How to Make A Water Filter: for Emergency & Survival Situations

How to Make A Water Filter: for Emergency & Survival Situations

Water is a necessity for human existence. In a matter of days without water, the human body undergoes dehydration and death is imminent without a source of clean water to drink. The question of how to make a water filter is, therefore, one of the most surviving questions that is among the main questions to address when it comes to emergency preparedness and survival.

In situations of survival, it can be incredibly difficult to find water, not to mention a source clean enough to consume. Fortunately, if you know how to make a filter to clean the water, you can convert potentially toxic water into one that you can safely consume for your own survival. There are a lot of methods to filter the water, all of which are effective when done correctly.

The more you know how to filter the water from the materials you can buy or that you already have on hand, the better you will find yourself in an emergency or survival situation.

Benefits of water filtration.

Clearly, the main benefit of filtering water is that it allows its consumption. Humans have to replace the water they lose daily. To replace the lost water, one should consume more than 2 to 3 liters of water through the acts of drinking drinks and eating some foods.

How to Make A Water Filter: for Emergency & Survival Situations

Water is vital to the body’s own filtration system and helps cleanse the body of unwanted toxins. It facilitates digestion, helps regulate the digestive tract and minimizes the risk of developing infections. If a person is not adequately hydrated, they can become confused, exhausted and suffer innumerable symptoms of intensity and increasing consequences.

Then there are the pollutants in the natural sources of water that can make a person very sick or worse. Different water filters eliminate different pollutants, both organic and material. Some of the things that a quality homemade water filter can separate from water include:

Contaminants Purpose for filtering
Lead Lead is introduced into the water through erosions of natural deposits. Lead is a well-known toxin and studies have indicated it as a metal that contributes to developmental delays, both physical and mental, in children. It can also contribute to the appearance of kidney problems, as well as hypertension.
Mercury Mercury is also introduced into the water through the natural erosion of the deposits. Studies have linked excessive exposure to kidney problems.
Chemical pesticides All streams contain at least one detectable pesticide. About 56% of all streams have more than one pesticide.
Microbial cysts



If animal faeces enter the water, it is possible that the microbial cysts also enter a body of water. These cysts include the following:


Cryptosporidium: Often in rivers and lakes, it leads to gastrointestinal conditions.


Giardia: a parasite and a single-cell unit that infects animals and humans during the life cycle of the cyst. This also leads to gastrointestinal conditions.

Contaminants Materials Sediments and particles in the water source.
The bacteria Vibrio vulnificus, Salmonella, Escherichia coli, Vibrio cholerae, Campylobacter jejuni and Clostridium botulinum are some examples.
Virus Poliovirus, hepatitis A virus, coronavirus or polyomavirus
Entamoeba histolytica, Cyclospora cayetanensis, Cyclospora cayetanensis and Microsporidia
The parasites Echinococcus granulosus, Schistosoma, Enterobius vermicularis, Hymenolepis nana, Dracunculus medinensis, Taenia, Ascaris lumbricoides and Fasciolopsis buski
Algae desmodesmus armatus

Simple water bottle filter

A simple DYI water filter is easy to do to separate the floating matter from the water and some additional materials. In “Prepper’s Pocket Guide: 101 Easy Things You Can Do to Prepare Your Home for a Disaster,” authors Evan Wondolowski and Bernie Carr describe how to make a basic water filter to use at home during an emergency.

How to Make A Water Filter: for Emergency & Survival Situations

The ingredients include the following:

  • Cup (alternative comparable container)
  • Coffee filters (Alternative: paper towels)
  • Sand: Thick / Fine
  • Gravel
  • Charcoal granules – Activated
  • Batting foam (Alternative: cotton)
  • Bottle of plastic cola of 2 liters.

Step 1: Use the knife to cut the bottom of the cola bottle.

Step 2: Insert the foam batting (cotton ball) into the top opening of the bottle.

Step 3: Add two or three cups of activated charcoal. The carbon carries a positive (activated) charge and is porous so it will absorb and extract the toxins from the water as it passes through the filter. Since charcoal is activated, the particular matter that carries a negative charge is attracted to the charcoal and binds to it.

Step 4: Add sand and a layer of gravel.

Step 5: Add several coffee filters (or paper towels) on the sand or gravel.

Step 6: Place a container on the bottom of the filter and pour water through the top of the unit to filter it.

Keep in mind: This filter does not remove a sample of water contaminated with organic contaminants, including viruses, bacteria and protozoa, and this is an important distinction. This type of filter only cleans the water of sedimentary matter, particulate matter, iron, radon and heavy metals in the water. It is the first step in the process of water purification. Once filtered, you can boil the filtered water to help eliminate viruses, protozoa and bacteria and any existing organic contaminants. For more information, see the video at:

Making a biofilter

A biofilter is similar to the smallest simple water filter. Both filters have layers of material through which the water is placed to separate the particles from the water. This filter will not yet remove the water from each pathogen.

You can separate most of the pathogens so you can drink the water, but your body may have battled the few pathogens that do not get filtered. It is a risk that you must take into account and you may want to follow the filtering process with another method of water purification, such as boiling.

How to Make A Water Filter: for Emergency & Survival Situations

The biofilter is composed of three layers. Each layer is made of a different material to help filter impurities.

The ingredients are similar to those of the simple two-liter bottle water filter and include the following ingredients:

  • Five-gallon food-grade trays with lids are included: four each (one for each filtration stage and one for the storage of filtered water).
  • Fiberglass screen
  • Plastic cups
  • Rubber bands or o-rings (alternative: glue for a more secure grip)
  • Hole Saw
  • Plastic plumbing accessories: for use between filter stages and for greater control of water flow.
  • Plastic connection with tube: to release water from the bio, filter once it passes through the three stages of filtration.
  • Gravel for the first stage of filtration: it has the purpose of separating large pieces of debris in the water such as insects, tadpoles, leaves and twigs.
  • Sand for the second filtering stage. It is to filter the smallest particles that the gravel did not capture. The water will then move the third layer of material.
  • Activated carbon (also called activated carbon): carbon removes some chemicals and bacteria, but not all. The air passes through the coal and this forces open the pores of the surface of the coal. The openings are those that absorb the chemicals through a bonding process. The openings also trap some bacteria. The microporosity of charcoal, once it is activated, is a surface area of ​​more than 500 m2.

Step by step instructions:

Step 1: Stretch the fiberglass screen over the accessories that will be placed inside each plastic bucket. Use O-rings or rubber bands to seal and secure the screen on the fixture. Use the glue if you want a secure fit.

Step 2: In the center of two of the five gallon cubes, cut a hole equal to the diameter of your threaded fitting. In the third five gallon bucket, you have to cut another hole just above the bottom on the side of the bucket.

Step 3: connect the cubes with the plumbing fixtures making sure that the side of the fixture screen is always facing up. To create a seal between the accessories, use O-rings.

Step 4: Connect the connection that presents the plastic flexible tube to the third cube where the hole is on the side.

How to Make A Water Filter: for Emergency & Survival Situations

Step 5: Take two bucket lids and make a hole in each one a little larger than the accessory: this loose fit will allow the buckets to remain stackable.

Step 6: With a few small plastic cups, you can make the fiberglass screen more durable. You can drill holes in the sides of the plastic cups, place a cup over each shielded accessory and stick it in place.

Step 7: with a garden hose, clean the entire system to free it of dust and debris.

Step 8: Fill three buckets, one with sand, one with charcoal and one with gravel until each is filled to 75 percent. The lower cube contains coal, the middle sand and the upper cube contains the gravel. Put a lid on the gravel bucket.

Step 9: Aeration is a process in which air is added to the biofilter: this is achieved by passing water from one bucket to another: do this several times. You can also achieve this with pitchers.

Tips to maintain your water filter.

Tip 1: Update your filter. From time to time, once your water filter seems to stop filtering the water as well as it did initially, it is a good idea to empty the filter, remove its components, clean the fundamental parts of the filter and replace the materials in with new ones. .

Depending on the filter you make, this may mean refreshing gravel, sand, activated carbon, cotton, batting foam and other materials to trap particles. Before placing new materials, be sure to give each piece a fresh cleaning to ensure that your water is as clean as possible. Once the filter is restored, consider aerating once more.

How to Make A Water Filter: for Emergency & Survival Situations

Tip 2: Keep several clean storage containers ready to store the filtering water.

Tip 3: Water takes time to move through a three-stage filter. While pouring the water on top of the filter, do it slowly: This will give the water time to move through each stage without forcing the excess water up and over the top edge. If you notice that the water rises too close to the edge of the top of the filter, stop pouring until the water falls on the other parts of the filter.

Tip 4: See the turbidity of the water once filtered. If it is still cloudy, push it through the filter for the second and third time.

Tip 5: Follow the filtration process with a boil of one to three minutes to remove the remaining organic materials. You can escape with a one minute boil in most places, but if you are in a place where it is 1000 meters or 5000 feet above sea level, a three minute boil is required.

Tip 6: cool the boiled water and store it, but use it as quickly as possible to avoid stagnation and re-infestation of the water.

Unusual DIY filtering systems.

Method 1

Coffee filters, paper towels and cotton cloth: What do the last three materials have in common? All can be used to filter large debris from water material. Keep in mind that you can take several steps through the filter to make the water clear, and not all debris and particles are captured, but it is a rudimentary method to filter the water before boiling it. At a minimum, it can make the water less cloudy. Use a coffee filter and place it face up on a container of your choice.

Using a rubber band, seal the filter to the container. Take water and pour it slowly over the filter. The same can be done with a paper towel or cloth. Refrain from using colored or dyed materials and only use white cloth. If you are going to drink the water, you should boil it for safety reasons.

Method 2

Coffee filter and banana peel: If you have a banana peel, you can grind it in a food processor and place the peel cut in a coffee filter.

How to Make A Water Filter: for Emergency & Survival Situations

Place the coffee filter on a container and pour water into it. The peel will accumulate some bacteria and may spice up the water a little. It is recommended to boil water again after filtering.

Method 3

Tree Bark Filter: While a series of DIY filters require the use of two-liter plastic bottles, in an emergency, a bottle may not be available. Fortunately, if you have a knife, you can peel the bark off a variety of trees, all of which have flexible exteriors and you can use them to make a homemade filter for water. The flexible options of tree bark include linden, cedar, birch, pine and elm. You will need to cut a piece large enough to form a cone shape when you join the edges.

Use a rope (if you have it, the roots or whatever you have nearby to tie the cone closed). You still want the activated carbon to filter the water, but you can cover the inside with grass, sand and gravel to create a rudimentary filter in a hurry.

Xylem plant filter

You can make a filter system of something as natural as a tree branch and some supplies. A pine branch will be required for this filter because the pine contains sap and the sap contains xylem. The xylem in the sap will filter the dirt and absorb the particles. It will also filter some bacteria. In fact, this type of filter is impressively affective because it is of a rudimentary nature and has been found to be 99.9 percent effective in removing bacteria from water.

How to Make A Water Filter: for Emergency & Survival Situations

That said, the filter is not perfect and can not eliminate rotavirus or hepatitis from the water, and that is why it follows the filtration process with a boil. You will need the following:

  • One bottle (2 liters).
  • A pine branch about four inches long.
  • A hose clamp
  • Something to put the water when it is filtered.

Use a knife to remove the bark from the branch, and if you have a spare piece of sandpaper, you can smooth the sides of the xylem filter. You can use this type of filter system more than once, as long as you keep the stick moist and prevent it from drying out. After peeling the branch, make sure it fits on the neck of the bottle.

If it is a tight fit, use your blade to slightly reduce the edge of the stick so that it fits more easily. Remove the bottom of the bottle with your knife. Place about 2.5 inches of the pine branch inside the bottleneck. Turn it around to reveal the open background that you just created. Fill the bottle with water slowly: the water is filtered as it moves through the bar and the sap picks up bacteria and dirt in the water that moves through it.

Common practices of purification.

A water filter system helps the water look clean and reduce turbidity. Sometimes it eliminates some bacteria, but in no way conquers all organic pollutants: this is where the act of purification comes into play. The purifying water is the eradication of any invisible contaminant in the water.


This is the typical means of eliminating organic contaminants in water. The boiling time differs from one to ten minutes. If you are not sure of the level of water safety, it does not hurt to boil the water a little more, but not so much that your only source or water will evaporate. This method of purification is also simple, simply boil, cool and use as you see fit.

How to Make A Water Filter: for Emergency & Survival Situations

Keep in mind that you must first filter the water to remove the heavy metals from the water. Even if they are boiled, not all chemicals and contaminants are controlled.

Chemical products

Chemicals are another alternative, although not everyone approves this particular purification method. The chemical products should be used according to the indications and only in the short term. Avoid using them for more than three months. Some chemicals that you can use for purification processes include:

Bleach: When bleaching water for purification, be sure to use something that does not contain phosphates, soap, fragrances or additives. The ratio of bleach to water is 1/8 teaspoon per gallon of clear water. Add the bleach to the filtered water. Shake it. Let stand for 60 minutes. The water should smell a lot like a backyard pool with added chlorine. Now add 1 pint of the solutions to approximately 12.5 gallons of filtered water for purification.

How to Make A Water Filter: for Emergency & Survival Situations

Chlorine dioxide tablets: add one tablet per quart of filtered water (this is the general rule, but verify that the product packaging is safe.You can purify the water for up to four years and it is a four-hour purification process)

Iodine: Crystalline, liquid or tablets are available. Follow the packaging for purification information. If you have a thyroid condition, you should not use iodine. If you are pregnant, you should also avoid this method of purification.

Less common purification solutions.

Just as there are several filtration systems that you can choose from, there are also several purification methods: some extremely simple and some complex. Here are several more ways to purify the water you pass through your homemade filters:


Pasteurization is another means to purify filtered water and involves heating the water to a temperature of 149F (Fahrenheit). There are indicators (WAPI) that can be used to ensure that the proper temperature is reached.

How to Make A Water Filter: for Emergency & Survival Situations

The indicators have a special grade wax inside a tube. Once it reaches 150 degrees and maintains that temperature for a quarter of an hour, the wax will melt. While it is good to treat some bacteria, this method of purification does not remove chemicals, salts or heavy metals.

Solar water disinfectant

SoDIS is the practice of exposing cloudy water to sunlight and natural ultraviolet rays over a period of time, which allows UV rays and sun heat to destroy bacteria that contribute to the emergence of waterborne diseases. The water should be in a transparent bottle and exposed to sunlight for at least six hours and up to two days if the water is extremely cloudy. If you place the bottle in a darker area, such as on the pavement where the heat is absorbed, the purification process is even faster.


There are several means to distill water, and the types of liquids you can use are varied. Unlike the boil that sterilizes water but does not eliminate minerals, the distillation of the water will eliminate the minerals and will save it to consume as well. The distillation involves boiling the water and collecting the steam.

How to Make A Water Filter: for Emergency & Survival Situations

You can use a canner pot and put the water in the bottom of the large pot. Place the canning rack inside the pan and a large, empty glass bowl on top of it. Place a lid upside down in the canner and turn on the heat of the stove. The water vaporizes, accumulates in the upper part of the lid and runs towards the center of the lid, where it then drips into the empty container. Add ice to the top of the lid to accelerate the process of making potable distilled water.

In conclusion

Knowledge is, in fact, power when you are in an emergency or survival situation. The worst time to ask how a person can do a water filter is when they need it, and learning methods to purify water sources is one of the most important parts of survival training.

While it is always wonderful to know exactly how to make a water filter in case you need a source of clean water for hydration, it is highly recommended to know more than one method to make such a filter. It is a good idea to learn two or three methods to filter the water, if not more.

In some situations, it is possible for one water filter to be better than another, easier to assemble or create, or easier to use. The type of water filter that adapts to a particular situation of emergency or survival ultimately depends on the situation itself, and you want to be ready for every imaginable situation. Just be sure to follow the filtration process with a purification process so that the water is safe to consume.


Like this post? Please share to your friends:
Leave a Reply

;-) :| :x :twisted: :smile: :shock: :sad: :roll: :razz: :oops: :o :mrgreen: :lol: :idea: :grin: :evil: :cry: :cool: :arrow: :???: :?: :!:

SQL - 66 | 0.212 сек. | 8.46 МБ