Steel

The Propur Big Countertop Gravity Water Filter System is the best gravity water filtration system for contaminants removal, has this system has several NSF certifications to ensure that it can remove more than 220 contaminants from your water, including lead and fluoride that other systems need special filters to deal with.

The Propur Big Countertop Gravity Water Filter can remove most of the harmful contaminants of your water, including fluoride, lead, chlorine, VOCs, heavy metals, pesticides, herbicides, bacteria, pharmaceuticals, and more. In total, this water filter can remove more than 220 contaminants, generating one of the cleanest and contaminant-free water for you and your family.

And this gravity water filter is NSF certified, having the certifications NSF 42, 53, 401, and the Protocol P231, ensuring that:

  • NSF 42: for aesthetic effects, this certifies systems designed to reduce non-health-related contaminants, such as chlorine, chloramine, taste and odor, iron, manganese, particulate, and total dissolved solids (TDS).
  • NSF 53: for health effects, certifies systems designed to reduce specific health-related contaminants, such as lead, Cryptosporidium, VOCs, and chromium.
  • NSF 401: for emerging compounds/incidental contaminants, this certifies systems designed to remove up to 15 individual contaminants which have been identified in published studies as occurring in drinking water, such as prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, herbicides, pesticides, and chemical compounds.
  • NSF P231: ensures that the water filters are tested for purification at the microbiological level.

The Propur Big Countertop Gravity Water Filter is made of durable and rust-resistant stainless steel and has a capacity of 2.75 gallons of filtered water, which is enough water for most families.

The Propur’s ProOne G2.0 filters of the Propur Big will last for 2.400 gallons of water each (around 12 months), while not bad is not as good as other competitors we covered in our top.

Pros:

  • Removes more than 200 contaminants
  • Can remove fluoride and lead
  • NSF certified
  • Good water capacity
  • Durable stainless steel chambers
  • Can add extra filters

Cons:

  • Filters longevity
  • Some customers complained about rust
  • Best for: Travel
  • Dimension: 7.5 x 7.5 x 18 inches
  • Weight: ‎4 pounds
  • Capacity: 1.5 gallons
  • Filter Longevity: 6.000 gallons
  • Flow Rate: 0.05 GPM
  • Material: Stainless Steel

And the best gravity water filter for travel is another from Berkey, the Travel Berkey Gravity-Fed Water Filter. This lightweight gravity water filter is smaller and has a smaller capacity than other Kerkey gravity filters, but still has also great features, like great filter longevity, capacity to remove 99.99% of the contaminants, and it’s made of durable stainless steel.

The Travel Berkey Gravity-Fed Water Filter can remove 99.9% of contaminants, and from these, it can remove 99.9999% of viruses and bacteria, which is great for travel if you are outdoors and need to use water from a contaminated water source.

While this model doesn’t have an NSF certification, it was independently tested by third-party labs to ensure the effectiveness of Berley filters, and that they can remove the contaminants according to what is mentioned by the manufacturer.

The durable and compact stainless steel design, small size, 4 pounds weight, and capacity of 1.5 gallons make it a great choice for travel, but it still can be used at home for a family of up to 3 people.

Like the other Berkey models, it uses the same Black Berkey Purification Elements filters that can filter up to 3.000 gallons of water each, so 6.000 for the pair, which will last long.

Pros:

  • Effective filtration that removes 99.9% of the contaminants
  • Portable
  • Filter longevity
  • Independently tested
  • Durable stainless steel chambers
  • Can add extra filters

Cons:

  • Does not remove fluoride (but you can buy specific filters for that)
  • Some customers complained about leaks
  • Best for: Alkaline
  • Dimension: 12.75 x 12.75 x 24 inches
  • Weight: ‎8.3 pounds
  • Capacity: 4 gallons
  • Filter Longevity: 500 gallons
  • Material: BPA-free Plastic

If you are looking for a gravity water filter that produces alkaline water, the Zen Water Systems Countertop System is the right choice. This affordable gravity water filter not only removes several water contaminants, but also adds minerals to the water making it alkaline, using an 8-stage process. 

The Zen Water Systems Countertop System has a 5-stage mineral cartridge that removes water contaminants and adds micronutrients elements, followed but other 3-stage composed by a micro-ceramic filter that removes water-borne bacteria and impurities, maifan mineral stones that infuse essential minerals into the water, and a magnetic spigot that declutter water molecules to improve hydration. After this process, you will have clean alkaline water with beneficial minerals, and free of harmful contaminants.

This gravity water filter is composed of 2 BPA-free plastic chambers, the top one with a capacity for 2 gallons of water, and the bottom one with a capacity for 4 gallons, where the filtered water is stored. The transparent design allows you to check the water level without having to open the system, which is something that you can’t do with stainless steel models.

The Zen Water Systems Countertop System is composed of different filters, with distinct lifespan: the mineral stones will last between 3 to 5 years, the ceramic filter lasts for 1.000 gallons, and the 5-stage filter will only last for 500 gallons, which is much less than other gravity water filters in our top.

Pros:

  • Price
  • 5-stage filtration system
  • Produces alkaline water
  • Good water capacity
  • Clear chambers let you check the water level
  • BPA-free materials

Cons:

  • Cannot remove fluoride
  • No certifications
  • Some customers complained about the low filtration speed
  • Best for: Hanging Bag
  • Dimension: 13.2 x 2.8 x 5.8 inches
  • Weight: ‎0.73 pounds
  • Capacity: 1 gallon
  • Filter Longevity: 1.500 gallons
  • Flow Rate: 0.46 GPM

The Platypus Gravity Water Filter is the best hanging bag gravity water filter, making it an ideal choice if you go for outdoor activities. This device is lightweight and portable, has a capacity for 1 gallon of water, a great water flow that will filter your water in minutes, and can remove more than 99.9% of bacteria and protozoa from water.

The Platypus Gravity Water Filter uses hollow fiber technology to trap the contaminants, removing many contaminants that you will find in outdoor water sources, like E.coli, salmonella, cholera, Giardia, Cryptosporidium, bacteria, and much more.

This system is composed of 2 4-liter bags, the top one where you put the dirty water, and the bottom one that is filled with the filtered water that passes through the hollow-fiber filter membrane that separates both bags.

The Platypus Gravity Water Filter has a flow rate of 0.46 GPM, which is good enough to fill a bag of 1 gallon of filtered water in 2.5 minutes, great for these types of filters.

The filter will last for 1.500 gallons, which may not look good when compared with countertop gravity water filters, but is good in comparison with other hanging bag gravity filters that are made to use in outdoor activities.

Pros:

  • Meets all EPA/NSF guidelines for removal of bacteria and protozoa
  • Good capacity
  • Good water flow
  • Lightweight
  • Filter longevity

Cons:

  • Some customers complained about being hard to close after usage

Buying Guide for Gravity Water Filter

Buying the best Gravity Water Filter for you and your family depends on several factors, and with so many options available is not a simple task.

That is why we present a curated selection of the best gravity water filters for different situations, and we also created a comprehensive buying guide for gravity water filters so that you can understand the most important factors and be able to make the best purchase decision.

What to Consider When Choosing the Best Gravity Water Filter

When researching for a gravity water filter to buy, these are the key features that you should consider:

Contaminants to Remove

There are different gravity water filters available, and they will be able to remove different types of contaminants. You should choose the one that can target the contaminants that exist in your water, to ensure that you and your family will have clean and tasty water to drink.

You can know which contaminants exist in your water source by checking the CCR of your water provider or by checking the water of your home by yourself, using a  water test kit.

Cost

In any purchase, you should consider the cost, so it is also an important factor when buying a gravity water filter.

Usually, gravity water filters are not as expensive as other types of filters, but the price can vary a bit depending on different factors.

Take into consideration also the recurring cost of changing the filters as you will need to change your cartridge filter with some frequency.

Capacity

Unlike other water filter systems like undersink water filters that are connected directly to the waterline, a gravity water filter needs to be filled with water manually.

So the capacity and size of the chamber are relevant because it defines the amount of filtered water that will be available for you.

You should calculate how much water your family consumes per day, and choose a filter with adequate capacity.

Water Flow Rate

Water flow rate is measured by the amount of water in gallons per minute, or GPM. Gravity water filters won’t filter water as quickly as other filtration systems because gravity is the only factor pressuring the water through it, and other systems have the pressure from the water lines.

Understand how much time it will take each gravity water filter to filter a certain amount of water, and check if that is enough for your family’s needs.

Filter Longevity

You will need to replace the filter cartridge of your gravity water filter from time to time, and that activity will be determined by the longevity of the filter.

A combination of good longevity and a decent price is ideal so you won’t have to change the filter quite often and minimize the recurring cost of changing the filter.

You will find filters with different longevity, that can vary for a few months to a year, so take this into consideration when calculating the total cost.

Certifications

Both NSF and WQA are independent third-party accredited institutions that certify water filters, which gives the consumer the trust that those products can remove certain harmful contaminants. 

Some brands will claim they are tested according to NSF standards, but we can only be sure the products were tested by a third-party accredited institution for the ones with certification.

Some of the most common NSF certifications for gravity water filters are:

  • NSF 42: for aesthetic effects, this certifies systems designed to reduce non-health-related contaminants, such as chlorine, chloramine, taste and odor, iron, manganese, particulate, and total dissolved solids (TDS).
  • NSF 53: for health effects, certifies systems designed to reduce specific health-related contaminants, such as lead, Cryptosporidium, VOCs, and chromium.
  • NSF 401: for emerging compounds/incidental contaminants, this certifies systems designed to remove up to 15 individual contaminants which have been identified in published studies as occurring in drinking water, such as prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, herbicides, pesticides, and chemical compounds.

System Physical Size & Space Available

You should decide where you want to place the gravity water filter, and check if it has the right dimensions and will fit well before you buy it.

A larger gravity water filter will take more space, but at the same time will have more capacity so you will have more water available and won’t have to fill it as often.

But the larger it is, the less portable it will be, so if you plan to move it from one location to another, consider the size and weight of the device.

Chamber Material

Another important factor to consider when choosing a gravity water filter is the chamber material because you don’t want this component to be made of materials that can leach contaminants into your filtered water.

The better choices are food-grade stainless steel or BPA-free materials, to avoid contamination. Stainless steel material has the bonus of lasting longer and being more durable.

What is a Gravity Water Filter?

A gravity water filter is a type of water filter that uses gravity to make the water flow through a filter media to become clean of contaminants.

This type of water filter doesn’t use the water pressure from the water line to push the water through the filter, instead, it uses gravity. This filtration process is slower than other filtration methods but will expose the water more time to the filter media which leads to a more effective filtration of contaminants.

Typically a gravity water filter is composed of an upper chamber and a lower chamber that acts as a storage tank for the filtered water, with one or more filter media in the middle through which the water passes to be filtered. Then the water is dispensed through a spigot connected to the lower chamber.

How Does a Gravity Water Filter Work?

A gravity water filter works in the following way: you fill the upper chamber with water, then gravity forces it to go through the media filters that connect the upper to the lower chamber, these filters will retain the contaminants from the water, and the filtered water goes through the bottom chamber, which has a dispenser for you to collect the clean and fresh water.

The media filters can vary, but will typically have several microscopic pores that will stop the water contaminants, letting only clean water flow through the lower component of the gravity water filter.

The Different Types of Gravity Water Filters

There are mainly two types of gravity water filters available, so let’s cover them in more detail:

Countertop Gravity Water Filter:

This is the most common type of gravity water filter and the one which we explained the behavior before, and is typically used indoors.

A countertop water filter should be placed on a flat surface like a countertop, but can also be placed in the ground if you use it outdoors.

They are commonly large and can store good quantities of water, and there are different sizes so you can select the appropriate model for you and your family. 

Hanging Gravity Bag Water Filter:

Hanging gravity bag water filters are typically used outdoors, as they are portable and lightweight versions of a gravity water filter.

They look like small IV bags, which you will fill with water from a lake or river during an outdoor activity, and leave it hanging while gravity will make the water flow through a tube into a storage container, being filtered during the process.

Whole House Water Filter Benefits

Gravity water filters have many advantages, such as:

Removes Contaminants & Impurities from Your Water

One of the main benefits of having a gravity water filter is to have access to clean and filtered water.

Gravity water filters can remove many harmful contaminants from your water, depending on the type of media filter used, ensuring clean water is available for your entire family.

Improve Water Taste & Odor

Another benefit of using a gravity water filter to filter your water is that it improves its taste and odor. 

Some contaminants are responsible for the bad taste of water, and a common motive for the rotten egg taste of unfiltered water is the presence of hydrogen sulfide [1], which can be eliminated by certain gravity water filter systems.

Cost

When compared with other types of water filters, like whole house water filters or Reverse Osmosis systems, gravity water filters are not expensive, so the price to pay for clean and fresh water is low when using this type of filter.

And if you currently consume bottled water, you will save lots of money by starting drinking filtered water, as the initial cost of a gravity water filter is a small fraction of the annual cost of buying bottled water.

Another cost-saving benefit of using gravity water filters is that is don’t need electricity to work, so you won’t see an increase in your electricity bill.

Environment-friendly

Drinking bottled water is not environmentally friendly, as you will generate lots of plastic waste by doing this.

Start drinking filtered water will heavily reduce your plastic waste footprint, and positively contribute to a better and healthier environment.

If you are a consumer of bottled water, you will heavily reduce the amount of plastic waste you create by starting using a whole house water filter, which is an environmentally friendly decision.

Apart from that, you will also save some money, as bottled water ends up much more expensive than filtered water, in the long run.

Good for Emergencies

Because it doesn’t need electricity to work and also doesn’t need to be connected to a water line, a gravity water filter is a great option to have for an emergency scenario.

You can move it to another location if needed, and fill it with water from an outdoor water source and get clean water to drink in a difficult situation.

Simple Installation & Maintenance

Installing a gravity water filter is quite simple, you won’t need tools and follow several steps to complete the installation as it is required with other types of water filters.

A gravity water filter almost doesn’t need installation, you will only need to put together a few components of this device, and filter an initial batch of water to remove some particles before starting using it.

The maintenance of a gravity water filter is also simple, as you will only need to clean the filter from time to time and change the filters when they reach the end of their life.

Whole House Water Filter Disadvantages

But gravity water filters also have some disadvantages, such as:

Slow Filtration Speed

Gravity water filters are not quick at filtering water because the water is not pushed through the filters with pressure, but just using gravity which takes longer.

SO you won’t have access to filtered water immediately when you need it, you will need to make sure you fill the device with water and give it time to filter it before you need it.

Need to be Manually Filled

Unlike other water filtration systems that are directly connected to the water line, gravity water filters need to be manually refilled.

So, when the filtered water runs out, or even before to give it some time to filter, you will need to refill the upper chamber with water. While this isn’t a huge effort, it can be an issue for people with mobility limitations.

Gravity Water Filter Installation

Installing a gravity water filter is a simple task, as you just need to assemble it, and you don’t require to connect this type of device to a water line or electricity like you would need to do with other water filtration systems.

Assembling a gravity water filtration system is something that you should be able to do by yourself in a few minutes. Just make sure you follow the instructions of the manufacturer to ensure that everything is on the correct spot.

Gravity Water Filter Maintenance

Like all water filters, you will need to replace the filter cartridges with a certain frequency, but this is a simple process that you can complete in a few minutes. 

It is also important to clean your gravity water filters every now and then. Just wash the upper and lower chamber components with warm and soapy water to completely remove any impurities.

FAQ About Gravity Water Filters

Here are some answers to frequently asked questions about gravity water filters.

What is the cost of a gravity water filter?

Compared with other types of water filters, gravity water filters are not expensive.

While the price can vary a bit depending on different factors, you should be able to find a good option in the $100 to $400 range.

Can I install a whole house water filter myself?

Absolutely!

Gravity water filters are simple to install as you only have to assemble them, no need to connect to water lines, and having to cut pipes on drill through countertops like needs to be done to install other types of water filters.

Are Gravity Water Filters good filtration systems?

Yes! Of course, it will depend on the model because different versions will have different media filters that can target specific contaminants, but you will be able to find models that are really effective at removing contaminants from the water.

An added benefit of gravity water filters is that the water is not pushed through the filters, which increases the time the water is in contact with the filters, increasing the amounts of impurities that are removed.

How do I know when to change the filters?

You should follow the guidelines from the manufacturer of your gravity water filter regarding the periodicity to change the filters.

But some water sources are more contaminated than others, and the filters might become effective earlier than expected.

One sign that it is time to change the filters is when it takes longer than usual to filter the water, which happens when the filters are clogged.

Another sign that it is time to change the filters is when the water doesn’t taste as good as before. This is because the filter is not so effective anymore and some bad taste and odors can pass through.

How often should you clean your system?

It is a good idea to clean your gravity water filter every 2 or months, to ensure that no impurities remain there and that you will continue to have clean and fresh water.

Does a gravity water filter soften water?

Not really.

Gravity water filters are designed to remove contaminants from the water. If you need to soften your water, you should buy a water softener.

Which one is better, a hanging bag gravity water filter or a countertop gravity water filter?

Well, it depends on what use you want to give to it.

A countertop gravity water filter is more robust and effective at removing contaminants, but if with need a water filter for outdoor use, a hanging gravity water filter will be a better choice.

Our Verdict

Clean and healthy water is fundamental to our health, and a gravity water filter can ensure that all the water in your home is clean of harmful contaminants.

You are now aware of the important factors to look out for when buying a gravity water filter, and you should also know the best options available in the market, and how they suit different situations.

For us, the best overall choice is the Big Berkey Gravity Water Filter, but all the gravity water filters we have in our top are great options, so you can’t go wrong with any of them!