Monday, July 26, 2010

Up-cycled Crock Water Filtration System

Many times people forget that going green and recycling can actually be done in a fashionable way. A great way to go green while cutting costs and keeping a decor fashion in mind is by up-cycling a standard water crock into a water filtration system. By recycling a glass, terracotta, or stoneware tapped spout crock you can add a conversation piece to your kitchen decor while keeping your family safe from harsh chemicals.

To make your own up-cycled water filtration system you will need:

Tea crock made of glass, terracotta, or stoneware.
Tobacco pipe filter screen.
Activated charcoal for aquariums.
Chlorine free bleach.
Aquarium gravel

A "green note" before getting started.

**You may wonder why I did not choose plastic for this project. Unfortunately, many of the modern plastics we utilize give off chemical components if re-used over time. This is especially the case in usage of water bottles. For more information on the harmful chemicals given off by the reusing of plastic water, soda, and other containers please see National Geographic sponsored site The Green Guide and Environment California's studies on plastic emissions.**

Step 1 – Sterilize the parts.

The tea crock may appear to be clean but to make sure that you are receiving clean charcoal filtered water it is best to sterilize the crock first. You can sterilize the crock by filling it with warm water and adding two tablespoons of chlorine free bleach. Seventh Generation has a wonderful chlorine free bleach that is affordable and works wonders on sanitizing household objects. Allow the mixture to rest in the crock for several hours or overnight. Drain the crock and rinse thoroughly.

Step 2 – Assemble the filter.

Tobacco pipe filter screens come in various circular sizes. Purchase the largest sized pipe filter you can find. You can also use a faucet screen for this, however, the pour time may be slower as the faucet screen holes are much smaller. Remove the tap from the crock. Most taps unscrew from the crock itself. If you do not have one that is removable then you may want to find or purchase one that is for ease of upkeep and maintenance. Slide the screen in place and reattach the tap to the crock.

Step 3 – Prepare the activated charcoal.

You will want to choose an amount of gravel and charcoal that will fill the crock to one inch above the tap. Depending on the size of the chosen tea crock this could be two to six pounds of activated charcoal. Mix the charcoal with the aquarium gravel. Place the charcoal mixture in the bottom of the tea crock. Fill the crock with tap water and allow the activated charcoal to rest in the water for forty five minutes to an hour. Drain the water and refill the crock.

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