What Does Brita Filter Out? Uncover the Facts

You may have heard of Brita water filters, but do you know what does brita filter out? Brita filters are designed to remove impurities and enhance the taste of tap water. From chlorine and lead to mercury and cadmium, these filters effectively reduce the levels of various contaminants commonly found in tap water.

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With a combination of activated carbon and ion-exchange resin, Brita filters provide clean and refreshing water for you and your family to enjoy. Say goodbye to the unpleasant taste and odor of tap water – Brita has got you covered!

Types of Contaminants Brita Filters Can Remove

Heavy Metals

Brita filters are effective in removing heavy metals from drinking water. Heavy metals such as lead, mercury, and cadmium can be found in tap water due to industrial contamination or aging infrastructure. These metals pose serious health risks when ingested over time. However, Brita filters use a combination of activated carbon and ion exchange resin to effectively reduce the level of heavy metals, making your drinking water safer.


Chlorine is commonly used as a disinfectant in municipal water treatment facilities. While it serves the purpose of killing harmful bacteria and viruses, chlorine can have an unpleasant taste and odor. Brita filters are designed to effectively remove chlorine, enhancing the taste and smell of your tap water. This not only makes it more enjoyable to drink but also reduces the exposure to potentially harmful byproducts that can be formed when chlorine interacts with organic matter in water.

Bacteria and Viruses

Brita filters have been proven to reduce the presence of bacteria and viruses in drinking water. While they may not completely eliminate all bacterial and viral contaminants, it provides an extra layer of protection against common pathogens. This makes Brita filters a reliable option for improving the safety of your tap water.


One concerning issue in water sources is the presence of pharmaceuticals. These include various medications that can end up in water systems through human excretion or improper disposal. Brita filters have been found to effectively reduce the concentration of certain pharmaceuticals, providing peace of mind and minimizing potential health risks associated with their consumption.


Agricultural and residential pesticide use can lead to the contamination of water sources, presenting a health concern. Brita filters have proven to be effective in reducing the presence of pesticides in tap water. This ensures that you and your family are not exposed to these potentially harmful chemicals through your drinking water.


Similar to pesticides, herbicides are chemicals used to control weed growth. They can enter water sources due to runoff from agricultural fields or residential use. Brita filters have been shown to effectively remove herbicides, making your tap water safer to consume.


High levels of copper in drinking water can be harmful to human health, especially for individuals with certain medical conditions. Brita filters have been specifically designed to reduce the concentration of copper, providing you with cleaner and safer drinking water.


Zinc is a mineral that can naturally occur in water sources, but high levels can have adverse health effects. Brita filters have the capability to reduce the levels of zinc in tap water, ensuring that you are not exposed to excessive amounts of this mineral through your drinking water.


Sediments such as sand, silt, and clay can make your tap water appear cloudy or gritty. Brita filters are efficient in removing sediments, improving the overall clarity and quality of your drinking water.


Microplastics are tiny plastic particles that have infiltrated various water sources, including tap water. Brita filters are capable of removing microplastics, helping to ensure that you are not unknowingly consuming these harmful contaminants.

Potential Contaminants that Brita Filters May Not Remove


Fluoride is a compound that is often added to municipal water supplies to promote dental health. While Brita filters can remove certain contaminants, fluoride is not one of them. Fluoride can sometimes be present in tap water at levels higher than the recommended limit. If you are concerned about the fluoride content in your drinking water, you may need to explore alternative filtration methods or consider using fluoride-free water sources.


Nitrates are naturally occurring compounds that can be found in water sources, primarily due to agricultural runoff and the use of fertilizers. Brita filters are not designed to remove nitrates, which can be particularly harmful to infants, pregnant women, and individuals with certain health conditions. If you suspect that your tap water has high nitrate levels, it is advisable to seek alternative methods of filtration or obtain water from a known safe source.


Lead is a highly toxic metal that can be present in tap water, especially in older buildings with lead pipes or plumbing fixtures. While Brita filters are effective in reducing the concentration of lead, they may not eliminate it entirely. It is essential to be aware of the lead levels in your tap water and consider additional measures, such as using lead-certified filters or consulting with a water testing professional, if you have concerns about lead contamination.

Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs)

Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) are organic chemicals that can originate from various sources, including industrial activities and household products. These contaminants can potentially be present in tap water and may have harmful health effects. While Brita filters can help improve water taste and odor by reducing certain VOCs, they may not be able to completely remove all VOCs. If you have specific concerns about VOCs in your water supply, it is advisable to explore alternative filtration methods or consult with a water quality expert.


Cysts are microscopic organisms that can be present in water sources, including municipal water supplies. Some common examples of cysts include Giardia and Cryptosporidium, which can cause gastrointestinal illnesses. Brita filters are not designed to remove cysts effectively. If you suspect that your tap water may be contaminated with cysts, it is recommended to use a filtration system specifically designed for cyst removal or consider using bottled water as an alternative.

Factors Affecting Brita Filter’s Performance

Filter Lifespan

The lifespan of a Brita filter cartridge depends on the usage and the quality of water being filtered. On average, a standard Brita filter cartridge can provide around 40 gallons (150 liters) or approximately two months of use. However, if your tap water contains higher levels of contaminants or sediments, the cartridge may require replacement more frequently. It is important to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations and monitor the water flow rate for optimal filter performance.

Water Temperature

The temperature of the water being filtered can affect the performance of a Brita filter. Brita recommends using cold tap water for filtration, as hot water can potentially damage the filter cartridge and reduce its effectiveness. Additionally, extremely cold water may cause the filter material to become less flexible, leading to reduced filtration efficiency. It is best to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines regarding water temperature for optimal results.

Water Quality

The initial quality of your tap water plays a significant role in the performance of a Brita filter. While Brita filters are designed to effectively remove multiple contaminants, excessive levels or certain types of contaminants may exceed its filtration capacity. It is important to be aware of the specific water quality issues in your area and consider appropriate filtration methods if necessary. Regular water testing can help you understand the effectiveness of your Brita filter and identify any potential concerns.

Filter Maintenance

Proper maintenance is crucial for ensuring the optimal performance of a Brita filter. Regularly cleaning and maintaining the filter pitcher or dispenser, including the replacement of filter cartridges as recommended by the manufacturer, is essential.

Failure to follow the maintenance instructions may lead to decreased filter efficiency and an increased risk of contaminants passing through. Regularly inspecting and cleaning the filter components, such as the lid and reservoir, to prevent any mold or bacterial growth is also important for maintaining the effectiveness of the filtration system.

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