How clean and fresh is your glass of water?

LOS ANGELES "Today's filters promise to do more than remove just bad tastes and odors," said Dan DiClerico, Consumer Reports. "These days, many filters claim to remove contaminants like lead and chloroform, which is a surrogate for pesticides and other harmful organics."

/*Consumer Reports*/ tested carafes, faucet-mounted filters, and the more expensive countertop and under-the-sink filters. Testers set up an elaborate rig and ran water spiked with lead and chloroform through it to evaluate the filters.

"Ideally, you want a filter that will catch the most contaminants and maintain a good flow rate, without clogging," said DiClerico.

Not all delivered. A Crystal Quest faucet water filter did a poor job at removing lead and chloroform.

"We had several filters clog quickly, including an under-the-sink model that cost over $400," said DiClerico, referring to the Everpure H-1200.

If you don't need to filter large amounts of water at a time your best bet is an inexpensive carafe or faucet-mounted filter. The $30 Clear2O carafe filter is a Consumer Reports best buy, as is the $15 Culligan faucet-mounted filter. Both did an excellent job at removing lead and chloroform.

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