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“Centrifugal” Water Filter Cleaner
Dirty water pulled in from Lake Champlain was rapidly clogging up the “whole house” water filters at Stephen Zonies’s Vermont home, so he built his own centrifugal water filter cleaner. It consists of a piece of perforated pvc pipe and a standard pressure washer.
“Our home has 3 different 12-in. long filters in it to capture particles ranging from large to small, and we were spending a lot of money to replace the filters when they got dirty,” says Zonies. “The filters sell at hardware stores for about $10 apiece, and with dirty water the cost to replace them can add up quickly.
“The problem is that in late summer the lake becomes pea green with algae and churned-up sediment from wind storms. The water starts to smell and taste bad, and the sand and grit can clog up a new filter in just 3 to 4 days. Sometimes we were able to use only 100 to 200 gal. of clean water before we had to replace the filters.
“I tried rinsing out the filters in a bucket, but that didn’t remove all the particles trapped inside. My homemade centrifugal cleaner cleans filters good enough that I can make them last for several more weeks, depending on how dirty the water is.”
The 1-in. dia. perforated pvc pipe is suspended horizontally off the ground on a pair of wooden brackets. The pipe goes all the way through the filter and is connected to a garden hose. The other end is capped shut. Zonies drilled a series of tiny holes about 1/4 in. apart into one side of the pipe.   
He positions the pressure washer with the nozzle pointed at a slight angle to the filter, and down toward the bottom of the filter. Then he turns on the hose water and starts the pressure washer.
“I slowly work the pressure washer from one end of the filter to the other,” says Zonies. “The high pressure water coming out of the nozzle just touches the bottom of the filter, which causes the filter to spin at about 200 rpm’s. The centrifugal force cleans the filter from the inside out. The holes in the pipe provide water for back-flow pressure to flush particles out of the filter. The water from the pipe and pressure washer has already been filtered, so it’s clean,” he notes.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Stephen Zonies, 754 Stagecoach Road, Waitsfield, Vt. 05673 (ph 802 496-2434; drsteve@madriver.com).

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2020 - Volume #44, Issue #2