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Berkey vs Brita: Which one is the best in 2021?

By Austin Armstrong March 31, 2021


In the world of consumer-grade water filtration, not all products are equal. Some companies want to offer a basic water filter which families can easily afford; such filters only provide the simplest level of filtration, and often fail to remove the more dangerous toxins and pathogens. Other companies are more ambitious, seeking to provide high-end water purification systems that provide excellent protection for households, trusting that there is a large number of consumers willing to pay top dollar for quality. When one’s health is at stake, many are willing to do just that. 

As such, occasionally we find ourselves comparing apples and oranges. Berkey makes a charcoal filter of exceptional quality which can strain out toxins at a molecular level. It can even remove viruses. Brita, on the other hand, makes a simple pitcher or countertop filter which will remove a percentage of certain basic impurities, heavy metals, sediment, and chlorine to name a few.

After this comparison, you will see that Berkey clearly outperforms Brita when it comes to removing contaminants. The question is whether you, the consumer, want to spend more for the Berkey system. If you are not, we may have a solution for you.

Berkey vs. Brita: What Contaminants Do They Remove?

To compare the filtration efficiency of Berkey and Brita, we chose Brita’s longlast filter, which is used in a number of their products, and provides the highest level of filtration overall of any of their filters. Berkey’s products all use the same black “purification element”, usually in pairs. For both products, we found all the data related to filtration performance on their respective websites for this side-by-side comparison.

Here’s an item-by-item comparison of the two products:

 Filtration Efficiency (%)
Contaminant The Water Machine Brita Filter
Flouride 99.9 n/a
Bacteria 99.9999 n/a**
Coliform and e-Coli 99.9
Viruses 99.999
Lead 99.9 99.5/99.6
Arsenic 99.9 n/a
Iron 99.9 n/a
Mercury 99.9 99.5/99.9
Chlorine 99.9* 97.4
Trihalomethanes (THMs) 99.8* n/a
Chloramines 99.9* n/a
Pharmaceuticals 99.9*
Acetaminophen 99.9 n/a
Ibuprofen 99.9 94.9
Naproxen 99.9 96.4
Atenolol - 95
Carbamazepine 99.9 96
Meprobamate - 94
Phenytoin - 95
Trimethoprim 99.9 96
10 other drugs 99.9 n/a
Petroleum Contaminants
Benzine - 93.5
Ethylbenzene - 99
VOCs 99.9*
Methylcyclohexane-Methane 99.9* n/a
P-Dichlorobenzene - 98.2
Tetrachloroethylene - 96.1
Nonylphenols 93.5
Bisphenol-A 99.9 95.5
4-para-Nonylphenol 99.9
Pesticides 99.9*
Endrin - 98.7
Carbon Tetrachloride - 91.2
Atrazine 99.9 99.3
Simazine - 98.4
Linuron - 93
Metolachlor - 94
Heavy Metals 99.1
Aluminum 99 n/a
Antimony 99.9 n/a
Barium 80 n/a
Beryllium 99.9 n/a
Bismuth 99.9 n/a
Cadmium 99.7 96.9/99.2
Cobalt 95 n/a
Chromium 99.9 n/a
Chromium-6 99.85 n/a
Copper 99.9 n/a
Iron 99.9 n/a
Molybdenum 90 n/a
Nickel 99.9 n/a
Vanadium 87.5 n/a
Zinc 99.9 n/a
Uranium 97 n/a
Gross Alpha Emitter 98.7 n/a


n/a - Manufacturer provided no percentage for what portion was filtered out

* Berkey reduced chemicals in these categories to undetectable levels. Although some of them were specifically tested for, none were found.

** Brita has a disclaimer on their website stipulating that one should not put water into the filter that is known to be at risk of contamination from pathogens.

Based on this data, one can easily see that Berkey’s charcoal purification system completely outshines Brita. Purifying water at the molecular level, Berkey’s product has the power to remove all manner of toxic chemicals, heavy metals, pharmaceuticals, bacteria, and even 99.999% of viruses. If money is no object, Berkey is the clear favorite here. However, stay tuned, because Berkey also beats Brita on price!

Models and Costs


  • Big Berkey Water Filter $278.00
  • Replacement Filters   120.00


  • Soho (w/ Longlast Filter)   $29.99
  • Monterey (w/ Longlast Filter)     39.99
  • Ultramax Dispenser (w/ Longlast Filter)     44.99
  • Grand     32.99
  • Other Pitchers     19.99 and up
  • Longlast Replacement Filter     16.99
  • Longlast Replacement Filter (2-pack)     32.99

Brita makes a variety of pitchers and dispensers that are compatible with their Longlast filter. Some come with the filter, some do not. 

Now then, let’s see how long these two brands’ filters last:

  • Berkey’s charcoal filters (1 pair) 6000 Gallons (approx. 11 years)*
  • Brita’s Longlast Filter 120 Gallons (approx. 2.6 months)*

* assumes that owner(s) use 1.5 gallons/day

When you purchase one of Berkey’s purification systems, it comes with a pair of filters that will last for 6000 gallons. That’s about 11 years. If you want to use your Brita device for 11 years, you will need to purchase an additional 50 replacement filters! Here’s the cost breakdown:

  • Brita Soho (includes 1 Longlast Filter)   $29.99
  • 48 replacement filters (bought as 24 pairs) $791.76
  • 1 more replacement filter     16.99
  • TL $838.74

By comparison, the Big Berkey looks like this:

  • Big Berkey (includes 1 set of filters) $278.00

In other words, you can save $560.74 by purchasing the more expensive filter!! True, you will need to come up with more cash initially, but over the course of 11 years of life, you will save $560 in replacement filter costs. And you can do this with a filtration system that outperforms Brita’s best product

Berkey Vs Brita Pros and Cons

Brita (Longlast Filter)

Brita offers a simple filter product that is easy to purchase and use. If your idea of protecting the health of those in your household is to buy a pitcher with a replaceable filter that will last for a few months and reduce your exposure to certain chemicals, you can get a product for as little as $30. Just remember, to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations regarding filter purity, you will need to replace the filter in your pitcher every 80 days or so. So you will spend an additional $51 on replacement filters in year one, and $66 more for each subsequent year. And remember, that’s for Brita’s best filter. It cannot come close to what Berkey’s filter offers in terms of performance.

[Note: With a Brita filter, you will need to keep a log of how many gallons of water were poured into each pitcher. That’s the most accurate means of ensuring that you get all of the useful life out of each filter, without overusing it.]  


The only downside to purchasing one of Berkey’s products is the upfront cost. Purchasing one unit will cost close to $300, although it will come with your first set of filters. When you consider that the cost of the product will be spread out over 11 years, you can imagine that you are getting quite a bargain. After you have used the filters for 6000 gallons, you simply spend another $120 for another set of filters, and you are off and running for another 11 years. 

Berkey’s superior charcoal system simply outclasses Brita’s Longlast filter. It removes all traces of countless toxins and pathogens, including petroleum, pharmaceuticals, pesticides, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and bacteria. And it purifies your water from heavy metals and other contaminants also. By the time it reaches your glass, the amounts of dangerous contaminants in your water are so low that they pose no threat.

Which is better? Neither! Buy The Water Machine!

The Water Machine is a reverse gravity water filtration system like the one found in Berkey water filters.  It has a 3-gallon capacity like Berkey, it is gravity-fed, so there is nothing to plug in. Like Berkey, it uses the highest quality of charcoal filters, filters out the same impurities and can last as long as 6000 gallons of water before replacing it. 

So what’s the difference? Price. The value is in how much you’ll be saving on pure clean water. Instead of paying over $100 for the water filters you’re currently buying, you can pay less than $80 for replacement filters. That’s a savings of 20%!  

In addition to having one of the world’s best water purification systems on the planet, you’ll get a free pair of water filters for every 4 friends or family members you know that purchase The Water Machine water filter system. 

The Best Part: No SMELL Flavor

Want to know what the best part of the Berkey Water Filtration System is? The No Smell flavor. That’s right, everyone who uses The Water Machine will taste the same exact thing: The purest, cleanest, delicious no flavored water. That’s right, No plastic or metal tasting water in your mouth. 

Not only that! It’s easy to clean!

The Water Machine is Your Choice for Home Water Purification

The better investment in your water will be The Water Machine. With it’s reverse gravity water filters, minimal and space saving glass design, The Water Machine will fit perfectly on any countertop in your home or any space with one of our floor stands. 

Purchasing The Water Machine today gets you the best water filtration system you’ll ever experience with the cleanest, purest water you’ll ever taste - without any flavor, just the way we like it too. 

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