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Thread: Preferred water treatment options.

  1. #21
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    This is what people use that live in rural off the grid homesteads.
    https://www.berkeyfilters.com/
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  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsbhike View Post
    The Lifestraw looks to be the all around better long term choice and more bang for the buck.
    Lifestraw is not ideal I only keep them for emergencies. Like I lost my pack and all I have is my lifestraw which is worn like a necklace.

    The best filters for most situations are the gravity fed bag systems. They fold up to be very compact, you can fill the bag and move, and they can be had in up to 10 liter configuration, you could improvise and make one much larger.

    Berkey is the best for home or some place permanent, because they're large and cumbersome. Most Berkey have multiple filter elements. The size of one Berkey filter i could carry 3 to 4 gravity filters.

  3. #23
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    Preferred water treatment options.

    Just a little extra comparison for conversation
    Off grid use

    Lifestraw gravity filter
    Built in back flush valve
    4,700 gal life
    First use ready to use in under 5mins
    Long term storage 1 liter bleach water then air dry

    Berkey water filter
    3000 gal life when you maintain your filters with a scotch brite pad to keep them clean.
    $27 for a primer so your filters are primed and ready to use in a timely fashion. Also used to back flush if used poor quality water and helps to dry out the filters for storage.

    Long term storage
    From website
    We recommended storing the Black Berkey Filters for four or more days if they will not be in use. Below you will find the proper method of storing the Black Berkey Filters depending on the time the filters will not be used. It is best to empty both chambers before storing because anytime water sits, it becomes stagnant, which 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. After Use Short Term: If the filters are not used between 4 and 15 days, we advise removing them from the system, 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 primarily saturated, so 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 them. We offer a tool to assist in both priming and purging. This tool is called a Black Berkey Primer. The benefit of purging the Black Berkey Purification Elements is that they are dried very quickly and cleaned to a degree simultaneously. 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. Packing them in a storage bag 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 (TM) pad or stiff brush. In theory, the shelf life of the elements is indefinite. **Please note that the storage methods above apply only to the Black Berkey Purification Elements. ** 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.


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    Last edited by zombiescometh; 06-09-22 at 01:03.
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  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by zombiescometh View Post
    Just a little extra comparison for conversation
    Off grid use

    Lifestraw gravity filter
    Built in back flush valve
    4,700 gal life
    First use ready to use in under 5mins
    Long term storage 1 liter bleach water then air dry

    Berkey water filter
    3000 gal life when you maintain your filters with a scotch brite pad to keep them clean.
    $27 for a primer so your filters are primed and ready to use in a timely fashion. Also used to back flush if used poor quality water and helps to dry out the filters for storage.

    Long term storage
    You do not need the "primer", all you have to do is put it against a faucet and fill. You can even use a water bottle, soak it in water over night, or simply install it in the supply tank and fill, gravity does the rest. The primer is not needed.

    As for cleaning, I've never had to, not once. If bucket filling as the OP said, just let it settle overnight and then fill the tank.

    Filter capacity, even the mid-sized Berkey comes with two filters, which with daily use will last one person 8 years, I wouldn't give it a second thought.

    As for storage, the whole point of using a Berkey is to put it into daily use, so storage is moot. I would be more concerned with getting clean water each and every day (esp if I was on a muni-system) than just rely on something in a rare emergency. Mine is set up on the counter and I use it daily, when needed it's topped off right from my sink faucet every 3-4 days. If something happens and I need to haul from one of the sources on my property, it's already set up and ready to fill.

    It is simple, easy to use, no fiddling, and best of all... bullet-proof. No hoses or fittings to dry out, rot, break, or leak. No goofy bags to clean or multi-step processes to use. Just fill with water and use as needed. All stainless steel and brass.

    I've used their gravity filter as well as those of a few others, they are literally the last system I would ever use being fiddly, leaky, and exceptionally prone to cross-contamination. I would rather (and have) used a conventional pump filter before I would use one of those. Those gravity filters are meant to be portable and compact, not easy or simple to use. The OP implied use in a primary location (please confirm/clarify), so need for portability or compactness and the headaches it brings.

    Again, just MHO based on using such things in real life


    ETA
    For perspective, I guess I should mention my experience with gravity filters. When I was in school one of my main jobs to help pay my way was a river rafting guide, everything from day trips to multi-day excursions. Due to limitations our source of water for the groups was from the river we were on, all filtered through... you guessed it, gravity systems. Aside from being a pain to set-up, use and maintain (they leaked regularly), I learned the hard way about the susceptibility to cross-contamination. Loperamide was always carried on board
    Last edited by Dusty T; 06-09-22 at 13:58.

  5. #25
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    Thanks gang...I did end up getting the berky for the house & still looking for a more portable unit.

    I also got some water storage totes & preserver...figured it was a good idea for both hurricane season & shtf long term storage.

    Really appreciate responses.
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  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Artos View Post
    Thanks gang...I did end up getting the berky for the house & still looking for a more portable unit.

    I also got some water storage totes & preserver...figured it was a good idea for both hurricane season & shtf long term storage.

    Really appreciate responses.
    Totes are also a great idea

    If you are open to another suggestion, start with only one filter and plug the other positions. Then run it for a few weeks to see if it will meet your usage demand. All extra filters do is increase your flow rate to the "clean" section. If you have say the 4gal model, but you only use one gallon per day, then you don't need the higher refill rate and can save the other filter for a spare. With clean well water I get a flow rate of 1g/hr with just one filter, so it will only take 4 hours to refill, thus you can top off every 2-3 days. If your water is super dirty then you can add more filters until you get the balance that works best for you. That is why I suggest getting the largest model you can afford, then bank the filters until needed.

    For my use I top off every few days even though I have about 5 days capacity, I just stretch out the sink hose and top off.
    I hope that makes sense.


    PS
    I also recommend the sight glass as you can see level at a glance so you don't run out -or- overflow
    That also lets you sock away the brass valve as a backup
    Best wishes

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Artos View Post
    Thanks gang...I did end up getting the berky for the house & still looking for a more portable unit.

    I also got some water storage totes & preserver...figured it was a good idea for both hurricane season & shtf long term storage.

    Really appreciate responses.
    For a portable unit you cannot go wrong with the Katadyn Hiker. I have been using one on backpacking trips for 25 years (mine is made by PUR, Katadyn bought them out) and have only replaced the filter once, mainly due to its age and not failure.

    https://www.cabelas.com/shop/en/kata...7&gclsrc=3p.ds
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  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dusty T View Post
    You do not need the "primer", all you have to do is put it against a faucet and fill. You can even use a water bottle, soak it in water over night, or simply install it in the supply tank and fill, gravity does the rest. The primer is not needed.

    As for cleaning, I've never had to, not once. If bucket filling as the OP said, just let it settle overnight and then fill the tank.

    Filter capacity, even the mid-sized Berkey comes with two filters, which with daily use will last one person 8 years, I wouldn't give it a second thought.

    As for storage, the whole point of using a Berkey is to put it into daily use, so storage is moot. I would be more concerned with getting clean water each and every day (esp if I was on a muni-system) than just rely on something in a rare emergency. Mine is set up on the counter and I use it daily, when needed it's topped off right from my sink faucet every 3-4 days. If something happens and I need to haul from one of the sources on my property, it's already set up and ready to fill.

    It is simple, easy to use, no fiddling, and best of all... bullet-proof. No hoses or fittings to dry out, rot, break, or leak. No goofy bags to clean or multi-step processes to use. Just fill with water and use as needed. All stainless steel and brass.

    I've used their gravity filter as well as those of a few others, they are literally the last system I would ever use being fiddly, leaky, and exceptionally prone to cross-contamination. I would rather (and have) used a conventional pump filter before I would use one of those. Those gravity filters are meant to be portable and compact, not easy or simple to use. The OP implied use in a primary location (please confirm/clarify), so need for portability or compactness and the headaches it brings.

    Again, just MHO based on using such things in real life


    ETA
    For perspective, I guess I should mention my experience with gravity filters. When I was in school one of my main jobs to help pay my way was a river rafting guide, everything from day trips to multi-day excursions. Due to limitations our source of water for the groups was from the river we were on, all filtered through... you guessed it, gravity systems. Aside from being a pain to set-up, use and maintain (they leaked regularly), I learned the hard way about the susceptibility to cross-contamination. Loperamide was always carried on board
    Sorry I guess I could have been more specific. I just hate when people imply simplicity to something.

    Having to fetch buckets of water from a water source, I assumed he didnít have access to running water to prime the berkey filter normally. If that is the case you would need to soak for 8 hours or buy the primer pump.

    Also as for the cleaning berkey recommends to clean the container once a month and the filters every 6-12 months. Some arenít as lucky to have access to such clean water they donít need to perform the recommended cleaning maintenance.

    Itís a great product and lots of people like it.

    Some things just grind my gears
    They seem very Apple like in pricing
    $180 for a round stainless steel container
    $23 for a more durable spigot
    $27 for primer if you donít want to do an 8 hr soak
    $35 biofilm drops
    $46 for a stand
    $50 if you want to be able to tell how much water is left

    And yes almost every style and design of a more portable water system has downsides.

    26000 gallons lifestraw community $395

    https://lifestraw.com/products/lifestraw-community


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  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Artos View Post
    & still looking for a more portable unit.
    The vast majority of hikers that thru-hike the AT, CDT, and PCT use the Sawyer Squeeze screwed onto a SmartWater bottle. Threads match up. Many go with the Sawyer Mini at first but often end up complaining about flow rate. They don't seem to have that issue with the Squeeze. You can't much simpler but like someone said, don't let it freeze and at some point you will need some known clean water to back flush it with. But again, you just need a second SmartWater bottle or any bottle for that matter for the clean water.

    This girl has thru-hiked all three trails above plus the Florida Trail and some other trail in Spain or somewhere I forget. Anyway... thousands of miles.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5-Agdf1aNVE ---- read second reply comment in this video

    Now the other addition people get is a CNOC bag as you can see here.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cdAPqbY5uxE

    There is one other slightly heavier bag that you can get from REI

    https://www.rei.com/product/190151/h...iner-100-fl-oz

    The advantage to this is the lid. If you were above water, like a bridge, you could not lower a CNOC bag to the water and have it fill up. With the Hydrapak you could lower it with a piece of dynema and it would fill up.

    Several people also like the Platypus system.
    https://www.rei.com/product/866422/p...system-4-liter

    If you want to invent your own system and need plastics quick disconnect fittings like you see on bladder systems I can get you some part numbers from USPlastics. I rigged up a Sawyer with some Y fittings and quick disconnects for attaching the syringe etc. Connecting to different things, etc.. You can get the Leur<sp> connectors ( for Sawyer back-flush syringe ), tubing, quick dis-connects with or without shutoffs, etc. all from USPlastics

    ---edit --- these are the the dis-connects I am talking about. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00EURFBKI/ref=emc_b_5_t

    Hope that gives you some portable ideas.
    Last edited by tb-av; 06-11-22 at 18:51.

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by zombiescometh View Post
    I just hate when people imply simplicity to something.
    Nothing was implied, it was clearly stated...
    Berkey = Simple
    Gravity = Pain in the ass

    If that is the case you would need to soak for 8 hours
    Whoop De Doo

    or buy the primer pump
    The pump isn't needed

    BTW The Lifestraw not only needs to be "prime for each use" it needs to be "backwashed at least five times"

    Also as for the cleaning berkey recommends to clean the container once a month and the filters every 6-12 months
    Again, Whoop De Doo
    Per the Lifestaw manual... "Follow this cleaning procedure as often as possible, minimum twice a day during use"

    Some things just grind my gears
    They seem very Apple like in pricing
    $180 for a round stainless steel container
    $23 for a more durable spigot
    $27 for primer if you don’t want to do an 8 hr soak
    $35 biofilm drops
    $46 for a stand
    $50 if you want to be able to tell how much water is left
    None of those things are needed

    And yes almost every style and design of a more portable water system has downsides.
    And someone who has used such systems everyday for months on end is telling you (someone who has never used either system) that gravity systems are a fussy complicated mess with tons of downsides including being highly susceptible to cross contamination. But feel free to buy and use whatever you like and learn he hard way.
    Last edited by Dusty T; 06-14-22 at 16:04.

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