Updated on December 27, 2023


Created on August 2, 2016

ACI Household Filter

The ACI Household Filter is a hollow-fiber membrane tabletop filter that can include one or two buckets for safe water storage and is suitable for turbid waters.

Tested By
  • Centre for Affordable Water and Sanitation Technologies (CAWST)
  • Michigan State University Bio-E facility
Content Partners


Product Description

The ACI Household Filter is a tabletop filter manufactured by the US‐based organization Aqua Clara International. It comes with two 0.1‐micron hollow fiber membrane elements in a single PVC housing, a tap, necessary installation hardware, a 75‐micron pre‐filter screen, and a backwashing syringe. The buckets must be procured separately and can be configured with one or two 20 L buckets for safe water storage.

Target SDGs

SDG 6: Clean Water and Sanitation

SDG 3: Good Health and Well-Being

Market Suggested Retail Price


Target Users (Target Impact Group)


Distributors / Implementing Organizations

Filters have been distributed through partner organizations including: Fifth Reformed Church, Mars Hill Church, and World Relief.

Manufacturing/Building Method

Filters units are assembled in-country. Locally available components include: 1/4 inch PVC housing; 3/4 inch tap with rubber seal; 75 micron pre filter screen; 1. 5 gallon bucket or larger; large back-flushing syringe. Imported components include: two 0.1 micron hollow membrane units. To assemble, install the filter unit on the side of the bucket near the bottom in line with the tap in a one bucket configuration, or with the filter installed in the upper bucket over the hole to the bottom bucket with the tap in the bottom bucket.

Intellectural Property Type


User Provision Model

Users can obtain the filters from local partner organizations. ACI requires that interested parties participate in a training program to ensure proper construction, use and monitoring of the units built in the field. Their approach centers on training and supporting individuals and/or organizations to establish and manage micro-enterprises based around purifier construction, sales and service with a focus on sustainability. The filters are distributed by partner organizations who provide filters by donation or locally established micro-enterprises.

Distributions to Date Status

More than 10,000 distributions Interview with manufacturer.

Target use case

Household use

Manufacturer-specified flow rate (L/hr)

60 L/hr when full

Bacteria reduction

6 log

Type of membrane filtration


Virus reduction


Protozoa reduction


Heavy metals and/or arsenic reduction


Maximum recommended influent turbidity level (NTU)


Effluent turbidity levels (NTU)


Material of construction

Hollow-fiber membrane, plastic, PVC

Safe water storage capacity (L)

20 L

Manufacturer-specified lifetime volume (L)

~550,000 L

Design Specifications

The filter is comprised of one or two 20 L buckets, a pre-filter screen, and two hollow-fiber membrane units. The pre-filter has a 50-75 micron screen and the membrane filters have a pore size of 0.2 microns. Water thus passes through each step in the filtration process as mentioned.

Product Schematics

Technical Support

ACI provides technical support to implementing organizations.

Replacement Components

Filter housing replacement components available on local market.


Manufacturer claims filters can treat more than 300 L of water a day and last for 10 years if properly maintained.

Manufacturer Specified Performance Parameters

Manufacturer claims filters are capable of 6 log bacteria removal.

Vetted Performance Status

ACI Household filter was included in the HIF Emergency Household Water Filter Challenge to test for suitability in different emergency scenarios for humanitarian intervention and also tested by CAWST.


No known safety hazards are related to this product.

Complementary Technical Systems

Safe water storage container for treated water for a one-bucket configuration.

Academic Research and References

Cruz, Alli, Shepard, Katie, Swanson, Tatyana Venegas, and Walsh, Amy, Balancing Competing Priorities in Water Filtration: An Analysis for AMOS Health and Hope.

“Household Filter (1B or 2B HHF),” Aquaclara.org, 08-Dec-2012. Available: https://aquaclara.org/what-we-do/water-purifiers/sam-iii/

“How We Work,” Aquaclara.org, 19-Apr-2011. Available: https://aquaclara.org/what-we-do/how-we-work/

REALadmin, “Home,” Fifth Reformed Church Grand Rapids, 23-Nov-2020. Available: https://fifthchurch.org/home/

“Mars Hill Home,” Marshill.org. Available: http://www.marshill.org

“World Relief,” World Relief, 29-Jan-2020. Available: https://worldrelief.org/

“Goal 6,” Sdgs.un.org. Available: https://sdgs.un.org/goals/goal6

“Training,” Aquaclara.org, 19-Apr-2011. Available: https://aquaclara.org/what-we-do/training/

“Our Story,” Aquaclara.org, 01-May-2011. Available: https://aquaclara.org/who-we-are/learn-more/

“Screen-Shot-2016-04-22-at-9.56.05-AM.png (976×731),” Aquaclara.org. Available: https://aquaclara.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/Screen-Shot-2016-04-22-at-9.56.05-AM.png

Evaluation Matrix, “HIF emergency household water filter challenge:,” Elrha.org. Available: http://www.elrha.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/2017-06-01_HIF-Emergency-Household-Water-Filter-Challenge_CAWST-Evaluation-Matrix-and-Report.pdf

“Evaluation & Research,” Aquaclara.org, 15-Apr-2011. Available: https://aquaclara.org/evaluation-research/

A. Clara, “Household water treatment and safe storage (HWTS) implementation case study: Biosand filters and membrane filters in Kenya program details lead organization,” Constantcontact.com, 2016. Available: http://files.constantcontact.com/53f1742b001/58b14867-0878-48f0-8540-435abee9b8f6.pdf?ver=1500921508000

“ACI_Modules.png (621×805),” Aquaclara.org. Available: https://aquaclara.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/ACI_Modules.png


Compliance with regulations

Approved by the Kenya Bureau of Standards

Evaluation methods

In the HIF Emergency Household Water Filter Challenge, filters were tested for ease-of-use, effectiveness, lifespan, robustness, and affordability and evaluated in a matrix for different disaster scenarios. There is also a logistics case study from CAWST for product acceptance which used interviewing and focus groups to test implementation and financing strategies.

Other Information

Aqua Clara International works with a number of technologies for household, facility, and industrial water treatment.

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