What is a Gravity Water Filter System?

You may have heard of a Berkey system being referred to as a 'gravity filter'. But what does that mean? What is a gravity filter? The simple answer is that a gravity water filter system uses the natural force of gravity to pull water through the filter media.

A Berkey water filter system has an upper chamber and a lower chamber. The filters sit in the upper chamber. Water is poured into the upper chamber, and gravity pulls the water down through the Black Berkey Filters and into the lower chamber.

Similar to the common phrase, what goes up must come down; what goes in the upper chamber must go down into the lower chamber (minus contaminants). This concept is important to keep in mind when filling the upper chamber to prevent overflow.

How does a Berkey work?

 

No one wants spilled water all over their kitchen. To prevent leaking, make sure the lower chamber has enough available space for the water in the upper chamber to flow into. The best way to do this is to only fill the upper chamber when the lower chamber is completely empty. A great way to tell when it's time for a refill is by attaching a sight glass spigot. It clearly shows the water level in the lower chamber. 

If water is not moving from the top chamber to the bottom chamber, it may be because of another natural force -- a vacuum seal. The two chambers are meticulously measured and designed to nest snuggly on top of each other. So tightly that air cannot escape. That air bubble takes up space and prevents any other molecules, including water, from filling the lower chamber.

To combat this, use the anti-airlock clip, exclusive to berkeyfilters.com customers only. This small metal piece attaches to the rim of the lower chamber and creates just enough space between the metal canisters to allow gas to escape--eliminating the vacuum. Troubleshoot other reasons why Berkey flow rate may be slowed or stopped.

Filling up a Berkey

The greatest benefit to a gravity water filter is its ability to operate without electricity. Berkey water filters function completely off of gravity. Absolutely no need for power, making them perfect for off-grid living and for emergencies.

Related: The Best Water Filter for Preppers

In case of a power outage due to a natural disaster, Berkey can provide purified water. Unlike competitor systems that must be plugged in or whole-house systems, such as reverse osmosis, which requires high water pressure to produce filtered water, Berkey Filters operate the same with or without electricity. Berkey Filters are the best gravity filters because of its powerful functionality.

Related: Countertop Berkey vs. Whole-House System

 

How to Set-Up a Berkey Quickly 

Easy to follow, step by step process for assembly. 

Why a TDS Meter Reading isn't Right for Berkey?

Find out why TDS is not a good way to measure the "cleanliness" of water.

Do Berkey Filters Change Your pH Level

Depending on your water, Berkey may change the pH level