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Best Reverse Osmosis Systems – Our Top Picks for 2022


Reverse Osmosis (RO) is a proven and effective way to ensure you are drinking a high-quality water. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is the standard for providing a lot of helpful information in regards to your particular water source, the type of reverse osmosis filter you need, as well as addressing concerns you may have about your water. Whether you are interested in installing an RO system in your home or not, it’s important to know the quality of the water available on tap that your household receives.

Water quality can affect everything from eye sight, to the health of your teeth, hair and skin. To understand your water quality best, check out your local “Consumer Confidence Report†or CDC, to learn about what is in your water. Public water suppliers are required to submit a new CRC every year. If you get your water from a private well, get a sample from your well and send it to a certified laboratory for analysis. The results of your water test can help you determine factors to consider before purchasing a best reverse osmosis system, as well as the kind of RO system to suit your needs best.

Best RO Systems: Side by Side Comparison

Check simple and brief comparison of best systems reviewed below.

ModelPreviewStagesGPDRating 
APEC ROES-50 5-Stage
(Editor’s Choice)
5504.9
iSpring RCC7 WQA
5754.8
Home Master TMAFC Artesian
(Editor’s Choice)
7504.8
APEC Ultimate RO-90
5904.7
iSpring RCC7AK 6-Stage 6754.6
Home Master HydroPerfection
9754.5
Express Water RO5DX5504.7

As you can see from the table above each system is unique, and they are also top rated as the best RO filtration systems on the marketplace today. Whether you are looking for an all-inclusive, nine stage filtration system, or you simply need a basic system under your kitchen sink to ensure your water is pure and safe, one of these systems is sure to meet your needs- and your budget.

If you live in a rural area you may be treating well water, which would have different needs than someone living in a condominium in a large city. Each person has pollutant in their water, but pollutants are different. The positives of one system may be the negatives for another person in regard to that same system. Keep in mind that everyone has different needs and no matter what you choose, any reverse osmosis water purification system is better than not having one at all.

If you are using any one of these systems, you are protecting yourself from contaminants and that is a good thing. If you need to start small, then simply start small. Most of these companies have additional parts you can purchase later if you want to enhance your current system.

Our Favorite: Reverse Osmosis System Reviews

Instead of picking the highest rated and most expensive systems, we have gone through all options available to find the best ones. Some of the systems reviewed have 5 stages of purification, to eliminate unsafe contaminants, while others include UV light treatment to kill harmful bacteria that may cause sickness. The systems reviewed range in price, but there are options for those looking for top of the line systems, or more cost-efficient ones, and everything in between.

Here are RO systems that provide exceptional value and do their job correctly.

APEC Top Tier 5-Stage Ultra Safe Water Filter (ESSENCE ROES-50)

APEC ROES-50 5-StageThis system is more than satisfactory: it is supreme quality. Because APEC has your health and water safety as their top priority, all their products are designed and assembled in the USA.

The Top Tier 5-stage system’s technology removes nearly 100% of contaminants which include: chlorine, lead, heavy metals, arsenic, viruses and more than 1000+ other contaminants.

The filters that come with this system are premium filters which will last for a very long time. They treat both tap water and well water giving you an unlimited supply of refreshing and crisp water that is far better, and far less pricey, than bottled water.

Because it’s manufacturer is WQA certified, you can rest at ease knowing you are guaranteed a reliable, noiseless system that will provide you with pure drinking water for a very long time.

To ensure your water is contaminant-free and safe, every system comes equipped with FDA certified, food grade tubing as well as a 100% lead-free chrome faucet.

If you are not completely satisfied, you have a one year guarantee to return the product.

The tank that comes included with this system is designed to fit under a typical kitchen cabinet. The dimensions of the tank are 11′ X 11″ x 15.â€

There are no extra lock clips or any additional steps you need to take to prevent a seal leak. The connect fittings are very reliable and convenient.

Positives
  • Great value for the price.
  • APEC’s systems are very inexpensive.
  • The RO-90 has an impressive flow rate for such a low price point.
Negatives
  • Small Capacity
  • When it comes to filter replacement, things can get a little pricey.

iSpring RCC7 WQA Gold Seal Certified 5-Stage System

iSpring RCC7 WQA Gold Seal Certified 5-Stage Reverse Osmosis Drinking Water Filter SystemThe iSpring RCC7 is a high-quality system. This product is designed to help you increase your water consumption, to minimize your spending, and virtually obliterate your bottled water and water transportation needs altogether.

The RCC7 comes complete with a gold seal certified five-stage filtration system. It is one of the best RO filters on the market. It will filter out over one thousand different water contaminants, even the tough ones to filter out such as fluoride and chlorine. It’s semipermeable RO membrane will filter down to an astonishing 0.0001 micron. That means it can remove every harmful contaminant in the water ranging from chemicals and bacteria to viruses.

Everyone should have a reverse osmosis system in their home and iSpring has made that possible. The company has paved the way and come up with a do it yourself installation of the filter system. Remember to push the tubing all the way in and use the Teflon tape that came with it.

This system will fit under your sink in standard cabinets. The WQA (Water Quality Association) has certified this set with a Gold Seal of Certification.

Be sure to register your new unit with the manufacturer for your free one-year money back guarantee warranty.

Positives
  • Easy to install.
  • WQA Gold Seal.
  • Excellent value for the money.
  • Uses filters that are inexpensive and standard size.
Negatives
  • Routing the tubing can be tedious.
  • Small Capacity.
  • You have to be gentle with the membrane and o-rings.

APEC Top Tier Supreme Certified System (ULTIMATE RO-90)

APEC Top Tier Supreme Certified High Flow 90 GPD Ultra Safe Reverse Osmosis Drinking Water Filter SystemThe APEC ULTIMATE RO-90 is the fastest, and safest reverse osmosis system to filter your drinking water on the market as of today. APEC’s other systems have proven to us that they go above and beyond providing clean, crisp, refreshing water that is both higher quality and better for you, than standard bottled water. It has the highest grade, super pure, 5 stage filter system.

Because APEC is 100% designed and made in the USA from selecting only the most exceptional components from around the world, you know that you are going to have safe water. Your water will be free of over 1000 contaminants including heavy metals, biological matter, viruses, and chemicals. Because it is WQA Gold Seal Certified, it removes nearly 100% of all those pollutants leaving your mind at ease and your water pure and clean.

The RO-90 comes equipped with the longest lasting filters on the market. These filters last two times longer than other systems, require virtually no maintenance and need fewer change-outs. All APEC systems come with a lead-free chrome faucet and FDA certified food grade tubing. Using these tools is another step towards providing you and your family with safe, clean and pure water.

Unique, high grade connect fittings make this job extremely easy and convenient. They require no extra lock clips or tape, and they ensure your unit is ultimately secure.

Positives
  • Comes with clear instructions.
  • Great Capacity.
  • Everything fits as it should.
  • Packaged well.
  • Made in the USA.
Negatives
  • Pricey Filter replacement.
  • The small holding tank means the water is always room temperature.
  • Low output.

iSpring RCC7AK 6-Stage with Alkaline Remineralization Filter

iSpring RCC7AK 6-Stage Under-Sink Reverse Osmosis Drinking Water Filtration System with Alkaline Remineralization Filter - 75 GPDThe iSpring RCC7AK is a top-notch system. Their filtration system takes it one step further, to reintroduce the good minerals, or re-mineralize, your water after eliminating all the harmful contaminants. iSpring is known for encouraging users to drink more water and to reduce the use of bottled/transported water. They help users introduce these changes by providing a system that will rid the water of many pollutants, including chlorine and fluoride and enhance the water with minerals users need to stay healthy like calcium, magnesium, potassium, and sodium. It’s RO semipermeable membrane can filter out essentially everything because it filters down to 0.0001 microns, making this system highly effective in keeping the drinking water safe and out of harm’s way.

Alkaline is what happens to the water when the pH is balanced. Because the RO system takes everything out of the water, including the helpful stuff, this system uses a sixth filter to re-mineralize the water.

This system also offers a streamlined DIY installation, by fitting conveniently under sink cabinets Register your purchase under warranty directly with the manufacturer to activate your free one-year money back guarantee lifetime support from iSpring.

Positives
  • Easy installation.
  • Sleek faucet.
  • PH Filter.
  • Good flow rate.
  • Adds minerals to your water.
Negatives
  • It’s a large unit that takes up space.
  • Larger flow rate means increased running cost.

Home Master TMAFC Artesian Undersink Water Filter System

Home Master TMAFC Artesian Full Contact Undersink Reverse Osmosis Water Filter SystemHome Master’s Artesian TMAFC system is a game changer. They designed the Artesian just for you, the homeowner. Their filtration systems solve the problems that are commonly found in reverse osmosis systems. Home Master took the time to review what it takes to have the best RO filter, and then delivered with this comprehensive top-of-the-line product.

The Home Master’s Artesian Full Contact system re-mineralizes the water twice: once on its way to the storage tank, and again on its way to the tap. Each time is processed, a little bit of calcium and magnesium is added to ensure a quality taste and slightly alkaline, safe water.

This RO system is unique and has components that do more work than Traditional RO systems. The fittings are double the size, producing more water. It is also unique because of the added filtration step the Artesian has between the rubber bladder of the storage tank and the tap. The additional filtration step is added because although the water is pure, it is slightly acidic, which in turn, affects the taste.

The Home Master TMAFC Full Contact has one of the best RO filtration systems at a quality price. It starts by cleaning your tap water, stripping it of contaminants such as chlorine, heavy metals, pharmaceuticals, viruses, and chemicals. In total, it removes contaminants for up to 98% cleaner, safer, purer water. This step is completed by using RO, then a sediment filter, and then carbon filtration. Finally, it is channeled through their patented remineralization process not once, but twice giving your safe, clean water needed minerals from a fresh source.

The Artesian’s filtration system is hard core, and it comes with a total of seven stages. It is also a purifier and enhancer, which means the water produced is incredibly safe, clean mineral water you can get from your tap.

In designing the Home Master RO, a sophisticated combination of flow restriction components were integrated into the system architecture to regulate the pressure in the 50 gpd membrane chamber for optimized purification and minimized wastewater production. The most sophisticated parts certified to NSF standards are included in the design and construction of the product.

Positives
  • Has the most filtration stages on the list.
  • Has excellent water pressure.
  • Iron Filter.
  • Quick-filling tank.
  • Extremely efficient.
Negatives
  • High priced.
  • Can be noisy while running.
  • Has a large footprint.

Express Water RO5DX 5-Stage Undersink RO System

Express Water 5 Stage Undersink Reverse Osmosis Drinking Water Filtration Express Water’s RO5DX is a good quality system at a fair price. It provides the best Reverse Osmosis technology filter system finally your way, to get unlimited, fresh, great tasting, purified drinking water with RO technology at an affordable price.

Express Water is the premier manufacturer and supplier of reverse Osmosis and filtration systems. The RO5DX is manufactured and designed to meet industry standards with up to 99% removal of pollutants and contaminants that are found in your drinking water.

This system is built to exceed quality standards; it is backed and supported by their USA professional technical support. Their easy-to-install RO systems filter the impurities, contaminants, chemicals, and solids found in tap and well waters.

Each product comes shipped with easy to understand instructions. If you ever have any trouble or questions regarding the Express Water system you can contact their client care team anytime either online or by phone.

Some of the RO5DX specifications and features include:

1st stage: Has 5-micron Melt-Blown polypropylene sediment that removes large and fine particles such as sand, dirt, silt, and rust particles.

2nd stage: Includes GAC activated carbon filters; Removes chlorine, odors, and tastes of many organic compounds.

3rd stage: Has 5-micron carbon filters which block carbon filters made of fine coconut shell carbon; They also remove chlorine, tastes, odors, VOC and other common chemicals.

4th stage: This stage introduces a thin film 50 gpd RO membrane. A TFC membrane is the main component of any reverse Osmosis unit; it provides up to 99 percent reduction rate of bacteria and chemicals.

5th stage: The inline granular carbon filter polishes filters; and stabilizes the water tasting qualities and further removes any traces of bad tastes and odors.

Positives
  • The RO5DX has the lowest price on the list
  • Basic system, but well protected to last a long time
  • Replacement filters are very affordable
  • Easy installation – great for DIY!
Negatives
  • Slow flow rate
  • Can waste water if not installed properly

Home Master TMHP HydroPerfection 7-Stage System

Home Master TMHP HydroPerfection Undersink Reverse Osmosis Water Filter SystemThe TMHP HydroPerfection reverse osmosis system from Home Master brings you superior water purity while at the same time adding healthy minerals that produce crisp and safe mineral water on demand.

The pump included in this system will increase your water production by half and decrease your water waste almost entirely.

The most common problems found in regular RO (reverse osmosis) systems are leaks in the canister filter, water waste, low flow, servicing issues, and sometimes slightly acidic water. Home Master has brought to the table a creative design that virtually knocks out all those problems.

The HydroPerfection from Home Master is a smarter choice for multiple reasons: it has the best water efficiency, great tasting clean water, easy to replace filters, and UV light technology.

With filtration, sterilization, remineralization, and purification steps, the HydroPerfection has an astonishingly impressive nine stages to ensure you are receiving is nothing but immaculately clean water.
Home Master gives you and your family peace of mind knowing your mineral water is safe. It removes 98% of iron, chlorine, metals, dissolved solids, and other unsafe pollutants using not only reverse osmosis, but also catalytic carbon filter, sediment filter, and iron filter.

The mixed media pre-filler has strong catalytic carbon that removes herbicides and pesticides, which can harm the membrane in your RO system. Also, iron usually found in well water will also destroy that membrane, so HydroPerfection has a high-quality pre-iron filer to ensure your system does not get harmed.

Their highly advanced UV technology ensures your water is protected nonstop from pollutants, bacteria, and other pests that may enter the water system.

Positives
  • Produces great tasting water
  • Easy installation
  • UV light means 0 bacteria
Negatives
  • It’s an expensive system

What is Reverse Osmosis?

Reverse Osmosis According to Wikipedia, “Reverse osmosis is a water purification technology that uses a semipermeable membrane to remove ions, molecules, and larger particles from drinking water.â€

During this process, nearly 100% of all harmful sediments, bacteria, and cultures among other things are removed from the water leaving you with nothing but pure, clean, and safe drinkable water.

What Should I Consider Before Purchasing a Reverse Osmosis System?

There are many factors to consider before purchasing an RO system for your home. While you may think it as simple as finding one at your local home and garden store, making sure you have the right sink fittings, questions about your water hardness are reasonable questions to determine before purchasing the system you think best fits your needs. Here are various things to consider before purchasing an RO system.

Proper Faucet for Dispensary

All RO systems require a separate faucet for the dispensation of the treated water. Make sure you have one installed before purchasing an RO system. You can choose a new faucet or upgrade your current one to match the style of your existing sink fixture. You can also pick the type of faucet you want: an air gap, or non-air gap faucet.

A non-air gap faucet doesn’t have a gap of air in the drain line that prevents water from the drainage form being siphoned back into the water system. These kinds of faucets are most common however, because they are easier to install, less noisy during use. By simply checking the valve installed in the drain line, drainage can be prevented from back flowing from the drain.

Number of Stages the RO System Should Have

Most RO systems come with at least three stages of filtering and up to five stages. Typically, four stages are perfectly fine for most applications, however if your water has high levels of sediment, a system with the extra pre-filtration step will provide the best filtration for your needs.

Water Hardness

It’s important to understand the water quality of the tap available in your location. An RO system is not a water softener. If your water tends to be hard and is above 7 grains per gallon (gpg), a water softener will be necessary to pretreat the water and help preserve the life of the RO system and its membranes.

RO System Efficiency

Some systems are more efficient than others. Just like we use water to wash our dishes, or clothing, RO systems use water to clean the RO membranes as they filter the water. During the filtration process, RO systems typically do use more water for this cleaning, than the water they produce. However, once the storage tank is full, the system will shut down and water will not go down the drain.

Water Taste and Smell

RO systems work great at removing lead, iron, nitrates and a host of other contaminants that can affect the quality of the water you are drinking. In addition, it also can remove chlorine and chemicals that affect the taste of the water, greatly improving the taste and quality of the drinking water available.

If you want to remove particles or chemicals in your home water, an RO system is a great option. You can install a system that will treat the whole house, by using a system installed at the home point of entry (POE). Before this, it’s important to have a water analysis done to see what is causing the offensive smell or taste. Once you have found the cause, it’s easier to determine the right water treatment equipment that will address your specific needs.

Amount of Water an RO System Can Produce

The systems “50 gallons per day†(GPD) rating is the efficiency and speed at which the RO system makes drinking water, and how quickly it produces a gallon of water per hour. Expect a GPD rating of at least 50% to 75% of the system’s rating. The average household doesn’t use 50+ gallons of water per day, so a 50 GPD-rated system provides more than adequate water production for the day.

RO Water for An Ice Maker

To have safe and clean treated ice at the convenience of your fingertips, purchase a refrigerator icemaker adapter kit to easily get RO water to your icemaker.

RO Parts and Pieces

Lets talk about different parts and pieces of filter which work together to perform a complete filtration process.

Pre-Membrane Filters

The pre-membrane filters will remove out all solids like sand, rust, and chlorine through a minimum five-micron filter. The best RO filters tend to be the ones that filter more than once. These solids are in ordinary drinking water and are not always visible to the average eye. These solids can damage the reverse osmosis’ semipermeable membrane and the filter, or multiple filters and work hard to prevent that.

RO Membrane

The reverse osmosis membrane is a small, virtually undetectable filter that will let nothing more significant than 0.001 microns pass through it. What that means, is the only thing that can penetrate the membrane and go through it is pure water. Yes, some dissolved solids can get past the filter, but the membrane itself can eliminate nearly 99% of them. Because the membrane is extremely thin, increased water pressure does affect how quickly the water can get through it.

Final Filter

In most RO systems, the water will pass through one last filtration step. This last carbon filter will be used to remove any little taste and smell out of the water. After this step, the pure water is then stored in a tank ready for use.

Optional Reverse Osmosis System Add-ons and Upgrades

There are some additional features which you can get with RO system and get a better quality water as compared to basic system.

UV Lights

UV lights are a safe and effective way for killing 99% of bacteria and microorganisms that can make one sick, such as bacteria like E. coli. Unlike a corrosive solvent like chlorine, UV adds nothing to your water; it only removes the bad bacteria. While reviewing some of the best RO filter systems, most have the UV light option already equipped. If you do not have UV light filtration on your original reverse osmosis system and are concerned about your water source, you can easily purchase one and equip it.

Remineralization

In some systems, remineralization is a part of their entire process, while in others, you can purchase it as an additional feature. As the name implies, remineralization means you are selectively adding back beneficial nutrients to the water. Adding minerals back to the water is a great way to increase its PH level making it less acidic. For the most part, though, it just enhances the taste of the water.

Pressure Increasing Pump

There are two main reasons for adding a pressure increasing pump to your RO filter system. One, you may have poor water pressure, or two, you simply would like your reverse osmosis system to raise its output to give you more water, faster.

There are two types of pumps that can be added. The first is an electric pump, and the second type is a permeate pump (as used on many Home Master systems such the TMHP). A permeate pump is an ingenious non-electric device that uses water pressure to increase the water pressure in the system. Not only does this increase the output of the system by 50%, but it also dramatically reduces the water needed to flush the membrane. Instead of using 4 gallons of wastewater to produce a gallon of filtered water, systems with a permeate pump waste 1 gallon to produce a gallon of pure filtered water.

The Benefits of Reverse Osmosis Systems

Water is life. Without it, we cannot live. Poor water quality plays a huge role in severe medical issues like cancer, gastrointestinal problems, high blood pressure, staff, and cysts.

Its priority to keep ourselves and our family’s safe and we have the resources available to us. Therefore, we naturally want to keep our water safe and pure. The systems on the market today can rid our drinking water of any unsafe metals, viruses or the many pollutants out there.

The chance to use the RO systems available today is excellent news, as there are ample options to clean and purify water than ever before. There is no need for anyone to go without clean, crisp mineral water. At home, at work, while on vacation or away from civilization – we have drinkable, safe, clean and delicious water available.

The science and technology of today gives up many water filtering options. Gone are the days of changing your countertop charcoal system every couple hundred gallons. Those systems of the past hardly reduced water contaminants. Nowadays, the technologically advanced RO systems go through countless filtration steps, and remineralization steps to provide you with drinkable water. The tanks are made larger, and the filters last much longer.

Maintenance for Your Reverse Osmosis System: The Best Care

The Three-Stages of a Reverse Osmosis System and Their Maintenance

A simple RO system mainly consists of three stages: Pre-filtering, osmotic membrane, and post-filtering. Advanced osmosis systems also have four or five stages for improved water purification.

The pre-filtering stage consists of a filter cartridge that separates out sand, silt, and other residual particles. This stage is important to protect the Reverse Osmosis (RO) Membrane from damage caused by these particles. This filter must be changed every 6-9 months.

Next, a carbon filter is used to remove any taste and odor from water. This filter cartridges must also be changed every 6-9 months.

If you don’t change these two cartridges, your RO membrane may become damaged, and water purification will also be affected; you might notice a specific taste and odor in water.

Maintenance of the Central RO Membrane

Next is the reverse osmosis stage, in which water gets pushed at a pressure of 35 psi to pass through the membrane. The thinly perforated RO membrane will separate the solutes from the solvent, and an only pure solvent is allowed to pass through.

This RO membrane is the central part of an RO system and its maintenance, and regular cleaning is of utmost importance to get clean, purified and fresh water.

You can clean the membrane every 3-4 months to prevent clogging of pores. If cleaned properly, this membrane has a longer lifespan, however; it must be changed every 2-3 years.

The post-filtering process is used to purify the water further and optimize it to meet market standards. A carbon filter is usually used at this stage to wash out any odor and taste from the water. This filter must also be changed every 6-9 months.

To summarize

  1. Replace all filters every 6-9 months or max 12 months.
  2. Replace RO membrane every 24-36 months.
  3. Sanitize the water tanks every year.
  4. Cleanse and re-assemble the plumbing pipes every 2 years.
  5. Replace and buy new parts when necessary.
  6. The pressure nozzle must also be checked at regular intervals.
If you don’t properly maintain your reverse osmosis system, the performance and quality of purification will significantly be affected; you might experience offensive taste and odor of water and low water pressure. Low water pressure is an evident sign that your filter and membrane life is running out.

If you correctly maintain your RO system, it can last as long as 10-15 years. Remember, clean filters, and membranes mean pure and healthy water.

So, What is The Best RO Filtration System?

There is something for everyone when it comes to finding the best reverse osmosis system for your home. Whatever your needs may be, guaranteed you will find the right piece of equipment. Remember, purifying your water and keeping yourself safe is a necessary thing to do, so no matter what system you choose, keep in mind that any one of these systems will protect you.

If you are looking for the best overall choice for price and performance, then the APEC ROES 5 STAGE is your system. It has outstanding reviews, does its job well, and is a steal for under $200.00.

For ultimate filtration and remineralization that ensure the purest and freshest mineral water, then the Home Master’s Artesian would be the choice for you.

iSpring’s RCC7 FIVE STAGE SYSTEM has the best value there is on the market. It has a great system, a very inexpensive running cost and is reasonably priced. The WQA Gold Seal is a good indicator of how well it works.

APEC’s 5 STAGE RO-90 has the largest water tank capacity, so if you are looking to store a lot of water, this is the unit for you. It is tested thoroughly and is built with top-grade components.

For amazing value, turn to the iSpring ICC7AK. This is the cheapest 6 stage RO system with real quality. It provides excellent tasting mineral water at an attractive price. Another gem from iSpring that offers terrific value. This reverse osmosis water system reviews well on other consumer sites too.

If cost and efficiency are a priority, turn to Express Water’s efficient and straightforward 5 stage system. This is a water filter that’s hard to beat when it comes to price. It also has a one-year warranty and technical support that is based in the USA. The Express Water is as inexpensive as it gets for 5 stages of water filtration. As a bonus, it comes with extra filters. It also comes highly recommended on Amazon.

Home Master’s HydroPerfection is hands down, the Cadillac of any water purifying system out there. You will receive ultimate protection from this bad boy. It is well equipped to handle whatever pollutant or contaminant that gets in it.

These water purification systems range in value and features but ultimately provide clean and healthy water for your home water needs. Reverse Osmosis systems are an excellent choice for proven and effective drinkable water. They are an exceptional product to add to your home filtration system.