Pre-filters are Protection for Your Water Equipment

Homes on private wells will use a sediment pre-filter to protect their water treatment equipment.  From time to time, debris and/or iron will enter the home from a private well.  A pre-filter is used to catch any sediment and/or iron from entering the water treatment equipment creating unnecessary service calls.

What type of pre-filter should I use?

Sediment pre-filters are rated in microns.  The micron rating refers to the sediment size that the filter will capture.  For a household application, a 50 micron filter is best.  This type of filter will be able to catch debris, but still allow normal flow of water through the filter.  With a smaller rated micron filter, these filters need to be changed more often, plug up with sediment faster, and often decrease the household water  pressure.  We use a string woven sediment pre-filter that will fit filter housings for 3/4″ and 1″ piping.

When should I change my pre-filter?

Every home is different in the length of time a pre-filter should be changed depending on the amount of sediment entering the home from the well.  A typical time frame is 2-4 months between filter changes.

1. Remove the existing pre-filter from the filter housing.  When looking down on the filter, if the inside of the filter is a white color, then the filter can be used for a longer period of time.  If the inside of the filter is a brown/orange color, then the filter will need to be changed sooner.

2. If the water pressure in your home has decreased.  Often times, the pre-filter will get plugged with sediment not allowing enough water to pass through the filter and supply your home.

3. If a sulfur odor develops in your cold water.  An unchanged filters often breeds bacteria which will cause a sulfur odor in your cold water.  If this is the cause and when changing the filter, add a small cap full of non-scented household bleach to disinfect the filter housing from bacteria.

What tools will I need to change my pre-filter?

– properly sized filter (50 micron)

– filter wrench or a big pair of pliers

– cap full of non-scented household bleach or chlorine

– food grade silicone

– a dry rag

How do I change my pre-filter?

1.Shut the water off by either turning off the valves before and after the sediment filter or turning off the shut off valve at the well tank.  If turning off the water at the well tank, after turning off the valve, run a cold water faucet, preferably in a basement or the lowest point in the home, until the water stops or trickles out.

2. Using a filter wrench or a large pair of pliers, unscrew the filter housing and remove the old filter.  Notice: Water will continue to drain out of the pipes

3. Put one cap full of non-scented household bleach or chlorine into the filter housing.

4. Check to make sure the o-ring has silicone on it and the o-ring has not fallen out of the filter housing.

5. Put the new pre-filter in the filter housing and hand tighten the filter housing to the piping.

6. Wipe down the filter housing with a rag so it is dry.

7. Turn the water back on slowly.

8. Check for leaks.

Download Instructions for changing your pre-filter.

I’ve changed my pre-filter and it is leaking?

– Tighten the filter housing with the filter wrench or big pliers.  Sometimes hand tightening is not enough.  Only tighten with wrench or pliers slightly so it is easier to remove for the next filter change.

– Check the o-ring seal in the filter housing.  Sometimes they become caught and do not seat in the correct position.  Make sure the o-ring does not have a buildup of sand, dirt, or other foreign material.  It is best to wipe the o-ring with a towel and apply food grade silicone on the o-ring.

– If questions arise during this filter change, please call our office at (815) 385-3093.