Are iSpring’s whole house systems as cheap and as effective as their reverse osmosis systems? We find out in our review of iSpring’s leading whole house system.
Filtration Stages: 3
Warranty: 1 year plus 30-day money back guarantee
Filter Lifespan: 6-12 months
Water Flow Rate: Up to 15 gallons per minute
Waste Water: None
Dimensions: 24 x 12 x 36 inches
Similar model: HomeMaster 3-stage
iSpring make some great reverse osmosis water filters, so I was really interested to see what their whole house systems offer. They are known for offering very affordable and effective technology, and I hoped to find the same ideals in the WKB32B. While I wouldn’t say it was cheap, it is certainly very competitively priced for a whole house system. It comes in at quite a bit cheaper than 3-stage systems by Home Master and Aquasana.
It uses the largest filters on the market, meaning that water flow isn’t impaired and that the filters last longer than conventional ones. A main selling point of the iSpring reverse osmosis systems is that the filters are much cheaper then competitors. The filters for this whole house system are also among the cheapest available. It also uses 1″ ports designed for a high water flow, and to minimize the loss of pressure as water travels through the filter. These one inch ports offer a water flow rate of up to 15 gallons per minute. This is among the highest water pressure available in whole house systems.
As an American based company, iSpring offer excellent customer support, and will provide support by e-mail and phone, before and after a purchase. This gives great peace of mind, as buying and installing a whole house water filter system is a big leap into the unknown for almost all of us.
Being a 3-stage system it offers three layers of protection against harmful water contaminants.
The first stage filter protects against the larger particles like sediment, rust, sand, dirt, and heavy metals. This filter uses multi-layer technology which gives a more gradual filtration, meaning that the filter is less likely to clog up as quickly. Put simply, the outside layer of the filter has bigger holes (larger micron size), and the holes get smaller as the filter nears the inner layer. This has the effect of reducing clogging of the filter pores which can cause pressure loss. It also means your filters will last a bit longer. This filter offers protection down to 5 microns, meaning that only particles smaller than this will pass. This is about as good as it gets for whole house water filters, which are not as refined as reverse osmosis systems. The Aquasana Rhino is offers the best protection in a whole house unit (down to 0.35 microns). Five microns should suffice in most areas, but if you have problems with pesticides then I’d recommend something a bit more refined.
The second and third stages of the filtration process use carbon block filters. These work to remove further pollutants from the water, and also to refine the taste and odor. They are more effective at removing chlorine and organic chemicals. These two filters are exactly the same, and doing so keeps the running costs low. However, these big blue 20″ x 4.5″ filter housings are standard among many different filter systems. This means there are a variety of different filters available, allowing you to pick and choose and customize your water filter combinations. This system comes as standard with one sediment filter and two carbon filters, but if you wanted you could add a pH filter in place of a carbon filter to balance the pH. This idea of customization is a great selling point of this system, and allows you to tailor your filters specifically to your water problem.
Update: This 3-stage water filter is now available in 3 different filter configurations. There is the regular carbon filter that we have just mentioned, and now two specialist versions. They deal with heavy metals like lead, copper, and iron. The carbon version is great for municipal water supplies, while the heavy metal filters are well suited to well water supplies. Take a look at how the 3 systems compare in the table below:
The WGB32B-PB version is the most expensive, but it is one of the most effective whole house systems for treating well water supplies. It can deal with water that has high levels of sediment in it, while at the same time removing dangerous heavy metals like lead and mercury.
The cheaper WGB32B is perfect for city water supplies. The 2 carbon filters are great at treating high levels of chlorine.
If you don’t require something as powerful as a 3-stage whole house system, the iSpring also offer this range in the 2-stage form. The 2-stage systems are available in the same 3 options, but are quite a bit cheaper, and allow faster water flow rates.
This water filter is NSF certified. The NSF is a public health and safety organization, and ensure that the filter has been tested to the highest safety standards. Only the water filter systems of the highest standards are awarded these certificates.
This whole house water filter will do a great job in protecting your home from most harmful water contaminants. It is powerful enough to protect against the more common contaminants. If you should need something more powerful then reverse osmosis water filters are the next best thing. However, they won’t filter all of the water in your home (only at one point). This is the trade-off between the two systems of filtration.
Installation and Maintenance
The iSpring WKB32B does not include bypass or shut off valves, and will require soldering to install. The bypass valves and pipe are necessary or you will have a really messy time when it comes to changing the filters. They can be purchased at relatively little expense to add at installation. The filters themselves are pretty easy to change and just require a wrench, and a bit of muscle. The user manual is available to read here.
Check out our guide to whole house filters to see how you can install a whole house system like this, all by yourself. We have step by step instructions and some videos that outline the whole process very clearly.
Pros and Cons
|Cheap filters||Need some DIY skills to install|
|Great U.S. based customer support|
|Option for well water or municipal supply|
Check back soon for more reviews of the top water filters, and water treatment devices. Follow us on Facebook to stay in the loop with all that’s new in the water filter world.