Cleaning your Berkey®
Berkey® purification systems are designed to last over time, providing you with healthy filtered water for decades. The tanks are made of high quality stainless steel and will stand the test of time. However, it is necessary to take care of them from time to time and to clean them. On the one hand, lime deposits can cling to them and, on the other hand, pollutants can concentrate in the upper tank. Your Black Berkey® filters also require regular maintenance to ensure that they do not become clogged and that the filtration speed remains normal.
Maintenance and cleaning of tanks
The frequency of cleaning depends largely on the quality of the water you use. Very hard water will quickly leave traces on the tanks, which will have to be removed. The use of water other than tap water, and therefore more polluted, will also require more frequent cleaning. We recommend cleaning the tanks every 2 to 3 months, depending on the conditions of use, with a lesser frequency, of the order of one month, if you have hard water (limescale) or if you use water that you know is potentially polluted.
Which product to use
For limescale, in areas with hard water, deposits can build up on the walls of tanks, at the base of the tap or at the joints. A natural solution is to use vinegar, pure if the limescale is really stubborn, or with a 50% dilution with water. Simply spray on the areas where the limescale has accumulated, wait a few minutes and then rinse.
Caution: Do not spray vinegar on Black Berkey® filters or PF-2 filters.
To clean the tanks, you can use lukewarm water with a little mild washing-up liquid and scrub gently with a sponge. In case of known contamination, add a few drops of bleach to a container of warm water and clean your tanks with it. Alternatively, you can put the tanks in the dishwasher, taking care to remove the tap and all filters.
Maintenance and cleaning of Black Berkey® filter elements
Cleaning method and frequency
For normal use with tap water, a cleaning every 2 months is sufficient. This frequency may be shorter if your water is very hard or if the filtration rate tends to decrease rapidly. After removing the Black Berkey® elements (and PF-2 filters if present), rub each filter over its entire surface under running water with the green side of a Scotch Brite. The purpose of this operation is to remove a surface layer in order to give your filter a new skin. They should then be rinsed and re-primed before being reinstalled. Detailed information on this is provided in the documentation supplied with your purchase or on this overview page. If your Berkey® system is used with water that is not tap water, the cleaning frequency may be shorter, especially if the water is loaded with various sediments or dirt.