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Regular maintenance of drinking water filters. Easy and worry-free

If you wish to use quality water at home, you usually can't do without a filter. Water from your supplier is full of chlorine and other disinfectants, water from your own well can surprise you with mechanical dirt, bacteria and other microorganisms. In addition, there are harmful residues of medicines or industrial fertilizers in all water resources, which water purifiers cannot remove. A filter will solve these quality problems, but the filters must also be cleaned and changed regularly. But it is completely worry-free. How?

How to pick a filter for drinking water

Before getting a new a filter, think about whether you need to filter water in your entire house or just in one of the taps. The tap water filter is much cheaper and easier to install, but it can only be recommended for recreational homes or households where your water is supplied from the water supply system. In this case, it is usually enough to filter kitchen water, which is a great way to remove chlorine from drinking water. However, if you only use well at home, water filtration at the inlet is absolutely essential for your health. This system is often part of a domestic waterworks.

Another important parameter is what kind of pollution a filter should capture from your water. You can find out the exact composition of the water either from your local supplier, which is obliged by law to provide you with this information free of charge, or by a professional water analysis. The types of pollution are:

  • mechanical,
  • chemical,
  • organic.

Water filter can be intended for one kind of pollution or multi-purpose. However, no device is universal, so you must always pick according to your individual needs and the specific composition of your water. Do not blindly trust sellers who "guarantee" that their filter will remove all unwanted water pollution without finding out exact composition of your water. That is simply not possible. Consult your decision with a professional, especially if you are looking for a well water filter. Proper well water treatment is especially necessary.

You can find more about water filters in the article How to choose a home water filter.

Is your water at home really clean? 

How to clean a water filter

Each filter works on a different principle and its maintenance depends on the type of filter.

  1. A mechanical dirt filter contains a fine screen that catches dirt and must be cleaned regularly.
  2. Filters designed for water treatment (such as carbon water filters, softeners or hard water filters, iron water filters, nitrate filters, etc.) contain filter cartridges, which must be replaced regularly, at intervals specified by the manufacturer.

You can learn all about filter cartridge replacement in the article Drinking water filtration: How to replace a filter cartridge.

We will now focus on the maintenance of mechanical water filters, or rinsing a filter screen.

How to rinse the filter screen

First of all, it should be emphasized that the screen can never be cleaned manually, with a sponge or a brush. It is so fine that any mechanical cleaning could damage it. Therefore, we basically clean it only by rinsing, and depending on the type of water filter, it is either manual or automatic backwashing.

You should do it at least once every 6 months, but if you have heavily polluted water or clogged faucets, do not hesitate to rinse more often. A clogged or heavily clogged screen no longer fulfills its function. Thanks to the correct and sufficiently frequent rinsing,  your water filters will always work correctly and keep you water of the required quality without mechanical dirt.

Honeywell filter screen.

Manual rinsing

Before manual rinsing, prepare a bucket, rag, unscrewing wrench and, ideally, a spare screen, which will make your work much faster and easier. Follow these steps:

  1. Switch off the water supply using the valves at the inlet and outlet of the filter.
  2. 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.
  3. Remove the screen cartridge and carefully rinse it under the tap.
  4. When it is completely clean, put it back to the filter.
  5. Screw on the filter back together with the seal.

If you have a spare filter element, you can install it on the water filter immediately and rinse the used one later. 

Manual rinsing with backwashing valve

In the case of water filters with a backwash valve, cleaning is a bit easier because you do not have to disassemble your water filter. The process is as follows:

  1. Connect a hose with the appropriate diameter to backwashing valve.
  2. Open the valve and allow dirty water to drain into the prepared container until it is completely clean.
  3. Disconnect the hose and close the valve.

Automatic backwashing saves your time and worries

Water filters with backwash are most advantageous for many reasons. You can completely forget about the need to clean the screen, because the filter cleans itself and at intervals determined by intelligent software according to various parameters. Although in the case of water filters with automatic backwashing, you must prepare for a higher initial investment, but it will save your time and take away all worries with its maintenance.

Honeywell automatic reverse rinsing actuator.

How does automatic rinsing work? These filters use reverse water flow for self-cleaning. In the case of the patented Honeywell backwash filter system, the filter screen is rinsed with water stream generated by a rotating nozzle. This high-pressure water stream removes and washes away any deposited dirt without damaging the screen. Small particles of sand, rust and other impurities simply drain into the waste. What other benefits does this system has?

  • Each screen has an auxiliary part that ensures water supply even during rinsing.
  • Automatic backwashing is very efficient, reliable and fast, with a minimum of water consumed during the process.
  • There is no water leakage during rinsing, so you do not have to put containers or rags anywhere.
  • You don't have to think about cleaning the filter at all or set anything, cleaning frequency is self-monitored by the filter.
  • Backwashing is completely automatic thanks to the smart software and you won't even notice it thanks to the uninterrupted water supply. Automatic rinsing takes place based on the analysis of various parameters about once every two months.
  • However, if you want to clean the filter beyond the necessary maintenance, you can start the process manually.

ATTENTION: Not all automatic backwashing filters have their own control unit. For filters that do not have this software, it is necessary to start the process manually. Although this is a very simple solution, it is not without worries. If you want to enjoy a truly maintenance-free home water filtration solution, choose filters with a control unit.