How to Get Filtered Water for Your RV

There’s nothing better than life in a recreational vehicle (RV). You’ve got the open road ahead, worries behind, and everything you need wherever you are! But you might be surprised at how many camping trips and road journeys can be ruined by unfiltered water. When your RV’s water isn’t properly filtered, your road trips might just be from one hospital to the next!

Purified water can prevent sickness, injury, or worse. Luckily, there are tons of options that will keep your water fresh and safe. Read on to learn how to filter the water in your RV so that you can focus less on filtration and more on fun!

Why You Need an RV Water Filter

Purified water is extremely important no matter your living condition. Water sources can be contaminated by sediment, parasites/bacteria, heavy metals, and other microscopic dangers. Drinking non-purified water can lead to health concerns for you and your family. No one wants to spend vacation at a hospital.

Living or traveling in an RV increases risk. You’ll be hooking up to various water sources and you won’t know what the quality of the water might be. That’s why it’s so important to ensure your RV is equipped with a water filter that can handle any job. The truth is: water sources can become contaminated all the time. Campground owners and maintenance crews might do their best to keep their water sources clean, but they can’t catch everything. In 2018, a Minnesota campground found their water sources contaminated twice by E. coli. Yikes.

Here are some common dangers with campground water sources…

Bacteria, Fungi, and Microbial Contamination

It’s scary to hear, but it’s true: water sources can often be contaminated by germs, fungi, and other illness-causing microbes. These contaminants can cause major sicknesses, including but not limited to: Giardia, Norovirus, and even Hepatitis A. No water filter can filter out everything, but setting up a proper filtration system can ensure you’re more protected.

Sediment, Dirt, Silt Contamination

Ground disturbances from geological events (like earthquakes) or man-made events (like construction) can shift the ground around water sources. This can lead to dirt, silt, and other sediments being introduced into your drinking water. Water filters are especially good at filtering out hard contaminants like this. Drinking unfiltered water filled with sediment can lead to sickness.

Heavy Metal Contamination

Some water sources use metal piping that can rust over time. Metal flakes and shavings can enter your water when this happens. Drinking these microscopic metal pieces can cause serious problems! They can cut up your mouth and throat, cause infection, or even lead to poisoning! 

All these complications can be mitigated. All you need is a good water filter. And you’re in luck! You’ve got options…

Water Can Be Infected

RV Water Filter Options

Getting a water filter for your RV is surprisingly easy. There are tons of online retailers that provide wide selections. Amazon is always a wonderful place to pick up anything you need. But, maybe you aren’t sure what kind of filter to look for? No worries! This article has you covered.

Your biggest consideration should be how much of your water supply you want to purify. Do you want to purify all the water going into your RV or do you just want to filter the drinking water? This determine the type of filter to search for. You should also consider how much space the filter will take up. And, of course, you should figure out a budget.

Water filter types can vary, but here are the basics…

Whole RV Filtration

Water purifiers intended to filter all the water going into your RV are often called “whole RV filters”. These filters can attach directly to the water hookup outside your RV, to your water intake hose, or can be installed within the RV itself. These are generally divided into canisters, with one, two, or three-canister options available. Generally speaking, more canisters means better filtration. More canisters also means the filter takes up more space, too, so watch out for that.

There are also whole RV filters, called “inline filters”, which are usually a single canister, low-use system. These are the cheaper versions of whole RV filters and work for a shorter period of time. These inline filters are great options for people who use their RVs intermittently. Full-timers should definitely consider larger systems.

Drinking Water Filtration – Under-the-Sink Filters

Under-the-sink water filters attach to the lines running underneath a sink and filter ONLY the water coming into that sink. They come in a range of sizes, just like their whole RV counterparts. Space is a large consideration here because they install under the sink. Keep in mind that not all RVs provide access to the plumbing underneath the sink, so you’ll need to ensure yours does before buying one of these filters.

Drinking Water Filtration – Countertop Filters

Like under-the-sink filters, countertop water filters only filter the water in the sink to which they’re attached. Instead of going under the sink, they attach directly to the tap. This means you won’t have to worry about how much space the filter uses under the sink, but you might need to worry about counter space. In an RV, every inch counts!

RV Water Filter Installation

Installing the various types of portable water filters can be a challenge because there are so many types, so you may need to rely on your specific filter’s manufacturer to provide specific installation information. If you aren’t comfortable doing it yourself, don’t worry. Many manufacturers provide professional installation as a service, and general plumbing services can usually assist you with installation as well. If you’d like to give it a shot on your own…

This video provides installation information on a filtration system that connects to your intake hose. 

This one describes installing a basic under-the-sink system.

And this one shows you how to install a countertop system.

Again, if you have specific questions, consult either your filter manufacturer’s instructions or a professional plumbing service.

Best RV Water Filters

So, you know what sort of filter you want! Now you need to know which is the best! There are a lot of options out there. Here are a few of the very best options of each filter type.

Watts POE12DSA1KDF Dual Exterior Water Filter Kit

This Watts exterior filter sits between your intake and the hookup. It can be mounted inside your RV, keeping things nice and clean, but can just as easy be used externally. It’s lightweight and incredibly durable, complete with a two-stage system that will last for a year. The plastic fittings on this system can be a little finnicky, so be sure to install with care and keep lots of Teflon tape around to secure any loose fittings. 

Watts POE12DSA1KDF Dual Exterior Water Filter Kit
  • Country Of Origin: China
  • Model Number: POE12DSA1KDF
  • Item Package Dimension: 15.0" L x 12.0" W x 6.0" H

Clearsource Premium RV Water Filter System

This Clearsource system is an external system. It can still be mounted inside the RV, but it already comes pre-built with a stand for outdoor use. It comes with a two-stage system. Because the whole system is so well-packaged, it’s very simple to install and use. The downside: it can be a little pricey!

Clearsource Premier RV Water Filter System - Protects Against Contaminants & Bacteria
  • INDUSTRY-LEADING 0.2 MICRON PROTECTION. Our two-stage filter system, with best-in-class 0.2-micron protection against contaminants – better than all other in -line, single or dual canister RV water filter systems on the market.
  • CLEANER, SAFER WATER THAN OTHER SYSTEMS. Tighter filter pores trap more contaminants. We lead the industry in the size and quality of our filters. Other systems offer 0.5-micron capability with “nominal” rated filters - meaning some but not all of the pores are the rated size.
  • HOSPITAL-GRADE 0.2-MICRON FILTER CAPTURES CONTAMINANTS OTHER SYSTEMS MISS. Unlike the filters in other systems, our 0.2 micron filter carries an “absolute” rating – meaning every pore is the rated size or better. With this enhanced protection, the Clearsource Premier removes or reduces bacteria like Legionella and E. Coli, and cysts like giardia.

Camco 40045 TastePURE Inline Water Filter

No RV water filter conversation is complete without mentioning this Camco filter. It’s incredibly popular among RV enthusiasts. It’s a single-canister system and it’s guaranteed to keep your water fresh and clean! However, this system is also prone to clogging quickly and therefor has a short lifespan. It isn’t recommended for full-timers or people who regularly use their RV, but it’s great for intermittent users and part-time campers.

Camco TastePURE RV Water Filter - New Advanced 6-Step Patent-Protected Filtration - Camping Essentials for Fresh Drinking Water - 2-Pack of RV Inline Water Filters, Made in USA (40045)
  • ADVANCED 6-STEP FILTRATION TECHNOLOGY: Experience the extraordinary power of Hex-Flow Technology & its remarkable 6-step filtration process. Every layer works together to provide you with water that is exceptionally clean.
  • CERTIFIED LEAD-FREE: These camping water filters are independently tested & listed to standards NSF/ANSI 42 & NSF/ANSI 53. They are CSA lead-free content certified to NSF/ANSI 372 & compliant with all federal & state-level lead-free laws.
  • ACCESS TO PURE, GREAT-TASTING WATER: Enjoy clean water wherever you go! These RV inline filters reduce unpleasant tastes, odor, chlorine, sediment, etc. GAC filtration, combined w/ KDF controls bacteria & mold growth when the filters aren’t in use.

Ecosoft 3 Stage Under Sink Water Filter System

Some enthusiasts consider this under-the-sink system the king of RV drinking water filtration. It comes with a heavy-duty three-stage system that will definitely purify your water! It’s built to last as well. However, the system’s three canisters can take up lots of room underneath the sink, so be sure you’ve got the space to spare! Also, you’re getting what you pay for. This bad boy is more expensive than other, smaller options.

Ecosoft 3-Stage Under Sink High Capacity Tankless Drinking Water Filtration System-Includes Sediment 2X CTO Carbon Block Filters with Kitchen Faucet
  • KETTLE & IRON WITHOUT LIMESCALE! Our water filtration system makes water softer, removes organochlorine & mechanical components, lowers levels of manganese & iron. The house water filter system reduces water-hardening salts, concentration of heavy & non-ferrous metals, preventing limescale formation.
  • BPA FREE SAFETY! High quality plastic of water filtration systems provide best everyday experience for you and your family.
  • DELICIOUS WATER ANY TIME! This water filter system delivers valuable pure water for both drinking and cooking. Make healthy dishes full of vitamins!

Frizzlife Under Sink Water Filter

The Frizzlife system is a single-canister, under-the-sink system built specifically for ease-of-use. It’s very easy to install and the canister, which can last up to two years, is designed for quick changes. If you’re looking for easy, you found your option! This system is on the cheaper side and great for RVers that just want to install a system and go. However, the single-canister system won’t provide the highest quality filtration, so consider that before you buy.

Frizzlife Under Sink Water Filter-NSF/ANSI 53&42 Certified Drinking Water Filtration System-0.5 Micron Removes Lead, Chlorine,Bad Taste & Odor, W/Dedicated Faucet
  • [Two-stage Advanced Water Filter With 0.5 Micron]: The Frizzlife MP99 Water Filtration System includes a TWO-STAGE High precise compound filter including a unique technology that reduces contaminants while leaving in all essential minerals. Certified to reduce Lead, Chlorine, Taste & Odor and Particulates. Enjoy healthy water from the tap.
  • [Dedicated Faucet & Brass Feed Water Adapter Valve Included]: Frizzlife Undersink water filtration system includes a dedicated stainless steel faucet that can be installed in most sinks providing cleaner filtered water for cooking or drinking. NO plumbing would be required. it comes with a 3/8" compatible brass feed water adapter, brackets, and STEP-TO-STEP Installation manual, you can mount the water filter as you wish within 10 minutes.
  • [Best Auto Shut Off Design]: Utilizing quick change twist-in installation design makes it take less than 3 minutes for you to install the system or doing a filter replacement. Provides for easy, tool-free, no mess filter replacement. The filter cap is designed with a BUILT-IN shut off valve. You don't even need to shut off the water supply whenever you work on the filter cartridge replacement.

Woder 10K-Gen3 Ultra High Capacity Direct Connect Water Filtration System

This water filter is surprisingly heavy-duty considering its one-canister system. It’s easy to use and install. It’s also made to filter just about everything but the sink above it! The Woder system is designed for a whopping 10,000 gallons of purification (or about 3 years with regular, daily use). Be advised that this system is only for use with cold drinking water. Most importantly, it will significantly restrict water flow.

Woder Under Counter Water Filter – Ultra High Capacity Home Water Filtration System – Lead, HM, Chlorine and PFAS Removal - Keeps Essential Minerals US Made (Gen3(1))
  • BUILT TO LAST water filtration system under sink - Replacements if early expiration Occurs. Cost effective replacement cartridge (B0C1H59KSQ) under sink filter.
  • EASY AND QUICK INSTALLATION. NO PLUMBING REQUIRED. NO COUNTERTOP DRILLING! WD-G4-DC under sink water filter comes with SS hoses that fit standard US 3/8” water valves (US Building Code)
  • PURE AND HEALTHY MINERAL WATER ON TAP! - Woder's Advanced Selective Filtration technology removes 99.9% of contaminants while it leaves in essential minerals, unlike ro water filter system under sink.

Go Berkey Kit (Stainless Steel Portable Water Filter System with Sport Berkey Water Bottle and Carrying Case)

This is perhaps the most popular portable water filter you can find. It’s designed for use in a range of situations and is capable of connecting to your tap or directly to the water source. This kit comes complete with a water filter, a filter bottle, and even a carrying case for everything! High versatility means you can use this water filter in your RV or out on camping excursions. That versatility will also come with a cost, though, so budget could be a factor on this one.

Go Berkey Water Filter Kit with 1 Qt. Berkey Gravity Fed Water Filter System, Berkey Sport Bottle and Black Berkey Primer
  • A PERSONAL WATER FILTRATION SOLUTION FOR ON THE GO- The 1-quart Go Berkey Water Filter System provides clean, refreshing water for on the go, at home and everyday use. The Go Berkey System is constructed of AISI 304 stainless steel and has a 1-quart storage capacity. It measures 14" tall with a 4" diameter when in use. When not in use, upper chamber nests in lower chamber and measures just 10" high with a 4" diameter when stored.
  • COMPACT DESIGN, WITH SAME CONTAMINANT REDUCTION PERFORMANCE AS LARGER BERKEY SYSTEMS- The system's Black Berkey Element addresses over 200+ typical contaminants that could be present in drinking water sources. Black Berkey Elements have been tested by accredited third-party labs that have reported that the elements remove or reduce over 200+ typical contaminants found in drinking water.
  • READY TO GO- The Go Berkey Water Filter is the smallest gravity-fed water filter system available (requires time for assembly and filtration), and is perfect for use in a dorm room, the office, hotels and more. Plus, it’s a great addition for your bug-out bag or travel gear, or keep it in your vehicle so it's easily available whenever and wherever you need it.

APEC Water Systems CT-2000 Countertop Water Filter

APEC is a highly-trusted name in water filtration. And for good reason. Their systems are quality, well-priced, and exceptionally easy to use. You can trust that this countertop system will keep your water delicious and looking great. Perhaps the only drawback to this system is its opaque container shell: you won’t actually be able to see your filter through its cartridge holding. 

APEC 4-in-1 Ceramic Countertop Drinking Water Filter System (CT-2000)
  • 4-in-1 ceramic filter combines ceramic media, silver ion media, activated carbon block and ion exchange media to remove water contaminants
  • Multi-Stage Filtration Removes Bac., Chlorine, Lead & More
  • > 99.99% E.Coli, Cryptosporidium & Cyst Removal

Apex Countertop Drinking Water Filter

Easy to install and use. This Apex system has a clear shell, comes in various colors, and doesn’t take up much space. It’s also pretty affordable. Each filter can purify about 750 gallons of water before it needs replacing. Air pockets can form during installation, though, so keep an eye on any excess moisture accumulation. Also, be prepared for low water pressure.

APEX MR-1050 Countertop Water Filter, 5 Stage Mineral pH Alkaline Easy Install Faucet Water Filter - Reduces Heavy Metals, Bad Taste and Up to 99% of Chlorine - Clear
  • REDUCES CONTAMINANTS IN TAP WATER: The APEX Clear Countertop Alkaline Drinking Water Filter System removes contaminants commonly found in tap water, like chlorine, sediment, and radon. It also filters Cryptosporidium, and Giardia cysts, which contribute to water-borne illnesses. APEX water filters remove mercury and harmful pesticides to give you delicious, sparkling, fresh clean drinking water.
  • CONNECTS TO STANDARD FAUCETS: APEX’s Clear countertop water filter system has been designed to conveniently sit right on your kitchen counter. It is simple to install, and connects easily to most standard kitchen faucets. All the necessary hardware is included for easy do-it-yourself installation. Simply remove the aerator screen from the faucet and screw on the collar of the APEX diverter valve.
  • COST-EFFECTIVE WATER FILTER: By using an APEX countertop alkaline water filter, you can stop wasting money on small disposable bottles of water that just get thrown away when empty. Buying bottled water for daily home consumption gets expensive and tedious. You don’t have to lug heavy water jugs or cases home to enjoy fresh clean drinking water. APEX water filters are the solution.

Brita Large 10 Cup Water Filter Pitcher

If money’s tight, you can always buy a water pitcher with a built-in filter. It’ll do fine for filtering your drinking water, but it’s low capacity and will take up room in your fridge. It won’t help you much with washing water, but it’s an affordable solution in a pinch.

Brita Large Water Filter Pitcher for Tap and Drinking Water with 1 Standard Filter, Lasts 2 Months, 10 Cup Capacity, BPA Free, White
  • The BPA-free Grand water pitcher with filter holds 10 cups of water, enough to fill 3 24-ounce reusable water bottles
  • Get great-tasting water without the waste; by switching to Brita, you can save money and replace 1,800 single-use plastic water bottles* a year
  • This space efficient Brita pitcher fits perfectly on refrigerator shelves, features an easy-fill locking lid and is easy to pour; Height 10.16"; Width 5.77"; Length/Depth 11"; Weight 2.48 pounds

LifeStraw Go Water Filter Bottle

You can go to filtered water bottles in serious situations. They can’t hold as much as pitchers and aren’t great for long-term use, but having a couple stored away can be useful if your water filter unexpectedly goes out.

LifeStraw Go Water Filter Bottle with 2-Stage Integrated Filter Straw for Hiking, Backpacking, and Travel, Blue
  • ADVANCED WATER FILTRATION. Protects against, microplastics, chlorine, organic chemical matter and sand, dirt, cloudiness and more; improves taste
  • MADE TO LAST. Long-lasting membrane microfilter lasts up to 4,000 liters and the activated carbon filter lasts up to 100 liters of water with proper use and maintenance
  • RIGOROUSLY TESTED. Reusable, durable and BPA-free, independently lab tested to meet protocols established by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and NSF International/ANSI


Water filtration is key — especially when living or traveling in an RV. All those different water sources can be potentially hazardous, so investing in proper water filtration is essential. Make sure you’ve done thorough research and you understand what you need before buying or installing any portable water filter. Look for quality filters and use the above list to guide your purchase. Don’t let water purification ruin family vacations or life on the road!

Good luck, safe travels, and happy drinking!


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