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Old 12-12-2011, 04:36 PM
Lemon Lemon is offline
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From a practical perspective, we should all have a $6 tube of food grade silicone caulk in our preps.


I'm not defending the shoddy workmanship, but any filter can be damaged by heavy use (abuse) in the field.
Old 12-12-2011, 04:52 PM
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I found this forum and this thread in response to a search on 'defective berkey'.

Earlier this year, Hubby and I spent hundreds of dollars for a new Royal Berkey and replacement filters. We have a ranch in the mountains, and our water comes from the creek. For the past 11 years, we have used a PUR countertop purifier. It worked beautifully, and we should have stuck with it. Instead, we bought the berkey. We have thought we were drinking purified water from it, until a forum member on another survival site mentioned the faulty filters. I finally remembered to get some red food color so I could test the Berkey. We have three filters and a plug in our unit. They only gave us one plug, so this configuration is the only way we could go. I poured the water with red dye in the top, and lifted the top to see what was happening. Pink water was pouring through one filter, and nothing was coming out of the others.

I called Berkey this morning. The young woman seemed completely unconcerned about our health after hearing that we had been drinking unfiltered stream water for months, because we trusted our berkey. She said we needed to test all of our filters, including the ones in storage, and send the defective ones back.

She also said "only 5% of the filters are defective". This means it isn't just a bad batch. It is an ongoing problem, and nobody will know if their water is safe unless they test it.

I told her that I was worried about priming the filters, testing them, and putting them back into storage wet to rot and mold. She said that if the filter candles are stood upright, they will dry out completely in 5 days.

Anyway, I highly recommend that everyone here test their berkeys with the red food dye test.
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Old 12-12-2011, 09:14 PM
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when you called Berkey, who did you call? A distributor or New Millennium?
Old 12-17-2011, 09:28 AM
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Problem finally resolved as I received my replacement filters after almost a month. Now I can go back to drinking water instead of Baily"s or beer (just joking). I will buy a set of back up ceramic filters, probably Katadyn Ceradyn or equivlent, but not black berkeys.
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Old 12-17-2011, 09:42 AM
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Is it just me or are we watching the Berkey company destroy itself?
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Old 12-17-2011, 10:41 AM
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Originally Posted by ULTRAMAGNUM View Post
Is it just me or are we watching the Berkey company destroy itself?
The peek in exponential growth should effect just about every industry that has in anyway relied on debt over the course of the past decade for operation or growth. Berkey is no exception.

You see it in different ways with different companies based on what they are selling. Food producers are shrinking the size of their packaging. Durable goods producers are cutting corners and making defective goods. Its all part of the same underlying problem.
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Old 12-18-2011, 06:10 PM
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Default 5% Failure Rate

5% is an extremely high failure number. Imagine if your Campbell's soup can's had a 5% bad rate, or bottled water - one out of every 24 would be bad. Would you purchase either? Given the criticality of this item-- it's a WATER PURIFIER-- how about 99.99999 success rate. If the local municipal water systems had that kind of QA they would be in BIG TROUBLE.

We should really sue these guys.

Paddy
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Old 12-18-2011, 06:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisInGa View Post
The peek in exponential growth should effect just about every industry that has in anyway relied on debt over the course of the past decade for operation or growth. Berkey is no exception.

You see it in different ways with different companies based on what they are selling. Food producers are shrinking the size of their packaging. Durable goods producers are cutting corners and making defective goods. Its all part of the same underlying problem.
Puhleeze.

They have all the chances in the world to buck up and provide better customer service than is being experienced.

Aparently they are not too concerned.

Let's not start blaming Bush for this too...
Old 01-23-2012, 05:13 PM
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I'm sorry I didn't get back sooner to reply. I called New Millenium Concepts. The lady that told me about the 5% failure rate was there. Berkey is acknowledging that they have had defective filters twice. In 2010, and when mine were made in March/April/May of 2011. I finally got a chance to test my filters, and started a thread about it here: http://www.homesteadingtoday.com/sho...d.php?t=428442 I've got lots of pictures there.

Berkey discusses the failures, and how to determine the date of manufacture here: http://www.berkeywater.com/Element.pdf They also have instructions on how to get to the returns form if you have defective filters.

Two of my filters separated from their bases before they could be tested. I've got pictures posted at the link above You can actually see dirt that got inside the filters plastic base while it was in use. I'm asking NMC to replace ALL of my filters. I can't trust that the remaining filters won't separate as easily as the first two did. I hope they found an adhesive that actually sticks to the plastic bases, because that was the problem with my filters, and I think it was the cause of the latest round of defective filters..

I believe that I got sick from drinking unfiltered creek water. I thought the water was purified because I ran it through my Berkey before drinking it. I had Gastric bypass surgery on November 29th. I didn't do the red food color test until December 10th or 11th. That was when I discovered that our filters were defective. I drank the unfiltered water for two weeks after my surgery.

We quit using the Berkey immediately after the red food color test. NMC told us to test ALL of our filters. Hubby finally found the spare filters in storage last week. I needed to take them somewhere with a known safe water source, so they could be primed and tested.

Before I could do that, I got terribly ill. My stomach tore, and I had to have emergency surgery. I got peritonitis, and was given massive doses of antibiotics. Was this from drinking creek water? Possibly. Probably, but I'll never know. It didn't occur to me to ask my doctor until after the infection was treated. There was no other reason for this to have happened. My stomach was empty, being 6-7 hours after eating.

Anyway I finally got to test the remaining filters on Friday, and there are photos and a description at the link I provided. I also have a picture of a filter failing the red food color test.

I want to get the word out to all Berkey owners that they need to test their filters. I don't want anyone else to go through what I went through.
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Old 01-23-2012, 05:19 PM
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This is why i purchased a distilling unit many years ago....You can always rely on the purity of steam............
Old 01-27-2012, 10:03 AM
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read the PUR purifier web site, states "Tested to remove an average of 96% of trace levels of pharmaceuticals" and stated PUR helped to remove lead/heavy metals but I could not find what % of heavy metals or list of metal other than lead it removed. do you have any infor on PUR, thinking about the pitcher system as a SHTF water filter.

thankyou for your help
Old 01-27-2012, 05:25 PM
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Originally Posted by reddragon23 View Post
read the PUR purifier web site, states "Tested to remove an average of 96% of trace levels of pharmaceuticals" and stated PUR helped to remove lead/heavy metals but I could not find what % of heavy metals or list of metal other than lead it removed. do you have any infor on PUR, thinking about the pitcher system as a SHTF water filter.

thankyou for your help
I can't answer your question. I suggest you call PUR to ask them your specific questions.
Old 01-27-2012, 06:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by paddydd View Post
5% is an extremely high failure number. Imagine if your Campbell's soup can's had a 5% bad rate, or bottled water - one out of every 24 would be bad. Would you purchase either? Given the criticality of this item-- it's a WATER PURIFIER-- how about 99.99999 success rate. If the local municipal water systems had that kind of QA they would be in BIG TROUBLE.

We should really sue these guys.

Paddy
As I understand it, the individual filter elements are in parallel, so that if one filter element is bad, the output is contaminated.

If each individual filter element has a 5% chance of being bad, the chance of it being good is 1-0.05, or 0.95. If four filter elements are in parallel, the probability of all four filter elements being good is 0.95^4 = 81.4%, so the probability of contamination is 18.6%.

Been a long time since I studied statistics and probability, so the computation could be wrong.
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Old 01-27-2012, 07:12 PM
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Default Thanks for the info

common Tator,
Thanks for all the info, photos and research
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Old 01-27-2012, 07:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JackOfVA View Post
As I understand it, the individual filter elements are in parallel, so that if one filter element is bad, the output is contaminated.

If each individual filter element has a 5% chance of being bad, the chance of it being good is 1-0.05, or 0.95. If four filter elements are in parallel, the probability of all four filter elements being good is 0.95^4 = 81.4%, so the probability of contamination is 18.6%.

Been a long time since I studied statistics and probability, so the computation could be wrong.
Our Berkey only came with one plug, so we had to put three filters in. Two of those fell off their plastic bases and the third failed the red dye test. for us, that is a 100% failure rate. It's a miserable statistic, but the math is simpler. Our filters were produced in March and April of 2011.
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Old 01-27-2012, 09:51 PM
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I bought a Big Berkey about 9 months ago (April 2010) and only have used it sparingly, just water for coffee. So not a great amount of water thru it. In december I started noticing the water went thru very fast. Then I saw that one of the two Black Berkey filters was separated at its base. I contacted the Berkey mfg (New Melinium in Arlington TX) and asked if they had a recall on the Black Berkeys and was told that no. They claim it is a rare instance and that if I have a receipt they would prorate the cost to replace. Since I can't find the receipt they say then I will have to go by the mfg date on the filters (April 3010) which would mean I would pay 75% of the cost which is an insult. They have a defective/unsafe product and won't admit it. I am looking for other filters to use in the Berkey buckets. Any suggestions?? Gabby in Oklahoma
Old 01-27-2012, 10:00 PM
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If you find other filter elements that will work in the Big Berkey (and have proven themselves to be good quality) please let me know...I am through with the Black Berkey filters...they are NO GOODand should be recalled and replaced for free! But that isn't going to happen. So I am looking for other options yet still use the Big berkey containers.

Gabby in Oklahoma
Old 01-27-2012, 10:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnw104 View Post
OK, I have been looking for water filters; I came close to getting a Big Berkey, until I read about the problems with the filters. Then I saw the Aqua Rain Filters. Not all that sure about them they seem to be good. But from what I have read the Big Berkey’s black filter is the better. So here is the question, did Berkey FIX the problems with the filters? I have been looking at other thread's so if I missed it and this has been answered please post the link to the thread.
Thanks
I've been using three Berkey's for years and don't have any problems with any of the filters (natural or black). However, I've met the man who makes the Aqua Rain and know that he's an upstanding gentleman and I know that the product is made in the USA. I wouldn't have a problem owning one.
Old 01-27-2012, 10:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gabby View Post
If you find other filter elements that will work in the Big Berkey (and have proven themselves to be good quality) please let me know...I am through with the Black Berkey filters...they are NO GOODand should be recalled and replaced for free! But that isn't going to happen. So I am looking for other options yet still use the Big berkey containers.

Gabby in Oklahoma
Here's where I buy mine.
http://www.stpaulmercantile.com/inde...=SuperSterasyl
Old 01-27-2012, 10:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Highwater Filters View Post
Katadyn Ceradyn is a comparable product. I have not had one complaint from any of my customers about them.
Katadyn makes an outstanding filter.
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