Berkey Filters Blog
Summer is all about sun, bbqs, beaches, and vacation.
There is always so much to do and so many things to pack. Also, did you call the pet sitter? Where is your swimsuit? Wait, what will you do with your Berkey while you are gone? Can you take your Berkey with you?
Don’t worry! We got your back with these helpful vacation tips.
Leaving your Berkey at home?
If you are leaving on vacation for more than four days first, you will need to carefully remove the filters from your system. The black filters should be laid on top of a towel on a flat surface (where they would be safe from rolling off) so they can dry out evenly. The pf2 fluoride filters will need to be placed in a zip-top bag and stored in the door of the refrigerator until you return.
The fluoride filters cannot be dried out, and if they do they will need to be replaced. The fluoride filters can only be stored for a total of 2 weeks. Make sure your system is completely dry & empty. Once you return you simply will need to re-prime your black filters and re-assemble.
If you are storing for more than 30 days, we recommend drying out the black filters and then placing them in the original box or similar container (it doesn’t have to be sealed ait tight). Preferably in a cool, dry place like a closet shelf and away from any strong odors.
Taking your Berkey with you?
I’ll be honest. I have thought about just bringing my Big Berkey with me on long weekend trips!
The Stainless-Steel chambers nest perfectly inside each other for easy transportation. Make sure to remove your filters and pack them carefully. We recommend placing the dried out black filters in a plastic zip lock baggies and using towels to cushion the filters.
If you have the fluoride filters, you can store them in ziplock baggies in a cooler. Just make sure they are not sitting right on top of ice! You will want to run water through the fluoride filters at least every four days to keep them from drying out.
Make sure to reprime your filters once you get to your destination! Don’t forget to add the priming button to your packing list!
Bonus tip! Seat belt your Berkey in to keep it from rolling around in the car!
Flying this summer?
Make sure to check with your specific airline and TSA guidelines to see what is allowed. I traveled with the Sport Berkey recently. I emptied it before going through TSA and refilled it after getting through security. If you are traveling with the Go Berkey Kit make sure your filters are dried out, and the chambers are empty!
Going anywhere fun with your Berkey this summer? We love seeing your Berkey adventures! Send us a photo via Facebook or Instagram, and you may be featured on our social media!
Happy Travels Berkey Family!
We are honored to have Ashley Longnecker with www.tinyshinyhome.com as our guest blogger this month. Check out what she has to say about their epic adventures and why the Big Berkey is the one kitchen item they will never be without!
Good morning Berkey friends! I’m Ashley – mom, teacher, adventure seeker, route planner and executive chef of the Tiny Shiny Home crew. We are a crazy family of six traveling North America in our renovated 1972 Airstream Sovereign in search of epic adventures and a minimalist lifestyle.
We primarily boondock which means we camp in the middle of nowhere without hookups such as water or electricity. Our Airstream is powered by the sun which gives us the freedom to be off-grid for long periods of time. We haul our water with jugs and a collapsable water bladder and pump it into our 40 gallon fresh water tank.
We have been nomadic for over 3 years now and have had the most incredible time exploring with our 4 amazing kids. We crave new adventures, epic hikes, and an ever-changing backyard.
With summer in full swing and lots of hiking plans, we require a rather large amount of water. From our house to our first RV, and now nestled in our Tiny Shiny Home, our Big Berkey is the one kitchen item we will never be without. We even made sure to design a space for it during our Airstream renovation.
When people come into our home on wheels they always ask us about the ‘shiny thing on the counter’ and usually leave convinced they need to get their own. With the ever-changing quality of water in North America, we are so thankful to always have filtered water everywhere we go.
Having a Berkey water filter gives us one less thing to worry about. Since we know we will always have high-quality drinking water, that means our hardest decision is whether we visit the desert, the mountains or the ocean next. To follow along on our adventures, you can find us on Instagram and Facebook @tinyshinyhome or on our blog, TinyShinyHome.com and on Youtube at TinyShinyHome. See you down the road!
We are honored to have Max La Manna with www.eatingwithmax.com as our guest blogger this month. Check out what he has to say about his zero waste movement and how you can make a difference too!
Ever since I could remember, and perhaps it was the way I was brought up, I was mindful of our resources on this planet. I was conscious of how we used resources and what resources we used. When I used to buy bottled water, I wondered, “what happens to the bottle next?” I knew I could throw it away, be done with it and forget about it. But I started questioning where is “away” and where is the bottle ending up next?
My name is Max La Manna; I’m a zero waste vegan chef living in Brooklyn, New York. I grew up with a chef father and food was the center focus of our family. As a family, we grew and harvested a variety of different vegetables. This was a lot of fun as a child because you would plant a seed and wait patiently for weeks for plant life to take its course. Once it started budding, vines were growing, and you reaped a full, plentiful veggie patch – you were ecstatic! The young me was vegan at heart but didn’t know it yet.
For me, being zero waste and a chef came at the same time – hand in hand! I was working in a restaurant and saw how much food was being thrown away. When I asked the chef about the food waste, he simply shrugged his shoulders and didn’t care. This made me very upset, and I knew that something needed to happen. I moved on and started cooking privately, incorporating this zero waste method – where no food would ever go to waste.
Today, we live in a world of convenience where everything we want is at our fingertips. However, everything has a cause and effect. The number one occupant in American landfills, according to the EPA is FOOD WASTE! We can feed everyone on this planet with the food that we produce, but instead, it is thrown away because it’s grown imperfectly and is therefor non-profitable.
We hear the saying, “leave the planet in better shape than how you found it” – I’m working on that right now – it may take me my whole life, but I am okay with that.
In order to make a better, cleaner world I am going to need clean, pure water to help me achieve this goal. How do you do this? Say no to plastic packaging! Bring your own vessel for water – I guarantee you will save money and help avoid plastic from ending up in landfills and our oceans. We as humans can live without food much longer than water. Water is so vitally important for our health and well-being. When I introduced Berkey into my routine, I noticed it made a huge difference right away in the taste and how I felt. This is because it removes toxins and impurities from the water that I was consuming. Did you know that Berkey Filters will remove over 200+ contaminants?
I want to operate my body and mind at the highest level and having the clean, pure water that Berkey provides is going to help me reach this goal. I leave you with this, imagine a world, where everyone has access to clean, pure water. What a world that would be and how different we would all be.
– Max La Manna
Follow along with Max’s adventures here: www.instagram.com/eatingwithmax
Do you know what’s in your water?
Do you even want to know what could be living in your water?
Not only do you have to worry about bacteria, viruses, chlorine, heavy metals, micro-organisms and pharmaceutical drug contaminants but some water companies add fluoride to your water supply as well.
So it’s apparent that you need a water purifier but how do you know which one to choose? Let us help you compare the differences.
How often do you have to replace the filters? How much do they run? What’s the initial set up cost? Berkey Filters offers seven different sizes starting at $175! The unit comes with two black carbon filters. They can last 2-5 years depending on your water source. That’s about is 1.7 cents a day! Replacements are $107. And each filter can be cleaned up to 100 times!
The additional fluoride filters will reduce fluoride up to 95% and are $50. They will last one year or 1,000 gallons, whichever comes first. Disposable filters that you buy at bargain prices online require frequent changes. Clean water doesn’t have to be expensive!
2. What is being removed?
The Black Berkey purification elements remove over 200+ contaminants including chlorine and lead. These filters have been tested to remove both pathogenic bacteria and viruses higher than the EPA purification standards. Because the Berkey will remove viruses, it is considered a purifier, unlike other filters on the market.
You can find a more comprehensive list here http://www.berkeyfilters.com/berkey-answers/performance/filtration-specifications/ along with our actual testing results and percentages.
One of the great benefits of Berkey Filters is the portability! Each of the seven different sizes contains the same Black Berkey filter element, delivering the same clean water. Our travel sizes make it convenient to use our reliable filtration systems in small RV campers, summer cabins, or anywhere storage space may be limited. All of our units are counter-top models but can also be used outdoors. They are fully functional using only gravity. Therefore they are not dependent on electricity or any other outside source to function. They also do not need to be hooked up to your kitchen faucet and come in handy when the power goes out!
4. Questionable Water Sources
We always recommend using the cleanest water source available when filtering water in your Berkey System. However, lake, stream, pond, river, or flood water can be filtered in the Berkey System. In an emergency scenario, the Berkey will even filter pool water and make it safe to drink! (this excludes saltwater pools because the concentration of salt will more than likely ruin the elements quickly).
Want to learn more about pretreating questionable water sources?
5. Can’t I just buy a filter from the store?
Carbon-based, paper and certain resin based filters do not have filters that can be cleaned, there is no feedback mechanism for filter replacements, most do not remove pathogenic bacterias, and most systems provide only 40-700 gallons (150-2,660 liters) before the filter must be replaced.
6. What about a whole house system?
Because the Berkey system is a gravity fed system, the water processes through the filter naturally by water pressure and gravity. The longer contact time with the filters is one of the reasons it can remove viruses and so many other contaminants.
Many regular home filter systems operate under pressure, significantly reducing the amount of time the water is in contact with the filtration media. Since gravity is used for water filtration in a Berkey system, the contact time with the media is much longer. This extended contact time has a direct impact on the media’s ability to reduce Chloramine and other potential contaminants.
7. Should I look into a Reverse Osmosis or Distiller system?
Another impressive thing about the Berkey system is that it will remove the harmful contaminants from your water, but allow healthy minerals (such as calcium, magnesium, and potassium) to remain. Reverse Osmosis or Distiller systems will remove everything from your water including these beneficial minerals! These systems become useless during emergencies when power and or water pressure is lost.
A Distiller specifically does not remove VOC’s (chemicals found in herbicides, pesticides, and fertilizers). It also wastes nearly five gallons for each gallon of water that is filtered.
A Reverse Osmosis wastes a lot of water, about three gallons of water for each gallon it filters. It also does not remove pathogenic bacteria and does not have re-cleanable filters. Plus, there is no feedback mechanism for filter replacements and the reservoir tank can become a breeding ground for bacteria. Yuck!
With respect to cost per gallon of water, calculated upon the cost per gallon for replacement filters and energy costs, Distillation systems and RO systems that are properly maintained typically cost between 35-65 cents per gallon. Again, a Berkey system typically costs about 1.8 cents per gallon!
8. I want more evidence! By comparison, Berkey water filters outperform commercially available water filters from both the portable and household water filter categories. Take a look at these Berkey water filter comparison charts and see for yourself that Berkey outperforms the competition in almost every category.
We are honored to have Dr. Ben Lynch with www.seekinghealth.com as our guest blogger this month. Check out what he has to say about the importance of filtered water.
I was in an intense conference call with my agent and my writer.
We were discussing what to call my future book.
The title they really wanted was ‘The 7 Deadly Genes.”
I wasn’t being clear with what I intended to write.
I wanted my book to be:
- truly holistic.
This was the phone call where I had to make myself clear and get the book name clear.
As I discussed it, my writer, Rachel, blurted out, “Dirty Genes.”
“What’s that?” I asked.
“Dirty Genes,” she said calmly.
I knew that was it! That’s where Dirty Genes was born!
What is a Dirty Gene?
My favorite definition of a Dirty Gene – as it is so clear and concise, is this:
Dirty Gene: A gene that doesn’t work optimally.
What happens when a gene gets dirty?
- It cannot function
- Since it cannot function, work doesn’t get done.
- Minor symptoms start happening.
It’s important to note that genes aren’t just born dirty they can act dirty too.
Our environment influences how our genes act.
For example, your body has to filter out toxins every day and not just from the food you eat, but from the eleven thousand liters of air you breathe and the eight cups of water you drink!
When you drink filtered water, you are removing arsenic, chlorine, and other unwanted chemicals from your water, thereby reducing the workload of your MTHFR gene.
When genes get overworked and tired, they get dirty, which can lead to chronic disease.
Better to identify the dirt early and remove it, right?
- How can you if you don’t know what the dirt is?
- How can you if you don’t know which symptoms link to which genes?
- How can you if you don’t know what these genes do, how they want to work and how they get dirty?
A gene (and the enzyme it makes) does not work optimally IF it:
- Lacks vitamins and minerals to help activate the enzyme it produces
- contains a variant/SNP which affects its shape which then affects its ability to perform a function
- Is blocked by something – such as heavy metals, infections, chemicals, other hormones
- does not have enough material to build with – such as lacking protein (methionine, tyrosine, tryptophan)
- has too much material which inundates it – such as folic acid, methionine and more (discussed fully in Dirty Genes)
Is genetic testing worthless?
Genetic testing and the reports can be a distraction though, from the fundamentals. You have to make sure you clean your dirty genes FIRST before you start focusing on SNPs and genetic results.
The fundamentals start with avoiding chemicals, breathing clean air, drinking filtered water, getting enough sleep. I can go on…I tell you how to “soak and scrub” your Dirty Genes in the book.
If you have a bunch of SNPs, they absolutely contribute to your susceptibility to symptoms and disease. My point is no matter what, you have to work to keep your genes clean – especially if they are born dirty they are easier to get dirtier.
In my book, Dirty Genes, I show you how to dive deeper into what a Dirty Gene is and what YOU can DO…
What if, for the price of a movie, or a nice dinner, you could have a true understanding of genetics and the immediate way you can use that knowledge to change your current health? That’s what my book, “Dirty Genes: A Breakthrough Program to Treat the Root Cause of Illness and Optimize Your Health,” offers you.
And it was just voted #1 Best New Release in Immune Systems by Amazon!
Dirty Genes became an Amazon International Bestseller–before it was published!
The benefits of understanding your genetics are huge. You may be on the path already, and have done genetic testing and be eager to learn more about MTHFR or other mutations and how to optimize your health.
Or you may read that sentence and feel like it’s a foreign language.
The truth is that no matter where you come into the discussion, there is still so much to learn and information you need so you can use the key that your own body has to offer you.
Understanding your genetic information is the first step in being able to address issues and “reprogram” your genes to work for you and potentially prevent disease – or even effect conditions you’re currently dealing with.
In fact, your genetic destiny is like a document that’s written in the Cloud–you get to edit and revise it, every moment of your life.
The Dirty Genes book is where you discover the insights and master the tools to harness the phenomenal power of this emerging medicine.
Dr. Ben Lynch received his Cell and Molecular Biology, BS from the University of Washington and his doctorate in Naturopathic Medicine (ND) from Bastyr University. His passion for identifying the cause of disease-directed him towards nutrigenomics and methylation dysfunction. Currently, he researches, writes and presents worldwide on the topic of MTHFR, methylation defects and genetic control.
You may learn more about Dr. Lynch and his work at www.drbenlynch.com. Dr. Lynch is the President of www.SeekingHealth.com, a supplement company oriented towards disease prevention and health promotion. He lives in Seattle, WA with his wife, Nadia, and three boys, Tasman, Mathew and Theodor.
Can you imagine being able to impact an entire community with the simple gift of clean water? Tis the season of giving and in light of recent natural disasters, it’s important to give back to those who are in need this precious gift.
Last year, Berkey Filters had the opportunity to help ROWAN (Rural Orphans & Widows AIDS Network) in Eastern Uganda. The network exists to help Orphans & Widows through; education, medical care and treatment, and business training. We were happy to provide Berkey systems as well as Berkey Sport Bottles, to deliver clean water. This year we partnered with the program again.
The thing I love about ROWAN is that they work closely with Ugandan widows, caregivers & community members – most of whom lost their spouse to AIDS.
The pure joy and health provided to these widows and orphans is priceless.
Here at Berkey Filters, we are also working closely with relief organizations like the Salvation Army to help in aiding recently affected hurricane communities with clean water.
What would you do if you could help?
The Berkey system can help people across the globe. Recently our friends at the Blinded Veterans Association of Puerto Rico were able to provide blind veterans access to clean water with the Berkey systems.
“Angel Reyes, President of the Blind Veteran’s Association, along with Sergeant- Major Ruben Sanchez, the Secretary-Treasurer have organized a team of workers, many of whom are blind or legally blind, to prepare, assemble and load the filters into private vehicles that are able to get into areas where larger relief vehicles can’t go,” explained Walt Gallaway in an email to Berkey Filters.
Walt has been the middleman in helping us ship systems to Puerto Rico.
He goes on to explain, “These guys, are using their own money and vehicles to get filters to the most remote and needy areas. They go into smaller remote neighborhoods where a blind veteran lives, organize the neighborhood to share one or more filters, teach a responsible person how to maintain and keep the filter producing.”
What’s so extraordinary about these men is Sanchez, himself, is legally blind and his son drives him on filter deliveries. Can you imagine what it must be like to hand a filter to someone who has had nothing but rainwater to drink for over a month!
It’s because of these selfless organizations like Rowan and the Blind Veteran’s Group that so many without access to clean water can now confidently provide such a vital human necessity to those in need. Gallaway described it perfectly in saying, “These filters are making a huge difference in the mental and emotional health of the people delivering them as well as those who are using them.”
So, in the season of giving back, we applaud these organization for spreading the Berkey love!
So, you bought a Berkey. Now you get to enjoy pure, chemical free water. If you are like me then you are super excited about your new water purifier. So much so that you want to use your Berkey water for everything! After I purchased my Berkey I noticed I was also drinking way more water! However, it is important to keep in mind that you should be refilling your system at least every other day. Having a hard time using up all the water in two days? Berkey water doesn’t have to be used just for drinking! Check out these 40 other ways to use your purified water!
- Water plants
- Water for pets – Your pets can taste the difference. My cats won’t go near tap water!
- Wash produce
- Kombucha – Are you loving the healthy benefits of Kombucha as much as I am? This fermented tea is packed full of probiotics!
- Making Coffee or Tea – I swear my coffee tastes so much smoother and rich when I use Berkey water!
- Making Ice cubes
- Cooking- boiling pasta, soups, etc.
- Make homemade soap and home products
- Nut Butters – When making your own nut butter you can use Berkey water to soak the nuts.
- Hand-wash only laundry
- Baby Formula
- Essential Oils Diffusers
- Shower – our Berkey shower filter removed 99% of free chlorine! I also noticed that my skin and hair is much softer after using the shower filter.
- Brush teeth
- Wash face
- Sprout seeds/vegetables
- Household CleaningCanning/preserving food
- Filtering rainwater
- Fermented foods
- Bathing infants/children
- Coconut Milk
- Almond Milk
- DIY Antibacterial Spray
- Storing for an emergency
- Instant Milk
- Fresh bouquets – I noticed my bouquets will last almost two weeks longer when I put them in Berkey water! And they keep their fresh scent longer too.
- Sharing with family/friends
- In a soda stream
- Hummingbird feeder
- In your camper/tent
- Fill a pitcher in your fridge- never be without cold water! You can refrigerate Berkey water for up to 7 days.
Did we forget something? Feel free to share your Berkey water uses in the comments!
You feed them expensive food, buy them lots of fun toys, they may even sleep on memory foam beds, but do you think about the water you are giving to your fur babies?
Just like humans, cats and dog’s bodies are made up of 80% water. It only makes sense that you would want to provide them with the best H2O possible.
“Remember, if you wouldn’t drink the water coming out of the faucet, you probably shouldn’t give it to your dog. And if the city government tells you not to drink the water, your dog shouldn’t drink it either,” advises PetMD.com.
The same harmful contaminants in tap water are just as susceptible to our pets especially since their bodies are smaller; unsafe drinking water can cause more damage more quickly.
So how can you keep your pets healthy? Start by testing your water. This way you will know exactly what harmful contaminants you and your pets could be ingesting. You can also ask your local water company for a yearly report on your water conditions.
Next, invest in a water filter and provide your pets with the filtered water. Berkey Systems removes bacteria and viruses at 99.99% while allowing healthy minerals (such as calcium, magnesium, and potassium) to remain. Your pets will appreciate this extra benefit!
Finally, frequent cleaning of your pet’s water dish will keep away bacteria and mold. We recommend giving their food and water dishes a good clean with warm soapy water every few days.
You and your pets will taste the difference. If the water tastes better, it will only encourage your animals to drink more water, keeping them from getting dehydrated!
So, go ahead and keep spoiling your four legged friends. Give them the filtered water! They will thank you in sloppy kisses, sweet purrs, and wagging tails!
Photo credit 1st photo: @melissayogi1111
Photo credit 2nd photo: @inhonorofmotherhood
Do you know what’s in your drinking water? According to the Natural Resources Defense Council, 77 million people across the US are drinking contaminated tap water. The EPA states “This is now forcing more people to figure out how and where to get clean drinking water.” As US citizens, we are fortunate enough to have running water, but is your water “healthy”? From Flint, MI to Newark, NJ our drinking water is under siege as a result of cost-cutting budgets and careless disposal of waste.
You care about the food you eat and getting enough exercise, but have you considered the quality of water you drink? High quality “healthy” water is just as, if not MORE important as high-quality, non-GMO food. Filtered water is no longer just a taste preference, but a necessity.
Even if you are lucky enough to live in an area with a cleaner water source there still may be chemicals present in the water. It is still important to consider investing in a water purification system.
The easy “solution” millions make is to buy bottled water, but can you really trust what you are drinking? Where does this water come from, how long has the water been in that plastic water bottle, what chemicals are leaching from the plastic, and are you recycling the plastic bottles? These are all important questions to consider when buying bottled water.
Additionally, if you’re buying bottled water for its convenience and low price, you might want to reconsider. A 40 pack of 16.9 oz. water bottles costs on average $3.98. That’s 5.28 gallons of water which works out to $0.75 per gallon. Remember this number; we’ll come back to it a bit later. To reach the recommended 64 oz. of water a day, each member of your household needs to drink four 16.9 oz. bottles. For a family of four, your 40 pack will last only 2.5 days.
If you’ve already made the decision that bottled water is not for you, you likely know there are many options on the market to filter your water including pitcher, sink and refrigerator filters. However, there are fewer water purification options on the market. A purifier is more powerful than a filter. It’s like a super filter removing more contaminants than a standard filter, such as bacteria and viruses. Whichever option you choose, it’s important to do your research to truly understand what your water filter or purification system removes.
The Berkey system is a purifier meaning it will remove more heavy metals, pesticides, viruses, bacteria, and trihalomethanes, than a typical pitcher, sink or fridge filter. The technology that Berkey uses to purify water can handle the very smallest of water contaminants, even viruses, making it one of the most powerful water filtering systems available.
A common area of anxiety many experience when buying a filtration system is the initial cost. Filter systems are typically less expensive for initial setup than purification systems, however, as you add up the cost and time to buy replacement filters every 1 to 3 months, they are actually substantially more expensive than a purification system, like the Berkey. Consider the average cost of bottled water is $0.75 per gallon (calculated above). A Berkey filter’s cost is $0.02 per gallon ($107 cost / 6,000-gallon filter lifespan). That is 37 times less than bottled water! Let’s also consider the price of pitcher and faucet filter replacements. Typically, pitcher filter replacement cost $0.15 per gallon, as they last 40 gallons and cost $6.33 each. A Faucet filter is even more expensive at $0.18 per gallon, as they typically last 100 gallons and cost $18.99 each. Compared to Berkey Filters both pitcher and faucet filters are 7.5 to 9 times more expensive. Also, take into consideration the lifespan of Berkey Filters (6,000 gallons) will last 150 to 160 times longer than pitcher and faucet filters.
Even though the initial set up cost for Berkey may seem pricey (systems start at $228) you will be saving more money and time than buying plastic water bottles, pitcher and faucet filters. With a Berkey Filter system, your water is a mere $0.02 per gallon for clean drinking water, and your filters will last for years, saving you valuable time!
With Berkey Filters you can now be in control of the water you drink. Make the choice today to cut out unhealthy water and switch to Berkey Water; you won’t be disappointed!
More water than you could ever imagine… right beneath your feet!
by Jerry Alonzy
Image via Sergiu Bacioiu (Flickr)
In 1864, Jules Verne imagined an ocean where few men had ever been. Harry (or Axel, depending on the translation from the French you are reading) is the nephew of Professor Hardwigg, the discoverer of a document chronicling the voyage of Arne Saknussemm to the earth’s center. He stares dumbfounded at the vast body of water before him, illuminated by some seemingly magical force.
“I stood still, far more stupefied than astonished. Not all the wildest effects of imagination could have conjured up such as scene! ‘The sea – the sea,’ I cried.”
Yes, it was a sea far beneath the earth. “A vast, limitless expanse of water, the end of a lake if not of an ocean, spread before us, until it was lost in the distance.”
In one of his most well-known tales, “A Journey to the Center of the Earth,” Verne imagined a vast underground sea, a water source for uncountable species of plant and animal life unencumbered by the vagaries of our terrene climate and the rules of evolution. Could a body of clean, fresh water really exist deep within the earth to become the life force to a subterranean world?