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Clean water: how to purify water and clean water filters at home

Clean up your act and learn how to purify water at home with our clean water tips for healthy hygiene.


Reading Time: 5 minutes

Written by Eunice Samson

a glass of water in front of a window

Key steps:

Enjoy crystal-clear water with these 3 steps: 

  1. Check that your water supply is drinkable. If it is, you don’t need to worry about how to filter water. 

  2. Natural solutions like sand and charcoal are great for purifying water, but can be trickier to use. Stick to special tablets or water filters if you are unsure.

  3. Check that your water is of drinkable quality before consuming. Not all filtering processes do this, so choose your method carefully.

Water is the most essential element of life, after air, which is why it is crucial that the water we consume is clean. That's why we've put together this guide on how to filter water at home. Whether you’re wondering how to filter water from a borehole or how to purify wellpoint water, we have some great solutions for you. Once you know how to clean it, check out these tips on how you can best conserve your water!

Speak to your local authority for full details on which local water sources are drinkable and which need pre-filtering beforehand.

How to purify water with sand: the right way

Natural water sources are filtered through layers of rock, so why can't you apply the same process at home? You can certainly remove large elements from water by using sand; however, the process doesn’t always make the water immediately drinkable. There might still be bacteria present that can cause disease. Not to worry! With a few clean water tips, you can rest assured that your drinking water is bacteria-free.

If you want to know how to filter water and eliminate any remaining bacteria, try this water purification method:

  1. Get two 2-liter plastic bottles.

  2. Cut around 4 inches off the bottom of both bottles.

  3. Remove the cap from both bottles.

  4. Tie a coffee filter over the top of the opening of one by using an elastic band.

  5. Insert this bottleneck into the other bottle, ensuring that they fit well. 

  6. Pour sand into the bottle opening.

  7. Pour your water in through the top, holding it over a container to collect the water.

  8. The water should filter down through the sand, which will remove large particles.

  9. The water coming out of the bottom should be noticeably clearer.

  10. To remove bacteria from the water, try distillation: simply boil the water and use distillation equipment to condense the vapor that is released. And voila! You just learnt how to filter water at home using sand.

The Poll

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Remember: make sure that you only drink water that you know is completely bacteria-free. When in doubt, opt for a different water source.

Clean water tips using charcoal

Sand is not the only way you can purify water. Charcoal is another popular water filtering mechanism because it’s made of carbon: a porous material. This means it can absorb the harmful contaminants of water.

If you want to know how to purify water using charcoal, you’ll first need to build a filter in which to put the charcoal. To make a filter, just follow the above steps for the sand filter method. Again, the first step is to ensure that the water is safe to drink. This can be difficult to do from home, so check with local experts about any water-borne bacteria that are prone to your area before consuming anything you have filtered yourself. 

How to purify water at home with tablets

This is the safest option for people who need to purify water for drinking. Water tablets are available for purchase at various outlets and are usually very effective. But, again, remember to ensure that the water you are drinking is safe – we can’t stress this enough!

If you decide to use tablets to purify your water, it’s important that you follow the instructions on the pack and only buy tablets that are specifically designed to make water safe for human consumption.

How to use the tablets will depend on the brand that you choose, but it usually involves:

  1. Taking a large container of water (the pack instructions will specify how much). 

  2. Dropping a tablet into the water.

  3. Leaving it for the specified amount of time.

  4. Checking that the tablets have done their job before consuming the water. 

How to purify water naturally with a filter

If you want to know how to filter water, store-bought filters are definitely the most straightforward choice. But convenience isn’t the only benefit that they offer! This method is also particularly useful if you need to know how to remove iron from water. Here are some clean water tips if you’re interested in using a store-bought filter: 

  1. Buy a water bottle with a built-in filter. Ensure that it is designed to remove the contaminants present in your local water supply.

  2. When in doubt, speak to the store employees or contact the manufacturers and ask what specific things the product filters out!

  3. Check how long the filter lasts. The longer you use it, the quicker it will need replacing. 

How to clean water filters

If you opt for the store-bought option, you will need to know how to clean a water filter to keep it in good condition. You’ll most likely have a pitcher-style filter if you bought it from a store. Follow these steps on how to clean water filters to ensure that your product is smudge and mildew-free:

  1. Take the filter apart and empty out any water.

  2. Replace the filter cartridge (which should be done about every two to six months depending on the brand).

  3. Wash the pieces of the filter with dish soap and warm water.

  4. Rinse and dry the filter.

Helpful tip: If you find mildew on the lid or inside of your filter, use one teaspoon of white vinegar and one cup of water to scrub it away.

If you need to know how to clean a ceramic water filter, the steps are a bit trickier. Nevertheless, ceramic water filters are one of the best ways to ensure high-quality water and cleaning the filter yourself will save you money on professional assistance. Follow these steps if you want to know how to clean a ceramic water filter:

  1. Make sure you have gloves, goggles, and a face mask on hand (you will be handling cleaning chemicals so safety is a top priority!).

  2. Fill a bucket with half a gallon of clear water and add two cups of muriatic acid (you can find muriatic acid at most pool supply or hardware stores).

  3. Stir the mixture until it is thoroughly blended.

  4. Use a high-pressure hose to clean every part of the water filter.

  5. Place the water filter inside the bucket of water and muriatic acid.

  6. Leave it in a well-ventilated area for about five days.

  7. After five days, remove the water filter and submerge it in a new bucket of clean water. Leave it there for about five minutes.

  8. Remove the filter and rinse it thoroughly.

These are our top clean water tips for enjoying filtered water right from home. And remember, whatever you do, you must be 100% sure that the water is safe to drink before you consume it.

Originally published