How to Clean the Black Berkey Filter

Routinely cleaning the Black Berkey Filters extends the life span, and increases flow rate. One of the many benefits of Berkey water filtration systems is the sustainability. The filters used in the system are not single-use disposable. These filters last extensively longer than other filter systems and have the ability to be cleaned. Instead of tossing a dirty filter, Berkey filters can be scrubbed and continuously used.Ā 

IncorporateĀ cleaning your filters, chambers and spigot into your routine system maintenance for best use. At this time,Ā there is no method to clean the Fluoride Filters.Ā 

This cleaning ability is what sets the Black Berkey purification elements apart from our competition.Ā Cleaning the water filter is needed when the flow rate decreasesĀ and the output slows to the point that it is no longer meeting your needs. This point depends on the amount of contaminants you are removing. For household use we suggest cleaning every six months, and for field use weekly, possibly daily in the harshest conditions.

Berkeys don't use disposable filters, which means our filter elements have to maintain their integrity after many thorough cleanings. As part of a regular maintenance routine, our filter elements can be cleaned up to 100 times before the need to purchase a replacement.

The same black filter elements fit in all of our water filter systems, including theĀ Ā Big Berkey, Travel Berkey, andĀ Ā Royal Berkey.

When and How Often to Clean Your Berkey FilterĀ 

The unique composition of the Black Berkey purification element creates a pore structure so small that minute particulates become trapped on the very outermost surface of the filter. Over time, like all filters, this will cause the flow rate to decrease. Clean the filter elements whenever you notice a decrease in flow. How often this happens depends on use, but you should clean your chambersĀ at least monthly, and the filter elements at least every 3-6 months.

Precaution: When cleaning Berkey water filter systems, it is important to keep some things in mind. While this system can effectively purify untreated pond or river water, always use the cleanest, clearest source possible when cleaning the Berkey filter elements. Do not allow contaminated water to enter the core of the Berkey filtering element. This can be prevented by placing your finger over the hole where the water exits the filter.

Cleaning Instructions for Household Use

Ā 

  1. Empty all of the water from your Berkey system.
  2. Remove the top container and set it on itsĀ top on a solid surface like a table or countertop.
  3. Remove the fluoride filters if installed. Then remove Black Berkey element by unscrewing the wing nut that secures the Black Berkey element to the container.
  4. Hold the filter under the running faucet, with the exit hole pointed up.
  5. Using a new 3M Scotch Brite pad, carefully scrub the black surface of the filter element for several minutes. DO NOT use soap or detergents on filters
  6. Set the elements aside and wash your hands.
  7. Reinstall the filters in the system.
  8. Printable Instructions PDF

Cleaning Instructions for Field Use

  1. Read precaution below.
  2. All water used to clean the filters and the unit must be free of harmful contaminants prior to proceeding.
  3. In a clean bucket, basin, or other similar containers, add clean water. If you are forced to clean your Berkey system elements with compromised water, we recommend adding 16 drops of household bleach or iodine for every gallon of water being used to clean the elements.
  4. Empty all of the water from your Berkey system.
  5. Remove the top container and set it on itsĀ top on a clean solid surface like a table or countertop.
  6. Remove the filters by unscrewing the wing nut that secures the Black Berkey element to the container.
  7. Using a new 3M Scotch Brite pad, carefully scrub the outer black surface of the filtering element, rinsing it as needed in the clean water. DO NOT use soap or detergents on filters
  8. Clean all filters as described above and set them aside on a clean surface.
  9. Empty the container and add more fresh, clean, bleach-treated water as described in precaution above.
  10. Submerge the filters in the fresh, clean, bleach-treated water, and set them aside on a clean surface.
  11. Wash your hands with soap.
  12. Reinstall the filters in the system.

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