Choosing the best UV filter for well water is somewhat tricky depending on what’s in your well water. A UV filter might be all you need to effectively eliminate harmful microorganisms in your well water. On the flip side, a UV filter might only be part of a complete home filtration system for well water.
Regardless, UV filtration is more important for people on well water than people on municipal water. Why? Well, municipal water is typically treated with chlorine or chloramines that do most of the heavy lifting. The good news is that UV filters are an excellent alternative to chlorine treatment for well water.
In this guide, I share:
- Top UV Filters for Well Water
- UV Water Filter Reviews
- Tips on How to Choose the Right UV Filter for Your Home
Best UV Water Purifier Reviews
In the UV water filter department, there are two main types of filters. The best UV filter brands are low-pressure, high-output. This type of lamp delivers a higher intensity of UV light, which allows for smaller, more effective systems.
The Pelican UV filter is the perfect example of a low-pressure, high-output lamp. Despite being significantly shorter in length and having a 46 Watt lamp compared to a 55 Watt lamp, the Pelican system can effectively treat up to 16 gallons per minute.
Be sure to stick around after the reviews for more tips on how to choose the best UV filter for well water.
#1) Springwell UV Water Purification System (SPRW-UVC5-15)
When your goal is to purchase equipment from a trustworthy vendor, Springwell should be at or near the top of your list. Currently, Springwell offers a wide range of well water filtration products to suit all of your needs. For this reason, I chose Springwell’s UV filter as my top selection. Additionally, this is one of the most advanced and efficient UV water purifiers on the market.
Firstly, Springwell scores high in each important category, including hitting the mark on the recommended 30mj/cm2 UV intensity for effective elimination of harmful bacteria, including E.coli, Cryptosporidium, and Giardia lamblia. Secondly, this system treats well water with a UV transmittance score down to 75% to keep the warranty intact, which is one of the best numbers available. Third, Springwell stands behind its products with one of the longest warranties offered.
Outside of those considerations, model SPRW-UVC5-15 is sufficient for households with up to 7 bathrooms with its 15 GPM service flow rate. Also, the electronic monitor with a color LCD screen makes it easy for you to monitor the filter. You’ll find readings indicating the lamp life along with any potential warnings about your water quality.
Below are the highlights of Springwell’s SPRW-UVC5-15 to consider before you choose a UV filter to treat your well water:
- High 30mj/cm2 UV intensity
- High service flow rate for no drop in water pressure
- Visual LCD screen for lamp life readings and more
- Long warranty terms and a 6-month satisfaction guarantee
- Detailed user manual and installation instructions
#2) US Water Systems Pulsar Ultraviolet Disinfection System (405-PUV-200-20)
One of the few companies that strive to design and manufacture well water treatment equipment in the United States is US Water Systems. Currently, its Pulsar UV system is made in North America. So, if you prefer to skip over equipment made in China, look here first.
Next, the Pulsar lamp is one of the most reliable you’ll find offered by a UV system with a 9000-hr lamp life you can count on. The low-pressure coated lamp delivers the necessary 30mJ/cm2 concentration of UV light to effectively eliminate bacteria commonly found in well water. Additionally, the stainless steel chamber is built to last a lifetime and efficiently protect the bulb.
Plus, the chamber allows for lamp changes without interrupting water flow. As for keeping tabs on the lamp life, the built-in controller displays the remaining lamp life and even features an alarm to notify you in the event of a lamp failure. Lastly, this system is available in various sizes to suit all households. Presently, there are 10, 15, and 20 GPM systems with the option to add on a 1-micron pre-filter.
Below you’ll find a list of highlights to consider when choosing the Pulsar UV disinfection system for your home:
- Made in North America
- Reliable 9000-hr lamp life
- Easy lamp changes without interrupting water flow
- Lamp life indicator
- CSA and CE compliant
- Long warranty terms
#3) Pelican UV Water Filter (PUV-7)
Pelican Water Systems (now Pentair Water Solutions) is one of the most reliable water filtration companies that’s most well-known for its line of whole-house filtration systems. Of all the companies manufacturing UV filters, Pelican UV filters incorporate the most efficient and cutting-edge technology.
Another feature that sets Pelican apart from its competitors is the long warranty period. When you invest in a Pelican UV water filter, there’s no need to worry about money down the drain. Since UV filters aren’t cheap, a Pelican UV filter is a wise investment.
You already know that Pelican UV water filters are low-pressure, high-output, which is the reason why the Pelican chamber is smaller than most of the other units in my top picks, outside of Viqua. The Chamber is made of 304 stainless steel and will stand the test of time. There are two models available for home use, the PUV-7 and PUV-14. The main difference between the two systems is the size.
The PUV-7 has a peak flow rate of 16 GPM, while the PUV-14 can handle up to 34 GPM. For most households, the PUV-7 is more than enough.
Below are other highlights of the Pelican PUV-7 to consider before you choose a UV filter to treat your well water:
- Safety Cap & Lamp Plug
- Maximum Operating Pressure: 125 psi
- Lamp Replacement Reminder
- Visual “Power On” Indicator
- Lamp Timer Reset & Display
- Voltage: 100-240V AC
#4) HQUA UV Sterilizer (HQUA-OWS-12)
The greatest advantage of the HQUA filter over the Pelican filter is the significant decrease in price, however, that also means a dip in quality. The longer lamps with more watts are less efficient and do not fall into the low-pressure, high-output category. Having said that, the HQUA certainly gets the job done and has the capacity to purify water for households with up to four bathrooms. For most homes, 12 GPM is sufficient to supply the entire home.
Like the Pelican filter, the HQUA chamber is made of 304 stainless steel. It features a quartz sleeve for housing the lamp and an electronic ballast with a 365-day countdown timer. Overall, the HQUA unit is the best UV filter for the money currently available. Giardia, Cryptosporidium, and E. coli are just a handful of the primary contaminants this filter incinerates.
Below are the pros and cons I found in the HQUA reviews:
#5) iSpring UV Filter (UVF55)
As you probably already noticed, the iSpring chamber is essentially identical to the HQUA purifier all the way down to the dimensions. The biggest difference here is the 55-watt lamp in the iSpring unit compared to the 40-watt lamp in the HQUA unit.
Also, I trust iSpring before HQUA since HQUA is a relatively-unknown company. On the other hand, iSpring is one of the most well-known and respected reverse osmosis system manufacturers. The company manufactures a wide range of water filtration products and is known for its superior customer service.
Depending on your budget, the iSpring UVF55 might be your best bet. At the time of this writing, it costs significantly less than the Pelican PUV-7 and not a whole lot more than the HQUA system. When you choose iSpring, you can be sure that the iSpring team walks you through the installation and answers any questions you might have along the way.
Below are the pros and cons I found in the iSpring UVF55 reviews:
#6) Viqua Whole-House UV Water Sterilizer (S5Q-PA 6)
Similar to the Pelican PUV-7, the Viqua UV filter uses a low-pressure, high-output lamp for increased efficiency. For smaller households with up to two bathrooms, the S5Q-PA 6 is a worthy and more affordable alternative to the PUV-7 system. If 6 GPM max output is enough to supply your home, this is a high-quality UV unit that’ll save you some bucks.
Of the purifiers in my top picks, Viqua, Pelican, and Springwell are backed by the longest warranties. It’s also important to note that, unlike Pelican, Viqua specializes in UV filtration and has been in the UV filtration business for close to four decades. When you buy a Viqua UV purifier, you’re buying from one of the most reliable and knowledgeable companies in the world.
Below are the pros and cons I found reported by owners in the Viqua reviews:
#7) Bluonics UltraViolet Light Water Sterilizer (55W UV)
One brand that’s emerging as a force in the water filtration space is Bluonics. Currently, this brand brings quality and affordability to the table, which are two things that all homeowners should look for when choosing water filtration equipment. There are three sizes available in the Bluonics UV water filter lineup, ranging from 6W up to 110W.
For the money and for choosing a good whole-house UV water filter, model 55W UV is sufficient and gives you good value for the money. Comparatively, Bluonics recommends model 55W UV for homes up to 2000 sq ft and the larger 110W UV for homes larger than 2000 sq ft.
As for the specs, the 55W UV compares favorably to the preceding models in this guide. Plus, there are several packages available with multiple replacement bulbs. All in all, Bluonics manufactures one of the better UV water purifiers currently available for a competitive price.
Below are the pros and cons I found reported by users in the Bluonics reviews:
Tips for Choosing the Best UV Filter for Well Water
Below is a list of considerations to make before you invest in a UV water purifier for your home:
- UV filters are not meant for iron bacteria problems – If you have well water with iron bacteria, it’s necessary to install a whole house well water filter before the UV filter. Whole house systems with multiple stages including KDF-85 media do an excellent job of removing hydrogen sulfide and iron.
- The importance of UVT (Ultra Violet Transmittance) – UVT is a measure of how well your water transmits UV light. Municipal water typically has a UVT of 95%, while well water hovers around 85% UVT (*). For this reason, municipal water is easier to treat and requires less pre-filtration than most well water. One of the reasons I chose Springwell as my top pick is that its UV filters are effective down to 75% UVT and provide the required 30 m/J UV dose for reliable disinfection.
- Max Service Flow Rate – The max flow rate is important to check to ensure the UV filter is compatible with your current water filtration system and has the capacity to serve your entire home. UV filters with a max flow rate of 6 GPM are typically adequate for smaller households with up to two bathrooms. Larger households with four or more bathrooms should aim for a max flow rate of 12 GPM at a minimum.
- Warranty – A quality UV filter comes backed by a long warranty. One of the reasons I like Pelican systems for home use is the top-notch stainless steel chambers and canisters the company manufactures. Of the filters in my top picks, the Pelican, US Water Systems, and Springwell units will last the longest followed by the Viqua unit. Once you enter the budget realm, there’s a higher chance of issues occurring after the warranty expires.
Those are the most important factors to consider when choosing a UV filter. Remember, the lamp wattage is not a measure of effectiveness. Low-pressure, high-output lamps are currently the best on the market. Both Pelican and Viqua UV filters feature low-pressure, high-output lamps.
UV filters for well water are an effective alternative to chlorine for eliminating harmful bacteria in private wells. The most important thing to keep in mind is that UV filters are not made to be standalone. If you have hard well water or iron-rich well water, it must be treated before it enters the UV chamber for the UV light to do its job effectively.
A good sediment pre-filter and multi-stage whole house filtration system are required for most well water applications. Additionally, most people on well water will need to consider installing a water softener before the UV filter. UV filters are for eliminating bacteria, not removing contaminants.