Before one can enjoy the first sips from their newly purchased berkey water filter, any system using Black Berkey Purification Elements must be primed to prepare the filters for use. Fortunately, it only takes a few minutes to do and is rather easy and straightforward.
"But, what if I am only buying the black berkey filters as a backup set for the future? Once I receive them, can't I just throw them in the cabinet and forget about them?"
The answer to that question is no if you want to take advantage of the 2 year manufacturer warranty. Priming before storage will allow you to test the black berkey and verify that there are no defects with the product. This is extremely important because the clock on the warranty starts ticking upon date of receipt. If one just threw it into the closet and took it out 3 years later, only to find problems with the filter, it would be out of warranty. Even though there is a small chance of product defect, going through the priming exercise up front helps protect your future investment. Let's begin by providing you a video of the priming being executed, followed by text priming instructions, and storage instructions.
Priming Your Black Berkey Filters Video
Priming Your Black Berkey Filter
Whether you are using a Berkey Light, a Royal Berkey, or any of the other Berkey systems that utilize the Black Berkey purification element, priming is required due to the extremely small pores that make up the filter. These elements need to have water forced through them to clear the air that has been trapped inside the micro fine pores during production. Begin by opening up your black berkey box and verify that each element has a rubber washer and a wing nut attached to it. Also inside the box you'll find your priming button, a tan rubber washer. It will be thicker than the element washer with a smaller center hole. See Figure 1.
Now, follow the 5 steps of the priming process below (also shown in Figure 3 Diagram) :
1. Start by pressing the tan priming button onto the stem of the black berkey purification element with the small end facing the element.
2. Place the stem of the Black Berkey element between your fingers and press the large end of the priming button against the faucet. (see Figure 2)
3. While holding the priming button against the faucet, turn on the cold water gently, and allow the water to fill the cavity of the purification element. (see Figure 2)
4. Allow the exterior of the Black Berkey element to sweat beads of water for about 5 seconds.
5. Follow this process for each element you intend to prime and they will ready for everyday use.
Storage of your Black Berkey Purification Element
Now that your Black Berkey's are primed, you may either install them into your system and drink away, or you may store them for future use. If storing, the most critical issue to monitor is that the filters are allowed to fully dry out.
Follow these basic guidelines for storage after priming:
1. Use a dry cloth to remove any excess water from the filters
2. Air dry the filters by laying them out on a cloth on a window sill with good sun exposure. Preferably, this area should be well ventilated
3. Turn the at least once a day to ensure they are being evenly dried.
4. After approximately 2.5 - 3 weeks, the black berkey elements should be fully dry. If sun is not available, please place in warmer parts of your home and allow for longer dry out times.
5. Once fully dry, place you black berkeys in a container or plastic bag that protects them from moisture. Vacuum sealed is preferred.
6. These filters are now prepped and ready for use when needed.
Following the above steps for priming and storage ensures that you utilize the black berkey elements in the way they were intended and provides a method for you to protect your future investment. Proper storage gives you the ability to guarantee yourself years worth of clean drinking water with the ease of being able to install them directly into your system immediately when needed. This is another benefit that many other filtration systems cannot reproduce and speaks to inherent versatility and quality of the Berkey Filter Line.