How Often Should I Change My Whole House Water Filter?

The frequency of replacing your whole house water filter depends on a few factors: the type of filter you have, how much water is used in your home, and the quality of the incoming water supply. Generally, a whole house water filter should be replaced at least every six months or more frequently, depending on your usage. If you have a high sediment filter, it should be replaced more often depending on the amount of debris in your water. Additionally, if you notice any changes in your water quality or pressure, this may indicate that it’s time to replace your whole house filter. Regular maintenance and replacement will ensure the system is working properly and provide your family with clean, filtered water.

What Is A Whole House Water Filtration System?

What Is A Whole House Water Filtration System?
A Whole House Water Filtration System

A whole house water filtration system, also referred to as a point-of-entry (POE) filter, is a complete filtration solution for the incoming water supply of your entire home. It is installed at the source of your water supply before it reaches any other fixtures or appliances, ensuring that all the water used in your home is filtered. This type of system offers more comprehensive filtration than a standard point-of-use (POU) filter, which typically only filters the water used for drinking and cooking.

Why Filters Need To Be Changed?

Why Filters Need To Be Changed?
Filters Need To Be Changed

It is important to frequently change your whole house water filter since filters can become blocked with sediment, rust, and other debris over time. If the filter is not changed regularly, it will lead to decreased water flow and pressure issues in your home. In addition, if you have a carbon-based filter, the carbon itself will break down, decreasing its ability to filter out contaminants in your water.

How Often Should I Change My Whole House Water Filter?

The frequency of changing your whole house water filter will depend on several factors. These include the type of filter you use, the quality and quantity of sediment in your water source, and your usage patterns. Generally, most filtration systems should be changed every three to six months.

  • Pre-filter: Every 3 to 9 months: If you are using a pre-filter to protect the primary filter, it should be changed more often than the main filter. This will help catch finer particles and extend the life of your main filter.
    Carbon pre-filter
  • Post-filter: Every 6 to 12 months: It’s best to replace your post-filter cartridges every 6 to 12 months. Even if you don’t see any visible signs that the filter is clogged or is working less effectively, contaminants can still be present in your water supply and could impact the taste or texture of your water.
  • Filtration tanks: Every 5 to 10 years: Filtration tanks are the most commonly used type of whole-house water filter. They have a life expectancy of 5 to 10 years and must be replaced regularly. The frequency at which they should be changed will depend on the quality of your water and how often the filter is being used. If you experience any decreased water flow in your home, this could be a sign that the filter’s capacity has been reached and it needs to be changed.
  • UV filter (lamp): As needed (about once a year): Depending on your usage and how often you check the filter, replacing your UV lamp once a year is a good idea. This is especially important if you have hard water or other contaminants in your water supply. A dirty UV lamp won’t be effective at killing off bacteria and viruses, so make sure to change it annually.
    UV filter (lamp)
    UV filter (lamp)
  • Salt-free water softener filtration tank: Every 6 years: It is recommended to replace the water softener tank every 6 years to reduce the chance of contaminants or other particles being released into your drinking water.

How Often Should You Change Water Filter Cartridge?

The rule of thumb is to change your filter cartridge every 6-12 months or when the manufacturer’s instructions suggest. This can vary depending on the type and size of your filter system and how much water you use in a given amount of time. Generally speaking, most whole-house water filtration systems will need to be changed sooner if they are used more frequently or have higher water flow rates. Some systems may require you to change their filters as often as every 3 months to keep the system running smoothly and efficiently.

How Often To Change Big Blue Water Filter Cartridge?

How Often To Change Big Blue Water Filter Cartridge?
Change Big Blue Water Filter Cartridge

The frequency of filter changes for a Big Blue Whole House Water Filter can vary depending on the filtration needs of your home. The most common recommendation is to change the filters every 6-12 months, but this may need to be adjusted depending on water quality and usage. For example, if your water has high sediment or iron levels, you may need to change the filters more frequently.

It can also be beneficial to install a sediment pre-filter before your Big Blue filter. This will help reduce the frequency of filter changes and keep your system operating at its best. If you have a sediment pre-filter, we recommend changing it every 3-6 months to maintain optimal filtration performance.

Factors That Influence How Long A Whole House Filter Lasts

  • Filter Type and Material: Different types of whole house filters use different filtration media to capture impurities from the water. The type and material used in a filter can have an impact on how long it lasts. For example, some filters use a ceramic or pleated polyester material designed to be durable and last longer than other materials like activated carbon which doesn’t last as long.
  • Filter Capacity: The larger the filter capacity, the longer it will last before needing to be replaced since it will have more effective filtration media. When choosing a filter, consider the size of your home and how much water you use daily to determine what capacity is best for you.
  • Your Water Quality: The frequency of filter changes will depend on the condition and quality of your water. If drawing from a well, it’s important to test for bacteria and other contaminants regularly. In areas with frequent flooding or heavy rains, sediment levels in the water supply can increase, making filtration more important. If your filter indicates that the water is not being filtered properly, it’s time to change it.
  • Size of Your Household: Larger households use more water, so filters may need to be changed more frequently. If your household size increases or decreases significantly, you should consider changing the filter at least once a year and as often as every six months.
  • Overall Filter Quality: Higher quality filters typically require fewer changes than lower-quality filters. If you’ve opted for a more economical filter, you should plan on changing it at least every six months. Premium filters will usually last closer to a year or longer before they need to be replaced.
  • Water pressure: Low water pressure can affect the life of your filter. If you have low-flow fixtures or your household uses a lot of water, it may be time to change your whole house filter more frequently.
  • Usage: How often you use the water in your home will also play an important role in determining how often to change your filter.

Where Is The Whole Home Water Filter Located?

The whole house water filter is typically located before the main water line enters your home, often near the city meter. The exact location can vary depending on your plumbing system and where it is most convenient for you to access the filter. It’s important to note that if you haven’t had a whole house filter installed yet, it’s best to do so before any other water treatment system, like a softener or reverse osmosis.

How To Change A Whole Home Water Filter?

  • Turn off the main water supply:  The first step in changing the filter is turning off the water to your whole house. This should be done at the main shut-off valve, typically near where the water line enters your home.
    Turn off the main water supply
    Turn off the main water supply
  • Turn off the water outlet valve: turn off the water outlet valve that supplies water to the filter. This is usually located just below or behind the filter.
  • Push the pressure release button: Before changing your whole house water filter, press the pressure release button on the head of the filter. This will relieve any excess pressure in the filter housing, allowing you to unscrew and remove it easily. Wear safety glasses while doing this, as there may be splashing when releasing the pressure.
  • Turn the filter housing counter-clockwise: Most whole-house water filters require changing the filter cartridge once a year. However, depending on your water quality and usage, you may need to change it more or less often. Remove the housing from the wall and examine the filter cartridge inside to check if it’s time for a filter replacement. If there is visible dirt or discoloration, it’s time to replace the filter.
    Turn the filter housing counter-clockwise
    Turn the filter housing counter-clockwise
  • Remove the filter from the housing: Once you have determined the best replacement filter for your system, begin by unscrewing the old filter from the housing unit. Note that some systems may require a professional to do this.
  • Clean the inside of the housing: Clean throughly the inside of the filter housing with a damp cloth every three to four months as part of your whole house water filter maintenance schedule. This will help keep the filter functioning at its peak performance and extend its life span.
  • Place the replacement pre-filter in the housing: After cleaning the housing, replace the pre-filter. The filter should fit snugly in the housing, so you must press firmly but not too hard until it snaps into place. Ensure all seals are secure and the filter is tightly pressed against the housing.

How Does An Old Filter Affect Water Quality?

If you’re using an old filter, it won’t be as effective in filtering contaminants. As time passes, they become less and less efficient due to continuous clogging with sediment. This can result in poor water quality that affects your water’s taste, odour and appearance. It also increases the risk of potential health hazards.

Signs You Need to Change Your System Filter Soon

  • Unpleasant water taste: If your water tastes or smells unpleasant, it’s likely the filter will no longer remove as many contaminants. It might be time to replace your filter soon.
  • Odours: If you notice any off smells or tastes in your water, it’s time to change your filter. This is usually a sign that sediment and other materials have started to build up, impacting the taste of your water.
  • Low water pressure: If you experience a sudden drop in water pressure, it could indicate that your filter system needs to be changed.
  • Dirt or mold: If you have notched up dirt or mold in your water, it may be a good idea to change the filter more frequently. Pollutants or contaminants: If your water has high levels of pollutants or other contaminants, it is important to change the filter regularly. It will ensure your family’s health and safety.

Benefits Of Replacing A Whole House Filter Regularly

  • Better Tasting Water: By replacing your filter regularly, you’re ensuring that you get the best-tasting water possible.
  • Healthier Water: Filters have the potential to improve the taste and health of your home’s water. Depending on the type, whole house filters can be effective at removing contaminants such as chlorine, chloramines, lead, pesticides, sediment, and other common pollutants. To ensure that your water is free from these contaminants and tastes great during every glassful, you should change out your whole house filter regularly.
  • Cleaner Water: Changing your water filter regularly ensures you get clean, clear water free from sediment and contaminants. You should check the filter monthly to ensure it keeps up with its job of filtering out particles and debris. If the filter appears clogged or dirty, replace it right away. Also, be sure to check if there have been any changes in the color, taste, or odor of your water from the filter, as this could indicate that it needs to be changed.
  • Longer Filter Life: Regularly changing your whole house water filter will also help extend its lifespan. Over time, filters can become clogged with sediment and debris, which can reduce their effectiveness. Making sure to replace it every three months or so can help ensure it is working optimally for as long as possible.
  • Reduce cost: Replacing your water filter regularly can help keep costs down in the long run. Not only will it help ensure that you are getting clean, clear water free from sediments and contaminants but it can also reduce the need for costly repairs or replacements of the filter. Replacing your filter regularly can help avoid expensive plumbing bills due to clogged pipes. All of this can result in significant savings over time.


Can a water filter cartridge be reused?

No, they are not meant to be reused. Ideally, it would be best if you replaced your filter cartridge every 6 months. Additionally, if you see a decrease in water flow or pressure from your tap, it is most likely time to change the filter cartridge. Doing so will help ensure that the water you are using is clean and safe for consumption.

What happens if you do not change your whole house water filter?

If you don’t change your filter consistently, contaminants can build up and clog the filter’s pores. This will reduce water pressure and cause an ineffective filtration process. Over time, bacteria can breed and increase further in the filter if it is not changed regularly. The best way to ensure that your whole house water filter is always providing clean and healthy water is to change the filter according to the manufacturer’s recommendations. This will ensure that you are getting optimal performance from your filter and that your home remains free of harmful contaminants.

Do whole-house water filters need maintenance?

Yes. The filter cartridges in your whole house water filtration system need maintenance.

How often should I change my under-sink water filter?

This depends on many factors, including the filter system you choose, the water you use, and your local water conditions. Most manufacturers recommend changing carbon block filters every 6-12 months under normal usage. However, this can vary significantly depending on how hard or soft your water is and how much sediment is present.

Can I boil filtered water?

Can I boil filtered water
Boil filtered water

Yes, boiling water is a great way to make sure it’s safe to drink. Boiling will also help reduce the presence of chemicals and bacteria in your drinking water and any minerals not filtered out by your whole house filter. However, while boiling may kill off most living organisms, it does not remove heavy metals, fluoride or other contaminants. To be sure your water is safe to drink, you should test it regularly and use a filter rated for those contaminants.


Changing your whole house water filter is important to keep your home’s water safe and clean. To do so, a general rule of thumb is to change the filter every 3-6 months or after 10,000 gallons of water has gone through the system. However, this time frame can vary depending on your specific needs, local water conditions, the type of filter, and the amount of water you use. Therefore, follow the manufacturer’s instructions for filter replacement and monitor your system carefully to ensure your home gets the cleanest water possible. With proper maintenance and care, a whole house water filter can provide your family with safe and clean drinking water for many years to come.

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