Charcoal filter


This filter uses either ordinary, locally available granular charcoal or a more effective (but also more expensive) activated carbon product. Applied primarily to improve the taste, odor and color of drinking water. Mostly used within combined, commercial HWTS units (e.g. Tulip siphon filter, IRF or AquaEst Rain PC).


Moderately expensive. Costs depend on the used materials and the applied activation method.


Can be applied for household level, but operation and maintenance (e.g. replacing the filter material in time) needs careful attention of the users. Central authorities might recommend other treatment options. Difficult to check final water quality at the household level.


Carbonaceous materials are possibly locally available. But in case of using wood it might contribute to deforestation. Highly contaminated carbon or sludge from cleaning requires safe disposal. If dumped untreated, leaching may lead to groundwater contamination.


Charcoal needs to be renewed regularly. If left unused for some time, it can become breeding ground for harmful bacteria. Reactivation is achieved through the burning off of organic contaminants. Reactivation frequency depends on medium and water quality.


User acceptance expected to be good since charcoal filters can be effective in removing tastes, odours and colour. But there is contamination risk if carbon is not replaced in time. Reduced water quality is not necessarily noticed immediately by users.

Relevant remarks:

No relevant remarks for Charcoal filter.