Do you think your water is safe to drink just because it is clear? Even though it may be safe you may still be suspicious of your water but not sure if you should filter it or purify it. I believe my Berkey water filter reviews will help to “clear up” the need for water filtration.
Check out my friend Eric as we were playing with the portable Berkey to see what it could do! We took pond water, yikes, and Eric drank it after the filtration process.
RVers deal with a different sort of problem as they travel because they never know what the quality of the water that they are bringing into their RV’s. And for most RVers, hauling around bottled water is not the answer. The best way to deal with the problem of RV park water supply is to either filter or purify it.
If you are purifying your water you are trying to treat tainted water after it has reached your drinking glass. If you are filtering your water you are filtering out the bad stuff before it reaches your drinking glass. So, it is better to filter your drinking water. Can you do both? Read on!
Filtering your water before you drink it will remove impurities that water treatment facilities may leave behind. Even though the water you drink has been treated by a local municipality, or it is from a water well system, there may still be things in that water that are bad for you.
There may be inorganic and organic stuff in your water, including things added or missed by the water treatment facility like fluoride, prescription medication residue, and agricultural runoff. A good water filter like the Berkey water filters system will remove these residual compounds before you drink the water. So, what is the best water filtration system?
What Water Filtration Systems Have We Used in the Past?
There are many options available today for the consumer to consider when trying to decide on a water filtration system that will actually do what it claims to do. Certainly, not all methods are created equal!
There a water filter pitchers, faucet-mounted systems, under-sink mounted filters, whole house water filtration, etc. The water that this produces is only as good as the filter that it uses. So the determining factor then will be the filter specifications as to what contaminants the filter removes from the water that passes through it.
Pam and I have been big fans of water filtration our entire married lives, since 1989. We have tried numerous water filtration systems over the years. When we lived in a home, and we have had a few of them, each had some sort of system that allowed us to take the municipal or well water that came into our home and filter it.
Early on I felt that as long as I had a sediment and charcoal filter installed on our main water line, we would be okay. After all, we lived in the mountains of Colorado. We were right at the source of the water for most reservoirs in the state.
When we built our home in Summit County, Colorado in 1999, it had well water from a source that was one hundred a sixty feet deep. Now my driveway grade was at 9,289 feet above sea level. One would think the water would be pretty good, right. It did have high mineral content but tested okay. We did install a whole house filtration system and a water sterilizer for our drinking water.
It used ultraviolet light to zap the water with the addition of two other filters. That was probably the most sophisticated system that we had. When you live at those kinds of altitudes you drink a lot more water and we wanted ours to be the best we could get it to be. Plus we exercised a lot as we are both avid cyclists.
When we transitioned into the RV lifestyle in 2008, we took our water sterilizer system with us and tried to put it in the RV, but it just did not work out. The RV had a mainline filter system so we used a combination filter for the RV’s water needs and also bought a Zero Water pitcher for drinking water. We used that for a while until I realized it was stripping all the essential minerals out if the water leaving it somewhat acidic.
This is a similar thing that reverse osmosis systems do. We had one of those in a home that we built in the early 1990s. It was a Culligan system. It sounded good but we just did not know as much about the water filtration process as we do now. Sure, you can strip everything out of your water, but you can also take out good things in the process. Water should contain certain minerals so that it remains healthy for your body’s needs and it is more alkaline than it is acidic. That is what some of these water filtration systems do.
So now that we have been out on the road for ten years, what do Howard, Pam and Lindsey use for their drinking water? It is a little more difficult with an RV to assure good water quality, as most RV systems are basic and not designed for the full-timer. Here you can see the two canisters and the water regulator we use to be sure we don’t send more than 55 psi of water pressure into the RV’s plumbing system. If there is too much pressure things can start leaking and separate under higher pressures.
We did some research and put together a whole-house system using two filter canisters, one with a sediment filter and the other with a KDF/GAC filter. This has worked well so far. But as we continue to do more research and discover all the nasties that can still make it through our current system, we went looking for an additional water filtration system to handle just our drinking water.
Berkey Water Filter Reviews
We came across the Berkey Water Filter system recently. This intrigued us because it is more portable and there are different sized units are available based on consumer needs. It seems to be more suited towards the RVer than most other systems I have seen. Plus it is a gravity-fed system so there is no need to hook up anything. Just add the water you are getting out of the faucet in your RV, either from the city source or the onboard freshwater tank, and dump it in the Berkey.
Once the water makes it through the dual filter system, the water is ready to consume. So here is the Berkey water filter’s listing of what they remove!
So How Do the Berkey Water Filters Do it?
The process of water filtration is a complicated subject as well as a complex science. Several methods are used to create the black Berkey filtration and purification elements used in their systems. Berkey combines several methods to create its unique filtration process.
Berkey’s water filtration first line of defense is a combination of different media types that are all constructed into a very compact matrix that forms millions of microscopic pores. These are so minuscule that they produce what they refer to as a tortuous path that parasites, cysts, pathogenic bacteria, sediment and other sedimentary materials must make their way through.
These paths are so tiny that these toxins are not able to pass through them and they become trapped and not allowed into your drinking water. Berkey calls this process microfiltration.
The second process the Berkey media uses is adsorption and absorption. A barrier is created that allows the tiny pores of the filter media to block water contaminants that are smaller than the pore size itself. That is how the Berkey is able to remove the most stubborn viruses that other manufactures filters can’t without the use of chemicals like chlorine and iodine.
The next step is to remove the heavy metals ions through an ion exchange process where they are attracted to and transformed by electrically bonding to the media. The final step is to remove any final harmful water contaminates by using the gravity flow set up of the Berkey. Water molecules take several minutes to pass through the filter elements. This allows a better removal rate of harmful contaminants that can not be achieved through pressurized water filtration processes.
All the Berkey user has to do is pour water from the tap or whatever source is available, and the Berkey works to remove all harmful elements in the water leaving you with safe water to drink, and for pennies a gallon! There is also an Arsenic and fluoride filter that can be installed in the lower chamber of the unit.
What is the best Berkey for an RVer? We would say the Travel Berkey because it is the smallest of the Berkey units. It measures 18″ tall and 8″ in diameter. It weighs a little over six pounds when empty. It will produce two and a half gallons an hour and has storage for a gallon and a half. For normal everyday use this would serve one to three people a day, or in our case, Pam and I, and Lindsey, our Pembroke Welsh Corgi.
How Does the Berkey Water Filter System Compare to Others?
What Does the Berkey Water Filter System Look Like?
Here are some close-up photos of the Travel Berkey. As you can see the Berkey is very pretty and it is easy to move about the RV as needs require it to.
Here is a view looking down into the fill chamber and the two filter elements that are the magic of the Berkey water filter system.
This photo shows the two additional filters that can be added, for a total of four. These sit down in the water collection tank to filter out more aggressive forms of arsenic and fluoride if you feel you need this additional protection.
Where Can You Order This Incredible Berkey Water Filter System?
Well, since this is perfect for RVers, you want to order it from an RV company! There are other places you can go to order these units, and they make them appear like they are the same as the more expensive units, but they are not. For example, Amazon sells them for a lower price, but they give you a filter that only handles 1,000 gallons, not 3,000 gallons. Berkey dealers have to sell at the suggested retail price or they will lose their dealership. But that does not mean they can’t throw in a few bones to try and get your business. So, be careful. We recommend you buy either one of these!
Our friends Eric and Tami Johnson are fellow full-timer RVers who run their RV products business on the road. They have a warehouse in Alabama and their friendly staff handles your orders with care. Plus, if you need other RV related products, they offer some of the best, as well as unsurpassed customer support on the use of them.
So, if you want the best in water filtration and purification, and want to help keep our website a free service of useful information for those looking to full time RV, Click Here!
If you feel you must order from Amazon because you are a Prime member and need it fast, well here you go! I would hate to have you search for the link when I have it right here!
Pam and I have been using the Travel Berkey for a while now. We have found that it does travel well sitting on the counter. The rubber ring on the bottom of the stainless steel canister keeps it from moving while traveling on unmaintained highways.
Pouring water in the top yields more than a gallon of awesome drinking water in a very short period of time, which is surprising given it is a gravity-fed system. You can easily make gallons of water a day if needed. We use about a gallon of drinking water each day, so one fill in the evening assures we have what we need the next day.
Our previous system of two whole house filters worked for many years, but there are no guarantees that we were creating safe drinking water even though we researched our filter choices extensively.
The other issue we had was with that much filtration on the incoming city water line, it really cut down the water pressure in the RV. Most parks provide 40 – 60 PSI of water pressure. Unfiltered that is fine! But, add two whole-house filters and you wind up with a trickle in the shower when the RV park pressure is low or when the filters reach the end of their life. It was really becoming a problem!
Now that we have the Berkey Water Filtration System we have reduced the filtration to one KDF/GAC filter on the incoming line. Our internal water pressure is so much better! Plus, we still have safe water inside, it’s just not what we use for drinking water.
We can also now use the water out of our fresh water tank for drinking water when we are boondocking because we can put that in the Berkey to create clean and safe drinking water.
We are happy campers!!