Dipo Adebayo
2 min readJan 4, 2021



One Simple Action That Will Make It Last Much Longer

Homeowners sometimes ask, "why does my water filtration system give unclean water?"

There are few things as frustrating as a wasted investment: in this case spending your hard earned cash to put up a water filtration unit only to have the water come out wrong.

Water filtration doesn't have to be a failed investment, if you understand some basic principles that go into keeping it working. I'll explain one of those principles, but first a quick run though on how filtration works- in this case, a multimedia filtration.

A multimedia filter has different layers, usually 3 or 4, the coarsest media layer being on top. Each lower layer is successively finer. A gravel media supports the multimedia system and an underdrain is located beneath the media bed.

As water enters the top of the filter vessel, it flows through the increasingly finer media layers and suspended solids are then trapped in the pore spaces of the media as the water flow throughs.

Now there's one major reason these medias fail— lack of proper backwashing. You may wonder, "what does that even mean?"

Backwashing is simply the reversal of the water flow through the filter vessel, so that it moves water upward with enough force to cause the multimedia to expand, causing the trapped particles to loosen and get washed away in the backwash water. The physical characteristics of the filter media allow the layers to resettle in their proper order after backwashing

To maintain a consistent quantity and quality of treated water, the filter media must be backwashed regularly

Multimedia filters can fail because of an inadequate backwash flow rate, an irregular backwashing schedule, or insufficient time allowed for backwashing. If backwashing is done improperly, untreated water may eventually channel through the media, resulting in a clogged underdrain or incomplete treatment.

It's important you follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for backwashing the media. A good idea is to keep a log book to record the backwashing frequency, duration and physical quality of backwash water.

With proper backwashing, all other factors being in place, you can stay rest assured that your media will serve you for much longer before it needs replacement, translating to your water filtration system continuing to provide you clean water.



Dipo Adebayo

I am a water engineer, softskills coach, writer & teen counselor. I write on hope and rising above shame, rejection, fear & failure. Follow on IG @dipoadebayo