Best Iron Filter For Well Water 2023 (Don't Be Fooled) (2023)

An iron filter won't shake your world, but it will drastically change the way you think about your water. If your faucet is taboo and you spend more on appliance repairs than on vacations, the iron could be the culprit.

It clogs pipes, ruins water heaters, and makes coffee taste like metal. Resistant to common filtration methods, it takes more than carbon to remove. Need one of oursBest Whole House Cast Iron Filters for Well Water..

Overview of the 7 best iron filter systems for well water

  • Overall best: SpringWell WS
  • Best for high iron content: Softpro Iron Master
  • Best for bacteria: Pentair
  • Best capacity: acuabey
  • Best for Sulfur: Level 1
  • Best chemical system: in search of crystal
  • Best budget: Durawater-Eisenfresser

#1SpringWell WSWell water filtration system for the whole house

πŸ“Goals:Iron, manganese and hydrogen sulfide (iron + iron)| Procedure:Air injection oxidation|Capacity:1 million gallons| flow quotient:12-20 GPM| Bluetooth:βœ”οΈ| Guarantee:the whole life| Annual costs:~ 150 $| Classification:5/5| Best for:high iron

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our assessmentOur ratings are based on personal testing or user feedback and consider factors such as price, flow rate, system type, contaminant removal, filter media, filter life, family size, warranty, and customer satisfaction.


Easy to use5/5β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…

Flow Quotient5/5β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…

I like5/5β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…

SpringWell filter system for the whole house tackles difficult iron problems. Say goodbye to orange stains and rotten egg smells. Impurities such as iron, manganese and hydrogen sulfide are oxidized and filtered in a single tank.

Your water will look, smell and taste greatintended nature.

  • Integral iron filtration
  • maintenance free
  • environmental friend
  • Easy DIY installation
  • Easy bathroom-based sizing

Use coupon code:QWL5save on computer

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Best for:Those looking for the best whole home iron water filter that simply works to efficiently remove high levels of iron need this system.

Isn't it better for:If budget is an issue, I would go with the Softpro AIO system.


  • the system isstill. Bluetooth-enabled, user-friendly settings can be managed from the digital head or a handheld device.
  • Backwashes are water based and produce less waste your money.
  • With twice the average flow rate of similar iron water filters, there is no loss of line pressure.
  • With a lifetime guarantee, it's a risk-free purchase.
  • SpringWell filters are easy to install if you have basic plumbing skills and the right tools. Otherwise, it's an easy job for a pro.
  • The SpringWell filter is self-cleaning and will last a lifetime. So don't worry about the iron filter, it will last as long as the filter media works.
  • This system removes up to 7 PPM, 20% more than the average iron filter, plus up to 1 PPM of manganese and 8 PPM of hydrogen sulfide, the gas responsible for rotten egg smell.
  • SpringWell designed this filter to be thatthe last thing you'll have. It's not cheap to start with, but it's competitively priced and requires no maintenance, so long-term running costs are minimal.
  • Made from durable, certified components, you can feel the quality as soon as you take it out of the box. Backed by a company with decades of filtration experience, it's the best whole home iron filter for those looking to invest.

In contrast

  • Accessories are sold separately.
  • The head components are plastic, like many systems. It would be nice if they were metal.
Best Iron Filter For Well Water 2023 (Don't Be Fooled) (5)


Use coupon code:QWL5save on computer!

SpringWell Product Updates:

  • SpringWell now offers filters for more than 4 toilets
  • Optionales UV-Add-on
  • Optional reverse osmosis upgrade.

#2 SoftPro Iron Master AIO iron filter for well water

πŸ“Goals:Iron 30 PPM Iron + Iron| Procedure:All in one + Catalox| Capability:1 million gallons| flow quotient:12 GPM| Bluetooth:❌| Guarantee:7 years| Annual costs:~ 150 $| Classification:5/5| Best for:high iron

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our assessmentOur ratings are based on personal testing or user feedback and consider factors such as price, flow rate, system type, contaminant removal, filter media, filter life, family size, warranty, and customer satisfaction.


Easy to use4/5β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…

Flow Quotient4,5/5β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…

I like5/5β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…

The IronMaster filtration systemgrinds iron without chemicalsβ€” up to 30 PPM, the highest in the industry. Available in three sizes to accommodate your fountain's flow rate, choose the model that best suits your home without paying too much for an oversized filter.

  • low acquisition costs
  • flexible sizes
  • Treats the worst iron problems.
  • Removes hydrogen and manganese sulfide.
  • Limited Lifetime Warranty
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Best for:This system is perfect for anyone looking to achieve high iron levels with no frills.

Isn't it better for:Those looking for remote application opportunities.


  • The state-of-the-art digital head shows the system status at a glance. Easy to use, intuitive to program.
  • A self-charging capacitor retains its settings in the event of a power failure for up to 48 hours without a battery.
  • The affordable IronMaster is assembled in the USA with durable components that will provide years of reliable service.
  • IronMaster solves the toughest iron problems.
  • Build quality is excellent and consumers praise it for its performance and durability.
  • It requires more maintenance than your average service system like SpringWell, but its low entry price makes it one of the most affordable.Filters for the whole housefor iron levels above 10 PPM.
  • Installing a sediment pre-filter can prevent premature wear and extend maintenance intervals.
  • The SoftPro IronMaster is a reliable and affordable water filtration system that removes iron, manganese and hydrogen sulfide from water.
  • This system is easy to install and comes with everything you need for installation including a bypass valve and quick connect hose kit.
  • Redox media have a long service life and effectively remove impurities from the water.
  • IronMaster filters are designed to minimize the impact on water pressure. Flow rates average from 6 to 12 GPM, well above the industry average.

In contrast

  • Requires more maintenance than comparable systems.
  • The system is not able to remove all contaminants from the water.
  • If the water has a high iron load, it may be necessary to replace the redox filter media more frequently.

Product Updates:

  • Valve upgraded to 1β€³ to offer more water flow

#3 Pentair Iron Manganese Water Filter

πŸ“Goals:Iron and manganese (iron and iron)| Procedure:chemical oxidation| Capability:600,000 gallons| flow quotient:7 gallons/min| Bluetooth:❌| Guarantee:1 again| Annual costs:~ 300 $| Classification:4,5/5| Best for:bacteria

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our assessmentOur ratings are based on personal testing or user feedback and consider factors such as price, flow rate, system type, contaminant removal, filter media, filter life, family size, warranty, and customer satisfaction.



Easy to use4/5β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…

Flow Quotient4,5/5β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…

I like5/5β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…

The Pentair Iron Well water filter is afour steps, a chlorine injection system that not only makes the water iron-free, but also makes it drinkable.

It comes complete with a sediment filter that improves its efficiency, as well as a premium carbon block filter that removes chlorine and more. The water tastes as fresh as it was bottled.

  • high capacity
  • certified security
  • It will not reduce the water pressure.
  • durable components
  • 60 Day Satisfaction Guarantee
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Best for:For some wells, an iron grid is not sufficient. If you also have bacteria or chemicals in your water that make it unsafe to drink, Pentair is the solution you've been looking for.

Isn't it better for:Those who are on a budget as this system is very expensive.


  • sure septic, the system processes up to a million gallons of water with minimal maintenance. Programming is very intuitive.
  • NSF-42 certified, Pentair has earned the Water Quality Association (WQA) seal of approval and is priced well below similar iron water filters sold by other leading manufacturers.
  • Multi-stage filtration removes a variety of contaminants.
  • Few iron well water filters offer this level of protection for such a modest investment.
  • Pentair filters are guaranteed to reduce chlorine to undetectable levels for five years or will replace your carbon filter for free.


  • Installation is complex if you're not handy, and the warranty is a headache for us: every part, from the tanks to the pipes, is covered for a different period.

Product Updates:

  • Pentair now offers theWF10-Pfor larger apartments with up to 6 bathrooms

#4 AquaOx FE Edition Iron Brunnenwasserfilter

πŸ“Goals:Iron 7 PPM (Iron + Iron), Hydrogen Sulfide| Procedure:Air injection oxidation| Capability:1 million gallons| flow quotient:6-12 GPM| Bluetooth:❌| Guarantee:ten years| Annual costs:~ 150 $| Classification:4,5/5| Best for:high iron

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our assessmentOur ratings are based on personal testing or user feedback and consider factors such as price, flow rate, system type, contaminant removal, filter media, filter life, family size, warranty, and customer satisfaction.


Easy to use4/5β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…

Flow Quotient4,5/5β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…

I like5/5β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…

Iron reduction system AquaOxIt's a new version of your respected home filtration system. A Birm filter whose aluminum-reinforced media reliably oxidizes and removes up to 7 PPM of iron.

It has a two million gallon capacity, enough for a family of four to last a decade or more without the need to replace expensive filters.

  • large capacity
  • maintenance free
  • Caudal out 12 GPM
  • Made in the USA
  • Elite 10 year guarantee

Best for:Those looking for a system that works with minimal maintenance.

Isn't it better for:If you are on a tight budget I would go with Softpro or SpringWell which offer similar features at a better price.


  • Easy to install and maintenance-free, the AquaOx FE Edition is brought to you by an experienced South Carolina-based company.
  • If it doesn't work as expected, you're protected by a 12-month money-back guarantee and dedicated customer service.
  • The AquaOx consistently receives five-star reviews for its thoughtful engineering, and this filter is no exception.
  • Built to last, its beauty lies in its simplicity - just set it and forget it.
  • Gallon for gallon, no filter removes more iron for your buck.
  • If you want to spend more time enjoying clean water than thinking about it, consider AquaOx.
  • A pre-filter is not required but is likely to improve overall water quality and protect your investment.

In contrast

  • not recommended forBrunnenwasser mit Tanninen

AquaOx Product Updates:

  • Now includes a sediment pre-filter.

Iron filter for the whole house No. 5 Level 1

πŸ“Goals:Iron 30 PPM (iron + iron)| Procedure:Air injection oxidation| Capability:600,000 gallons| flow quotient:6 GPM| Bluetooth:❌| Guarantee:limited for lifetime| Annual costs:~ 80 $| Classification:4,5/5| Best for:high iron

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our assessmentOur ratings are based on personal testing or user feedback and consider factors such as price, flow rate, system type, contaminant removal, filter media, filter life, family size, warranty, and customer satisfaction.


Easy to use4/5β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…

Flow Quotient4,5/5β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…

I like5/5β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…

Precision Series Tier 1 induction air filters reduce up to 30ppm of iron, hydrogen and manganese sulfide, removing unsightly stains and rotten egg smell from your home without chemicals.

From the showerhead to the kitchen faucet, every gallon is crystal clear.

  • Copes with the most stubborn iron problems.
  • low entry price
  • space-saving floor space
  • works silently

see last price

(Video) The Best Whole House Water Filter in 2023...That Nobody Knows About
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Best for:This is a great system for anyone looking to save money and eliminate iron.

Isn't it better for:Those with low water pressure and tannin issues will want to stay away from this system.


  • The Electronic Check Counter is very easy to program - there are no confusing symbols or codes.
  • Monitors water usage and displays gallons remaining until regeneration.
  • Cycles are fully adjustable and the battery backup saves your settings if power is lost.
  • This cost-effective system lasts up to 60 months with minimal maintenance and includes an anti-sediment filter.
  • A ten-year guarantee applies to non-electronic parts.
  • Iron reduction filters are most efficient on high pH water, so Teir1 has incorporated calcium and magnesium into its filter media to condition acidic water as it flows through the system and increase its pH.
  • The system is rated for 1 to 6 people, but the flow rate is below average at 5.8 GPM.
  • You'll need to replace it sooner than other models, but it's one of the most affordable iron filters for water levels above 10 PPM.
  • Ideal for the iron-weary homeowner with an equally empty check book, it's great value for money.

In contrast

  • Not recommended for waters with tannins.
  • With heavy use, you may notice a small drop in water pressure.

Product Updates:

  • Now includes an NSF certified electronic overhead valve

#6 Crystal Quest whole-home iron filters

πŸ“Goals:Iron 12 PPM (iron + iron)| Procedure:Air injection oxidation| Capability:1 million gallons| flow quotient:9-13 GPM| Bluetooth:❌| Guarantee:7 years| Annual costs:~ 150 $| Classification:4,5/5| Best for:High iron content and pollutants

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our assessmentOur ratings are based on personal testing or user feedback and consider factors such as price, flow rate, system type, contaminant removal, filter media, filter life, family size, warranty, and customer satisfaction.


Easy to use4/5β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…

Flow Quotient5/5β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…

I like4,5/5β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…

Crystal Quest Iron Well Water Filters feature an impressive three-stage filtration that removes sediment, agricultural chemicals, industrial solvents, iron, manganese, hydrogen sulfide and more.

Expandable, you can add a fabric softener, a UV sterilizer and a SMART filter that removes even more toxins, including heavy metals. Choose fiberglass tanks or upgrade to stainless steel.

  • quality filtering
  • It will not reduce the water pressure.
  • minimal maintenance
  • Premium components
  • Expandable

Best for:Those who want to efficiently remove 12 PPM iron from their well water.

Isn't it better for:Those who want a more hands-free, less technical system to operate.


  • Available in two sizes based on water usage, the 9-13 GMP flow rate provides adequate water pressure.
  • Systems treat up to a million gallons depending on water quality, but Crystal Quest recommends changing the media every 5-7 years for optimal performance.
  • If you have a water problem, Crystal Quest can solve it. Its expandable iron filter removes more impurities than comparable models. But more is not better for everyone.
  • For owners who want a higher level of protection, the specs are impressive. It is the best iron filter for well water with other dangerous impurities.

In contrast

  • A complex system, professional installation is guaranteed, but expensive. And it's not particularly user-friendly: a whole page of the manual is devoted to explaining the shortcuts used to program the control valve. If all you want is an iron water filter, it's overkill.
  • one year short warranty
  • confusing user interface

Product Updates:

  • Nothing to report yet.

#7 Durawater air injection iron supper filter

πŸ“Goals:Iron 30 PPM Iron + Iron| Procedure:Air injection oxidation| Capability:1 million gallons| flow quotient:12 GPM| Bluetooth:❌| Guarantee:7 years| Annual costs:~ 150 $| Classification:5/5| Best for:high iron

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our assessmentOur ratings are based on personal testing or user feedback and consider factors such as price, flow rate, system type, contaminant removal, filter media, filter life, family size, warranty, and customer satisfaction.


Easy to use4/5β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…

Flow Quotient4,5/5β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…

I like5/5β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…β˜…

Durawater's Iron Eater is a simple, cost-effective approach to iron filtration. Removes up to 12ppm of iron as well as sulfur and manganese. Air injection system, works without chemicals, oxidizes and filters impurities in a single fiberglass tank.

  • low acquisition costs
  • chemicals free
  • low maintenance
  • minimal maintenance
  • Excellent customer service

Best for:Anyone who wants to save money on a system that just works.

Isn't it better for:Anyone looking for a silent system with app control and monitoring will not like this system.


  • Equipped with the most advanced Fleck 5600SXT control head on the market, it's incredibly easy to program.
  • Change media every 5-7 years for best performance - $200 at current price.
  • Removes more hydrogen sulfide than many filters, up to 10 PPM.
  • The system time is fully programmable. Air-injected filters can be noisy, so we recommend backwashing when the noise bothers you the least.
  • It comes with a backup battery so you don't have to worry about running out of power.
  • It won't win awards for its style, but it's a solid, easy-to-install system that does a good job of cleaning iron, manganese, and sulfur for less money.

In contrast

  • noisy operation.

Product Updates:

  • Nothing to report yet.

Compare the 7 iron filters for well water

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Best Iron Filter For Well Water 2023 (Don't Be Fooled) (21)Compare brands and modelsBest Iron Filter For Well Water 2023 (Don't Be Fooled) (22)#1 Filter SpringWell WSBest Iron Filter For Well Water 2023 (Don't Be Fooled) (23)#2 Iron Master SoftProBest Iron Filter For Well Water 2023 (Don't Be Fooled) (24)#3 Pentair Iron and ManganeseBest Iron Filter For Well Water 2023 (Don't Be Fooled) (25)#4 AquaOx FE-EditionBest Iron Filter For Well Water 2023 (Don't Be Fooled) (26)Tier-1-Ferrofiltersystem Nr. 5Best Iron Filter For Well Water 2023 (Don't Be Fooled) (27)#6 Crystal Research FilterBest Iron Filter For Well Water 2023 (Don't Be Fooled) (28)#7 DuraWater-Eisenfilter
kind of ironiron + ironiron + ironiron + iron + bacteriaEiseniron + ironiron + ironiron + iron
Femax7 ppm30 ppm10 ppm7 ppm30 ppm12 ppm12 ppm
ProceedingsAll in one + green sandAll in one + Cataloxbleach oxidation + green sand + carbon filterall in oneall in oneall in oneall in one
Flow Quotient12-20 GPM12 GPM7 gallons/min6-12 GPM6 GPM6-12 GPM6-12 GPM
Guaranteethe whole life7 years1 againten yearslimited for lifetime7 yearsten years

Buying Guide: Best Iron Filters for Well Water

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Iron is not a health hazard, but it is a household wrecker. This causes your water to taste bad and wreaks havoc on your plumbing, appliances and bathroom fixtures, cutting your budget for unnecessary repairs.

(Video) How To Remove Iron from Well Water

The simple solution is filtration, but iron filters for well water are not well understood.

Join us for a chat about the technology, decode jargon, and see its features. Together we will select the best iron water filter for your home.

In this guide you will learn:

  • How we select these systems
  • Important considerations to know before purchasing
  • Why is it important to test the water?
  • How to choose the right system
  • what is iron
  • Frequently Asked Questions

How We Choose These High Quality Iron Well Screens

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We understand that it can be a painful process to research and compare different types of systems and wonder if you made the right decision. This is where we can help you with over 10 years of experience in water filtration systems, we know the intricacies and the jargon.

According to our experts, there are seven important aspects to consider: iron reduction, flow rate, capacity, filter media, ease of installation, maintenance, and long-term cost.

We know this may seem like overkill to experienced users. However, we want to make sure you don't regret your purchase one bit.

In fact, we've gone a step further by reading online reviews to uncover the underlying issues that can occur with specific installations of any of the systems listed above.

Important considerations:

  1. iron reduction:The primary focus of an iron filter is to reduce the amount of iron in your water supply. You want to look for a system that can effectively remove both ferrous (dissolved) and ferrous (insoluble) forms of iron from water.
  2. flow quotient:It's very important that you choose a system that meets or exceeds your average water usage without sacrificing performance and slowing down the shower faucet when someone turns on the washing machine.
  3. Capability:This refers to how much total volume of water can be filtered before filters or parts need to be replaced. Be sure to choose a system that matches your daily and average water usage to get the right system size.
  4. Media filter:Different types of filter media are used in specific situations, depending on what iron contaminants need to be removed. Commonly used materials include activated carbon, KDF-85/GAC blend, Greensand Plus, and Birm media, among others. Be sure to choose the one that works best to remove iron from your specific water source.
  5. Easier installation:Most simply hire a plumber to install their system. However, for DIYers, the systems listed above are DIY compatible and many have helpful video tutorials showing the process step by step on their website or Youtube.
  6. Maintenance requirements:Nobody wants a system that they have to take care of, so it's important to understand your system's maintenance schedule and determine if it's something that can be easily performed without hiring a service technician.
  7. Long-term costs:While the initial cost may seem like an attractive option, the long-term costs such as energy use, filter changes, etc. also need to be considered when choosing an iron filter system.

advantages and disadvantages

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  1. Whole-home iron filters are incredibly helpful in reducing iron, manganese, andSulfur in your water supply, Eliminating odors, stains and corrosion from plumbing systems.
  2. We only recommend systems that are easy to install, operate and maintain over the long term.
  3. These cost-effective solutions require minimal maintenance and can last up to 10 years with proper care.
  4. The filter media used is highly efficient at removing contaminants without clogging easily or requiring frequent replacement as is the case with other types of filters.


  1. It is important to understand what type of iron you need to remove and how much the type/brand you choose can do this as in a perfect world an iron filter may not remove all traces of iron.
  2. Some models may require additional components such as B. An air injection system that incurs additional costs when purchasing the device up front, as well as ongoing charges for electricity consumption during operation (depending on how often you use it).
  3. Over time, the filter media used in these systems can become clogged, reducing their effectiveness and requiring more frequent replacement.
  4. Finally, these systems may not be able to remove other contaminants such as bacteria or viruses from the well water; Therefore, additional filtering methods may need to be employed if this is a problem.

Test your water

The only way to know what's in well water is to test it; is the responsibility of the owner. We recommend sending a sample to a certified water purification laboratory. They only use scientifically recognized test methods and undergo annual quality controls.

The results show what type of iron is in your well, how much, and if iron bacteria are present. You'll also learn about your water chemistry, an essential step in choosing the best iron water filter. Why? Because the pH value, hardness, dissolved oxygen content and tannin content have a significant influence on its performance.

Choosing the best iron filter for your needs

The best iron filter for your needs is one that will remove the type of iron you have and is compatible with your water chemistry.

Let's reduce them.

If your water only contains iron (particles that float in the water but don't turn it brown), a sediment filter may be all you need. Choose between pure sediment filters and multi-stage systems that remove other unwanted contaminants.

If you have iron bacteria in your water, your filter options are limited to:

  • a chlorine injector
  • A catalytic carbon-hydrogen peroxide filter
  • An ozone filter system.

For all but the most stubborn iron problems, chlorine injectors are the cheapest to buy and maintain. Add an activated carbon post-filter to dissolve the chlorine taste.

If the total iron level in the water is less than 2 ppm, consider the following:

  • A sediment pre-filter and a water softener
  • Any oxidizing iron filter that works with your water chemistry

For total iron levels greater than two ppm, choose:

  • Any iron filter rated at two ppm or more

Now consider how these additional factors affect your purchase.

Capacity to filter impurities

The main purpose of an iron filter is to remove iron. But this humble element has friends: manganese and hydrogen sulfide. They are commonly found in heavy iron mines and can make your life just as miserable. Manganese causes black stains on sanitary ware and can be toxic to children in large quantities. Hydrogen sulfide makes the water smell like rotten eggs.

Oxidation is the most effective method of removing hydrogen and manganese sulfide; hence most iron filtration systems reduce both; Birm filters are the exception. Chlorine filters are very effective and a great option for homes with iron bacteria.

It's also possible that your water test revealed other troublesome contaminants. So, without making the decision too difficult, you want a filter, or combination of filters, that will meet most of your needs as economically and efficiently as possible. It pays to think ahead and consider models that kill more than one bird with the same shot.


Single tank iron filters have similar footprints. Most are about the height of a water softener: they measure about 5 feet with the heads installed. Like all whole house filtration systems, they are located in a basement or garage where the water enters your home. Installed upright, they rarely fit into a basement.

Multitank systems are significantly larger, requiring up to 16 square feet. Leave enough room to move comfortably around the unit during maintenance - refilling a chlorine injector is tiring enough without fighting for space. It's best to measure twice and order once, so check the specs before you buy.

Flow Quotient

Filtering takes time. Each layer of water flowing through the medium slows it down. The net effect is usually an annoying drop in tap water pressure, but you can compensate for this by making sure your system has fast flow.

what is the river Flow rate is the number of gallons that flow through a filter per minute. The higher the number, the better. American households use a lot of water. Running a faucet, shower, and dishwasher at the same time uses up to 10 gallons per minute. When the filter flow rate is too low, the results are predictable: something has to wait. The best iron water filters have an adequate flow rate to keep up.

system size

Water softeners and iron filters used to be sorted by grit or flow rate; at best it was confusing. But smart manufacturers have turned this into a system that's easier to understand based on the number of bathrooms in your home. Just follow the instructions and your filter should be the perfect size.

Capacity - life of the filter

Capacity refers to how many gallons a filter can handle before the media needs to be replaced. This is an important factor to consider when evaluating the cost of ownership of a system. A cheap filter that costs twice as much to maintain as a high-end model isn't a bargain, it's a nuisance.

installation / maintenance

Installing a whole house iron filter is not rocket science. But it requires basic plumbing skills and some tools that not all homeowners have. If you have a day or two, you can save money by doing it yourself. Best sellers offer technical advice over the phone, and many have installation videos on their websites. Being a DIYer has never been easier.
However, if the process is intimidating or you have a challenging situation like uneven plumbing or limited installation space, hiring a professional is never a bad idea. An iron filter is an investment, so the extra expense of having it professionally installed is well worth it for your safety.


Iron water filters don't come cheap, so warranties are a key selling point. They range from a year to a lifetime and cover repair bills when you can least afford them.
Some companies require professional installation of the recommended de-icing system and pre-filter or void the warranty. Returning the filter to the manufacturer for repair can be done at your own expense. Know the terms before you buy.

No warranty includes:

  1. normal wear and tear
  2. Improper handling or installation.
  3. illegal use
  4. Damage to your home as a result of a malfunction

what is iron

Iron is an element found in the earth's crust. Useful in products from frying pans to ovens, it's all around you, in stone and earth. Almost all groundwater contains some iron. The quantity and type will determine what type of iron water filter you need.

How does iron get into the water?

Iron seeps into the ground water. Every time it rains, the water running over the rocks carries the iron into the underground aquifers. The deeper your well, the more iron it is likely to contain.

Is iron in well water harmful?

Low iron levels are not considered harmful, but the EPA classifies it as a minor pollutant because it can harbor ferrobacteria, microorganisms that feed on dissolved iron. On their own, they rarely cause disease, but they create conditions in which dangerous bacteria can grow.

How much iron is too much? Concentrations above three parts per million (PPM) may cause skin irritation. Effectively prevents soap from foaming, creating a sticky residue that sticks to hair and clogs pores. The effects range from dryness to oily skin rashes.
And while it doesn't pose a direct danger, too much iron will affect the appearance, smell, and taste of your water. Drinking less water because you don't trust the faucet is not a health bargain.

There is a condition that iron in water can make worse. Known as hemochromatosis, it is a buildup of iron in the body caused by a faulty gene. Seriously, it affects about a million people in the US, causing heart and liver disease. Talk to your doctor about iron loss if it runs in your family.

types of iron

There are two types of iron commonly found in well water. Each has unique effects and requires different treatment.


Ferric or red iron is insoluble. It collects in the pipes and gives the water a noticeable orange or brown tint when you first turn on the faucet. Let it rest in a jar and it will settle to the bottom. It gives water a bitter, metallic taste and clogs showers and faucet aerators.


Ferrous or transparent iron dissolves in water. You can't see it, but it's the main food source for iron bacteria. In the presence of oxygen, these microorganisms convert iron into iron, leaving an oily, musty-smelling sludge in pipes, appliances, and bathroom fixtures.

Both are more than just a nuisance - they can have expensive effects on your home.

The Long-Term Costs of Too Much Iron in Your Home

The effects of excess iron are insidious: they are gradual and cumulative. Unless the water is rusty, the damage is usually done by the time homeowners notice. Early treatment is essential.

Consequences of too much iron are:

1. Low water pressure

The iron that accumulates in the pipes eventually reduces their diameter, preventing the water from flowing freely. The first symptom is low water pressure. Over time, it prevents the passage of solid waste and causes blockages.

2. Damaged Devices

Appliances that use water, from dishwashers to water heaters, rely on adequate water flow. Low pressure forces them to work harder, resulting in higher utility bills. Iron sludge on sensitive parts is corrosive and will lead to premature failure. Replacing an electric water heater can cost as much as $1,000!

3. Soiled clothes, dishes and bathroom accessories

The same red sludge that iron bacteria leave in pipes also ends up in washing machines and dishwashers, leaving stubborn stains on clothes and dishes. They cover toilets, bathtubs and shower walls. Skip cleaning one day and you could stain your grout and tiles permanently.

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Can iron be removed from water naturally?

Filtration is the only reliable way to remove iron, but some filters are chemical-free and use more natural agents than others.

How do iron filters work?

Filters rely on one or more of these three methods to remove iron:

1. Filtration of sediments

Sediment filters effectively remove iron and capture large rust particles. But they don't reduce iron or iron bacteria.

2. Ion exchange

Ion exchange is the same method used by water softeners to remove calcium and magnesium. As water flows through the softening tank, minerals, including iron, adhere to the resin grains. During the regeneration process, the brine solution from the brine tank breaks the bonds and sends the iron down the drain. It works well on paper, but in practice it has limitations.

Ion exchange only reduces iron; Iron spoils the resin. Hardness and pH must be perfectly balanced, and even then most ion exchange filters will remove two ppm iron or less. Tannins affect both iron removal and softening and require a tannin pre-filter. Still, there are better options.
Oxidation plus Filtration

Oxidation filters use oxygen to convert iron to ferric iron by filtering out precipitated particles using a variety of media. They are a more complete solution to difficult iron problems, but some filter types have more limitations than others.

3rd unit

Birm filters use oxygen dissolved in water to oxidize iron. Enhanced aluminosilicate granular media captures particles and sends them down the drain.

Birm filters are effective, but the water must contain enough dissolved oxygen to start the oxidation reaction and the pH must be at least 6.8. Birm filters are not recommended for well water containing tannins or hydrogen sulfide.

MangangrΓΌner Sand

Manganese greensand is a chemically treated media that oxidizes iron on contact, removing levels down to 10ppm. Oxygen isn't necessary, but just like water softeners use salt to regenerate the resin, greensand is rejuvenated with a solution of potassium permanganate, a potentially dangerous chemical that some homeowners don't want in their homes.

High efficiency green sand filters are a popular choice for difficult iron problems because they remove manganese and hydrogen sulfide. A pH below 7 affects efficiency, but this can be corrected with a calcite pre-filter.


Chlorine is the oldest method of oxidizing iron. Used by sewage treatment plants across the country, it also disinfects water and makes it potable.

Chlorine injection systems are among the only ways to kill iron bacteria, but they require more maintenance than other iron filters and can leave your water with a strong chemical taste. Installing a charcoal or KDF post-filter removes off-flavors.


Breather filters inject air into the water and convert iron to ferric iron. Some systems have two tanks and use a separate filter to remove solid particles; in others, aeration and filtration take place in the same tank. The aeration systems are designed for moderate iron levels, have few restrictions and use no chemicals. But they generate more wastewater than other systems, a problem in drought-prone areas.

hydrogen peroxide and catalytic carbon

Catalytic carbon combined with hydrogen peroxide is an exceptional oxidizing agent. Designed to handle the toughest of iron problems, these systems are highly effective but expensive to maintain. The average household uses $250 to $300 a year of peroxide solution, more than double the cost of bleach. Performance is impressive, but the cheapest systems can handle iron levels below 10ppm.


Ozone is a strong oxidizing agent. More powerful than chlorine, it controls iron bacteria but requires no chemicals. Expensive, but few ozone filters remove more than six ppm iron. And the FDA isn't interested in residential ozone generators, reporting health problems in people exposed to the gas. For most homes, bleach is a better option.

KDF (Kinetic Flow Degradation)

KDF media oxidizes iron through a chemical reaction, but it takes time and works best at low flow rates. Their use is usually limited to conventional multi-stage shower filters or water filters for removing iron residues and other impurities.


Katalox is an advanced lightweight medium that oxidizes iron faster than greensand and birm. Made from manganese coated zeolite, it is more efficient and lasts longer. Neither dissolved oxygen nor pH are involved and tannins do not affect the system. It removes large amounts of iron, manganese, and hydrogen sulfide, but cannot kill iron bacteria.

Whole-House Filters vs. Point-of-Use Iron Removal Filters

There are two types of water filtration systems: whole-home filters, which treat water as it enters your home, and point-of-use filters, which treat water from a single faucet.

Point-of-use systems such as bench filters or filter jugs can reduce iron particles in drinking water, but they cannot remove iron or iron bacteria, putting your health, plumbing, and equipment at risk. The only viable solution is a whole house filter.

Frequently asked questions:

Does a water softener remove iron from well water?

Most water softeners can remove 1-2 ppm iron, but iron, tannins, hydrogen sulfide and pH levels above 6.5 reduce their effectiveness. Unless you are softening your water and need to remove low iron levels, a dedicated iron filter is usually a better option.

Do reverse osmosis filters remove iron?

RO filters can remove iron but are not recommended. More than 0.3 ppm will permanently ruin the membrane.

Do iron filters work?

Iron filters are very effective within their specifications. Be sure to test your iron levels to choose the best system for your needs.

What is the best filtration system for well water?

The best well water filtration system is an affordable whole-home filter that specifically removes contaminants.

Are the air injection filters working?

Air injection filters are not only effective but also chemical free. Disadvantages include a clicking noise when the injector is running and they are not recommended for wells with iron bacteria. The extra oxygen helps it thrive.

Does boiling water remove iron?

Boiling water does not remove iron.

What is an iron curtain for water?

Iron curtain water filters are chemical-free oxidation filters that remove iron and hydrogen sulfide. They are manufactured by Hellenbrand, sold by major water treatment companies, and come in one, two, and three tank configurations depending on the severity of your iron problem.

Will a whole house filter remove iron?

Conventional household filters only remove trace amounts of iron. But a whole-home iron filter will fix the worst iron problems, protect your plumbing, and extend the life of your appliances.

Does a sediment filter remove iron?

Sediment filters remove iron, small but solid oxide particles. They neither remove dissolved iron nor kill iron bacteria.

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What is the best water filter for rust?

Rust is ferric iron so a sediment filter might be all you need. However, high levels can clog them prematurely. An iron filter may be a better solution in the long run.


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