We recommended storing the Black Berkey Filters if they will not be in use for 4 or more days. Below you will find the proper method of storing the Black Berkey Filters depending on the amount of time the filters will not be used. It is best to empty both chambers before storing because anytime water sits it becomes stagnant, which means it can grow bacteria. You may consider washing your chambers with soapy water before leaving them to dry.
Unused and unopened Black Berkey® Purification Elements theoretically have an indefinite shelf-life. We recommend storing them in a dry area away from anything fragrant (laundry rooms or the garage). The filters are very powerful and can absorb odors in the air.
Short Term: If the filters will not be used between 4 and 15 days we advise removing them from the system and placing them into a sealable sandwich bag or container and placing the filters in the refrigerator towards the front to ensure they do not freeze. This will allow the filters to stay mostly saturated so that minimal priming is required when they are ready to be used again. When you are ready to use the Black Berkey Filters again, re-prime until the exterior wall of the filter begins to sweat beads of water for 10 seconds.
Long Term: If you have used your Black Berkey Filters, you should fully dry them before storing. We offer a tool to assist in both priming and purging. This tool is called a Black Berkey Primer™. The benefit to purging the Black Berkey™ Purification Elements is that they are dried very quickly and cleaned to a degree at the same time. Alternatively, the filters can be dried by leaving them on a windowsill for one to three days allowing them to air-dry. The key is to ensure they are bone-dry before storing them, to prevent any bacterial growth. The filtration elements are extremely powerful and can absorb odors and smoke from the air. Once dry, we recommend sealing the purification elements. This can be done with a storage bag such as a sealable sandwich bag. By sealing them in a storage bag, this will aid in preventing the filter from absorbing any odors from the air. When you are ready to use your elements, they will need to be re-primed by scrubbing them clean with a 3M Scotch-Brite pad or stiff brush. In theory, the shelf life of the elements is indefinite.
**Please note that the storage methods above apply to the Black Berkey® Purification Elements only.
** When storing the chambers of your Berkey® system, it is best to empty both chambers before storing them, because anytime water is still, it becomes stagnant and can produce bacteria. We recommend washing your Berkey® system with soapy water before leaving it to dry.