Kinetico Vs. Culligan: Which Water System Is Better?

Jessica Allen
by Jessica Allen

Clean water is a necessity for your home. Whether you’re cooking, cleaning, or drinking a glass of water, that water needs to be clean and safe to use. But with so many different water systems on the market, which one is the best for you?

Kinetico and Culligan both provide high-quality products with great warranties. However, Kinetico’s electricity-free kinetic process will save you money, whereas Culligan will increase your electric bill. Kinetico users also praise its low-maintenance, longevity, and overall efficiency.

Kinetico Overview, Pros, and Cons

Kinetico Brand Overview

Kinetico has been around since 1970, when the company pioneered a new kind of water treatment system. This new system was non-electric and fully automatic. Since the ‘70s, Kinetico has become a global company, serving over 100 different countries.

The name “Kinetico” plays on the word “kinetic,” which refers to the water softeners’ kinetic process. The company is renowned for its creation of a twin-tank electricity-free demand-operated water softener.

Kinetico’s water treatment systems run using moving water rather than electricity. They’re designed to be low-maintenance, run efficiently, and last for years.

Kinetico Pros

One huge pro of choosing Kinetico is that their products come with an industry-leading 10-year warranty. Plus, customers have left overwhelmingly positive reviews when it comes to Kinetico water softeners.

Another great benefit of Kinetico water softeners is that they don’t use electricity and therefore won’t increase your electric bill. In addition, the twin-tank system produces soft water efficiently. Kinetico systems are built to handle high levels of water hardness as well.

Finally, Kinetico’s water softeners use countercurrent regeneration. This simply means that the cleaning effort flows in the opposite direction of the service flow. This leads to less salt, less waste, and improved longevity for water softeners from Kinetico.

Kinetico Cons

Pricing is one area where Kinetico is at a disadvantage, simply because the company’s pricing is not publicly available. If you’re interested in learning more about the exact cost of Kinetico products, you must contact a sales representative.

Another drawback of choosing Kinetico products is that you cannot install them yourself. Even if you have the knowledge and skills necessary to do so, a company representative must install the products. Otherwise, the warranty will be voided.

Similar to DIY installation voiding your Kinetico warranty, you cannot repair Kinetico products yourself. In addition, Kinetico’s replacement parts are often expensive. A final con of Kinetico is that some customers have reported high levels of iron in their soft water.

Culligan Overview, Pros, and Cons

Culligan Brand Overview

Culligan was first founded in 1936 and has expanded into 90 countries worldwide. The company owns over 35 brands that serve more than 50 million customers each year.

The company features a wide range of products. These include under-sink drinking water filtration systems and high-end multifunctional drinking water systems.

Whole home systems are another product that you can get from Culligan. These systems improve water quality at every tap throughout your home, providing you with high-quality water for cooking and cleaning.

Culligan Pros

An advantage of choosing Culligan is that you can actually adjust the softness of your water using the Dial-A-Softness Valve. Plus, Culligan provides you with diagnostics that allow you to see your water usage. This can encourage you to save water and be more environmentally friendly.

Culligan water softeners use an ion exchange process to soften water. In this process, the minerals that cause hard water are replaced with salt.

Another benefit of Culligan products is that they come with a limited lifetime warranty. Culligan also offers its customers a few different options to make payments more affordable. There are payment plans available, as well as the option to rent products rather than buying them.

Culligan Cons

Just like Kinetico, Culligan does not have its pricing publicly available. In order to get a quote for Culligan products, a representative must come to your house and evaluate your needs.

Although there aren’t any repercussions that come with DIY installation, it’s not recommended to install Culligan products on your own. It’s best to hire a specialist for installation as well as repairs.

Unfortunately, service calls come at a steep price, according to customer reviews. Some customers have also complained about unskilled and uncommunicative company representatives.

A downside of Culligan water softeners is that dozens of gallons of water are wasted during the regeneration process. In addition, since the water softeners are salt-based, they can lead to increased sodium consumption.

The amount of sodium in Culligan water should not cause problems for healthy adults. However, those who must follow a low-sodium diet may need to purchase additional products such as a water purifier.

Kinetico vs. Culligan: Evaluation Criteria

Here we will take a look at both companies from five different perspectives. Comparing Kinetico and Culligan in this way should help you decide which water system is the best choice for you.

Product Selection

Overall, Kinetico and Culligan have very similar product lines. However, there are some small differences that we’ll cover below.

Water Softeners

Kinetico offers three types of water softeners: the Premier Series, the Signature Series, and the Essential Series. Meanwhile, Culligan offers six different water softeners.

Culligan’s water softener options include the HE Series, the HE 1.25 Series, and the HE Municipal Water Conditioner. There are also the HE Softener Cleer, the HE Twin and Progressive Flow, and the Aquasential Select Series.

Drinking Water Filtration Systems

When it comes to drinking water filtration systems, Kinetico has five options. You can choose between the K5 Drinking Water Station and the AquaKinetic A200 Drinking Water System. Other options include the Kube® Advanced Water Filtration System, the MACguard® Filter, and the WH-NS Multi-Purpose Cartridge with NanoSmart™ Filtration.

Culligan offers three drinking water filtration systems. These include the Aquasential® Tankless RO Drinking Water Filtration System and the Aqua-Cleer® Advanced Under Sink Water Filtration System. The AC-30 Good Water Machine® Under Sink Water Filtration System is another choice.

Additional Products

Kinetico also has many different specialty solutions that target more specific issues. They offer an Arsenic Guard, a Calcite Backwashing Filter, a Carbon Backwashing Filter, and a Chloramine Reduction System. There is also a Dechlorinator, a Backwashing Filter, a Neutralizer, and Powerline PRO series filters.

In addition, Kinetico’s specialty solutions include a Scale Reduction System and a Sulfur Guard Backwashing Filter. While Culligan doesn’t feature specialty solutions, they have a few other products that Kinetico does not have.

Culligan offers two different options for whole-home water filtration systems. These are the High-Efficiency Whole House Well Water Filtration System and the Aquasential Select Series Whole House Water Filters. Culligan also has a Hot/Cold Water Dispenser and Cooler.

Water Softening Process

Kinetico uses the power of moving water, not electricity, to soften water. Meanwhile, Culligan uses an ion exchange process that replaces hard minerals with salt to soften the water.

Price Point

According to customer reviews, both Kinetico and Culligan tend to be on the expensive end. However, neither company provides pricing online; instead, it’s necessary to get in contact with a sales representative. One notable difference is that Culligan does offer payment plans and the option to rent their products rather than buying them.


For both Kinetico and Culligan, you’ll want to have a specialist come to your home for installation as well as repairs. With Kinetico, any DIY installation or repairs will result in a voided warranty.

DIY installation and repairs won’t cause a voided warranty for Culligan products. However, Culligan products tend to be difficult to install, so it’s best to have a specialist do it for you.


Both Culligan and Kinetico are known for their high quality and durability. The two companies are very similar in this area.

Related Questions

What are water softeners used for?

Water softeners remove minerals such as calcium and magnesium from your water supply. Hard water can cause problems such as reduced water flow, clogged plumbing, and increased stress on pipes. The use of a water softener solves these problems.

Is Culligan water purified?

Yes, Culligan water is purified. Culligan uses a reverse osmosis process to purify its water.

Is Kinetico a reverse osmosis system?

Some of Kinetico’s systems use reverse osmosis to reduce contaminants in the water. However, not all of Kinetico’s products employ reverse osmosis.

Kinetico vs. Culligan: The Final Verdict

The best option between Kinetico and Culligan depends on the product you want and the water softening process you prefer. Overall, the companies are very similar and have positive reputations. Customers tend to rate the products from both companies positively, but Culligan receives more negative reviews regarding customer service.

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Jessica Allen
Jessica Allen

With a lifelong passion for writing plus strong enthusiasm for home improvement and DIY projects, joining the team at Upgraded Home was an easy choice. Jessica Allen likes to share helpful information with current and aspiring homeowners. Aside from writing, Jessica loves doing yoga, playing the piano, and dabbling in graphic design.

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