Friday, January 28, 2011

Gravity Fed, Safe Drinking Water Filter

Water Filters, How to Make Your Own

Water, there is not enough I can say about how important water is. Most all of us take it for granted and it usually gets put on the back burner when we plan or begin building our self-reliant food storage preps, we should not. It is more important than stored food because without clean water you can not prepare your stored survival food or drink clean water to flush the ever present toxins from your body which if allowed to elevate, will quickly terminate your life. Without water within 3 days your body will be well on its way to shutting down from internal toxic poisoning and you will probably die in absolute misery within the next week. Without clean, bug free water it just doesn’t matter how much food or ammo you have stored.

Humans require 1–1½ gallons of clean water a day ‘per person’ for drinking and food preparations, possibly more in desert or sub-zero environments.

We live in a world that depends on electricity to run the pumps to pump clean water be it your own well or city wells; if electricity is not available the simple fact is there will be no water… Electricity is a very fragile infrastructure that can abruptly and without warning end. You may have your own water well but it needs an electric pump to access it unless you have or use a hand pump. You may be thinking, ‘I have a generator to run the pump so there’s no issue’. Well what do you do when your gas supply runs out? Again you will have no water.

The only limitless water alternative will be from clean creeks, streams, rivers, lakes and ponds that are non-highway runoff ponds. Highway runoff ponds will be loaded with garbage truck drippings, chemicals, antifreeze and other unthinkables.

After retrieving the raw water you still can’t drink or cook with that water because there may be bad bacteria in it and if you did you will become extremely ill from using it. The water must be chemically treated or passed through a ceramic water filter specifically made to remove the bacteria and infectious bugs.

A Doulton Ceramic water filter system is a must have for self-reliant survival. Below is what I made and use. It’s inexpensive and very easy to make and without any special tools just simple hand tools like a small pocket knife or box cutter.

Here’s how to make your own clean water ceramic filter capable of providing over 1,000 gallons of safe water for $80.97 including shipping!

Materials list and source:

Buckets:
http://www.usplastic.com/catalog/item.aspx?itemid=33032&catid=752
2 required @ $4.88 each

Lid:
http://www.usplastic.com/catalog/item.aspx?itemid=43849&catid=752
1 required @ $1.36
This lid covers the filtered water bucket and nests the raw water buckets on top.

Soft Lid/Cover:
http://www.usplastic.com/catalog/item.aspx?itemid=38893&catid=686
required @ $1.22
this lid is to cover the raw water bucket

Spigot:
http://www.usplastic.com/catalog/item.aspx?itemid=65805&catid=810
1 required @ $3.65

Filters:
http://www.dehydrated-food.net/water/
2 ceramic 7" filters required @ $30.00 each

Notes:
Using Your Ceramic Water Filter
The ‘first’ bucket of water will take about 8-12 hours to filter through. This is normal! It takes most of the day for the filters to get completely wetted to begin their full flow operation. After the first day you will be filtering normal at about ½ to ¾ a gallon per hour from then on. So just be aware when you first set up to use the filter from storage it will appear to be not working properly at first because the clean water flow will be very slow, be patient, its fine and this is normal. Overnight it will begin to flow at its full rate and continue to flow at the full rate until the filters need to be cleaned.

Storing Your Ceramic Filters After Use
Proper storage is extremely important. You must have your system is ready to produce life saving clean water when you need it most, and that moment is the moment you take it out of storage for use.
Immediately after use, clean the ceramic candles outside surfaces with a Scotch-Brite Pad and fresh water only. Use the Scotch-Brite pad and scrub off any discoloration or visible dirt. Do not use soap or any other type of cleaner.

Let the ceramic candles air dry for 3-4 days or longer if needed to be sure they are dry completely through. You can remove the candles from the filter housing and place in a zip-lock bag or place the entire filter unit into a plastic storage bag and seal tightly to keep airborne dust or bugs out for long term storage.

I chose to use 3½ gallon buckets for my filter as this size works fine for my needs and because I store it in my Bug Out Vehicle, my motor home, so space is a concern for me. You can use 3½, 5, 6 or 7 gallon buckets as they will all work the same and give you as much clean water as your circumstances need on hand. All these buckets sizes are available from the same place, USplastics.com.

I also chose to not bolt or attach the ceramic filters to the filtered water bucket lid like many others do. The reason is to save storage space. By not bolting or attaching to the filtered water buckets lid it allows me to nest the raw water bucket (the buckets the ceramic filters are in) inside the filtered water bucket.

When finished with your assembly don’t forget try it and to cycle water through it to wash out any manufacturing ceramic dust and wash the carbon dust off the charcoal filter inside the cartridges. As per the manufacturers instructions I cycled 3 gallons through mine twice dumping that water down the drain, then re-filll the raw water reservoir and the filtered water is now ready for use.


The two Doulton Super Sterasyl Ceramic Filters


End view of the filter


The tools I used. These are tools I have on hand.
I did not buy these for this project as you could use a
pocket knife or box cutter to do the job with.


The two 3½ gallon buckets, one ridged lid and one soft
flexible lid/cover for covering the raw water bucket.


The buckets and lid with the holes drilled. One hole in the
bottom-side of the filtered water bucket for the spigot,
two holes in the bottom of the raw water bucket for the
two filters to secure in and the ridged lid with two clearance
holes for the filters wing nuts to pass through when the raw
water bucket is placed on top of it.


Raw water bucket bottom with the two filters secured.


View inside the raw water bucket showing the filters in
place ready to use.


The assembled water filter system ready to use.


The raw water bucket nested inside the filtered water bucket
for compact storage.



The filter system ready for storage.



Information from the sellers’ website about Doulton Water Filters:
http://www.dehydrated-food.net/water/doulton/whyusedoulton.html

Doulton® water filter systems are especially designed to micro-filter a supply of safe drinking water from cisterns, ponds, streams, and other sources of questionable water. These very reliable filters are manufactured to the highest grade available in the world. They are corrosion resistant, hygienic, durable, and easy to clean.

Doulton® water filters are also compact, portable, and simple to operate. Requiring no external plumbing, each filter takes only minutes to assemble and can provide up to 24 gallons or more of safe drinking water each day. The high-tech silver-impregnated ceramic elements feature a nominal filtration efficiency of : 0.2 microns, greater than 98%, at 0.5 microns, greater than 99.9%, and at 0.9 microns, greater than 99.99% which effectively blocks waterborne pathogens and clarifies the water.

These filters are in common everyday use in households across the world, and are particularly effective on private well systems. Their replaceable filter elements have an activated carbon core and are designed to remove undesirable tastes, odors, and many organic chemicals.

The ease of operation combined with a proven effectiveness at eliminating water-borne diseases such as cholera and typhoid has led to the filter being the preferred unit for field operations by many of the world's major aid and emergency relief organizations.

Produces safe drinking water from lakes, cisterns, streams, etc.

Reliable design uses gravity — no pumps to wear out:

Long lasting filter elements will filter up to 60,000 gallons (using four elements), depending on turbidity level of the water being filtered and proper care of the filter elements

What the filter will remove:
Absolute filtration efficiency to 0.5 microns (U.S.) For particles 0.2 microns, efficiency is greater than 98%; from 0.3 to 0.5 microns, filtration efficiency is greater than 99%.

E.Coli; Greater than 99.99%
Klebsiella: Greater than 99.99%
Cholera; Greater than 99.99%
Shigella; Greater than 99.99%
Salmonella; Greater than 99.99%
Giardia Lambia; 100%
Live Cryptosporidium; 100%

How the filter works:
The special ceramic elements are manufactured specifically for use in this gravity filter. Doulton® ceramic elements consist of a fine microporous structure, which forms a complete barrier to all particles larger than 0.5 microns in size (1 Micron = 1/1,000th of a millimeter). All particles above this size become trapped on the surface and within the ceramic material. Fine particles of silver are evenly dispersed within the structure of the filter element, which prevent the growth of bacteria (mitosis) within the ceramic wall. The Doulton® elements also contain an additional activated carbon filling, which removes chemical and organic compounds from the water and improves its taste and odor.

After passing through the filter elements, safe, filtered water then collects in the lower chamber to be drawn off from a tap. The structure of the ceramic material is designed to be cleanable and regular cleaning of the element will allow its filtration efficiency to become regenerated. The elements may be cleaned over 100 times before replacement becomes necessary.

The Doulton® water filtration systems are the original gravity-fed water purifiers, and have been used since 1827.

You've probably heard of the "British Berky" water systems, sold on many websites. They are simply copies of the original Doulton systems. In fact, the "new" Berky systems are not only NOT made in England, but they now use a lower quality black filter, which can't be cleaned and reused (like the original Doulton ceramic filter), but the black filters perform no better than filters you can buy at Home Depot!

About the “Black Berky Filters”:
I don’t recommend Black Berky filters because they require priming before use!!!! Why? Because when you need clean filtered water you probably will not have pressurized safe water or enough clean safe water to prime them with!

Click on the link below for instructions to use the Black Berky Filters.
http://www.berkeyfilters.com/priming-black-filters.htm

Everyday each person needs 1-2 gallons of clean and safe water to drink and cook with. This water supply must be available to you 24/7 including during any emergency that may come up plus an accessible water source for replenishing the raw water as needed.

The commonly accepted method for storing emergency fresh water is in 55 gallon plastic drums. This method works but is a pain, plus needs a lot of storage room for the multiple drums needed and when the water is used up you are out of water. Also, keeping this water safe to drink means constantly monitoring of its sterile condition.

There is a much safer and far easier way. It’s the portable ceramic water filter.

The feature I like most is I can store this filter system indefinitely because there are no batteries or other needed chemicals to make it work. So when a disaster strikes, whether at home or if I have to Bug Out to a remote location, my water filter comes with me and I know I will always have safe water.

This filter system is just too easy to use:

Simply pour raw water in the top chamber then gravity draws the water through the filters that remove all the nasty bugs. No power of any type is needed. Configured with two ceramic Doulton filter elements the system can purify water at a rate of over 3 Gallons per hour!

Filter Life and Maintenance:
No need for expensive disposable filters. The Doulton ceramic filters are cleanable. When the flow rate decreases simply brush the filter elements with a ScotchBrite pad under running water, reinstall and your system is again ready to purify water. Each durable and efficient purification filter can last for up to 15,000 gallons (30,000 gallons per set of two) and provide years of efficient water purification. What's more, the Doulton ceramic filters have silver particles blended in the ceramic and makes them self-sterilizing.

13 comments:

  1. what do you think of chlorine tablets instead of the powder

    ReplyDelete
  2. Anon 11:19
    About using Tablets:
    The 1 and 3 inch tablets can be used if they are pure compressed Granular Calcium Hypochlorite Tablets as stated above. The down side is you will have to scrape the tablet to create the granules for use. Note that you probably will not have an accurate measurement or dosing because your particle size will not be the same as factory granules unless you measure by weight using a gram scale.

    Read more about granular chlorine at this link.
    http://livingprepared.blogspot.com/2009/12/other-bleach-granular-calcium.html

    ReplyDelete
  3. Great site. Great advice. I adopted your food storage method! Thanks for sharing the information.

    How did you come up with the 60,000 gallons (for 4 filters)?

    The SuperSterasyl Ceramic filters have a carbon core which must be replaced every 6 months or 535 gallons (according to the Doulton site).

    I modified your approach to increase the amount of water per filter (but also increases the cost a little):

    1. I use 2 Katadyn Ceradyn Filter Elements (no carbon). I think the Doulton Sterasyl Ceramic filters are equivalent to these, but I can't find information on the Doulton site about the capacity of these. (the Gravidyns has the carbon core also have a limited capacity. Do you know the capacity of the Doulton Sterasyl Ceramic filters?

    Each Katadyn Ceradyn filter lasts about 13,000 gallons, so with two you get 26,000 gallons of water at a cost of $68.00 each.

    2. The ceramic gets your virus/bacteria filtering and this water is probably good for cleaning / bathing. So, I don’t need to carbon filter all the water – just the cooking drinking portion.

    To get the chemicals out for drinking/cooking I run a portion of the ceramic filter water through a Brita pitcher. Each carbon filter will get you 40 gallons. 6 filters are about $40.00. I think 6 filters will be enough for lake or river water for about a year of drinking water (family of 3).

    My theory is that once the SHTF, most of the chemicals (fertilizers, pesticides, etc.) will stop flowing into the water and in several months time, chemicals in the water will not be a big concern. So, I plan on filtering for chemicals for only a year. If I still need filter after a year, my non-carbon ceramic filters have enough capacity to keep filter the viruses, etc. for many years to come.

    Thoughts?

    ReplyDelete
  4. amaj7b5,
    Great site. Great advice. I adopted your food storage method! Thanks for sharing the information.
    (Thank you and you’re very welcome! I’m glad you have adopted my food storage system, it is working well for me.)

    How did you come up with the 60,000 gallons (for 4 filters)?
    (I didn’t. As indicated this is quoted remarks from the sellers web site. I have asked the seller two times to quantify that statement and they have yet to respond to my requests.)

    The SuperSterasyl Ceramic filters have a carbon core which must be replaced every 6 months or 535 gallons (according to the Doulton site).
    (This is somewhat misleading. You do not need the charcoal element working to provide bug free water. The ceramic filter continues to work long after the charcoal portion is used up. The charcoal element removes only odors so you may experience some odors etc when the charcoal element has been used up.)

    I modified your approach to increase the amount of water per filter (but also increases the cost a little):

    1. I use 2 Katadyn Ceradyn Filter Elements (no carbon). I think the Doulton Sterasyl Ceramic filters are equivalent to these, but I can't find information on the Doulton site about the capacity of these. (the Gravidyns has the carbon core also have a limited capacity. Do you know the capacity of the Doulton Sterasyl Ceramic filters?
    (It has been a struggle for me to get responses about capacities from these companies. However based on the advertised micron filtering size and if the filters are similar in physical size the will filter the same amount of gallons.)

    Each Katadyn Ceradyn filter lasts about 13,000 gallons, so with two you get 26,000 gallons of water at a cost of $68.00 each.
    (Based on Katadyn claims, if both companies ceramic filters are the same filter dimensions and micron size you can see how 4 Doulton filters would produce 60,000 gallons of safe water.)

    2. The ceramic gets your virus/bacteria filtering and this water is probably good for cleaning / bathing. So, I don’t need to carbon filter all the water – just the cooking drinking portion.
    (Ceramic filtered water is design to provide drinking water. The carbon filter takes out only odors.)

    To get the chemicals out for drinking/cooking I run a portion of the ceramic filter water through a Brita pitcher. Each carbon filter will get you 40 gallons. 6 filters are about $40.00. I think 6 filters will be enough for lake or river water for about a year of drinking water (family of 3).
    (I have not researched Brita so I don’t know what they are capable of. I am also not aware of a filter that will remove chemical from drinking water. We need to be prudent when selecting a raw water source and be especially sure there is no highway storm water run-off dumping into the water source/pond.)

    My theory is that once the SHTF, most of the chemicals (fertilizers, pesticides, etc.) will stop flowing into the water and in several months time, chemicals in the water will not be a big concern. So, I plan on filtering for chemicals for only a year. If I still need filter after a year, my non-carbon ceramic filters have enough capacity to keep filter the viruses, etc. for many years to come.

    Thoughts?
    (My thoughts are above and I’m glad you’re moving forward to secure the most important survival item, clean drinking water.)

    ReplyDelete
  5. Hi,

    This is the perfect blog for anyone who wants to know about this topic. Filtering your drinking water offers a multitude of benefits. It helps the higher occurrence of stroke, heart attack. Thanks a lot...

    ReplyDelete
  6. Iceshaver, thanks for the comments about the blog. Can you direct me to the information about strokes and heart attacks I'd like to know more about that?

    ReplyDelete
  7. Thanks for sharing this great content, I really enjoyed the insign you bring to the topic, awesome stuff!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Water is one of the vital source of life. best water purifier i've tried and i'm sticking to is berkey water filter. Instantly purifies water from any source including stagnant water.

    ReplyDelete
  9. great experiment, i must try to do this on outdoor and long vacation on the woods involving stream and other fresh water source.

    ReplyDelete
  10. thanks for this wonderful post. It is very rare that i stumble to a blog equally educative and amusing. ill look forward to your next post

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Jason, I post what I do for myself and that works. The humor sometimes I can't help it!

      Delete


  11. Nice Post... Do You Know What to do If You’re a Last Minute Prepper? We are constantly telling people to start prepping now, and don’t be a last minute prepper, but not everyone takes heed to.

    preppers list
    survival magazine

    ReplyDelete
  12. I found out a couple of years ago that dangers of drinking bottled water and leaving it in your car too long. Apparently the plastic contaminants begin to affect the water. Very concerning. Now a days my wife and I drink water from a Brita Filter. It has shown to be very beneficial and cost effective.

    ReplyDelete

Your thoughts are welcome!