How Do Brita Filter Indicators Work & How Long Do Brita Filters Last?

There are a few different types of filter indicators used on Brita systems, some are sophisticated and work by calculating the amount of water that has passed through the filter, these are usually used on the faucet filters you can see how they work in the video below,

Other Brita filter indicators are simple digital timers with an LED display that tells you when it’s time to change the filter.

How Do Brita Filter Indicators Work

The time is pre-set by Brita and it is intended as a simple visual reminder to replace the filter, and don’t truly monitor the filter cartridge function. Each time a filter is replaced you need to reset the filter sensor so that it starts again with the fresh filter. Depending on what the water quality in your area is like, filters may last longer than the suggested time determined by the manufacturer.

I personally change my filter cartridge every second cycle as the water supply in my area is good with little contaminants, I could probably go even longer with no real noticeable difference to the water taste.

Types of Brita Filter Indicators

Brita pitcher filters all use timer indicators, they come in a few different styles, and all work in the same way, only new models have the option to adjust the timer depending on the filter cartridge in use.

Brita Faucet Filters have better indicators that measure the flow of water and alert you when the amount of water filtered is such that the filter needs to be changed.

Know Your Brita Color Indicators

The filter indicators on Brita pitcher and faucet filters are very easy to understand.

Standard Led Timer Display Filter Indicator

The countdown LED display is the original style and is used on filters using the oval-shaped Maxi filter design. It works by showing four solid bars from 100% to 0% when four bars are showing the filter has 100% of its life left, when all the bars are gone, it indicates that it’s time to replace the filter.

Standard Led Timer Display Filter Indicator

Red, Yellow and Green Led Filter Indicator

This is the style used on the Brita filters that use the Standard Brita Filter Cartridge. They work by changing color LED lights, from Green to Yellow when there is 25% filter life remaining and then showing Red when it is time to change the filter.

Red, Yellow and Green Led Filter Indicator

Variable Filter LED Indicator

With the release of the Brita Longlast filters, Brita has come up with an indicator that can be varied depending on which filter cartridge you use. When you replace the filter you either hold the reset for 2 seconds which will reset for a standard filter, or 6 seconds will start the timer for a Longlast filter.

If your Brita pitcher doesn’t have a filter indicator, look for labels that tell you when you need to change depending on the filter you use.

Where Is the Filter Indicator on a Brita Filter?

The Brita filter indicator is located on the top of the pitcher for easy viewing, having it clearly visible makes it easy to see when you should be replacing your old dirty filter cartridge with a new one.

On faucet filters, it is usually on the top at the front of the filter assembly

What to Do if Your Brita Filter Indicator Lights Are Not Working?

The Brita filter indicator runs on an inbuilt battery, they have a surprisingly long life, a few years or more for the simple black LED versions.

What to Do if Your Brita Filter Indicator Lights Are Not Working

Some styles are not automatic and will require you to hold the reset button after a filter change. If the light does not turn on after replacing the filter and holding the reset button there may be an issue with the display. But, in most cases, a simple reset procedure to activate the indicator lights should work.

How Long Do Brita Filter Indicator Batteries Last?

The Brita filter indicator runs on an inbuilt, non-replaceable battery, that according to Brita will last 5 years, depending on usage, ambient temperature, and other variables. I personally have not had a filter pitcher that long because I have kids and they are usually dropped and broken long before the battery dies. But the one I have at the moment is 4 years old and is still working fine.

If your indicator is not working after only a few months or weeks then it is likely not the battery and you have damaged the indicator, you can replace them for around $10- $15 but it is cheaper to buy a new pitcher that comes with a filter.

How Do You Activate the Brita Electronic Filter Indicator?

To activate the Brita electronic filter indicator, you must long-press the Status button for two seconds for a standard filter and release.

The indicator lights will blink twice simultaneously, and then the green light will blink three times.

The blinking indicates a selection of the standard filter mode of 40 gallons.

How Do You Activate the Brita Electronic Filter Indicator

Press and hold the STATUS button for six seconds to activate the Longlast 120 gallon Filter indicator light. The light will blink for a second indicating that it is in Long Last Filter mode.

If you accidentally set the indicator to the incorrect mode, just repeat the process until you select the mode that matches your filter.

How Does Brita Know When the Filter Is Bad?

In short, the filter indicator does not “know” when your water is bad, or when the filters need replacing. They work by either measuring the total volume of water passed through or by a countdown timer until the next recommended change. Filter indicators with a flow meter are going to be more accurate than a simple timer display.

None of the filter display indicators are perfect so you need to use some common sense. If you are using your filter more often than an average person, or your water quality is poorer than average you may need to replace your filter before the indicator suggests.

How Do I Know if My Brita Filter Is Bad?

There are a few things to look out for. You will usually know when the filter is bad and needs to be replaced because your water will have a tainted, often chlorine or metallic taste and smell.

Hard water can also cause the filter to clog, as the limescale builds up it greatly reduces the ability of the charcoal to remove contaminants, which also slows down the filter. You are unlikely to notice a decrease in flow unless the filter is extremely dirty, in which case you would notice the poor water quality long before you saw a decline in how long it took for the Brita to filter the water.

If the water smells bad or has any particulate matter in it, it is likely that the Brita filter is not producing enough of a quality stream of water and should be replaced.  Because, if your water filter is clogged, it will not effectively remove contaminants from your water, worse still it may be building up bacteria and other harmful toxins in the dirty filter material.

How Do I Know if My Brita Filter Is Bad

1. Decrease in Water Pressure

Brita faucet filters may show a drop in water pressure over time as the filters become clogged with particles, if you are changing your filters at the suggested time then you should never experience a noticeable drop in water pressure unless you happen to live in an area with very hard water. If you do then you may wish to consider investing in a better water filter, one that offers a water softener stage.

2. Checking the Indicator

To check the filter indicator light, press the STATUS button for no more than the green light blink 3 times and mean the indicator is active according to your filter.

3. Odd Noises From your Faucet Filters

It is normal for water filters to be slightly noisier than a standard faucet. However, if your faucet filter is making abnormally loud noises it could be caused by a few things.

The most common is a  “whooshing” noise that is usually heard when the selector for filtered and no filtered water is not fully turned one way, to fix simply make sure the sector is either fully on the filter or non filter selection. In rare cases it may be caused by debris accumulating in the system over time, preventing the filter from fitting correctly next time you change the filter, do a visual check, and clean using vinegar.

4. Filter Cartridge not Fitting Correctly

Always check your filters for defects before installing, if they are damaged or have any defect they will not work correctly, as you can see in this video, the cartridge is deformed preventing it from securely sealing into the housing, causing a water leak.

Why Is My Brita Filter Light Not Working?

If you have an older style filter indicator then you are probably seeing the indicator showing it is time to replace the filter, you can test this by holding the reset, if the indicator lights up again then it was just time to replace cartridges.

For other filter indicators, it could be a simple case of needing to be reset. You can try resetting the light, by pressing the STATUS button and holding it down for 2 seconds then releasing it. If this did not work it is likely the light is not working and needs to be replaced.

Do Brita Filters Actually Do Anything?

Brita filters come as tap faucet fittings, jug pitchers, and water bottles.

They are not going to be as effective as reverse osmosis at reducing all contaminants, and don’t remove all dissolved contaminants. But they are an affordable option and will reduce up to 99% of lead and are certified to reduce chlorine which contributes to taste and odor. They also filter out asbestos, mercury, benzene, cadmium, etc. Some cartridges are better at removing dissolved calcium than others so it is worth spending a few extra dollars and getting the Maxi Plus, or Longlast cartridges.

We highly recommend Brita filters to those who are on a budget, or are in a rented property where installing a full filter system is not an option.

How Long Does Brita Water Last in the Fridge?

You can of course keep your water in the fridge and should use Brita water within a month of filtering. The water lasts for about two months. After that it is probably going to start to get a taste that is not pleasant, it won’t harm you but it won’t be nice to drink. But who is going to have water sitting in the fridge for that long, unless you are away for a period of time?

Can Brita Water Be Left Out?

Yes, because Brita water filters remove many contaminants leaving the water out on the countertop is safe for short periods of time.

However, when Brita water filter pitchers are left outside of the fridge they have a greater chance of growing bacteria and microorganisms that can be harmful to the human body.

If you are leaving it out of the fridge, it’s best to keep it in a dark, cool area away from sunlight.

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