About a year and a half ago I bought the Berkey Light Water Filter With 2 Black Filter Elements (as seen in the picture to the right), and now I’m finally going to post my Berkey water filter review.
First off, if you don’t have a good way to purify water, you need to get one soon. Unless you have enough space to store several months worth of water, you’ll need to collect water and purify it during long-term disasters. You’ll have to harvest rainwater, collect it from lakes or streams, or find some other way to get it. After that you’ll have several options.
Most people boil water, but this is time-consuming and a waste of heat that could be used for cooking or keeping warm. You could also disinfect water with drops of bleach or purifying tablets, but it’s unhealthy to do this for a long time. Personally, I think your best bet is having a great water filter. All you do is pour the water in the top and after a short while you have clean drinking water.
And consider this: Even if the water never stops running, the quality is likely to go down as the economy worsens. During the hyperinflation in Argentina 10 years ago, water companies were so underfunded and so understaffed that they weren’t able to purify their water properly. They simply dumped lots of chlorine in the water and warned people not to let children or pregnant women drink it! I can see something similar happening in the U.S. and Europe in the coming years.
These are the reasons I got the Berkey Light system. But was it worth it? Sort of. Priming the Berkey filter and putting it all together was simple enough, and the water tasted great. Here’s something interesting I noticed: I usually have a glass of water on my nightstand. The next morning I dump out whatever is left because it tastes stagnant and dirty. But one day (after I had started using my Berkey filter), I took a sip of that water and it still tasted delicious the next morning!
Six months later, I ran into a problem. The filters are supposed to be good for 3000 gallons, but after only a few hundred gallons the base on the bottom of one of the filters started coming loose. It seems the bases are held in place with nothing more than cheap glue. Pretty poor quality considering how much I paid. According to what I read online this is a rare problem, so I got some replacement filters and they were fine until recently.
Lately I’ve noticed the filtered water doesn’t taste as great as it used to. As a test, I let a glass of water sit overnight and sure enough, the water tasted stagnant and dirty the next morning. Apparently these filters are done. (Yes, I could get a water testing kit and do a real test, but I’m pretty sure I know what the results will be.) Even if my family somehow went through three gallons of water a day, that’d still only be 1000 gallons and these are supposed to be good for 3000 gallons!
The other day I visited Amazon.com and was horrified by all the negative reviews of the black filters that have popped up lately. I wish those reviews had all been there a couple years ago. I would have gotten the Berkey Light With 9 inch British Berkefeld Ceramic Filters instead.
I didn’t want to purchase a whole new setup, so fortunately I found some very highly rated 7 inch ceramic filters by British Berkefeld that will fit my Berkey Light. There’s still not a single negative review of the ceramic filters, so hopefully I won’t have any problems with them. If I do, I’ll definitely make a post about it.