The 5 Best Cat Litter Box Filters: Review and Top Picks

By Davis Wilkins •  Updated: 05/05/23 •  10 min read
stinking litter box with cat standing on the side
The best cat litter box filter is the Van Ness Zeolite Air Filter.

Looking for the best cat litter box filters for your home? Well, you’ve come to the right place.

When I purchased the first filter for our litter box, my partner and I were expecting a lot more than we paid for.

We were happily surprised to find precisely what we had in mind and so much more.

Your cat is a part of the family. So much so, that she spends most of her time indoors, and naturally poops there too!

Cat litter box filters help to clean out odors and keep your cat’s litter box fresh.

If you’re looking to improve your home’s indoor air quality, getting a cat litter box filter can be a great idea.

 However, you don’t want to just get any cat litter filter. There are many different kinds to choose from, and some will work better than others.

You need the right one to make sure that you see the benefits of having one.

That’s where I come in. I want you to know what kitty litter filter is the best for your cats.

Hopefully, you can find out from this list of the best cat litter box filters.

How do you keep a litter box clean?

Here are the basic requirements that you need before cleaning your cat’s litter box:

Dump the waste litter into a plastic bag and seal it completely before throwing it away into the cat litter disposal system.

Do not be tempted to flash all the litter box contents into the toilet, simply because the packaging says flushable cat litter.

This is an easy way to clog your toilet.

Scrub the litter box thoroughly using mild soap and warm water. Do not use ammonia-based soaps as they may worsen the smell.

Rise completely and air dry. Alternatively, you can dry it using paper towels.

The Best Cat Litter Box Filter Top Picks

If you are pressed for time, here are the top 5 picks for the best charcoal litter box filter that I recommend for your litter box:

  1. Van Ness Zeolite Air Filter
  2. Petmate Booda Litter Box Charcoal Air Filters
  3. Catit Hooded Cat Pan Replacement Carbon Filters
  4. Arm & Hammer Universal Litter Filter for Hooded Cat Litter Pan
  5. Petmate Zeolite Basic Litter Box Filter

Best Cat Litter Box Filters

1.    Van Ness Zeolite Air Filter

For use with cat pans that are enclosed, inside the top lids.



2.    Petmate Booda Litter Box Charcoal Air Filters

With just one set of filters, you can keep the air clean for 6 months.

The Petmate Zeolite-Charcoal Replacement Litter Box Filter traps airborne odor molecules with Zeolite/Charcoal particles.

Zeolite has a cage-like structure that works in tandem with charcoal to trap odor molecules, providing double protection against odors.



3.    Catit Hooded Cat Pan Replacement Carbon Filters

Two filters are included in each package.



4.    Arm & Hammer Universal Litter Filter for Hooded Cat Litter Pan

For twice the protection, use charcoal and zeolite to trap odor and moisture created by trash.



5.    Petmate Zeolite Basic Litter Box Filter

This filter uses Zeolite to catch airborne odor molecules at the molecular level.



Litter scoop inside the box

What is the filter on a cat litter box?

The filter is placed at the bottom of the box, where it captures any solid waste before it can escape and spread around your house.

 It also helps keep odors under control by trapping them inside the box until you’re ready to remove them.

Filters are designed to trap small particles of feces and urine, as well as hair and other debris that may fall into the litter tray.

The presence of these items can lead to unpleasant odors and bacterial growth, which can cause health problems for both cats and humans.

There are several different types of filters on a cat litter box, but the most common is the carbon filter.

 The carbon filter absorbs odors and cleans the air that comes out of the box.

The effectiveness of filters varies depending on their type and design.

Some types are more effective than others, but there’s no universal standard for what constitutes an effective filter.

How long do litter box filters last?

The average cat owner changes their litter box filter once every two weeks or so, depending on the use and number of cats using the litter box.

When it comes to changing out your litter box filter, I recommend doing it every two weeks or so as well.

However, you’ll know when it’s time because your cat will start refusing to use his or her litter box if there is an odor problem.

The effectiveness of your litter box filter depends on several factors:

If you notice an increase in ammonia smell or dust coming from your litter box, it’s time to replace your filters.

Key features of replacement filters

  1. Should get rid of unwanted odors over a prolonged period
  2. Can be cut along template lines to fit almost any kitty litter box
  3. It should be easy to discard the filters
  4. Should be non-toxic to the cats and human beings
  5. Most are replaced every three months

Do air purifiers work for litter boxes?

The short answer is yes. Air purifiers can help keep your litter box odor-free, even if it’s a multi-cat household.

But there are some things you’ll need to do to make sure that your air purifier is doing its job as effectively as possible.

Air purifiers are a great investment for any household.

They help to remove allergens and other contaminants from the air, which can improve your health and reduce your risk of developing asthma or allergies.

Air purifiers are designed to remove odors from your home, so if you use one in conjunction with your kitty’s litter box, it can help reduce the smell of cat poop.

Types of Air Purifiers:

There are two types of air purifiers: mechanical and electronic.

Electronic air cleaners use activated carbon filters to absorb odors, while mechanical filters use a fan to blow air through a series of filters that trap the odor molecules before they reach your nose.

Electronic air cleaners are more effective at removing odors than mechanical ones, but only if they are used in conjunction with an activated carbon filter that traps odor molecules before they reach your nose (or other sensitive areas).

 These types of filters need to be replaced every few months or so depending on how often you use them, which means replacing them more frequently than you would replace other parts of your air purifier like pre-filters or HEPA filters.

How to clean litter box filter

The first thing to determine is how often you should be cleaning it.

A general rule of thumb is about once a month if you’re using clumping litter; if you’re using non-clumping litter, you can clean it every two to three months.

The most common litter box filters are made of foam and can be cleaned using the same methods, whether they’re square or round.

To clean them properly, you’ll need a small bucket or sink, some warm water, and some dish soap.

When it’s time to clean the filter, here are the steps you should follow:

  1. Locate the filter on your particular model of the cat litter box. Once you’ve found it, pop off its cover by pressing down on each side and pulling directly up at the same time.
  2. Dispose of any debris or waste that has gathered on top of the filter itself and shake off any excess dust.
  3. Turn on your sink faucet so that a gentle stream of water is flowing out. Hold the filter directly underneath so that water is running through it without filling up or soaking the filter itself. This will help dislodge any stubborn particles that have attached themselves to the surface of the filter.
  4. If you don’t have a running tap, add some warm water and a few drops of dish soap to the bucket or sink. Swirl the filter around in the water to remove any caked-on debris that may still be on it after soaking. This is best done by holding both ends of the filter and swirling it gently in circular motions.

5. Rinse out your filter with warm water until you can’t see any more suds coming from it when you squeeze it gently.


One of the biggest benefits of a cat litter box filter is that it cleans up much of the particulate matter which makes its way into the air while your cat is doing his business.

You cease to have to clean out a clogged litter box as often because items like hair and poop are caught in the filter instead of returning to the environment.

Ultimately, you will have to decide which cat litter box filter is right for you.

 It all depends on your needs, expectations, and budget. The only thing I would caution about is to make sure you read through the reviews I’ve shared thoroughly and compare the features of each unit carefully before making a purchase.

At the end of the day, a cat litter box is an accessory to help keep your pet happy and healthy.

Davis Wilkins

Davis Wilkins is a dedicated cat lover, with three cats under his care. He grew up in a cat-loving family, nurturing these feline friends. As a result, he purposed to share his cat knowledge with the universe. Wilkins has been writing professionally for over four years, specializing in feline care with a keen interest in litter box care and handling. He hopes to help other feline lovers achieve their pet care goals.

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