Shopping for a Point-of-Entry Home Water Filter?
You’re at the right place.
Whether your house is supplied with municipal water, or you source your water from wells, lakes, or even straight from a glacier, it is almost certainly exposed to some kind of contamination along the waybefore it reaches your home.
Using this water, especially for drinking, can be detrimental to your health, which is why it’s essential to address this issue before any health-related issue arises.
A good point-of-entry home water filter will capture all the harmful contaminants before they make their way towards your home faucets.
It will not only protect you from any adverse side effects but also preserve your pipes, faucets, fixtures, showers, and appliances.
What’s In This Buying Guide
Table of Contents
The market these days has a huge variety of point-of-entry water filters to offer.
However, you can’t simply go and purchase any system that you like. You have to understand your unique circumstances, needs and choose a water filter accordingly.
For this precise reason, in this guide, we have reviewed some of the best point-of-entry water filters and mentioned all the features you should look for when choosing the best water filter option.
We’ve also discussed the working and benefits of different point-of-entry filtration systems and how to install and maintain them.
Towards the end of this guide, we have also included a FAQ section to address some commonly asked questions regarding point of entry water filters.
Best Point-of-Entry Water Filter System
3M AP904 Aqua-Pure Whole House Filter
Best Single-Stage Filter
25.2 x 4.5 x 4.5 inches
up to 20 GPM
100,000 gallons or 12 months
25-year limited warranty
Home Master Whole House Water Filter
Best 2-Stage Filter
22.5 x 14.2 x 12.9 inches
Fine Sediment and Carbon
up to 20 GPM
up to 95,000 gallons or 12 months
2 years manufacturer limited warranty
Express Water Whole-House Filter
Best 3-Stage Filter
23.5 x 8.5 x 29.25 inches
Sediment, KDF, and Carbon Block
up to 15 GPM
100,000 gallons or 6 – 12 months
NSF / ANSI Certified
The 3M Aqua-Pure Whole House Filter removes both taste impurities and high levels of minerals from your water supply.
It is a single-stage point-of-entry water filter that uses carbon block technology to treat every gallon of water entering your home.
The 3M Aqua-Pure system consists of a durable stainless steel head and a single tank of replaceable activated carbon filters.
It can remove particles down to 5 microns, while its scale inhibition technology keeps minerals suspended so they don’t accumulate in fixtures and pipes.
This water filter can supply you with up to 20 gallons of water per minute and has a total capacity of 100,000 gallons.
The 3M AP904 Aqua-Pure Filter System is easy to install and the first unit in its class that doesn’t require easy-to-lose specialty wrenches.
Its innovative Sanitary Quick Change (SQC) design eliminates the need to use Herculean strength for cartridge changes.
Its high water flow rate of up to 20 gallons per minute is enough to take a long shower and run the dishwasher at the same time without losing any water pressure.
The filter cartridge is also high-capacity and supplies up to 100,000 gallons of water in its lifetime. Under average conditions, it is enough to last up to an entire year before needing replacement.
Another plus point of this system is its superior engineering and top-notch customer care.
We all know how much 3M stands for its products. The 25-year warranty coverage over this system is proof.
Boasting a stainless steel and plastic construction, the unit is NSF 42 Certified for being environment-friendly.
Issues & Limitations
While the system is great at reducing foul odor and taste from water, it comes without a sediment pre-filter.
Even the company recommends pairing this water filter with a pre-filter system. Not installing one greatly reduces its lifespan.
The 3M AP904 Aqua-Pure Filter System is a budget-friendly single-stage filter from a reliable manufacturer.
It is simple to install, easy to maintain, and long-lasting. It has a flow rate and ensures that you receive clean and safe water from every tap in your house.
The Home Master Whole House Water Filter is an efficient 2-stage water filter that removes up to 95% of sediment, chemicals, and chlorine from the water.
The first stage is the multi-gradient sediment filter with 4 filtration layers, while the second stage consists of an activated coconut shell carbon filter.
Both these stages work together to remove particles varying from 25 to 1 micron in size. The filter has a lifespan of up to 95,000 gallons and delivers a flow rate of up to 20 GPM.
The Home Master 2-Stage Whole House Water Filter guarantees pure water with its four gradient density sediment filter and a carbon block.
The sediment filter consists of 4 distinct layers, each designed to trap particles of varying sizes going down to 1 micron.
The carbon filter consists of an all-natural coconut shell carbon filter that prevents odor- and taste-causing chemicals from sneaking into your home.
Together, both these filtering stages remove up to 95% of contaminants from the water, making it suitable for drinking, washing, bathing, and other household chores.
Like all Home Master water filters, this 2-stage whole-house filter is built to last. It features a patent-pending steel mounting bracket and durable fittings to supply you with clean, drinkable water for years to come.
Lastly, its 2-year warranty coverage is proof of the manufacturer’s trust in its build and performance.
Issues & Limitations
The only major issue with the Home Master 2-stage filter is its installation.
Although the system comes with an extremely detailed and easy-to-understand manual, the installation is still confusing for most buyers.
You might need to hire a professional plumber to do the job, which will take both time and money.
So, if it’s an easy-to-install water filter that you’re after, the Home Master whole house 2-stage water filter is probably not for you.
This Home Master water filtration system is an effective unit that removes nearly all harmful particles from your water. It is a high-capacity device that delivers up to 20 gallons of water in a minute.
It is durable and low-maintenance and improves water quality from the minute you install it, and continues to do so for years if you are punctual with filter replacements.
The Express Water Whole-House Filter is a 3-stage water purification system that leaves your water clean, clear, and free of contaminants. The entire system comes with a freestanding frame that can be wall-mounted if required.
The Express Water filter consists of a sediment filter, a KDF (Kinetic Degradation Fluxion) filter, and an activated carbon block, all designed to take care of different types of particles contaminating the water.
The sediment filter removes rust, dirt, and sand, while the KDF and carbon filters capture different chemical elements. The entire setup removes up to 80 different contaminants from your water.
The Express Water Whole-House Filter is a complete water filtration system that instantly supplies high volumes of filtered water to the entire house.
With this installed on your main supply line, you receive crisp, clean drinking water from any faucet without anypressure drop.
The first stage is a sediment filter that stops coarse, damaging contaminants like sand, rust, and dirt from making their way to your pipes, fixtures, and appliances. It consists of 4 distinct layers that capture particles down to 5 microns in size.
The second stage is the KDF filter that traps all the chemical contaminants while controlling and inhibiting the growth of microorganisms.
Meanwhile, the third stage includes an activated carbon filter that improves the drinkability and taste of your water by absorbing foulodors and tastes.
This 3-stage Express Water filtration system purifies water without adding chemicals or wastewater.
It prolongs the life of the appliances and allows you to shower and cook without the taste and smell of harsh chlorine.
It also removes other major contaminants such as rust, lead, chloramine, VOC, heavy metals, and odor-causing elements with its deep filtration stages.
Issues & Limitations
The biggest problem with the Express Water filter system is the weight. It measures a total of 65 pounds and could be a problem if you want to install the filter yourself.
The included pressure gauges are also a little inaccurate, so you can’t rely on them to provide you with the right pressure information.
Point-of-Entry Water Filter Systems: Buying Guide
What Is a Point of Entry Water Filter System – and how does it work?
Point-of-entry water filters are also known as whole-house water filters. You might have heard about them from a family member or friend or may have stumbled upon the term on the internet.
So, what exactly is a point-of-entry water filter?
As the name suggests, it is a water filtration system that installs at your home’s point of entry, i.e., the point where the main water supply enters your home.
This way, all the water coming into your home gets filtered before it makes its way to the taps, fittings, and fixtures.
Such a system comprises a tank containing filter media. This media captures the physical and chemical impurities when the water passes through it, allowing only clean water to pass through.
Usually, the main water supply line is on the boundary of your house or in the basement, so the system stays out of the way.
It installs even before the heating systems, so both the hot and cold water coming to your home is clean and contaminant-free.
POE vs. POU Water Filtration
POE or point-of-entry systems purify water from the point it first enters your home. Meanwhile, POU or point-of-use systems filter the water only where you need it.
POE units are also known as whole-house water filters because they treat all the water coming into your house by connecting to the main water line.
POU filters usually connect to a single supply line, on the faucet, or under the sink and supply clean water to the actual point where it is used.
POU systems are usually low-capacity units, filtering small amounts of water and lasting around 6 months (depending on the unit you select). They are very suitable for light applications, like single-faucet use.
On the other hand, POE systems are high-capacity devices that filter large volumes of water and provide years of service before needing filtration media replacement (depending on use and unit selected).
POU filters are usually small and more affordable. Whole-house filtration systems cost more and are heavier.
Some examples of POU units include faucet filters, countertop filters, and under-sink filters. Whole-house reverse osmosis systems and multi-stage in-line filtration systems are examples of a POE water filtration system.
Why buy a Point of Entry Water Filter System over other kinds?
Apart from getting clean, pure water throughout the house, a point-of-entry water filter has other advantages over other kinds of filter systems. These include:
Protect your home from aesthetic damage
Point-of-entry water filtration systems protect your home against aesthetic damage.
They are specially designed to remove common water contaminants, including stubborn ones like sulfur, iron, and chlorine. These three elements are notorious for causing aesthetic damage to your home.
Iron leaves difficult-to-clean stains on fixtures and appliances, while chlorine and sulfur give the water a sour taste and smell.
A point-of-entry filter prevents these from making their way inside your house and causes perceivable damage to its aesthetic appeal.
Improve appliance lifespan
A POE water filter is also beneficial for household appliances like washing machines, dishwashers, and ice makers.
Low-quality water not only lowers their performance but with prolonged exposure, it corrodes and damages their components.
A point-of-entry water filtration system provides all these appliances with clean, good-quality water, allowing them to function optimally over a longer period.
Provide clean drinkable water
The dubious quality of the water supply is a prominent reason why most people opt for bottled water for drinking.
However, instead of spending so much on bottled water each year, you can invest in a POE filter to get bottled-quality water.
Installing a good whole house water filter will ensure that you have bottled quality water flowing from all the faucets around your home.
Once filtered, you can safely drink this water from any outlet without suffering any ill effects.
Reduce hair and skin problems
Water quality has a direct impact on the health of your hair and skin.
Hard water minerals like calcium and magnesium cause skin irritation, dandruff, hair fall, itchy scalp, and general dryness.
Like a whole-house reverse osmosis system, a good point-of-entry water filter efficiently eliminates all such contaminants, providing cleaner and softer water that is good for your hair and skin.
What to look for in a Point of Entry Water Filter System
Every household is different, which means not all of them will benefit from the same filtration system.
And while the basic functioning of all systems is the same, they vary in capacity and the contaminants they can remove.
So, you must assess your needs – like the contaminants you want to remove and how much filtered water you need every day – before making the final purchase.
Some factors that will help you in the decision-making process include:
The flow rate of point-of-entry water filters varies from one model to another and is represented by gallons per minute (GPM).
This rating is mentioned in the specifications of all systems, and while some have a high GPM rating, others filter supply fewer GPM.
The key to choosing a good water filter for your house is to keep your water requirements in mind, especially during the peak hours of the morning when everyone is getting ready for school or work.
This way, you will know exactly how much water flow rate you need, and you will refrain from buying anything lower.
Generally, regardless of the size of your family, a 15 GPM system is the best for most households.
The high flow rate means you will have an uninterrupted water supply without any pressure fluctuations.
Stages of filtration
Each water filtration is designed to remove numerous contaminants.
Some contaminants, like sand and slit, are visible so straining them is easy. But others like chlorine, bacteria, and iron are not as easily removed.
That’s why point-of-entry systems are usually multi-stage systems that trap harmful contaminants before they enter your home’s pipes.
You can find many single-stage, 2-stage, and 3-stage point-of-entry filtration systems. You should choose a suitable one according to the quality of your water supply.
Since municipal water is treated before distribution, a single or 2-stage system will work fine for it.
On the other hand, well water requires more filtration, so you should not settle for anything lower than a 3-stage filtration system.
Although most point-of-entry filters are low-maintenance, you still have to remember to replace their filter media from time to time; otherwise, your water quality will drop.
It’s always a good idea to purchase a system with a long filter lifespan, so you don’t need to change it very frequently.
Some systems have a 1-million-gallon filtration capacity, while others can only treat 100,000 gallons of water in their lifespan.
You should think about your water consumption and how frequently you are willing to replace the filters before finalizing your purchase.
The pore size is also specified on the systems in microns. It shows the size of the smallest particle the system can trap.
Most systems have a 1-5-micron rating, while multi-stage systems are a series of filters that screen out different-sized filters at each stage. Some premium systems also screen out particles as small as 0.35 microns.
Again, you should consider your water quality to choose a suitable system. Pore size becomes more significant when you have well water because it is untreated and needs additional care and purification.
Installation of Point of Entry Water Filter Systems
Installing a point-of-entry filtration system is a fairly easy task if you have basic plumbing know-how. If you are not a DIY-er, we suggest hiring a professional to help you out.
But if you decide to install it yourself, here is an overview of the process.
- Before starting, make sure you read the instructions carefully.
- Turn off the main water supply line and drain all the pipes.
- Choose a suitable spot for installing the system. Make sure it is easy to reach as you will need to change the filter cartridges from time to time.
- Take a pipe cutter and cut the pipe on the installation site.
- Follow the instructions and install all the fittings. Make sure the filter ports face the correct direction.
- Apply Teflon tape on all the joints.
- With the filter’s inlet valve turned off, turn on the main supply.
- Check for leaks.
- Now turn on the inlet valve
- Once done, check for leaks once more.
- If there are leaks, undo the fittings and make them tighter.
- Once everything is nice and secure and there are no water leaks, you are good to go.
- Now every time you want to change the filter, just turn off the inlet valve and use a wrench to remove the cartridge filter.
Pros and cons
While the advantages of point-of-entry water filters are undeniable, they do have some disadvantages.
Most point-of-entry water filters are low-maintenance and don’t require anything more than regular filter changes. But to make sure that they stay in top working conditions for years, here are some maintenance tips:
Frequently Asked Questions
Is it costly to have a point of entry water filter system?
This depends on the product you choose. If you opt to purchase a high-quality system, you will incur a high upfront cost but will also save money on less frequent filter changes.
A cheaper system will undoubtedly cost less but will require you to spend more money on its maintenance.
How long does a POE filter last?
Depending on its size and capacity, a POE filter can last from three months to up to a year. Some high-capacity systems can also last for about 10 years.
The filter’s lifespan also depends upon the quality of your water supply.
For example, municipal water has better quality than well water because it is treated before being distributed.
So, your point-of-entry system will last longer with municipal water than it will with well water.
Is POE Water Filtration System Worth the Money?
Of course, a POE system is worth every cent you spend over it. It is a great way to get cleaner and healthier water for you and your family.
With a good whole-house water filtration system in place, you can stop purchasing bottled water altogether and start drinking water straight from the faucet, which will be both cost-effective and environmentally friendly.
Final Verdict: What is the best Point of Entry Water Filter System?
We find the Express Water Whole-House Filter to be the best point-of-entry water filter out of the rest because it removes up to 80 different contaminants from your water.
But if you want a 2-stage filtration system, we’d suggest you go for the Home Master Whole-House Water Filter.
And if convenience is what you are after, the 3M AP904 Aqua-Pure Whole-House Filter is the perfect choice for you.