Berkey water vs. other popular filters
This chart lays out a cost comparison of a liter of Berkey water versus a liter of water produced by other leading water filters. Although many water filters have a lower upfront cost, the fact that Black Berkey elements are cleanable and can be used year after year, and the fact that the Berkey’s stainless steel reservoirs will last a lifetime, means that Berkey is, hands down, the most cost-effective water treatment system on the market.
Cost comparison calculations in the table above are made on the basis that 2 Black Berkey elements can treat up to 6000 gallons (22,700 liters) of water before needing to be replaced. That’s the equivalent of 150 Brita pitcher filters or 60 Brita faucet filters that you don’t have to buy, and also that won’t end up in the landfill. (see Environmentally Friendly). When comes time to replace the Berkey filters, you just pay for new filters and the price per liter drops to 0.7¢/liter for the next 22,700 liters.
In addition to costing less per liter, Berkey far surpasses the performance most other filters on the market, producing safe, clean and refreshing water from any potable or non-potable water source around the world. (see Performance Comparison)
Berkey water vs. bottled water
The bottled-water industry has seen skyrocketing growth in recent years, and the range of consumer products keeps expanding in response to people’s growing concerns about the safety of tap water. However, the bottled water industry as a whole is an environmental catastrophe, draining our planet’s precious natural resources and generating growing quantities of plastic waste, greenhouse gases, and water wastage. Furthermore, bottled water can sometimes be nothing more than treated municipal tap water in a bottle, as is the case with demineralized or reverse osmosis water which is not necessarily the best option for our health (See Water Types Comparison).
In addition to having a huge environmental impact, however, bottled water costs A LOT of money. $4-5 may not seem like a large amount of money to spend on an 18 liter (5 gallons) bottle of water. However, when you do the math, many families spend $500 or more per year on bottled water. Bottled water can cost anywhere from 25¢ to 50¢/liter. Berkey water, on the other hand, can cost as little as 1.4¢/liter as a pair of cleanable filters can treat an average of 6000 gallons or 22,700 liters before needing to be replaced.
The cost of buying 22,700 liters of bottled water can be rather shocking, especially when compared to the cost of a Berkey system which starts at about $300:
Berkey water vs. distilled or R.O. water
Reverse Osmosis (R.O.) systems are typically the most expensive of the 3 options, due to the cost of the system and the expense of having the system installed. Next highest would be a water distillation unit Berkey systems are by far the least expensive of the three, thanks to the cleanable filters that can be used over and over again.
When you take all costs into account, including filter changes and energy costs, RO water and distilled water costs anywhere between 10¢ and 20¢/liter, whereas Berkey water costs about 1.4¢ per liter with the first set of filters (including system purchase), then around 0.7¢/liter for subsequent sets of filters ($150 for 2 filters / 22,7000 liters = $0.007/liter).
In addition to being the cheapest option, Berkey systems also keep healthful minerals in the water, thus avoiding the negative health effects of demineralized acidic water on our body’s internal balance (see pH Balanced Healthful Water).