Restaurants must be extra careful about how they prepare food and what they serve their customers. This is why it’s important for them to run a clean kitchen, which also involves having a reliable clean water source for cooking and drinking.
A restaurant water filter offers restaurants the opportunity to filter water on-demand. These systems can be portable filters or Point-Of-Entry whole house systems.
The best water filter for restaurants is the Springwell CF1, which is a whole house system that filters water for the entire restaurant. If you need a portable systems, Waterdrop G3P800 and Clearly under-sink filter top options to consider.
Best Water Filter Systems for Restaurants
Commercial Whole House Water Filtration Systems:
- Springwell CF1 – Best All-rounder
- Kind Water Systems E-3000 – Best Filter & Softener Combo
- US Water Systems Defender – Best for Large Water Needs
Portable Point-of-Use Water Filters:
- Waterdrop G3P800 – Easiest to Install and Maintain
- Clearly Filtered Undersink Model – Most affordable
Commercial Water Filtration Systems for Restaurants
Commercial systems are larger than portable units. Their size allows them to have a much higher flow rate and makes it possible to attach them to more faucets throughout your restaurant.
The best system in this category is the Springwell CF1, although the Kind Water Systems E-3000 and the US Water Systems Defender are two other choices worth considering.
1. Springwell CF1 Whole House Filter
- Price – $981.79
- Warranty – Lifetime warranty on tanks and valves
- Filter Life – 1,000,000 gallons
- A lifetime warranty on tanks and valves
- 6-month money-back guarantee
- Great add-on systems: UV filter, reverse osmosis water system
- Professional help is required for the installation
This Springwell CF1 is a whole house system that boasts a 4-stage filtration process designed to catch and remove a wide range of water contaminants.
- The flex bed is designed to channel the water through the system to extend its contact time with the filters, removing more contaminants.
- The KDF bed is made of a copper/zinc alloy media that removes chlorine and other common water contaminants, such as chloramine, MTBE, TTHM, and more.
- The catalytic carbon bed eliminates organic contaminants, PFOS, PFAS, PFOA, herbicides, pesticides, and more.
- The 5-micron sediment filter runs a final sweep, ensuring that the water is free of sand, silt, clay, or other sediment particles.
The process is thorough and removes any discoloration from the water, as well as any strange tastes or odors. The system also includes optional UV water filtration and reverse osmosis. The UV filtration system passes the water through a light that removes any organic materials that the catalytic carbon bed might have missed.
On the other hand, the reverse osmosis filter provides a fine membrane screen that removes all particles larger than hydrogen and oxygen molecules. On its own, this screen would get clogged with contaminants pretty quickly, but when used in succession with the other filters, it lasts much longer since not that many contaminants get to the membrane.
This model can produce 9 GPM (gallons per minute), which the manufacturer says is ideal for 1-3 bathrooms. However, since restaurants only use sinks, we’d say that this flow rate is ideal for up to 5, maybe 6 sinks.
2. Kind Water Systems E-3000 Water Filter & Softener
- Price – $1,598.24
- Warranty – Limited lifetime warranty
- Filter Life – 6 months
- Good flow rate of up to 15 GPM
- 120-day money-back guarantee
- Highly-effective three-phase filtration
- Replacement filters cost between $40 and $100
The Kind Water Systems E-3000 is a wall-mounted whole-house water filtration system. The fact that it goes on a wall gives it a bit of a leg up (no pun intended) on the competition since it helps you save floor space.
This feature is very useful for busy kitchens that lack space around the main water pipes and can’t fit a standard whole-house filter water tank like the Springwell CF1.
Despite the smaller size, the Kind Water Systems is much more powerful than the Springwell and can handle flow rates of up to 15 GPM. This flow rate can normally cover up to 6 bathrooms, but since we’re mostly talking about sinks here, we’d say that it can provide filtered water for up to 9 sinks.
This unit is easy to install, and you don’t need to pay a professional to do the job for you. The filters are also easy to replace since you just need to unscrew the casing, remove the old filter, pop in the new one, and screw it back on. Do this three times (once for each filter casing), and you’re done with maintenance, which should take less than 5 minutes.
Speaking of filters, they can remove a large number of different contaminants.
The first casing holds a carbon filter that can remove things like chlorine, herbicides, pesticides, organic acids, solvents, chloramine, and so on.
On the other hand, the sediment filter is very effective at removing unpleasant odors and tastes from the water, as well as soil, clay, mud, and other sediment particles.
The third casing holds a salt-free water-softening filter that neutralizes heavy minerals in the water, such as calcium and magnesium, and prevents them from forming limescale in your pipes and damaging them.
Best of all, you get a lifetime warranty and a 120-day money-back guarantee if you’re unsatisfied with the filtration system.
3. US Water Systems Defender Whole House RO System for Restaurant
- Price – $6,065.15
- Warranty – 2-year warranty (10 years on parts for the BodyGuard Plus)
- Filter Life – 6 months
- Comes with a lot of optional extras
- Easy to install
- Great flow rate
- Very expensive, especially when you factor in the potential add-ons
The US Water Systems Defender is the most expensive unit on our list, and one of the most expensive filtration systems in general, but its versatility justifies the price. The unit comes with a lot of additional equipment and upgrades that you can add to make it an ideal fit for any kitchen.
However, these add-ons add to the already high price. To illustrate this with an example, the base 2,000 GPD (gallons per day) no pre-treatment model costs around $6,000, while the 16,000 GPD BodyGuard Plus and antiscalant variant will set you back around $12,000.
Besides the steep price, this model is an excellent unit for just about any kitchen. It uses a reverse osmosis filter that runs the water through a thin membrane removing the most common water contaminants.
The control panel has a display that’s easy to read and use. You have flow rate meters on the front of the case, as well as pressure gauges and adjustable valves on top for the water input and output points.
The BodyGuard Plus that we mentioned a little earlier is an additional piece of equipment that adds around $1,100 to the initial price. If you buy it, it can remove chlorine, chloramine, pesticides, and other chemicals from the water. It also removes any tastes and odors, completely purifying tap water.
On top of that, the unit comes with a carbon filter lasting 1,000,000 gallons and a warranty on the unit’s parts valid for 10 years.
The biggest strength of this unit is, without a doubt, its versatility. All of the add-ons are designed to attach to the initial casing easily, and you can connect as many as you think you might need to eliminate all of the potential contaminants in your water.
Portable Point-of-Use Water Filters for Restaurants
These units save a lot more space compared to the commercial whole-house filtration systems, which means they can perfectly fit in any small restaurant or kitchen without getting in the way. In this category, we recommend two units for restaurants, the Waterdrop G3P800, and the Clearly Filtered under sink model.
1. Waterdrop G3P800 RO System
- Price – $999.00
- Warranty – 1-year warranty
- Filter Life – 6 months
- 30-day money-back guarantee
- 1-year warranty
- Comes with its own faucet
- Very expensive for a portable unit
The Waterdrop G3P800 is undoubtedly the best option for small kitchens due to its simplicity. It has its own faucet, so you just need to place the filter under the counter, attach it to the water pipes, and then attach the custom faucet to the water output valve.
The new faucet is great for restaurants since it has a high drop-down end that makes putting large glasses, dishes, and even bottles underneath very convenient. It also has a large display that shows you exactly how long until the filter needs to be replaced. You also get a TDS display that shows you the quality of the water that’s currently passing through the filter and the faucet.
The filtration system uses three separate filters to remove contaminants. The first filter is an activated carbon removing organic contaminants from the water. The second filter is a pre-sediment filter that gets rid of the large soil and sediment particles.
The third and final filter is the RO filter which passes the water through a very thin membrane removing all of the smaller particles and contaminants that might have passed through the previous two filters.
You also have a UV sterilization light in the system to help eliminate organic contaminants that might have passed the activated carbon filter.
The sediment and carbon filters cost $30 a piece, so they’re not too expensive, but the RO filter will set you back around $90. This means that replacing all three filters costs around $150. You only need to do this twice a year, so it’s not going to bankrupt you, but the filters are definitely on the more expensive side when you put them all together.
On the plus side, all three filters are easy to remove and replace since you just need to twist them off and put in the new ones. The whole process should take you no more than 2 minutes for all 3.
Clearly Filtered Undersink Model – Most Affordable
- Price – $ 550.00
- Warranty – Limited lifetime warranty
- Filter Life – 2,000 Gallons
- Very affordable
- 90-day money-back guarantee
- Easy installation and maintenance
- The filter isn’t very effective against highly contaminated water
While this might be the smallest water filtration unit on our list, it can remove a staggering 232+ contaminants. These contaminants include fluoride, lead, PFAS, heavy metals, chemicals, organic contaminants, and other common water contaminants.
Like the Waterdrop G3P800, Clearly Filtered is also very easy to install.
You simply need to attach one end of the water hose to the water pipe and the other to the faucet you’re using. Then, you need to place and screw in the outlined holes just above the filter cartridges, but if you have a second pair of hands to help, you can finish the job in no time.
Clearly Filtered uses a three-stage system with an activated carbon filter, a heavy metal filter, and a fluoride filter. The first filter takes care of sediment particles and unpleasant tastes and odors. The second filter removes heavy metals, herbicides, and pesticides, while the third filter removes any fluoride from your drinking water.
However, while the filters remove a large number of different contaminants, they’re still pretty limited when it comes to performance. In other words, if your water contains very high pollutant levels, the filters will clog quickly, and the flow rate will decrease as the water can’t pass through the blocked filters anymore.
Because of this, Clearly Filtered is an excellent unit for small restaurants where space is an issue, and the water is mainly affected by fluoride and lead. This system can remove more than 90% of the fluoride in your water and 99% of lead, but excessive amounts of other contaminants will clog the filters quickly.
How We Reviewed Water Filter Systems for Restaurants
The three main factors that we took into account when picking out the best water filter systems for restaurants include: filter life, price, and warranty
Most of the filters on our list have replaceable filters that you change after some time, usually around once every year or two.
The Springwell is the only model that doesn’t have replaceable filters, but the fact that it can purify more than a million gallons of water before it stops working means that you’ll likely use it for more than 10 years without a problem.
|Water Filter System||Filter Life|
|Springwell CF1||1,000,000 gallons – more than 10 years|
|Kind Water Systems E-3000||2,000 gallons ~ 1 years|
|US Water Systems Defender||1,000,000 gallons ~ more than 10 years|
|Waterdrop G3P800||2,900 gallons ~ 2 years|
|Clearly Filtered Undersink Model||2,000 Gallons ~ 1 year|
The price of the filtration unit plays a major part in determining whether or not a certain model is right for your restaurant.
The price of commercial and portable water filters is mainly determined by the unit’s size and flow rate. We only recommend the more expensive models for really large restaurants since small facilities won’t need the high flow rate they can generate.
In the case of the portable filter systems, the price difference between the Waterdrop G3800 and the Clearly Filtered is because the Waterdrop has a much more effective contaminant removal ratio.
|Kind Water Systems E-3000||$1,598.24|
|US Water Systems Defender||$6,065.15|
|Clearly Filtered Undersink Model||$550.00|
As you’ll be making a significant investment, you want to make sure that the filter you get has a good warranty. The Springwell, the Kind Water Systems, and the Clearly filtered models have pretty good warranties. The US Water Systems Defender and the Waterdrop both have rather limited warranties, which is a point against them, especially when you consider that they’re the most expensive systems in their respective categories.
|Springwell CF1||Lifetime warranty on tanks and valves|
|Kind Water Systems E-3000||Limited lifetime warranty|
|US Water Systems Defender||2-year warranty|
|Waterdrop G3P800||1-year warranty|
|Clearly Filtered Undersink Model||Limited lifetime warranty|
Advantages of Using Water Filter Systems in Restaurants
The most significant advantage of using a water filter system in your restaurant is that you will be ensuring the safety of your patrons.
Clean water also improves the taste of meals since it’s free from microplastics, heavy metals, or sediment particles that get mixed up with the food and change the flavor in unwanted ways.
These devices are also very affordable in the long run. The most expensive item on our list has an initial buying price of several thousand dollars, but even that model is cost-effective when it comes to running costs and maintenance.
Replacement filters cost between $20 and $60, lasting around a year, and water waste is kept to a minimum, so your water bill should remain the same.
Disadvantages of Using Water Filter Systems in Restaurants
Maintenance is a major disadvantage of these devices. The filters only need to be replaced every half a year at most, depending on the model you use, so that’s not much of an issue.
But you’ll still need to check the pre-filters for blockages, ensure that nothing is leaking, and do some basic upkeep to ensure that your unit is running well.
Additionally, these devices take up a lot of space. For houses, the size usually isn’t a problem since they go into the basement where the main water pipes are located. However, if your restaurant doesn’t have a basement, you might need to allocate space in your storage room for these units.
Frequently Asked Questions
In this section, we’ll address some of the most commonly asked questions about using water filters in restaurants.
The most affordable water filter system for restaurants on our list is the Clearly Filtered under-sink model, as it will set you back only around $550.
There are much cheaper filtration systems out there, but we suggest sticking with a unit with proven quality and performance in restaurants.
Getting a cheaper system with a less effective filter exposes your customers and you to danger. If the filter isn’t working right (and your water is contaminated), the customer might get sick from the food or drinks prepared with that water.
The Clearly Filtered model is a great bargain and a well-reviewed system that strikes a great balance between affordability and utility, so it’s definitely one of the best choices for small restaurants that are looking for a reliable water filtration system.
The answer is yes!
Water filter systems can ensure the food you cook using the water from your kitchen won’t contain contaminants that might make your customers sick. It also has the benefit of allowing you to serve tap water safely.
If nothing else, you can always get one of the cheaper models for a trial run. Try it out for a bit and see if it’s helpful. Then upgrade to a bigger model if you need one. If it isn’t, you won’t have lost too much money and can return to the way things were.
The way we see it, you’ve got very little to lose and can only gain by getting yourself a water filtration system.
The under-sink models are a much better option for small restaurants and kitchens since you don’t need a lot of space to install and use them.
On the other hand, the larger units generally have more effective filters and significantly better flow rates. However, we only recommend them for restaurants with a basement or a place where they can be installed without getting in the way.
The Springwell CF1 has decent flow rates, is reasonably priced, and removes many contaminants, so it’s a good choice for any restaurant with the room for it.
The Kind Water Systems E-3000 is a bit more compact than a ground-mounted model, and the flow rates make it an excellent option for larger restaurants.
The US Water Systems Defender is very expensive, but the add-ons you can get with it give you many choices regarding the type of system you want to build, depending on your needs.
The Waterdrop G3P800 has very effective filters, it’s easy to use and install, but you can only use it on one sink, so it’s only a good option for very small kitchens.
The Clearly Filtered Undersink unit is the weakest regarding flow rate and filter capability. Still, it’s very affordable, so it’s an excellent choice for anyone who needs a filter for one sink only or wants to get a water filter for a trial run without having to invest too much money.