Brita vs PUR – The Best Water Filter Pitcher/Dispenser

Brita vs PUR water filter dispenser
After thorough testing of the Brita and PUR water filter pitchers/dispensers, PUR outperformed Brita in the majority of categories. Read on to find out why PUR is our pick for the best water filter pitcher/dispenser.

If you don’t have a fridge with a filtered water dispenser built in, then a water filter pitcher/dispenser is a must for you. Water filter pitchers and dispensers are specifically designed to help make drinking clean water easy and convenient. They filter out harmful contaminants from tap water that come from old water pipes, as well as tainted water sources (depending on where you live). As an added benefit (in our opinion), they make tap water taste significantly better as well. So, which is the best water filter pitcher/dispenser to buy? We decided to test the top two brands to help you make an informed buying decision.

Preview
Our Pick
18-Cup Dispenser with Filter (removes up to 96% of mercury and helps reduce the taste and odor of chlorine in tap water)
Brita Extra Large 18 Cup UltraMax Water Dispenser and Filter - BPA Free - Black
Title
PUR 18-Cup Dispenser with Filter
Brita Extra Large 18 Cup UltraMax Water Dispenser and Filter
Prime
-
Price
from $37.02
$27.63
Our Pick
Preview
18-Cup Dispenser with Filter (removes up to 96% of mercury and helps reduce the taste and odor of chlorine in tap water)
Title
PUR 18-Cup Dispenser with Filter
Prime
-
Price
from $37.02
Details
Preview
Brita Extra Large 18 Cup UltraMax Water Dispenser and Filter - BPA Free - Black
Title
Brita Extra Large 18 Cup UltraMax Water Dispenser and Filter
Prime
Price
$27.63
Details

Why We Chose Brita and PUR

Most everyone has heard of Brita water filters. They have been around for quite some time and seem to be touted as the best of the best for water filters. After scouring tons of reviews and asking the public, Brita was a no brainer to include in this test. A lesser known brand, however, became the top competitor we could find – PUR.

PUR is definitely a newcomer to this market when compared to Brita and seems to be lesser well-known. PUR water filters have great reviews though, and have an ever expanding presence in brick and mortar retail stores like Walmart and Target where they have prime shelf displays. PUR also targets Brita specifically with its marketing, claiming to filter much better. PUR called out Brita, so let’s see who wins this matchup.

First Impressions

We decided to test the two large 18 cup water filter pitchers/dispensers from each brand. Right away, it is clear that Brita has a more modern and sleek design than PUR. The Brita pitcher also takes up significantly less space in the fridge as it is smaller overall. It has a very nice top that hinges open to provide easy access for refilling the pitcher.

The PUR pitcher/dispenser appears much more “plasticy” and looks overall to be made of cheaper materials. It’s top has to come completely off in order to refill the pitcher, and its dispenser lever looks a lot cheaper than Brita’s.

WINNER: Brita

Pricing

Both the Brita and the PUR water filter pitchers and dispensers are affordable for the average household. Additionally, there is almost no price difference between the two brands throughout their range of products. The smaller pitchers range from the $15-$20 range for 5 cup capacities, while the 7 and 10 cup capacities range from the $20-$30 range. Both of the large 18 cup capacity dispensers that we decided to test were about $35, so there really is no winner here in terms of pricing.

The difference in pricing lies in the replacement filters. Both Brita and PUR recommend changing your filter every 2 months. Brita replacement filters are about half of the cost of PUR replacement filters. A pack of 6 Brita filters costs around $25, where with PUR filters, that $25 will only get you a pack of 3 filters.

Brita Water Filter Dispenser

WINNER: Brita

Filtering Specs

Both of these filters are supposed to allow the average household to safely drink tap water by filtering out any harmful contaminants. Now, we don’t have the advanced testing tools to see what elements each filter actually filters, so we have to rely on each company’s own verified claims.

Brita

Brita doesn’t actually claim that its water filter filters very many contaminants. In fact, Brita only claims to filter/reduce the following:

Heavy Metals – Mercury, Copper, Cadmium

Taste and Odor – Chlorine

Metallic Taste – Zinc

Sale
Brita Extra Large 18 Cup UltraMax Water Dispenser and Filter
  • SPACE EFFICIENT: The BPA-Free UltraMax Water Dispenser tank holds 18 cups or 1.13 gallons of water which is great for families. Fits neatly on countertops and refrigerator shelves. Height - 9.67 inches. Width - 13.94 inches. Depth - 5.19 inches. Weight 3 pounds
  • CLEANER AND GREAT TASTING: The Brita standard filter reduces chlorine (taste and odor), copper, mercury, zinc and cadmium impurities found in tap water for cleaner great tasting water. *Substances reduced may not be in all users' water
  • FILTER CHANGE REMINDER: A helpful sticker indicator on the water dispenser lets you keep track of when you last changed your water filter and when it needs to be replaced. Replace Brita filters every 40 gallons or every 2 months

Those are all great things to be able to filter/reduce out of your water, and do seem to cover the basic needs of filtering tap water. However, this list seems very short in comparison to PUR’s claims…

PUR

PUR gives the following list of contaminants that it is “Certified” to filter/reduce:

Metals – Mercury, Cadmium, etc.

Herbicides/Pesticides – 2, 4-D

Industrial Pollutants – Carbon Tetrachloride, Tetrachloroethylene

Microbial Cysts – Giardia lambia, Cryptosporidium

Taste and Odor – Chlorine

Metallic Taste – Zinc

Sediment

Certain Pharmaceuticals

PUR 18-Cup Dispenser
  • PUR CLASSIC WATER FILTRATION DISPENSER: PUR's 18-cup water dispenser fits in your fridge for easy, quick access to cleaner drinking water. The PUR water filter removes up to 96% of mercury and helps reduce the taste and odor of chlorine in tap water
  • DISPENSER WATER FILTERS: PUR Basic pitcher filters are certified to reduce 22 contaminants. They provide 40 gallons of filtration (1-2 months of typical use). Only PUR pitcher filters are certified to reduce contaminants in PUR pitchers & dispensers
  • WHY FILTER WATER? Home tap water may look clean, but may contain potentially harmful pollutants & contaminants picked up on its journey through old pipes. PUR water filters, faucet filtration systems & water filter pitchers reduce these contaminants

This is a far more comprehensive list than Brita’s, but also makes us wonder how many of these contaminants are even common or need to be reduced. A lot of the contaminants listed seem like they may only be present near farmland or industrial centers. Regardless, it is clear that PUR wanted to make sure that its potential customers know that it filters/reduces more contaminants than Brita. The Brita filter might be just as good, but the difference here is that PUR claims to be “Certified” and lists significantly more filtered elements. Even though we can’t fully confirm that PUR has the better filter, we still have to give it the nod here.

WINNER: PUR

How We Tested

In order to give you a better idea of how convenient and efficient each water filter brand is, we decided to put them through a series of tests. The tests were designed to reveal the everyday usability of each water filter dispenser, taste, and efficiencies.

Capacity

Both Brita and PUR have 18 cup capacities, but that doesn’t really tell the whole story. Those capacity figures only apply to the capacity after the water has been filtered. But each dispenser has a top section where you pour the tap water to be filtered. The two top sections have drastically different capacities:

Brita Top Section Capacity – 9 cups

PUR Top Section Capacity – 15 cups

PUR’s top section is substantially better in terms of capacity. This means that you can load up the dispenser with almost twice as much tap water as the Brita, which in turn means you don’t have to refill the dispenser as often. This was a huge plus for us, as we hate refilling the dispensers.

WINNER: PUR

Filtering Speed

Next, we wanted to test how efficiently each brand filtered water, as well as how efficiently the filtered watered is dispensed. To conduct this test, we timed how long it took for Brita and PUR to filter 5 cups of water completely.

Time to Filter 5 cups:

Brita – 2 minutes, 56 seconds

PUR – 5 minutes, 10 seconds

The Brita looks like it demolished the PUR filter in terms of filtering speed. However, it is worth it to mention that the PUR filter had filtered about 75% of the water in the 2 minutes, 56 seconds that it took Brita to filter 100%. The PUR filter really slows down in its filtering speed when there is not much water left to filter. This is most likely due to its filter design where the filter is raised above the bottom water level, where the Brita filter actually sits below the water level. So in reality, the Brita was faster, but not as fast as the time difference suggests.

WINNER: Brita

Dispensing Speed

When you’re thirsty, the last thing you want is a dispenser that gives you a tiny trickle stream of water. So, to test how fast each brand takes to dispense water, we conducted a very similar test and timed how long it took Brita and PUR to dispense 5 cups of filtered water. Here were the results:

Time to Dispense 5 cups of filtered water:

Brita – 44 seconds

PUR – 22 seconds

PUR was the obvious winner here as it dispensed water twice as fast as the Brita. The Brita was painfully slow at dispensing water. Additionally, the PUR dispenser lever was easier to use, and easier to keep in the locked open position. PUR is the obvious choice here.

WINNER: PUR

Taste

Perhaps the most important aspect of each of these water filters is the taste of the water. To test this, we conducted a blind taste test of 50 participants. We used each water filter for two weeks to make sure they were “broken in” and didn’t have any new filter taste. Here were the results:

Participants’ Taste Preference

Brita – 18%

PUR – 64%

No Difference – 18%

This was pretty surprising, as PUR was the clear taste winner here. Most participants noted only a slight preference, but the majority of participants chose PUR as better tasting than Brita. For us, this test definitely carried the most weight as taste is very important to us.

WINNER: PUR

The Best Water Filter Pitcher/Dispenser

PUR Water Filter Dispenser

To be honest, we came into this review with a little bias as we thought that there was no way that PUR would outperform Brita. However, we were surprised that PUR bested Brita in almost all categories. Although Brita does filter water quicker, has cheaper replacement filters, and does look more aesthetically pleasing, PUR is our winner as the best water filter pitcher/dispenser. It claims to filter more contaminants than Brita, has a larger capacity, dispenses water quicker, and tastes better.

OVERALL WINNER: PUR

PUR 18-Cup Dispenser
  • PUR CLASSIC WATER FILTRATION DISPENSER: PUR's 18-cup water dispenser fits in your fridge for easy, quick access to cleaner drinking water. The PUR water filter removes up to 96% of mercury and helps reduce the taste and odor of chlorine in tap water
  • DISPENSER WATER FILTERS: PUR Basic pitcher filters are certified to reduce 22 contaminants. They provide 40 gallons of filtration (1-2 months of typical use). Only PUR pitcher filters are certified to reduce contaminants in PUR pitchers & dispensers
  • WHY FILTER WATER? Home tap water may look clean, but may contain potentially harmful pollutants & contaminants picked up on its journey through old pipes. PUR water filters, faucet filtration systems & water filter pitchers reduce these contaminants

Final Thoughts

We consume water more than any other substance, which makes it very important to drink clean filtered water. To us, this makes a water filter pitcher/dispenser a must buy. So if you don’t have one already, or are looking to upgrade your existing one, consider purchasing a PUR water filter today! You won’t regret your decision and your body will forever be thankful.