What does "pure" water taste like? Pure water does not exist in the natural world. Naturally occurring water has any number of things that water has picked up from it's travels over, on and in the earth.


Sediment is anything inorganic that is suspended either permanantly or temporarily in the water. The brown color you see in many rivers is a result of water having picked up and carried along dirt or sand. Affect on Taste and Odor of Water - Sediment may or may not contribute a taste or odor to the water. Most often it just makes water look cloudy and unappealing. Berkey removes sediments from water leaving your water clear and appealing


Dissolved solids are minerals that have been dissolved by water as it passes over them. An common example would be dissolved salt in a glass of water. The salt will not settle out or be visible as would be the case with sediments. Iron in higher concentration is found in many areas and is responsible for the orange color imparted to things often in contact with iron bearing water. Chlorides and sulfates are two other commonly dissolved minerals. Affect on Taste and odor of Water - While dissolved iron does not affect taste to any great degree it can make the water look orange colored and unappealing. Other dissolved minerals are usually in concentrations too small to affect taste or odor or color of water. Berkey does not remove dissolved minerals from the water. Water is one of the suppliers of these essential elements to our body, so this is a good thing.


Calcium and Magnesium are a special category of dissolved solid and are the minerals most commonly found in water and in smaller concentration are healthy additions to the water. In larger concentrations they are the main cause of “hard water”. Higher concentrations contributes to the formation of an unsightly scum on the surface of water used for cooking, drinking or washing Minerals in the water will add taste to the water to a small degree; however the problems they cause in drinking water are most often related to the inability of the water to absorb other flavors. Affect on Taste and Odor of Water - Calcium and magnesium may or may not affect the taste of the water depending on their concentration. Larger concentrations may contribute some taste to the water. The primary affect on the use of water for drinking is that it makes it difficult to dissolve other flavors in the water, such as teas, or coffee and it may create a scum on top of the water when it mixes with other things added to boiled water. Berkey will not remove these minerals from the water. The accepted method for household removal is through the use of a Water Softener which uses an ion exchange process.


Chlorine is added to water by municipalities as a way of controlling pathogenic micro-organisms in the water. The health effects of chlorine have been fairly well documented and they point to chlorine and the bi-products of chlorine found especially in hot shower vapor as being the culprit in a number of ailments. Affect on Taste and Odor in Water Chlorine will affect the taste and odor of water depending on it's concentration. An extreme example of both it's taste and odor can be found in a swimming pool or even more so in a jacussi or hot tub, where concentration are usually highest. Berkey removes both chlorine and chlorine bi-products.


The existence of chemicals such as VOC’s, pesticides and benzene in water as a result of industrial contamination Affect on Taste and Odor in Water – All industrial chemicals may adversely affect the taste and odor of water depending on their concentration. Berkey removes these chemicals as well as other man-made chemicals, some or all of which may contribute to bad odor or taste in water.


Hydrogen sulfide can exist naturally in water Affect on Taste and Odor in Water – Hydrogen Sulfide gives water the smell of rotten eggs and a bad taste Berkey removes hydrogen sulfide from water.


Organic material in water may come from many sources. In some cases it is microscopic and not visible, in other cases it is visible, as in the form of green formation in or on the surface of standing water. Affect on Taste and Odor in Water Untreated water containing organic contaminates will begin to smell and taste badly over time as these organisms multiply, die off and decay. Berkey removes organic contaminants with the exception of viruses, which because of their small size, need to be killed, generally by the addition of chlorine to the water.


What’s in the Water - The taste and odor of water varies tremendously from place to place and is affected by both natural and man-made circumstances.
What’s Your Preference - Whether water tastes and smells good is dependant on your taste and odor preferences.
What Can the Berkey Do – If your water tastes and smells bad the Berkey is an excellent choice for improving both the taste and odor of your water as it removes or reduces those contaminants that affect the taste and odor of water.
What the Berkey Can’t Do – If your water has a high concentration of minerals (TDS) then you will find that making coffee or teas or dissolving things in the water is difficult. The Berkey does not remove minerals from water so you will need another solution. Water softeners, reverse osmosis filters and distillers are options to consider. Each has its own limitations and drawbacks.