In this blog, I am going to share with you a review of why we love having our Berkey Water Filter for when we are in the wilderness boondocking, as well as when we are in city campgrounds, and why Berkey Water Filters are the best filters on the market.
Our family of 7 has been living in an RV for the past 5 years and water filteration is something we have to think about often.
Learning to manage your resources is a huge part of living this RV lifestyle. If we are going on a road trip or boondocking off-grid, we always make sure we have plenty of water in our water holding tank. But before we drink that water, we like to filter it through our Berkey Water Filter to remove any harmful bacterias and such.
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When we are in a city campground, we use the city water but in certain cities, the city water has been known to have dozens of cancer-causing + other hazardous materials.
Did you know? Tap water in most U.S. cities is considered ‘safe to drink’, but EPA standards on when tap water is unsafe to drink haven’t been updated in about twenty years. This is why getting a good water filter like Berkey is so important for you and your family’s health and safety.
After getting tired of having to run to the water store every week when we were in San Diego and fill 20+ or more gallons of water for our family because we don’t trust that the tap water is safe, we decided to take our water filtering into our own hands by purchasing a Berkey Water Filter.
What is a Berkey Water Filter
Berkey is a family-run company out of Texas that uses a natural process to remove harmful contaminants. Yep, it’s all-natural, no chemicals at all!
If you know anything about us you know that we are a bit obsessed when it comes to health and wellness so finding a way to safely drink water was our top priority!
How Does The Berkey Water Filter Work
I did a lot of research on this before I bought ours just to be sure I knew it was worth the investment. After all, I’ve had numerous Brita water filters but never really thought worked.
When I looked into the Berkey water filtration system, I learned that there are 3 things that make the Berkey water filters stand out from the competition: pore size, cool barriers, and gravity. Let me break those down for you.
The matrix of microscopic pores in their water filters are so teeny tiny that pathogenic bacteria, cysts, parasites, sediment, and sedimentary minerals are completely blocked.
Any water contaminants that are tiny enough to pass through the pores are captured through adsorption. It’s a super sciency process which you can read about on their website, but basically, it means that you don’t have to use iodine or chlorine in order to kill submicron viruses.
Last, Berkey filters really slow…like really slow! This appears to be negative which I highlight below in the “Cons” section but honestly, it’s the best part of their water system.
Because it relies on the gravity of water dripping slowly through the filter, it has time to remove everything. Faster filters allow some harmful elements to go through.
Competitor water filters are only able to reduce the content of lead, herbicides and pesticides, chlorine, and sediment, but can not fully eliminate these harmful elements from your drinking water.
The fact that Berkey water filters reduce over 99% of toxic elements is really what makes Berkey stand out as a leader in the water filtration industry.
This means you have nothing to fear when the apocalypse comes and you want to clean your river water.
How Big of a Berkey Water Filter Do You Need
The Berkey water filters come in a multitude of sizes ranging from 1 quart to 6.5 gallons. I recommend getting a slightly larger version than you think you need.
We have the Royal Berkey 3.25 gallon filter. It’s best catered for 4-6 people which suits our big family and large quantity drinking needs.
How Much Does a Berkey Water Filter Cost
The pricing for these sizes starts at about $180 with the 1 quarter size and climbs to about $360 for the six-gallon size. You can see a price comparison here.
It’s a pretty big initial investment for something just meant for water, but if you look at it as a several-year investment, then it saves you quite a bit of money, compared to buying gallon jugs of water. Plus, it’s good for our planet!
Quick Set Up Guide
The Berkey is separated into two halves. Essentially you will fill water in the top half and then it drips through to the bottom half.
First, however, you need prime the filters:
- Place the priming button (which looks like a thick rubber washer) on the top of the filter and place it directly under and flush with your kitchen faucet.
- Let the water gently run into the filter until it looks like the filter is sweating.
- Continue filling for 1-2 minutes and then it’s ready to install.
- Attach the filters so that they sit in the lower compartment of the Berkey.
- Be sure to tighten everything by hand while assembling the device.
Important: You will need that priming washer button thingy again so don’t lose it!
If you notice your water production getting slower, it might be time to clean the filters. Berkey recommends only once or twice a year, but we have had to do this a little more frequently.
It’s easy to clean them. Holding the filter under warm running water, rub vigorously with a Scotch Brite pad for a few minutes and then re-prime just like you did when you first got it.
With the right care, these filters can last a decade.
Berkey Water Filters Provide Peace of Mind
I’ll admit, I was a bit reluctant to make the investment on a Berkey filter. If you, too, are still a litte hesitant about buying a Berkey filter, let me share with you a feature that made me decide to go for it.
When you buy your Berkey, you’ll get a 6-month limited warranty on defects and a 2 year prorated warranty on the Black Berkey filter. I’d purchase back up filters
- American company + built in the US
- Costs pennies after the initial investment
- Durable and well made
- Makes you self sufficient and sustainable in a survival need
- Filters really slow
- A big investment up front
If you are curious about the possibility of contaminants in your city water source, click here and take a look at Berkey’s tap water database, which tells you what harmful materials are and aren’t in your city’s tap water (hint: it’s pretty shocking).