How Long Does Carbon Water Filter Last: Accurate Answer!

Like other water filters, a carbon water filter is a protective barrier that retains the substances contaminating your drinking water. This filter works on the adsorption principle with extreme pores and large surface areas. 

Carbon is one of the safest filtrating agents and is often used to remove contaminants from water. The detoxifying power of carbon was first discovered by ancient Egyptians and is still used to make foods and beverages smell and taste better. 

How long does a carbon water filter last
How long does carbon water filter last?

This article will discuss everything related to carbon water filters and why you should consider having them. 

How Long Does Carbon Water Filter Last? 

Well, knowing about the lifespan of a carbon water filter is important so that you don’t have to rush out unnecessarily and replace it when it is not needed. Moreover, having an idea of the same is essential not only for the taste but also to ensure the water filter’s efficiency. 

A normal carbon water filter last up to 6 months from its initial use. However, if you are using an activated carbon water filter that is firmly protected by other filters, it may last up to 12 months. Several factors, like poor quality tap water and frequent use of the water filter, shorten its lifespan to a great extent.

How do you know when a carbon filter needs replacing? 

Although there are a hundred signs that your carbon water filter may show if it needs a replacement, the prime ones are smell and taste. If the water from the filter starts smelling and tasting unpleasant, it’s time to change your filter. 

How do you know when a carbon filter needs replacing? 
How do you know when a carbon filter needs replacing? 

In addition, if you experience a slight decrease in the water pressure, this, too, indicates an unhealthy filter. You will never get a visual hint about when to replace your water filter with activated carbon.

Instead, you must rely on the factors like taste, smell, and pressure. Despite these, it is always advised not to wait until the symptoms become prominent and to switch your carbon filter on an annual note. 

What happens if you don’t change the carbon filter? 

A carbon filter works on the adsorption principle and needs to be replaced once it reaches its maximum adsorption threshold. Failing to replace a used-up carbon filter decreases its absorbing efficiency and cannot adsorb or absorb any further contaminants. In this case, the contaminants and chemicals remain in the water and may hurt your health. 

What happens if you don’t change the carbon filter? 
What happens if you don’t change the carbon filter? 

As the carbon filter starts wearing out, it becomes quite evident in the smell and taste of the water. The unpleasant taste and smell of the foods and beverages can even make you sick. Water-borne diseases like diarrhea, cholera, and typhoid are caused when carbon filters aren’t changed periodically. 

Are carbon water filters worth it? 

Yes, carbon water filters are certainly worth it. They are pretty miraculous when removing contaminants, bad tastes, and unpleasant odors from the tap water. Additionally, carbon water filters are great when it comes to the filtration of chlorine, pesticides, trihalomethanes, industrial solvents, and arsenic from drinking water. 

Carbon water filters are expensive, but the amount spent on them is value for money. Being commendably more durable than other water filters, these filters enhance the water’s taste and keep us safe from water-borne waterborne diseases.

How do you clean a carbon water filter? 

A dirt-clogged carbon water filter’s efficiency is extremely low; therefore, cleaning it is highly essential. Moreover, the presence of the pores on its surface makes it easier for the users to wash and reuse it over time. 

Although there can be several ways of cleaning a carbon water filter, the best one is done by following the various steps:

How do you clean a carbon water filter? 
How do you clean a carbon water filter? 

💧Prepare a solution of Muriatic acid

Add two cups of muriatic acid to a clean water bucket, stirring it slowly. Consider stirring it with a plastic stirrer unless the acid gets dissolved completely. It is advised to perform the process under ideal room temperature for optimum results.

💧Rinse the carbon water filter properly

Wash the carbon filter minutely under running tap water before placing it inside the avid solution. Once you are done with the rinsing of the debris, keep the carbon water filter in the prepared solution and ensure that it submerges properly. 

💧Soak it in clean water after some days

Keep the filter and the mixture as it is for 5 days. During this time, all the contaminants from within the filter move out into the solution, leaving the filter clean. 

After you are done with this, take the filter out from the bucket and soak it in fresh water for atleast 10 minutes. This will help in diluting the acidic solution within the system.

💧Rinse the refill for the 2nd time

Refill your sink with clean water and repeat the above step. 

💧Rinse it again for the final time and refit

Last but not least, rinse the carbon water filter once again under the running tap water. Doing this will remove the remaining dirt particles and will make the filter ready to use again. 

How do you charge a carbon filter? 

Charging a carbon filter is easier than we think. To start, you just need a baking pan, soft cloth, salt, and filter cleaner. 

Once you are done with the arrangements, remove the filter from the fitted product. Rinse the filter under cool water and dampen it with a soft cloth in the water. Following this, wipe away the remaining residues and spots. 

Next, take the baking pan filled with water and add small amounts of salt per liter of water. Place the carbon filter in the salt solution and leave it ideal for at least two days. Finally, remove the filter from the salt solution, wash it under cold water and let it dry.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What can I do with an old carbon filter? 

An old carbon filter is never recommended for reuse; rather, it is better to dispose of them in approved landfills. Despite the disposal being a very obvious process, consider checking with your safety laboratory officer before proceeding. 

Can you reuse a carbon filter? 

Yes, carbon filters can be cleaned and reused at atleast 2-3 times before they wear out completely. Moreover, the presence of a large number of pores on their surfaces makes it easier to clean them properly. 

Can you reactivate the carbon filter? 

It is feasible to reactivate the carbon filter, but doing so can be dangerous. It requires igniting the carbon upto 900 degrees that were initially used to create it. Besides, reactivating the carbon releases the absorbed impurities and turns them toxic at higher temperatures. 


Although carbon water filters are a bit more high-budgeted purifiers than the usual ones, they are an admirable investment for your home. Considering their pros, these filters present you with healthy living. 

Moreover, you can perform your bit for your family by opting for a sustainable and safe water filter.