If you’ve been exploring solutions to water quality problems in your home, it’s likely that you’ve encountered multiple water treatment options. There are many different types of water filtration systems to suit a wide variety of issues, and one of the most recent developments is a Birm Media Filter. So, what is a Birm Media Filter, and how does it work? Let’s find out so that you can make an informed decision.

What is a Birm Media Filter?

The Burgess Iron Removal Method or Birm, is a filtration method that can remove iron from your drinking water supply. The filtration media is a moderately dense aluminum silicon core that’s been impregnated with manganous salts. The result is a black granular filtration material that’s extremely effective at removing iron from water, A Birm filter has a lifespan of 8-10 years, and it can offer a service flow rate of 5 gpm per square foot.

How Does a Birm Water Filter Work?

A standard water filter cannot remove iron particles and dissolved manganese. These two minerals need oxidization so that the larger pieces can be precipitated and then filtered out of the water supply. Birm filtration media creates an insoluble catalyst; this enhances the reaction that takes place between the iron or manganese and the dissolved oxygen. Once these minerals have become oxidized, the Birm filtration media can then strain the mineral contaminants out of the water.

Gradually, there will be a buildup of oxidized mineral material that will coat the surface of the Birm filter. The filter needs to be clean and clear in order to work effectively, so a backwash or powerful flushing system has been added. This is similar to the backwashing system on a standard iron filter, and the exact requirements should be followed according to the manufacturer’s instructions. If an inadequate backwash is carried out, it could compromise the effectiveness of the Birm filter, and it may even shorten the useful lifespan.

Birm Filtration Flow Rates

If you need to operate multiple plumbing fixtures and water using appliances at the same time, you will need to choose a filter with the right flow rate capacity. A larger home where there are more people will typically require a Birm filter with a high peak flow rate to meet demand. If you have low quality water with one part per million of iron content, a filter with a peak flow rate of 8 gallons per minute and no other contaminants you may be able to use a fairly basic backwash Birm filter without needing any water pre-treatment. If you’re not sure about how to proceed, consult a local water treatment specialist for expert help and advice before you make a final decision.

Birm Media Filter Restrictions

If a Birm media filtration system is used to filter water that contains hydrogen sulfide or tannins, the performance can be compromised. Also, the presence of chlorine in the water will reduce the effectiveness of the filter. If there is a very high concentration of chlorine, the catalytic coating on the filter surface can be depleted. There are also water pH level limitations for Birm filtration systems that must be carefully followed. These restrictions may seem insurmountable, but it’s essential to understand that a Birm media filter is designed to work as part of a more comprehensive water filtration system. If you have any of these issues with your water, there are other water treatment systems to deal with those specific water quality problems.

By EcoWater Systems.
EcoWater Systems of Nebraska is the largest water treatment company in the state and is a member of Water Quality Association.