How to DIY A Berkey® Filter?
by AQ Admin
Feb 14, 2023
Homeowners are constantly looking for ways to make their water
safe and healthy for drinking
and other domestic uses. One of these ways is the use of Berkey® water filters. Unlike other filtration systems in
the market, Berkey® water filters rely on gravity to eliminate harmful contaminants and chemicals from
. They are also versatile for both at-home and on-the-go uses. The longer lifespan of these filters is
reason they are popular among users, especially in the United States.
Despite their great benefits and functionality, Berkey® filters
are costly. You may have to pay up to $200 or $400 to get a unit—which is considered unaffordable for most American
homeowners. Fortunately, experts have devised DIY alternatives to the stainless steel Berkey® filter systems, which
are cheaper and more affordable to set up.
Read on to learn about how to make your own Berkey® filters from
start to finish and enjoy healthy, safe drinking water without breaking the bank.
What Are The Requirements for A DIY Berkey® Filter?
Like most DIY tasks, you need unique materials to set up your
Berkey® filter. We have outlined the required materials below.
Food-grade Plastic Storage Pails with Lids
The original Berkey® filters are equipped with stainless steel
containers. However, these will be replaced by two units of five-gallon food-grade plastic storage pails with lids.
These are usually available for sale in popular online stores. You may also get them for free at grocery store,
bakeries, or restaurants.
If you cannot get your hands on these storage pails, you can go
for stainless steel stockpots, especially if you are big on the stainless steel element. However, you must be
prepared to put more effort into cutting the metal. Alternatively, you can use large five-gallon water bottles if
you do not mind the slight complications involved.
NB: Avoid pickle buckets because of their offensive and lasting
smell. Irrespective of the container type you end up using, ensure they are made of food-safe materials.
Berkey® Filter Elements
For the filtration process, you need two black Berkey® filter
elements, often sold in pairs as replacement elements for the Berkey® gravity-fed water filter
systems. These filter
elements are responsible for removing the typical contaminants present in your raw water. Each of these filters can
deliver up to 6,000 gallons before it is due for a replacement.
The role of the spigot in your DIY Berkey® filter is to enable you
to keep track of the water level in the lower chamber of your filter system without necessarily guessing. It also
helps prevent spillage while the filter is in operation.
When it comes to the tools required for this DIY Berkey® filter,
you will need a drill with a 7/16” drill bit to drill a hole into the plastic pail or water bottles, depending on
which you are using.
How to Make A DIY Berkey® Water Filter System?
With the list of materials out of the way, let’s get to the steps
involved in making your DIY Big Berkey® filter. Click here to watch the video before
- 1. Wash your plastic pails and lids. If you are not using brand-new buckets, we recommend scrubbing them to
ensure they are clean.
- 2. Prime your Berkey® filters before installing them into the pails. To prime the filter, flush each with
running water from your tap or kitchen sink. You can also check the filter packaging for specific priming
- 3. Drill two holes in the center of the bottom of the plastic pail using the drill, just big enough to fit
in both filters.
- 4. Drill another hole in the side of the other plastic pail using the drill, leaving a space of about 1.5”
from the bottom.
- 5. Insert the filter(s) and the spigot in their respective holes and fasten tightly until they are secure.
- 6. Place the plastic pail with the filter on top of the other plastic pail with the spigot.
NB: Berkey® recommends running a whole gallon of water through the
filters to wash them and remove any residue left in the filters from the factory. You might even run another gallon
to ensure everything is fine.
Can This DIY Berkey® Filter Remove Fluoride?
The black Berkey® water filters we recommended above are not
fluoride. Hence, users who want to filter out fluoride from their feed water must include Berkey®
fluoride filters or its replacement ones. These filters are optional and may not be considered, except if you are
sure your feed water contains fluoride.
To add the fluoride filters, screw them onto the bottom of the
existing black filters. After this, hang them down into the bottom pail or stainless-steel container. You can find
specific instructions for attaching the filters by the manufacturers in the filter packaging.
Where Can You Find Berkey® Filter Replacement?
It is often advisable to buy both the black Berkey® water filter
and the Berkey® fluoride filters as a bundle. Compared to buying them separately, a bundle purchase of these filters
is easier and more economical.
Aquacrest Replacement for Black Berkey® & Fluoride Filter Bundle
Aquacrest offers a Black Berkey® and Fluoride Filter Bundle as
compatible spare parts. The Black Berkey® filters effectively reduce chlorine, sand, soil, rust, sediments, and
other impurities in your feed water. On the other hand, the fluoride filter removes fluoride from your feed water
while preventing the possible leaching of contaminants back into the filtered water.
The Black Berkey® Replacement Filters (BB9-2) & Fluoride Filter
Combo Pack (PF-2) from Aquacrest are made from natural food-grade materials, including activated alumina
activated carbon and coconut activated carbon block
deliver efficient purification performance and improved water
The best part? They are affordable, helping you save money while
enjoying clean and refreshing drinking water.
What Is The Lifespan of These Filters?
The exact filter life of your DIY Berkey® water filters depends on
usage and the particulate matter of your feed water. However, you can get up to 6,000 gallons of water from the
black Berkey® filters and 1,000 gallons from the fluoride filters before they are due for replacement.
In terms of size, a DIY Berkey® filter system made from two units
of five-gallon buckets has about the same filtration capacity as the Imperial Berkey®.
How to Clean DIY Berkey® Filters?
Like non-DIY filters, cleaning your DIY Berkey® filter is
essential. Start by removing any water from the system and detaching the filters. Then wash the containers
thoroughly. We recommend using hot soapy water for effective cleaning. Once you are done with the cleaning, replace
the filters and fill the container with your raw water.
Making A DIY Berkey® Filter Has Never Been Easier
Most homeowners will enjoy making their DIY Berkey® filter from
scratch enjoyable. The materials required are readily accessible and cheap. The process takes about an hour and
requires no special tools or prior plumbing experience.
Ready to make your own DIY Berkey® filter? Choose the Black
Berkey® & Fluoride Filter Bundle from Aquacrest for a best-in-class filtration experience and an unending supply of
safe, healthy drinking water.
*Berkey® is used for reference purposes only.
*Black Berkey® is used for reference purposes only.