Filtered Water Vs. Tap Water: What You Should Know

March 15, 2021
Benefits of tap water vs filtered water graphic | ZeroWater

The difference between filtered water and tap water can’t necessarily be seen with the naked eye, but water filters are essential for providing healthy, pure hydration. So when it comes to deciding between filtered water vs tap water, make sure you’re asking yourself the following questions:

  1. What benefits do I gain by drinking filtered water?
  2. Conversely, what impediments am I potentially exposing myself to by drinking tap water?
  3. How can I fit purified, filtered water in my busy life?

Tap Water Basics: What Are You Really Drinking?

You might think that tap water is simply that, right? Water that comes from the tap, which can include the kitchen sink, the bathroom sink, or the exterior hose. However, have you stopped to consider that the tap water you’re consuming could potentially be coming from miles upon miles away?

According to, 77% of people don’t know where their tap water comes from. This is because your tap water isn’t simply pulled from the local stream, lake, or creek down the road. More often than not, your tap water is traveling hundreds, if not thousands of miles, through aqueducts, pipelines, and more to arrive at your tap.

This leaves tap water vulnerable to being compromised by the different counties and states it travels through. Take California for example, in which 51% of its tap water travels through public land, leaving it vulnerable if you consider the lack of protections in those remote areas. 

Furthermore, despite the fact quality control divisions exist to monitor the drinking quality for urban areas, they are not a bulletproof solution against climate change and human error in water treatment facilities.

How Is Water Filtered?

Most water utility plants use the same method of filtration from city-to-city. While the source of this water is always going to be natural sources, such as glaciers, rivers, lakes, and more, almost every American drinks water that then goes through this 4-step water treatment process.

  1. Coagulation and Flocculation: Chemicals are added to the water to bind to the existing debris to create “flocs,” which are larger particles than the original impediments in the water.  
  2. Sedimentation: With the now larger “floc” weighing significantly more, it sinks to the bottom of the treatment tank, leaving clearer water on top.
  3. Filtration: That water then goes through a filtration system, leaving the larger floc behind for good. 
  4. Disinfection: Chlorine is then added to the filtered water to further destroy any bacteria, viruses, or germs that may have slipped through step 3.

While on its surface, this may seem like a thorough enough process to safely and effectively deliver potable tap water. However, over the years it’s been proven that this method can still fall short in providing safe tap water to the population.*

Some of these shortcomings include, but are not limited to:

  • Lead pipes: This is the core issue in the Flint, MI water crisis. Lead water pipes are susceptible to decay, which can create space for large amounts of debris to infect the water. If lead pipes aren’t routinely maintained with phosphate on the inside of the pipes, it can lead to unhealthy amounts of chloride in the water. 
  • Nitrate: In more rural areas, where cattle may be largely present, high amounts of nitrate have been known to seep into the water. This is alarmingly dangerous for newborn infants.

Health Benefits of Filtered Water Vs. Tap Water

Benefits of Tap Water Comparison Chart | ZeroWater Water Filter

By now, hopefully, you realize that the tap water you get from your faucet at home isn’t immune to imperfections. When you consider the fact that the average human should consume 3.2 liters of water a day, it should put into perspective the importance of safe drinking water.

This is why when it comes to filtered water vs tap water, the benefits of drinking filtered water are inarguable. However, that isn’t to say that tap water is void of any advantages. 



Single-use plastic bottle, safer for the environment. 

Removes more impediments. Tap water may retain more bacteria. Depending on your region, you may have more bacteria and/or more harmful bacteria.

Cheaper than filtered water, as you are not paying for a new filter each time.

Limited maintenance.

Filtered water taste > tap water taste

Water Filters for Home

If after reading this you realize the importance of filtered water, there are many options to consider when it comes to water filters for home.

There are even multiple ways in which you can filter your water at home, based on your kitchen layout, preferences, or lifestyle.

For example, a water pitcher with a built-in filter can be a great way to filter water in bulk, so that you have fresh, nourishing water throughout the day. 

ZeroWater recognizes the importance of filtered, delicious-tasting water, and has tailored its products to deliver the following unique advantages over its competitors.

  • ZeroWater removes more solids than any other pour-through filter.
  • ZeroWater products filter water through its 5-stage filtration cycle, compared to most competitors’ 2-step process.
  • ZeroWater significantly reduces lead, PFOA and PFOS, chromium, and other dangerous metals.

The ZeroWater promise means that you will enjoy the purest tasting water, that has removed more dangerous impediments than any of our competitors. To learn more about our one-of-a-kind products, visit our FAQ page, and shop water filters and pitchers!.