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Home Drinking Water Filtration: How to replace a filter cartridge

There is no doubt about the importance of filtering and treating drinking water. Unfiltered water can be contaminated mechanically, chemically or organically, causing health problems and damage to home appliances. High quality and safety of drinking water can be ensured by a suitably selected water filter. However, it is necessary to take good care of your water filter and regularly clean it or replace filter cartridges. A specific type of the filter determines its maintenance. In this article you will learn how to maintain different types of drinking water filters.

What does a water filter consist of?

A water filter consists mainly of a filter body, which is connected to the pipe, a sump and a filter cartridge or cartridges. Other components are seals, connection fittings and clamps. Shut-off valves should be installed in front of and behind the filter to make its maintenance or replacement accessible. In case of mechanical dirt screen filters, an automatic backwashing system or valve may also be an additional component.

Common types of filter elements

Functionality is ensured by filter elements, through which water flows and which captures unwanted water impurities - whether mechanical, chemical or organic. Each filter element works on a different principle and removes other types of impurities from the water. The most common are filters for mechanical impurities, where the filter element is a fine mesh, and an activated carbon filter, or their combination.

In case of heavily polluted water, a pre-filter can be added to the filtering unit, such as a screen with a lower density, which can catch large impurities and prolongs the life of the filter inserts. This option can be recommended especially for well water and rainwater filters. Water softeners solve hard water problems, while iron water is treated by iron filters.

There are many options, so you should have a professional water analysis done to determine the right type of filter for your case. However, all filter cartridges have one thing in common - limited service life. Learn ways of cartridge maintenance and have perfectly clean and healthy water.

Honeywell Triplex water filter.

How to maintain filter elements

As already said, filter cartridges differ depending on the type of dirt they are intended for. Their maintenance therefore depends on the type of filter element. The screen in mechanical dirt filters only need to be cleaned regularly, and only replaced when worn out. Other types of filters, such as the activated carbon filter, require regular cartridge replacement.

The life of filter cartridges is determined by a manufacturer and should generally be replaced or cleaned at least once every 6 months. If you notice poor water quality or lower water pressure, do not hesitate to replace it immediately. You can easily replace and clean it yourself.

Mechanical dirt filter: How to rinse its screen

This filter is fitted with a screen of various densities, it captures small particles of rust, sand and other. In order for the home drinking water filtration to work properly and your water filter not to clog, the screen must be cleaned regularly, at least once every 6 months.

Never clean the filter cartridge screen manually or with a brush, as it is too fine and could be damaged. Therefore, the only correct way to clean is to rinse. Mechanical dirt filters can be fitted with an automatic backwashing system or valve, otherwise you must rinse it yourself. So how to do it?

First of all, turn off the water supply, using the valves on the inlet and outlet of the filter. Then carefully unscrew the filter with a wrench or by hand. Water may leak from the filter during disassembly, so keep a bucket or rag under the pipe. Remove the cartridge and rinse it carefully under running water. Then place it back and screw the filter back on together with the seal.

If you wish to replace the filter cartridge efficiently, keep a clean replacement cartridge on hand. This will significantly speed up the process, as you will be able to turn on the water supply sooner and rinse the used filter element a little later. Of course, the replacement element is also suitable if the one used seems to be damaged.

If you have a water filter with a backwash valve, you do not need to disassemble your water filter. All you have to do is connect a hose with the appropriate diameter to the backwash valve, then open it and let the contaminated water flow into the prepared container. Allow the water to run until it is completely clean.

Water filters with automatic backwashing use reverse water flow for self-cleaning. If they are fitted with a control unit, they can also independently evaluate the need for rinsing according to the analysis of various parameters.

Proper filter maintenance will ensure perfect drinking water quality.

Carbon filter for drinking water: How to replace its cartridge

An activated carbon filter has a very versatile use and solves a wide range of drinking water problems. It removes most chemical and organic impurities from your water, but does not deprive it of essential minerals. In addition, it improves its taste and removes undesirable odors.

The activated carbon filter cartridge has a service life of approximately 6 months, it must be replaced after that. The process is similar to cleaning the screen. After turning off the water supply and unscrewing the filter, just remove the old filter element and replace it with a new one. Screw the filter back on and do not forget to insert the rubber O-ring into the thread.

Some carbon filter manufacturers also offer an activated carbon filter cartridge regeneration, which removes unwanted substances trapped in the filter and restores its function.

If you use other types of filter cartridges, follow the manufacturer's instructions for maintenance. They describe their service life and ways of replacement.