The Black Berkey is the driving force behind any Berkey Water Filter System. The technology behind their manufacture ensures that every glass of drinking water that comes out of the unit is safe to drink, completely purified and great tasting.
As the unfiltered water passes through the water system, each Black Berkey works as follows:
Microfiltration of the water
Whether the water that you want to filters comes straight out of a tap or from a pond it makes no difference to the Black Berkey.
The proprietary formulation of the purification elements has more than six media types. The matrix of their compact construction contains millions of microscopic pores. The manufacturers call the path that the water follows through these pores as the “tortuous path.” Any pathogenic bacteria, cysts, parasites, herbicides, pesticides, organic solvents, VOCs, detergents, cloudiness, silt, sediment, and sedimentary minerals are removed as the water filters through. Another added benefit is that all odors and foul tastes are also removed. Of the media types used, one is high-grade coconut shell carbon.
The paths within the filter are miniscule and pollutants are blocked and cannot pass through them. They are trapped within the pores and eliminated from the drinking water in this process known as microfiltration.
Adsorption and Absorption properties
The second important function of the Black Berkey is to use its adsorption and absorption properties.
Adsorption creates an ionic barrier which resembles surface tension. Even water contaminants that are smaller than the tiny black pores are blocked from filtering through.
This is highly effective and that is why even submicron viruses are completely blocked, something that other filters cannot do without using chemicals like iodine or chlorine.
An ion exchange process attracts and electronically bonds dangerous heavy metals to the media. Mineral molecules such as cadmium, chromium, copper, lead, mercury and aluminum are extracted.
Longer contact periods and slower flow rates
The Black Berkey uses the force of gravity to filter the water, unlike other systems which use water pressure to force the water molecules through.
The benefits of the system are that the water molecules don’t go through the filters in a fraction of a second, but pass through slowly and stay in contact with the media for a longer period.
Therefore, the media have the time to efficiently remove all the contaminants that are present.
The development of this technology took time to refine and the team who worked and tested the system included water purification specialists, researchers and engineers.
For areas that have high fluoride and arsenic in their water, Berkey has developed the PF-2 filter that can be used in combination with the Black Berkey to eliminate them.
Beneficial minerals and the Black Berkey
No ionic minerals are removed from the water, unless these are sedimentary minerals. Therefore, the beneficial minerals such as calcium and magnesium will pass right through the elements, staying in the water for your benefit.
Getting the best performance out of the Black Berkey elements
Before placing the filtration elements into the water filtration system, they will need to be primed according to the instructions. If the filters are not primed properly you may find that your water will have an unpleasant taste.
Moreover, each filter is designed to purify about 3000 gallons of water before it will need to be replaced. If you have 2 elements in the system, they will last for 6000 gallons. Depending on how much water is filtered daily they can last for years.
The filtration elements will need to be cleaned occasionally to ensure that any blocked surface pores are cleaned. You will notice that this is necessary because the flow rate will be greatly reduced.
All you have to do is to run the filter under water as you brush the outside of the elements with a kitchen sponge or soft brush, a clean toothbrush works well. By cleaning them once every six months you will ensure that you never have any problems with water flow rates.
The exterior of the Berkey Water Filtration System is made from highly durable stainless steel that is easy to keep clean. The interior of the upper and lower chambers can be washed once in a while with warm water and soap. A vinegar solution can also be used.
The Black Berkey purification elements complement the Berkey Water Filtration System and have been proven to yield the greatest volume of viruses, toxic chemicals and bacteria giving you the greatest tasting purified drinking water, no matter where you are.