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Ah, the RV life! If that’s your style of travel, you’ve probably found that the water you drink and use isn’t the greatest wherever you park for the night…or the week…or the month. So if you’re looking for the best RV water filter for your situation, you might find it amongst the three that we’ll look at here.
An inline RV water filter seems the best way to go. In this article, we’ll evaluate a Camco RV water filter, one filter from Culligan, and one more “premium” filter from Clearsource.
If you’re in a hurry right now and really just want to check the pricing and availability of each of these inline filter systems at Amazon, you can click (or tap) the links just below.
- Camco 40043 TastePURE Water Filter
- Culligan RV-800 Exterior Pre-Tank RV Water Filter
- CLEARSOURCE Premium RV Water Filter
Camco 40043 TastePURE Water Filter
The TastePURE filter from Camco is very popular among RVers and boaters. Model 40043 handles sediments down to 20 microns in size. It helps reduce bad taste and odor in your water as well as the amount of chlorine.
It has Granular Activated Carbon (GAC) filtration that works in combination with KDF, something that protects the system from bacteria when you’re not actually using it. (See this article for a few more details about KDF.)
Camco says the filter container itself has a wide body “for increased flow”. You may find that it’s not a whole lot wider than many other filters in the market.
Camco suggests that this filter can last up to 3 months. That may or may not encompass your whole RV or boating season. You might want to replace it every 2 months instead, just to be safe.
You get a flexible hose protector that should help prevent kinks, allowing the water to flow smoothly and evenly. Some have found that this connector is the weak link in the system though.
Check out the video below for additional opinions about the filter and connectors. Note that the model reviewed in the video may be the 40045 instead of the 40043 I’m recommending in this article.
How To Install and Use an RV Water Filter
Certifications for the Camco 40043 include being NSF 42/53 listed and CSA low lead cerification to NSF/ANSI standard 362. In other words, it’s safe to use anywhere.
Culligan RV-800 Exterior Pre-Tank RV Water Filter
Culligan, unfortunately, does a poor job of letting us know the details of their products via their own website. Virtually all the information below I gleaned from other sources. I can only assume that those sources got it right – perhaps from packaging and the product itself as opposed to online. (I’m obviously saying that I don’t have one of these filters in my possession for this review.)
Like all good RV filters, the Culligan RV-800 handles chlorine taste and odor, bacteria, and sediments. I can’t tell you the actual extent to which it removes each of these elements.
A single cartridge has a life of 2000 gallons. If you know how much you use in a season, compare that number to 2000 to determine how many of these you might go through each year.
That’s about all that’s worth mentioning. It’s about the same as the Camco above in most respects. I can’t tell you how it compares as far as sediment size.
Since these are relatively inexpensive items, it could be worth trying out each one on your own to see which one you like best.
CLEARSOURCE Premium RV Water Filter
The Clearsource filter system is truly a premium product, with a price tag to match. However, being a higher-quality filter than the others above, you shouldn’t have to replace parts nearly as often. In other words, you should get your money’s worth over time.
The Clearsource RV water filter comes with, not just one, but two filter canisters. The first one takes out the main contaminants down to 5 microns in size. What makes it through that one though has only a slim chance of making it through the 0.5 micron filter in the second stage.
These water filter canisters remove volatile and organic compounds, giardia (microscopic parasites), cysts, sediments, and chlorine. In other words, just about anything bad that could be in your water stream.
The video below comes from the manufacturer, Clearsource, so keep that in mind as you watch.
According to Clearsource, this filtration system processes 6.5 gallons per minute, whereas many others only handle 4.5 gallons in the same timeframe. Assuming this is true, you’ll get a lot more water when using the Clearsource.
As you should expect for the price, the Clearsource filter is made of better components than most. It has “heavy-duty filter housings with leak-proof buttress-style threading, all stainless steel components, and a heavy duty, powder-coated metal chassis.”
Final Thoughts about These RV Filters
As I said at the top, you’ll have to decide which of these filters is best for your situation. Personally, I think I’d opt for the Clearsource premium filter because you always get what you pay for. Keep in mind, though, that I’m not an RVer, so your opinion may be wildly different from mine in this regard.
There’s really no right or wrong choice though. It’s mainly whether you want to pay a lot up front or whether you want to make smaller but more frequent investments in your clean water.
Those links to Amazon again…