Berkey vs TAPP – how do they compare? Thinking about buying a water filter / water purifier and don’t know which one to choose?
We compared Berkey filters with TAPP 2 in 6 areas including ease of use / installation, water taste, filtering capabilities, water flow, capacity and yearly cost.
1. Ease of use / installation
Both filters are easy to use once in place. With Berkey filters you just fill water from the top and with TAPP turn on the faucet and switch on the filtering. The only difference is that TAPP filters need to be attached to the faucet the first time. For 95% of faucets this takes as little as 30 second. In a few cases an extra adapter or a tool is required.
Overall installation and ease of use is about the same. Many Berkey customers complain that they are more bothersome to clean.
2. Water taste of Berkey vs TAPP filters
Our own limited blind tests showed that people could not taste the difference between TAPP and Berkey filtered water. More importantly 8 out of 10 people could not taste the difference between the filtered water from TAPP and that of common bottled water such as Evian. 1/10 preferred a specific kind of bottled water but found the TAPP filtered water acceptable for drinking and great for use in tea or coffee.
We assume Berkey would get the similar result since the filtering capability is similar.
3. Filtering capability of Berkey filters vs TAPP 2
Berkey is a gravity filter whereas TAPP uses the pressure of the tap water. Both use activated carbon as the basis of filtering.
Overall the amount of filtered contaminants is about the same and neither removes healthy minerals such as sodium, magnesium, potassium and calcium. This means that if you test the filtered water with a TDS meter then you won’t see much difference.
The main differences / advantages:
- TAPP removes 100% of Microplastics
- Berkey removes 99.99% of bacteria and viruses
Microplastics is common in European and North American tap water while bacteria and viruses are not. In public tap water chlorination kills the bad bacteria and viruses which is why we don’t consider it necessary. The only exception is if you have your own well.
Both filters are independently tested to support their claims.
4. Water flow of Berkey vs TAPP
This is one of the biggest differences. Berkey has a flowrate of 0.25 litres per min (about 0.06 gallon / min) vs 4 litres (about 1 gallon / min) for TAPP 2.
Imagine you arrive home from holiday or a long weekend away and want a fresh glass of tap water or a cup of tea. With TAPP you can fill up instantly whereas with Berkey you need to empty the filter, fill up new water and wait 1 min before filling up the glass. The reason is that you shouldn’t drink tap water that has been stored for days without chlorine inside the filter.
The TAPP 2 high flow rate is also great if you want to wash of vegetables or fruit with filtered clean water.
5. Water filtering capacity
The average person consumes about 2 litres (0.5 gallon) of clean water at home per day for drinking and cooking. For a household of 4 people this means 240 litres per month (60 gallons) or 2880 litres per year (240 gallons).
The capacity of the annual package of TAPP 2 is about 6000 litres (2500 gallons) vs 12,000 litres (3000 gallons) for a Big Berkey filter lasting two years.
Berkey claims there is no time limit for their filters but most water scientists question this due to bacteria growth inside the filter. 2 years seems to be the upper limit.
6. Annual cost of a Berkey filter vs TAPP
The list price of a Big Berkey is about 320 euro ($280 in the US) which will deliver 12,000 litres or 2 years of clean water (see above). This means an annual cost of about160 euro.
The list price or TAPP 2 is 79 euros for first year and 60 euro second year which will deliver 6,000 litres per year. This is less than half the price of Berkey.
TAPP 2 subscriptions also come with a life time warranty.
Hopefully this comparison makes it a little bit easier choosing Berkey vs TAPP water filters. Please contact us on [email protected] if you have further questions.
Also read our comparison of Brita vs TAPP.
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