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anyone have a Berkey water filter? How you like it?

 
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just wondering if there are any that have a Berkey water filter and how do you like it
 
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I have one.   It works well.   Some food for thought is that the New York Times ran a review of it and couldn’t match some of the claims through an independent lab.   ....this is  regarding the black filter.  But they did give the Berkeley high marks for removing heavy metals.  Now, my reporting is through a faulty memory regarding an article I read some time ago.  

When it came time to replace the filters, I went with ceramic .... which Berkey used more many years.

NYT. September 6, 2018.  
 
pollinator
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We have a Berkey but have only being using it a few months.  Our well water has high turbity and so we are cleaning the filters and priming them regularly or else it filters too slowly.

The water is noticeably 'softer' (in our mouth) once Berkied.  We even Berkey bought water to benefit from this soft feeling.

You have reminded me of an experiment I want to try.  I am putting 1/2 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda in the water after I have Berkied it to get the pH level up.  I am now going to put the Bicarb in the water before it filters and see how that goes.  

To answer your question though we are very pleased with our Berkey.  After I bought it I found out  y accident that Rhonda Patrick uses a Berkey and she is a biologist and healthnut so dilutes the negativity you hear about their claims not stacking up.  

 
bruce Fine
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progress report--
Berkey up and running, had to prime filters with bottled water, kind of nasty stuff got flushed out of new filters.
ran 3 tanks full to flush filters, instructions say once.
anyway--it works great.
clean water to drink without drinking out of plastic--wow--what a great feeling.
will work on some type of pre filter if filters plug up in short period of time. but my well water is a bit better than just plain old pond water
 
Jenny Ives
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As soon as I can get my hands on diochotomous earth I will also pre filter.  

Interesting you were able to orime with bottled water.  I assumed it needed pressure.  
 
John F Dean
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Hi Bruce,

Can you share the priming process that you used?
 
John F Dean
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When it comes to using less than clean water, I filter it through several layers of cloth before I put it in the Berkey.   Hopefully it helps the filters last a little longer.  I have also heard of people tying socks over the filters ..... hopefully clean socks!
 
bruce Fine
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primin g with bottled water
in the Berkey box was a  white envelope with a blue flexible thing, kind of looks like a cow milking machine nipple adapter, I think it might be made of silicone.
I took cap off of 16oz bottle of water and put the big end of blue thing over cap threads. then I connected other end over Berkey filter nipple.
over the sink I flipped bottle of water upside down holding gripping firmly connection to prevent leaking and squeezed bottle of water forcing it through the filter.
I used two bottles of water per filter in attempt to remove as much of the milky looking stuff that came out.
then I installed filters in Berkey top tank. and ran three tank fulls of well water through it to flush out, all the goo, or whatever Berkey calls it, filter making production dust or whatever it is.

yes Berkey is good, had to save a while to get one but well worth every penny.
I didn't have to disrupt the delicate plumbing in the old house and now have great drinking water.
 
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I'm a cheapskate and can say it was worth every cent! My homestead is truly remote and off grid and most folks buy the five gallons of bottled water to drink and truck in water totes for 'plumbing' and watering animals/gardens. I pump totes of creek water and truck them around then use that water in my Berkey to drink and ain't dead yet. I'd it's after a flood and the water is murkey I'll buy bottles water if I can. We do get flooded in a lot and then I will strain the water through.a milk filter to get sediment out before using the Berkey. The only issues I've had has been one of the plastic nuts that holds the filter in place breaking and then the water dripping through and not filtering, but it was really obvious from the sound it was not filtering.
 
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I've only had mine about a week.  So far, I like it.  The initial push for using non-tap water was for fermenting veggies.  I intended to get one over a year ago but the covid issue kinda messed up supply for my local shop.  I'm pretty sure I can tell a difference in quality over distilled, which is what I was buying.  Coffee is better with the Berkey and I don't mess around with my coffee.  
 
pollinator
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We've had ours for a few years. We use it all the time and I wish I'd bought the biggest size. (Everyone I know who has one says the same thing.)

The tap water here smells like chlorinated swimming pool water and the Berkey makes it a very nice taste. It makes nice tea and coffee too!

I appreciate the fact that we can use it to filter our stored rainwater and water from the stream if we need to.
 
pollinator
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Our city has pretty good water but the chlorine smell from the tap is dreadful. Our water also has a good bit of iron in it. I love the berkey, and we use it for almost all cooking and coffee/tea brewing. Night and day difference in clean tasting water. I was using the regular filters with the added fluorine filters, but now am just using a black filter.
 
bruce Fine
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it is so so so so good not to have to drink plastic bottled water anymore and my worries of getting ill from yuckky water are gone. but its been 3 weeks and flow is reduced. yeah my well water has , I guess its called dissolved solids.  might just be time to get the 3m scrubby pads that Berkey recommends and clean the outside of the filters. and look into ways to prefilter water before pouring it into the Berkey top tank. I wonder if a few layers of cotton cloth lining a screen strainer would work as a pre filter?
 
pollinator
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bruce Fine wrote:just wondering if there are any that have a Berkey water filter and how do you like it



Love mine!  I picked one up from the scratch and dent section of the site.

The clear glass viewing spigot optional attachment is worth it and I'd highly recommend picking one up as well.
 
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We have a Berkey Light and love it. We need a set of new filters. They are quite old but still make such a difference. The reservoirs are a clear blue color so you have to scrub them pretty often or they will grow algae, especially if its sitting in the sun.
 
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I've never been able to get the little brown thingee they give you for priming the new filters to seal sufficiently around a faucet to work.  I found a turkey baster accomplished the task.  Slow, but it worked to fill the filter with water.
 
Denise Kersting
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Bruce, for

bruce Fine wrote:ways to prefilter water before pouring it into the Berkey top tank

We do just that for our cabin in a  homemade "berk"(not the one at home on city water).  We pull water from a spring there, but there is a good bit of sediment that clogs the filters fast. I'm looking at rigging up something better, but for now we are using a wire strainer over a 5 gallon bucker to pour water through a "filter sock" from an older ceramic filter I had. The "sock" is kinda like felt, thick but porous and folded and glued into a cup-like shape about 5" in diameter. What I want to try is to fit natural  cotton felt into a 1/2 classifier like this: https://highplainsprospectors.com/products/pioneer-stainless-steel-classifiers-9-mesh-sizes?variant=40138015211700
or just use something like this: https://www.usplastic.com/catalog/item.aspx?itemid=37444
 
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We've been using a Berkey for almost six years now for all our cooking, drinking, coffee, etc. and wouldn't be without it.  We have the three gallon and wish we'd gotten the bigger one. It seems pricey I know, but it really is worth every penny, as are the optional fluoride filters. I'm thankful for our clean city water but some days the chlorine smell is just over the top and that's when I love pouring it through the Berkey the most. We love our Berkey!
 
pollinator
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I like my water filter.  However, to save money (about $150) I used the method put out by Boss of the Swamp.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CjGxUAOrkrM
 
pollinator
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Sherri Lynn wrote:I like my water filter.  However, to save money (about $150) I used the method put out by Boss of the Swamp.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CjGxUAOrkrM



Thank you for this! We just spent $250 for the travel Berkey. So far so good, but its smaller than ideal. My first thoughts on checking it out was “wow, this is so simple”. Glad to see making one is also simple. I may try making one for deer camp that way we can ditch the plastic bottles and just drink filtered hose water instead.

Did you follow the design in the video or did you use food grade plastic buckets instead? Seems like most of the online DIY write ups are using plastic, but I definitely like the idea of stainless better. Not sure why… maybe more durable. Maybe leaches less than plastic.

Also, I read some comments in the video and people recommended him attaching the top container to the bottom lid differently, like by using a food grade caulk or adhesive so that nothing can get into that gap. Seems like it could be a good idea.
 
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10 years ++++

i wouldn't ever do without - made my own top/bottom with food grade buckets i got asking at baker counters in stores (they get the premade dough and icing in them) plenty of tutorials online.. mentioned here several times

to keep sediment from clogging the filter i use rainwater until winter... i have a cheap inline sediment filter between my shallow well jet pump and the water that goes to taps, water heater etc. so in the winter that keep the filters pretty clean.. every month i clean them gently as per the instructions..

many of the suggestion here will work very well to prolong the life of the filter which you do want to do... there is  a "clogging" point of no return on the pores in the filters after which the flow will slow considerably.. found this out by "learning" lol!

never been sick - water tastes great! hope you continue to be happy with it!
 
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We've had the Big Berkey for a number of years. We like it. Our well water is drinkable, but there's a slightly odd taste. It's been tested and is safe to drink, but... The Big Berkey is supplemented by a few PUR water filters.
 
pollinator
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Another yea vote- I've had mine for 4 years now, very happy with it!
 
pollinator
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We bought our Big Berkey a few years ago.  It's been living in the closet all that time.  Last winter the 70-year-old water main from the lake our RWD gets it's water from broke.  Woke up to a rapidly diminishing flow.  Filled several 6-gal food grade jerry jugs and about half the bathtub with literally the bilge run from the last of the hilltop storage tower.  

It was ten or eleven days before the RWD could repair the main.  We filtered all our drinking water through the BB and I have to say it worked fabulously.  All our water is lake water, and it always has the algae back taste, and of course the possibility of ag and parking lot runoff.  We use a GE SmartWater filter (came with the house, just kept using it.)  About $70 a year for two complete filter changes on the GESW unit.  I have no idea how long the BB filters will go, does anyone here have any experience with life-cycle cost on the BB filter units?

On another related note, just bought one of these...


Experience is the best teacher.
 
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Eric said, "On another related note, just bought one of these...



Ask asked Mr. Google "bathtub filter for emergency water"  though he didn't know.

Out of curiosity, what did you buy?
 
Eric Thomas
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https://waterbob.com/  Two, one for each tub.
 
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we have a Berkey, 2 black filters, 2.5 gallon, the wife loves it, i can definitely tell a big difference when drinking Berkey filtered water, im not picky myself, i drink straight from the tap well water, no softener, other than a sediment filter, its straight from the ground, 3 years so far and im still alive, but the Berkey is great tho, highly suggest one
 
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Love my Berkey, have to get a new filter for or would be using it right now.
 
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Have been using the berkey for three years now and we love it for filtering our drinking water. No filter on our well and the water is pretty good. 430ft deep and sometimes I drink straight from the tap no filter and have never had a problem with it. I like the berkey water though it tastes great and I’m confident it would filter rain water or anything else in an emergency which is really why we got it but wanted to try it and never stopped!
 
pollinator
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We have had ours for about 10 years or so. Love it… use it daily… just recently changed the filter for the first time. Lol
 
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