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Gravity Water Filter: Pros and Cons

By Jeff Wise September 01, 2020

Gravity Water Filter Pros and Cons

If you are looking for a gravity water filter system this article is for you.

In this post we look at the pros and cons of each sort of home water filtration system.

We are specifically going to look at the pros and cons of buying and using a gravity water filtration system.

Our family prefers the Berkey system but you can decide for yourself.

What are Different Types of Water Filtration Systems?

There are five main types of water filtration systems available that aren't gravity fed necessarily.

They work in different ways. In the interests of clarity, here is a quick explanation of each of them:

  • Distillation Systems – These heat up the water and collect the resulting steam, when it condenses.
  • Reverse Osmosis – Water is passed through fine membranes, which removes the impurities.
  • Ultraviolet – Some germs can be killed by ultraviolet light, which is why some filtration systems use ultraviolet light.
  • Ceramic Filters – These systems are the earliest form of osmosis system. Water is forced, under a little pressure, through the ceramic filter.
  • Catalytic Conversion – These systems leave the harmful elements in the water, but neutralize them. This simple process renders the water safe for human consumption.

What is a Gravity Water Filter?

A gravity fed water filter system like a Berkey®, is a very simple system that usually have micro-pores within a self-sterilizing and recleanable purification element.

The micro-pores are so small that pathogenic bacteria is not able to pass through it. 

Water is fed into a tank. The weight of the water allows it to flow over and through the filters. That purified water is gathered in a tank under the filtration system.

As the name indicates, the system uses the natural force of gravity to allow water to flow over the filters.

Many modern filtration systems are powered. They use a pump to force the water across the filtration systems.

Some under sink systems use the natural flow that occurs when a faucet is opened to draw water through the filtration system.

Are Gravity Fed Systems Efficient?

Provided you buy a good quality system that is fitted with an efficient gravity fed water filter, these systems are very efficient.

The filtration system we recommend is made by Berkey® of course!

Our systems have passed numerous independent laboratory tests and done so with flying colors.

Their water systems filter out virtually everything. The test results are so good that they exceed the measuring limits of the labs that tested these gravity or drip-fed water filtration systems.

In other words, the level of most contaminants was so low as to be undetectable. The labs instruments simply could not find any trace of them.

This efficiency and the fact that the system does not require any power to work makes them the perfect water purification system for use in an emergency. They can also be assembled without and special tools.

Types of Gravity or Drip Fed Water Purification Systems

There are several types of gravity fed water purification systems available. For decades, all public water was filtered in this way.

In fact, in many parts of the world this is still how water destined for public consumption is cleansed.

Public Works Systems

These gravity fed systems usually consist of a series of large tanks filled with different filtration mediums. The systems are normally set up so that water flows unaided from tank to tank.

In each tank different parasites, particulates and viruses are removed from the water. By the time the water has gone through the entire tank system it is safe to drink.

Some communities in wilderness areas still set these systems up. However, the majority now opt for a system where each household has their own on site filtration systems.

In House Gravity Water Filtration

There are two main types of gravity filtration systems. Externally fed, and internally fed.


If you already have mains water coming to a property or have a wild source of water with a pump, you can install an externally fed gravity system.

The top tank is fed with water, which goes through the filters and a bottom tank holds the water. The purified water can then be fed into the home with the aid of a pump or gravity.

Internal or Counter Top Water Filtration System

Most homes only need a counter top system. They work in the same way, but sit on a countertop or a small table.

The homeowners feeds water into the system manually, by taking the lid off the top tank and filling it up.

Gravity pushes the water past the filter and it is held in a bottom tank. The homeowner only has to put a jug under the tap in the bottom tank to get fresh water.

Things to Consider When Buying a Gravity Fed Water Filtration System

Now you know what these systems offer, here is a checklist to help you to buy the right one for you and your family.

Water Quality and Capabilities

The most important consideration is the quality of the water that the filtration system produces. There is no point in buying a system that cannot cope with being fed water from wild sources. If you are going to take the time to buy and use a filter system you want to make sure that it is capable of generating plenty of healthy drinking water.


An important consideration is capacity. You have to work out how much water you are likely to use at any one time and buy a tank with enough capacity.

Speed of Filtration

One thing many people do not consider is how fast the system can filter water. Some systems are very slow. You do not want to have to wait 20 minutes or half an hour for the tank of cleansed water to refill.

In Conclusion

As you can see gravity fed water filtration systems are a simple, but very efficient way to provide your family with safe water. If you want to learn more or buy a great quality gravity filtration system with a proven track record, please click here.

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