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Brita Carafe review: Is it eco-friendly & budget friendly?

The Thrifty Island Girl Lei Hang with a Brita water filter carafe and a backgroud of the ocean.
Me and my Brita Carafe

I got this beautiful Brita water filter carafe just over a week ago from my best friend Izzy. She got this stylish and eco-friendly product for me from my Amazon Wish list, as it was my 33th birthday earlier this week. So thank you very much Iz!

Why I wanted the Brita Carafe?

There are 2 main reasons to why I wanted the Brita Carafe. The reasons are live a slightly greener life and save money.

Saving the planet

Some of you may know, that I’ve developed an interest in sustainable living in the past year.  I became more aware of the harmful effects on the environment some of our habits have. I have never really thought about it too much, until I have watched some documentaries of these negative effects on wildlife & climate. Lately I got sad to see on WWF that the last male northern white rhino has died, and that we have only got 2 females left! Hence I believe making small lifestyle changes are becoming increasingly important to protect and save our planet from man-made damage.

I normally refuse to drink tap water and drink bottled mineral water instead. It’s because the chemical smell such as chlorine puts me off drinking the water. The there is also a strange chemical taste in the water, which I dislike. I just want pure tasting and smelling water. What I mean by this is water that doesn’t taste or smell of anything. Therefore I buy 2 liter bottled water. Yasmin and I go through 2 of those bottles a day. This means I am throwing away 14 plastic bottles per week! In a year I’m throwing away 728 PET (polyethylene terephthalate) plastic bottles! Though I recycle the plastic bottles, I still don’t like the fact this is unnecessarily adding to my carbon footprint. I’m convinced that we can make a positive impact in the world and I encourage you to join me!

Save money

Another reason for wanting this Brita Carafe is to save money but still be able to have 4 litres of water per day. I have been getting my bottled mineral water from Aldi at £0.17 per bottle (2 L).  Per day that would be £0.34 and per year would cost me £124.10. So if this Brita Filter can save me more money that would be awesome!

Making life easier

By having this water-filtering carafe, it saves me carrying the heavy water bottles whenever I do my grocery shop.

This also brings back memories of my dissertation when I was doing my Biomedical Science Degree. I was comparing the effectiveness of different branded water filters. I was comparing 5 different branded water filter to see, which one was the best at filtering out bacteria, an ions and cat ions. And yes the Brita filter jug was the one that was the best!

What is a Brita water filter Carafe?

It’s a 1.3L Carafe made by Brita with a built in water filter system, using a Brita replaceable MicroDisc filter. It’s made from BPA (bisphenol A) free material and is dishwasher safe, apart from the lid.  The water-filtering carafe is designed to fit into your fridge door with a height of 29cm and a 9.9cm diameter. The Brita Memo on the lid reminds you to replace the MicroDisc Filter every 4 weeks. The MicroDisc Filter can filter 150 liter of water before needing to be replaced.

Reducing carbon foot print

Bottled water vs Brita water filter annual CO2 emission ( carbon footprint) comparison bar chart graph.

According to Sciencing, a 0.5L plastic bottle of water has a carbon footprint of 82.8 grams. Since I usually get 2L bottles of water, I am estimating the carbon footprint is 4 times more, because the bottles I get hold 4 times the amount of water. This would be 331.2 grams, so in a year I had a carbon footprint of 242kg! According to Brita, 4 litres a day bottled water produces 279.4kg CO2 per year. That is a lot! By using the Brita water filter Carafe, I wont be throwing away plastic on a regular basis as I am reusing the carafe. Since the MicroDisc filters 150 litres of water, I wondered how long I could use the filter for before replacing it. As mentioned before my little girl Yasmin and I consume 4L a day, which makes it 28L per week. 150/28 is 5.3 weeks. Though it recommends changing the filter every 4 weeks, I will be using mine for 5 weeks. I will be doing this to make the most of the filter by making sure it filtered 150 litres before changing it.

The above graph shows how much CO2 emission is produced when a Brita Jug is being used with a Maxtra+ filter cartridge is being used for a year. The cartridges have a plastic case, whereas the MicroDisc filters don’t have a plastic casing, hence I believe the CO2 emission is a lot lower with the Disc.

What is the Brita MicroDisc made of and what does it do?

What it is made of

Brita MicroDiscs are made of coconut shell activated carbon.

The Brita MicroDisc filter is made of activated natural carbon from coconut shells, therefore doesn’t contain a plastic casing unlike the usual Brita cartridge. Since the active carbon filter is made from coconut shells, it should be biodegradable.

How does it work?

According to Brita the MicroDisc uses the activated carbon to filter out chlorine, any taste impairing substances, any micro particles larger than 30 micrometers (μm)

, trace impurities, while preserving natural minerals. The natural minerals it preserves are calcium (Ca) and magnesium (Mg). Since the pores of this disk shaped filter filters out anything larger than 30μm, this includes microorganisms such as bacteria. A thing to remember is that though it filters out bacteria, it does not kill the microbes. Many studies including this one from 2019 found on ScienceDirect show that active carbon purifies water by adsorbing organic and inorganic chemicals. I know the Brita filter cartridge I have taken apart and analyzed, also contained silver. Silver has antibacterial properties, which is able to kill some microorganisms such as bacteria and fungus. I said that silver kills some microbes, because it does not kill viruses. I am not sure whether the Brita cartridges used in Brita filter jugs still contain silver, like 9 years ago when I carried out my dissertation project for my BSc Biomedical Science degree under the supervision of the most amazing supervisor Dr Sarah Atchia.

How much money can I save?

I have worked out that I am spending £124.10 per year just on bottled water. The best price I found the Brita MicroDisc for including postage is from Amazon at £10.50 with free postage for a pack of 3 discs. Below I have a created a table for a so you can see at a glance how much it cost me to buy bottled water or use my new Brita carafe.

Cost of bottled water vs. Brita filtered water per year

 Bottled waterBrita water filter carafe
1456 litres of water£124.10£3.32 (from the tap)
10 Brita filter MicroDiscsN/A£35
Total Cost£124.10£38.50

As you can see I save £85.6 per year from switching bottled mineral water to using this eco-friendly and cost effective Brita water filter carafe.

If you would like to see how I worked out these figures, I’ll now break the costs down. So 1 disc costs me £3.5. As one of those filter discs lasts me 5.3 and there are 52 per year, I figured I’d use 10 filters per year. This is how I have worked it out 52/5.3=9.8. For a whole year the filters cost me £35 per year. Now obviously the water that comes out of the tap isn’t free, water companies such as Thames Water charge £2.28 per cubic liter. A cubic liter is 1000 litres. So 1 liter costs £0.00228 (2.28/1000), which is less than 1 penny! My little girl and I consume 28L per week. This makes it 1456L (28L per year x 52 weeks). So the water out of the tap costs me £3.32 per year (1456L x£0.0228).

Smell and taste of water

The Thrifty Island Girl Lei Hang drinking Brita filtered water from turquoise tumbler glass in her fleece Harry Potter Pyjamas.
Me drinking my Brita water in my fleecy Harry Potter PJs.

As mentioned before I don’t like the smell and taste of the chemicals in the tap water. This is the main reason I don’t drink tap water. I have smelt and tasted the water before using the Brita water filter carafe and after. It made a huge difference! I couldn’t smell the chlorine after filtering. The water tasted very different too. After I have filtered the water had no taste and no smell, which I believe water should be. I have asked my brother Tommy to do the smell and taste test before and after filtering. He too noticed a huge difference in taste and smell. So the filter definitely works.

My conclusion

I will be definitely continue using the Brita water filter carafe, as it is environmentally friendly and budget-friendly! I also like it the german quality and design of the Brita Carafe. And no, I am not jsut saying that because I was born and raised in Germany.

You can purchase the Brita Carafe from Amazon for £19.54 and the Brita MicroDiscs are on Amazon for £10.50.

For the same reason I am also using an EcoEgg.  Find out about more about the EcoEgg here.

Let me know what you think of the Brita water filter and whether you would get one or not in the comment section below.