What Is a Sediment Filter? – Get Your Answer Right Here!

When it comes to water filtration systems, we can not deny the importance of the sediment filter installed inside the system. Whether the filtration works effectively or not depends greatly on this first stage. So, what is a sediment filter? Keep on reading to find out the answers.

What is a Sediment Filter and How Does It Work?

Let us give you the most detailed knowledge out of this topic.

What Is a Sediment Filter?

To know about sediment filters, we need to go through the basics first. What is sediment, and how can sediment filters be of use?

Sediment In Water

Basically, sediment is any particle of organic and inorganic materials suspended in water and can be carried away when water flows.

Sediments in water come from various sources, but generally, they are made up of sand, mud, metallic particles, chemical elements, and even some types of materials or organic residues.

What Is a Sediment Filter
Various sediment particles in our water source.

These elements cause bad effects on human health and change water characteristics, like color, smell, and taste. Besides that, sediment buildup can damage your household equipment such as tanks, purifiers, plumbing, and faucets.

For those reasons, a sediment filter turns out as a radical solution to deal with these sediments. 

So, what’s exactly a sediment filter?

Sediment Filter

In simple terms, a sediment filter is a sieve designed to remove sediments from water. However, it is crỉtical to understand that these filters do not remove chemicals and heavy metals; they simply reduce the amount of sediment in the water.

Generally, sediment filters are classified by a micron number, which refers to the size of particles they can block. A sediment filter can be used for multiple purposes, ranging from household to industrial and agricultural.

Types of Sediment Filters

Three main types of sediment filters are depth filters, surface filters, and adsorptive filters. Currently, the surface and depth filters are the most common types.

Surface Filter

Surface filters (known as pleated filters) have accordion-shaped forms made up of slim sheets of filter materials like polyester or polypropylene. The pleated style gives this filter significantly more surface covers than other variants. 

Surface filters use their large surfaces to trap sediment particles and perform effectively when filtering larger particles. Specifically, these pleated filters are washable and reusable.

Depth Filter

Unlike the surface filters, depth filters allow water filtered to pass through its thick wall, and the treatment occurs throughout its depth. The most common depth filters are wound string type or “melt-blown” filters.

Some special filters are known as “graded density” filters, which can tighten themselves when water passes through the wall. As a result, they can remove particles of many sizes more effectively than others.

Depth filters vary depending on materials, from ceramic, polypropylene, cellulose, acrylic fiber, polyester to glass fiber. Among those, ceramic filters have absolute ratings and are extremely tight to filter out microorganisms.

Sediment filter
Sediment filter.

Adsorptive Filter

Adsorptive filters come in two forms: pleated or depth. Some of these filters rely on an “electrokinetic adsorption” process, which allows them to attract and hold negative microorganisms and colloids much smaller than 2 microns. Consequently, adsorptive filters can prevent colloidal matter much more efficiently than standard filters.

How Does a Sediment Filter Work? 

Sediment filters operate through a mechanical filtration process. Mechanical filtration physically prevents those unwanted sediments from penetrating your water supply.

Sediment filters work as a screen that blocks and traps particles larger than their internal pores’ diameter. As mentioned above, not all filters are the same in size, and their “micron number” will determine their ability to remove particles.

In general terms, the sediment filter works under the same filtration principle. They have a porosity that allows water to pass through but still prevents the dirt and sand from entering them. We can see these filters as the nets that catch undesirable sediments traveling in our water.

Surface filters use their large surface areas to trap large amounts of dust and other particles, while depth filters take advantage of their depth gradient structure to block suspended particles. Their thick walls become tighter towards the core side, helping them filter out smaller and smaller particles along the way.

Why Are Sediment Filters Important?

Now we’re clear about its functions and types, we should know why it is necessary for our daily routine. Let us walk you through the four reasons below.

Filtered Water Is Much Safer Than Regular Tap Water. 

The water filtered through a sediment filter is much safer than plain tap water. Though the FDA regulates tap water, it does not mean they are 100% safe. 

Tap water alone is a non-filtered source of H2O liquid, which means it contains a lot of bacteria. Direct tap water from a well will filter naturally, but there are innumerable factors that can affect your water source’s quality. Therefore, equipping a sediment filter will protect you from consuming hazardous and harmful particles.

Filter Water Is Also Safer Than Water In Bottles.

Most people wrongly think that bottled water is completely safe to drink. Nevertheless, drinking it, in the long run, is not ideal. The FDA hasn’t set strict regulations for those bottled water companies, not to mention that plastic products are harmful to the environment. Some even suppose that tap water is safer than bottled water.

Bottled water contains lurking hazards.
Bottled water contains lurking hazards.

The Sediment Filter Is Easy To Install.

Many people think that a sediment filter installation is a challenging task, but it’s not the truth. In most cases, installing a filter is as easy as a piece of cake.

No need for fancy tools or professional training because it’s almost effortless to attach the filters to the faucet. Anyhow, homeowners can always get an affordable installation service from a technician or a plumber. How great is that!

Your Water Will Taste Better With A Sediment Filter

Sediment affects the taste and smell of water. Though human eyes cannot see small dust particles, sediment filters can. They not only get rid of those particles but also give water a more refreshing and natural taste.

For the reasons above, installing a sediment filter for your water supply is necessary to keep your water from being contaminated by external elements.

Which Is The Best Option For Sediment Filter 

For residential use, almost all types of sediment filters are suitable. Specifically, the go-to filter of most households would be the traditional 5-micron wound string. Of course, it can also be replaced by depth filters or surface filters. 

However, it would be best to choose a filter according to the sizes of faucet cartridges. Down below are renewable surface filter cartridges:

Micron Rating2.5×9.752.5×204.5×104.5×20
1 Absolute36812
0.35 Nominal48913
1 Nominal481015
5 Nominal7141525
20 Nominal8161525
50 Nominal10201525

When To Clean Or Replace A Sediment Filter?

Clean your sediment filter
Clean your sediment filter every 4 to 6 months.

Nothing is permanent. A sediment filter needs to be cleansed at a frequent interval of about four to six months. If the water tastes differently or changes color, it is time to clean or replace the current filter. 

Take these steps when you need to clean your sediment filter:

  • Step 1: Lock the main valve and open ESF housing.
  • Step 2: Detach the housing water inlet tube.
  • Step 3: Remove the housing from the cap by rotating it clockwise.
  • Step 4: Take out the sediment filter inside the housing.
  • Step 5: Rub or tab gently to clean the filter.
  • Step 6: Put the sediment filter back into the housing, then attach it to the inlet water tube.


How Long Does A Sediment Filter Usually Last?

Sediment filters usually last about six months to one year. Anyhow, if you experience unpleasant tastes in your water prior to that date, you should have it cleaned or replaced.

Can A Carbon Filter Be Used As a Sediment Filter?

We do NOT recommend using a carbon filter as an alternative to a sediment filter. Sediment filters can prevent dust particles from entering your water source. On the other hand, carbon filters remove organic compounds by adsorption, making water taste and smell bad.

Do I Need to Replace Filter Media in Sediment Filters Too?

Yes, you do. Fortunately, sediment filter media lasts up to five to ten years. Therefore, you’ll be saving your time and money by replacing your filter media instead of changing your sediment filter.


Have you fully understood What is a sediment filter? Hopefully, our post has provided you with information about how sediment filters filter out the suspended sediments in the water. Thanks to its specific functionality, the sediment filter has become an indispensable part of the water filtration process in many household and manufacturing facilities. 

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