Maintain Your Pipes and Your Business

Make A Portable Water Filter

by Sheila Vasquez

Treat contaminated water when you are hiking in the woods by making a portable water filter. Knowing how to make one of these items can also come in handy if your water supply at your home is deemed unsafe to drink. You only need some basic materials that don't cost much to complete this project.

Use The Following Items

  • clear plastic jug 
  • sand
  • small pebbles
  • powdered charcoal
  • large brick or rock
  • hammer
  • long-handled spoon
  • piece of fabric
  • scissors
  • knife
  • water
  • pot 
  • small fire or cooking source
  • matches
  • water collection containers

Add The Layers To The Filter

Poke small holes that are close together in the bottom of the plastic container with a knife. Create a filtering system inside of the container. Each layer will remove impurities that are commonly found in water. Line the bottom of the container with a couple inches of clean, dry pebbles. Use a long, handled spoon to smooth them out so that they are the same thickness across the bottom. Add a piece of fabric on top of the pebbles. Trim the edges so that it fits well.

Add a couple inches of sand on top of the fabric. Place a layer of powdered charcoal on top of the sand. To crush the charcoal into a fine powder, use a heavy object to crumble it up. Setting the charcoal pieces on a hard surface and hitting them with a brick or large rock will work well. A hammer can also be used to do this.

Pour The Water In And Boil It

Use a collection container to hold the water that is going to be purified. Place a bowl underneath the water filter to hold the water as it passes through the layers. Once all of the water has been filtered, boiling it will remove any bacteria that remains. Heat the water until it comes to a rolling boil. Once it has cooled down, it will be safe for you to drink. 

Keep Supplies On Hand

Make an emergency kit to hold all of the filtering supplies in case clean water is not available to drink. Each of the filtering items can be placed in small plastic bags that seal. You will be prepared in case of an emergency and will be able to drink water that you find from a stream, pond, lake, or that is collected in a container while it is raining. 

For residential water treatment, work with a service like