When and how do I clean the Black Berkey® Purification Elements?

Black Berkey® Purification Elements don’t necessarily need to be cleaned every time one cleans their Berkey® unit. However, this can vary depending on your area and water source. In certain areas, the water contains a higher number of contaminants. In this case, it is necessary to clean the elements more frequently. If your water is muddy or really dirty we advise pre-filtering  your water by running it through some type of cloth, ie: shirt, bed sheet, bandanna, cheese cloth etc.  before putting it in  your Berkey® system. While this isn’t necessary, doing so keeps the cleaning schedule for the elements down by collecting debris that may clog the pores of your Black Berkey® Purification Elements. 

When is it time to clean your filters?

  • Cleaning the elements should be done when you experience a drastic reduction in your flow rate.
  • You may consider cleaning your elements on a consistent basis. For example, every 6 months. The benefit to doing so is that you won’t experience a slow flow rate. Cleaning elements on a regular schedule is at your discretion. This is a suggestion, not a requirement. 

How do you clean your filters?

  1. The only thing more valuable to your health than owning water filters for your home is owning clean water filters. 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.

  2. Empty all of the water from your Berkey system.

  3. Place the top container upside down on a solid surface, like a counter-top, and remove the PF-2 Fluoride Filters if you have them installed. 

  4. On the same surface, now place the top container on its side. 

  5. Remove the filters by holding the Black berkey element with one hand and unscrewing the wing nut that secures the Black Berkey element to the container.

  6. Hold the filter under the running faucet, with the exit hole pointed up.

  7. Using a new 3M Scotch-Brite pad, carefully scrub the black surface of the filter element for several minutes.

  8. Set the elements aside and wash your hands.

  9. Reassemble the unit

If you are currently using a water softening system, we highly recommend that you obtain pre-softened water directly from the source rather than run softened water through your Black Berkey® Elements.