Is Kinetico RO worth the $2K cost??

baltomom_gwJuly 31, 2013

I'm looking at RO systems. I got an estimate from Kinetico for their K5 and K3 systems. The list price for the Kinetico K5 is $2100, but the price they gave me was $1,850. The price for the K3 they gave me was $1650.

Consumer Reports rates Kinetico K5 #1, but says it's pricey. What's the explanation for the price? The salesman told me that the K5 sells for $3K in New York!! Is that sales hype or true? Anyone in NY buy a Kinetico K5 for $3K?

I'm really skeptical that this is anything more than a huge markup for a fairly good product. What makes it worth so much more money than its closest competitors? Culligan's Auqa Cleer is $1K (ranked #4 by Consumer Reports).

I just put in new wood floors in my kitchen, so don't want leaks. I had a Watts Premier RO in my old kitchen, but it leaked several times. It was very easy to change the filters, though, and the water tasted good. But I'd like a more reliable, easier to maintain system than the Watts, which required cleaning out clogged hoses every few months, or the system would leak.

I would appreciate any comments on the Kinetico systems (K5 and K3) and any other RO systems that might be just as good but less expensive.


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No doubt about it, Kinetico products are pricey because Kinetico products are proprietary. That means that you are married to your local dealer for warranty, service and repairs and parts. some Kinetico dealers refuse to sell end users parts and tech info is not readily available. If you have a good local Kinetico dealer then that's less of a problem, but if you have a dealer who thinks that customers exist for their convenience then... well, you know. Kinetico corporate doesn't seem to want to get involved and support their customers when the local dealer treats them badly and since sales areas are protected the consumer is SOL.

On the other hand, Kinetico products work well and they have built up a loyal customer base.

On the subject of the K5, it has a feature that sets it apart from other ROs. Rather than use a bladder tank for water storage that is charged with air it uses a tank that is WOW or Water On Water proprietary technology which is a water charged tank. The K5 delivers RO water out it's faucet at higher pressure than any other RO. Kinetico also offers a variety of different filter elements for the K5 that are not generally offered for other ROs.

As far as leaks... all ROs use replaceable cartridges and connections that can leak. Low quality ROs with the cheapest components are more prone to leak than ROs using the highest quality components. RO leaks generally are the result of the person doing the installation and routine service and not the fault of the RO. There have been reports of pacific rim filter canisters just cracking so I'd want an RO using made in USA components under my sink and that's what I have.

Is the Kinetico K5 worth $2k? Only the person writing the check can make that determination. I'd like to have one just because of the WOW design but our local dealer is a price gouger so I won't buy one.


This post was edited by justalurker on Wed, Jul 31, 13 at 11:15

    Bookmark   July 31, 2013 at 9:36AM
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Since you only mentioned an RO let me point out that no RO likes to be fed hard water. When you feed an RO hard water the calcium, which will not be caught by the pre-filters, will shorten the life of the RO membrane dramatically and membranes aren't cheap.

If you have hard water you should treat all the problems in your water identified by a comprehensive water test (by an independent certified lab) and then feed that treated water to the RO.

This post was edited by justalurker on Wed, Jul 31, 13 at 16:08

    Bookmark   July 31, 2013 at 9:37AM
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Im from NYC and did get the Kinetico K5 RO for $3400 through Local Dealer. I love my system i use it for almost year and a half. The reason its more expensive in NY because you need additional customization on the system prefilters in order for it to work with high sediment and rust.
I did called the company and they confirmed that is not price gaging.
Im definitlely recomend the system and company.
In a long run i prefer quality over price.

    Bookmark   November 14, 2013 at 7:03PM
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