Find the perfect water filter that removes fluoride today, with our guide. We also discuss the pros and cons of water fluoridation in the modern world.
The addition of fluoride to drinking water is a topic that provokes heated debate. In the US, it’s commonplace, but in Europe only around 2% of countries adopt this practice. What can’t be denied though, is that excessive exposure to fluoride can be toxic.
In this post we recommend 4 water filters that are particularly effective at removing fluoride from water. We’ve included a range of different styles of water filtration to suit every home, lifestyle, and budget.
The four types of water filter that we recommend are:
- A reverse osmosis system that is extremely effective in removing a huge range of drinking water contaminants.
- A whole house system that will filter both the drinking and bathing water in your home.
- A countertop unit that is less expensive and very easy to install at your kitchen faucet.
- A shower filter that will filter your bathing water.
Read on to find out which models remove fluoride from water the best.
4 of the Best Fluoride Water Filters
Let’s take a look in more detail at the top water filters that remove fluoride.
1. Reverse Osmosis – iSpring RCC7
Reverse osmosis is the most powerful method of water filtration available to use at home. It removes more than 1000 harmful water contaminants at rates of up to 99%.
This model is one of the best on the market, and is really well priced too. It has a Water Quality Association Gold Seal certificate to prove its effectiveness. This accolade is one of the highest available, and proves its power under independent testing.
So, does reverse osmosis remove fluoride?
You bet! The RCC7 is certified to remove 94-96% of fluoride from water, which is one of the highest rejection rates you will find. It will also filter pretty much everything else from water including, chlorine, lead, pesticides, and arsenic.
It’s installed under the kitchen sink, and provides filtered drinking water at the faucet.
Bottom Line: This is one of the top water filters around, and probably the best fluoride filter. iSpring also offer amazing customer support and a 1-year satisfaction guarantee.
2. Whole House System – APEX MR-3020
This 3-stage whole house system is installed where the water supply enters the home. It filters ALL of the household water, and maintains high water pressure.
The 3-stages of water filtration each specialize in removing different water contaminants. The filters are jumbo-sized which means they last a long time, and allow a strong water flow rate. Let’s take a look at what each stage does.
Stage 1 – A 5 micron filter that removes dirt, sediment, and rust.
Stage 2 – An Activated Alumina filter. This material specializes in the removal of fluoride from water. It is also effective at removing arsenic, chlorine, and heavy metals like lead, copper, mercury, and iron.
Stage 3 – A 1 micron pad/ Granular Activated Carbon combination. This stage removes chlorine and its byproducts like chloramines, TCE, and THM.
As it is a whole house system, it is the most expensive of our recommendations. In general, fluoride filters are more expensive than other types of water filter.
Bottom Line: If you need a whole house solution to fluoride in water, then this is the best there is. It comes highly recommended on Amazon, where it is very well reviewed.
3. Countertop Unit – Home Master Jr. F2 Elite
This water filter is the cheapest of the quality systems we have selected. It is also the easiest to install and to maintain. Installation requires no tools, and can be finished in minutes. This type of filter attaches to the kitchen faucet and sits on the countertop.
It uses a 5-stage filter process that removes up to 93% of fluoride, chloramine, chlorine, aluminum, and other heavy metals like lead, mercury, and copper. The fluoride is targeted in the same way as the APEX unit, by using Activated Alumina.
A nice feature of this system is that it won’t remove the healthy minerals like magnesium and calcium from your water. This means the water tastes great.
Bottom Line: This is a cheaper water filter that removes fluoride. It’s also great if space is an issue, or if you’re worried about installation or maintenance of a water filter.
4. ProPur ProMax Shower Filter With Shower Head
As promised, we’ve included the best fluoride shower filter. This fluoride filter uses four stages of filtration to protect your skin and hair from over 200 harmful contaminants including heavy metals, VOCs, chlorine, chloramine, fluoride, pharmaceuticals, and herbicides.
It’s really easy to install, and includes a triple function massage shower head.
Bottom Line: The best in bathing water protection from fluoride.
Water Fluoridation: The Backstory
Once hailed as one of the greatest achievements of the 20th century, today, the fluoridation of public drinking water polarizes opinion. In the US it’s widespread, but in Europe it’s rare (less than 2% of countries). Let’s take a look at why this is so, as well as at some of the arguments for and against it.
Water fluoridation, or the addition of fluoride to public water supplies, has been a widespread practice in the United States for over 50 years. Currently, approximately two-thirds of the U.S. population lives in a home with fluoridated public water according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Water fluoridation became (and remains) governmental policy for the purpose of reducing cavities across the whole population. The average concentration of fluoride in fluoridated public water is 1 part per million (ppm), or 1 milligram per liter (mg/L). The concentration of naturally-occurring fluoride in non-fluoridated water is usually less than 0.3 ppm, although the concentration in groundwater may be higher.
The practice of water fluoridation in the United States began in the 1940s, when studies by researchers at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) found that a fluoride concentration of about 1 mg/L was linked to fewer cavities (1). Other studies did not discover any significant negative effects of fluoride in water up to a fluoride concentration of 8 mg/L (2).
In 1945, the NIH researchers began a controlled experiment in Grand Rapids, Michigan, in which they fluoridated the public water supply. In 1950, they published the results of their study, which showed a large reduction in the number of cavities (3). Based on the results of this study and others, water fluoridation was implemented across the United States in the following years.
By 1951, water fluoridation was already an official public policy of the U.S. Public Health Service, and water fluoridation was in widespread use across the U.S. by 1960. In 1962, 1.2 mg/L was recommended by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services as the optimal fluoride level in drinking water to prevent tooth decay. This recommendation was changed to 0.7 mg/L in 2015, to reflect the more widespread access to fluoride in toothpaste, mouthwash, and other oral health products.
According to the CDC, water fluoridation has decreased tooth decay in both adults and children by approximately 25%. More importantly, water fluoridation is the most cost-effective way to provide all members of the population with fluoride, to improve oral health across all ages and socio-economic classes.
The Community Preventive Services Task Force, established in 1996 by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, continues to recommend water fluoridation, because it reduces tooth decay across the whole population.
Critics of water fluoridation point to to several questionable aspects of the method, all of which are related in some way to fluoride dosage. When fluoride is added to the public water supply, it is impossible to control the dosage of fluoride per person. Certain groups of people, including athletes, diabetics, manual laborers, and people with kidney disease, tend to drink much more water than other people. People that drink more fluoridated water receive larger doses of fluoride (beyond the amount intended) to prevent cavities. Another aspect of the dosage problem is that bottle-fed babies, whose formula is mixed with fluoridated water, consume excessive amounts of fluoride relative to their body mass.
In addition to the problem of dosage respective to the amount of water consumed by individual people, overall fluoride consumption is not just limited to fluoridated water. Nowadays, most toothpaste and mouthwash contains fluoride. Although the fluoride in toothpaste and mouthwash is meant to be applied in small doses, some toothpaste is usually swallowed, especially by children.
The question of dosage is important because high levels of fluoride are known to be toxic. Fluoride has been used in the past to decrease activity of hyperactive thyroids. In addition, fluoride accumulates in the body, often in the bones. However, the CDC has found the level of fluoride in the water supply to be safe. The only negative health aspect of fluoridated water at the current fluoridation level is dental fluorosis, according to the CDC.
Mild forms of dental fluorosis manifest in thin white streaks on the teeth, but severe cases can involve brown stains on the teeth, broken tooth enamel, or pits in the enamel. Dental fluorosis occurs only in young children up to the age of eight, because the fluorosis only arises when the teeth developing under the gums are exposed to too much fluoride over a long period of time. According to the CDC, 41% of children aged 12 to 15 had dental fluorosis in 2010. Most cases of dental fluorosis, however, are so mild that the function of the teeth is not affected, and the white streaks in the teeth are barely visible.
The decision to fluoridate public water, and the concentration of fluoride in use is reviewed regularly by the Environmental Protection Agency, and other governmental agencies tasked with monitoring public health measures.
We hope you found our post regarding the top water filters that remove fluoride useful. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, or Google+ to keep up to date on all the news in the water filter world. We also write about pollution, health, and the environment. Links are at the top of the page.
1. Frees, Allan 4; Lehr, Jay H. 4 (2009). Fluoride Wars: How a Modest Public Health Measure Became America’s Longest-Running Political Melodrama. Wiley. pp. 92–129. ISBN 9780470463673.
2. Lennon MA. One in a million: the first community trial of water fluoridation. Bull World Health Organ. 2006;84(9):759–60. doi:10.2471/BLT.05.028209. PMID 17128347. PMC 2627472.
3. Dean HT, Arnold FA, Jay P, Knutson JW. Studies on mass control of dental caries through fluoridation of the public water supply. Public Health Rep. 1950;65(43):1403–8. doi:10.2307/4587515. PMID 14781280.