How to Install a Whole House Water Filter onto a Main Water Line

Depending on the water quality in your area, you may want to consider installing a water filtration system onto your home’s main water supply line. My family and I installed one in our former home to help address hard water problems. It was a fairly easy procedure. The project cost roughly $400 and took almost two hours to complete. Once it was over, our water didn’t smell as bad and we had less hard water issues to deal with. Here’s a quick rundown on how to install a whole house water filtration system of your own:


In order to install a whole house water filtration system, you will need to purchase a household water filtration system ($300), a roll of Teflon plumber’s tape ($6), two gate valves ($30), two compression nuts ($4) and two compression rings ($4). You’ll also need a tape measure, pipe wrenches and a pipe cutter.

Prepare the Pipes

Start the project by locating your home’s main water supply shutoff valve. Once you’ve located the shutoff valve, shut off the water supply. Then systematically go through your entire house and turn on all the water faucets. You’ll also need to open up the main supply line’s drain faucets as well as the drain on your hot water heater and water softener. In doing so, you will rid the pipes of any residual water. If you fail to rid the pipes of residual water before starting the project, you’ll end up with a watery mess on your hands.

Continue preparing for the task at hand by grabbing your water filter’s cap and two gate valves. Coat the gate valve’s threads with Teflon plumbers’ tape. Next, attach one valve to each end of the water filter’s cap. Make sure that the tops of the valves are facing towards the ceiling. Afterward, set the water filter cap aside and take out your tape measure.

Install the Whole House Water Filtration System

Using the tape measure, calculate the distance from one gate valve to the other. When doing so, be sure to allow a slight overage in order to take into account the part of the pipe that gets inserted inside each gate valve. Otherwise, you’ll end up short. Once you have your measurements, transfer them to the section of the main supply line where you want the water filter to go. Double check your measurements and then cut the main supply line.

Afterward, attach a compression nut and a compression ring to each end of the newly cut, main supply line. Then insert the water filter cap between the two cut ends of pipe. Finish the water filter installation by attaching each gate valve to the main supply line with the compression nut and the compression ring.

Restore the Water Supply

Once the water filter cap is in place, go back through your house and shut off all the faucets that you opened up during the draining process. Then turn on the main water supply valve and let the pipes refill with water. Be prepared to hear a bit of a clunking noise and have your faucets spit out water the first time that you turn them on. In most instances, that is caused by the air in the pipes dissipating as the water supply returns. It will typically stop once all the built-up air is released. Afterward, inspect your water filter installation area for any leaks. If you find any leaks, you’ll need to shut off your home’s water supply and address the issue right away.

Source: Personal Experience

Killeen Gonzalez has a history of completing DIY home improvement projects with her family.

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