Gift of Water filter
Gift of Water
The Gift of Water is a 2-bucket system for chlorinating and filtering water for use in Haitiian homes.
The Gift of Water filter is a two-bucket set purification system designed and manufactured by Gift of Water, an Indiana based nonprofit organization dedicated to providing clean drinking water for communities in Haiti. This system incorporates both physical filtration for particle removal and chlorination for disinfection to provide purified water.
This product has been implemented by Gift of Water which works closely with CAWST (Centre for Affordable Water and Sanitation Technologies) to ensure that beneficiaries are educated in all areas of WASH to optimize the health benefits.
The program is carried out through established organizations (e.g. medical facilities, churches, and grass-roots community organizations) in Haiti.
Goal 6: Clean water and sanitation
Communities in Haiti where water borne diseases are common.
None. However Gift of water requests others not to use its name of logo unless Gift of Water supplies all the parts along with the program to ensure correct and consistent usage. Interview with representative
This product is distributed to communities across Haiti by Gift of Water in association with CAWST and established organizations in Haiti (e.g. medical facilities, Christian churches and grass-roots community organizations).
Is this filter designed for individual, household, or community use?
Manufacturer-specified flow rate (L/hr)
Laboratory-evaluated log scale removal rate of bacteria
Does the system use microfiltration, ultrafiltration, nanofiltration, or reverse osmosis?
Laboratory-evaluated log scale removal rate of viruses
Laboratory-evaluated log scale removal rate of protozoa
Reduction levels of heavy metals and/or arsenic through this treatment system
Manufacturer-specified maximum level of inlet turbidity (NTU)
Range or value of outlet turbidity levels (NTU)
Description of materials of construction
Is there safe water storage integrated into this product?
What is the total number of liters that is recommended can be filtered?
The Gift of Water system involves prechlorination, followed by a string filter, granular activated carbon, and then post-chlorination. In the first bucket, a 67 mg tablet of free chlorine disinfects the raw water from bacteria. Water then flows through the 1 micron (μm) polypropylene string filter which removes suspended solids and larger disease-causing protozoa in the first bucket. In the second bucket, granular activated carbon is used to remove organics, chlorine, harmful chemicals, heavy metals, bad taste and residual disinfectants, and then a 17 mg tablet of free chlorine for post-chlorination keeps the product water safe from recontamination. Users access the treated water via a tap in the bottom bucket.
Watch here how to Assemble the Gift of Water Bucket-Based Water Filtration System.
These are the specific steps for users to follow:
- Add 5 gallons of water (20 litres) to the top/red bucket
- Add a 67mg (red) chlorine tablet to the water
- Allow 30 minutes contact time.
- Place the top bucket on the bottom bucket, which activates a check-valve so that water flows through the two filters and into the bottom bucket.
- Add a 17mg (grey) chlorine tablet to bottom bucket
- Allow water to run through from top bucket to bottom bucket
Users can access technical support for filters through local technicians that do monthly household visits in Haiti. Interview with representative
Replacement components include: Aquatabs (chlorine tablets 67mg and 17mg), activated charcoal to recharge filter, string filter and occasionally if lost: spigot, coupler, stainless steel washer and check valve. Reduced flow from top bucket to bottom indicates string filter needs changing. A strong chlorine smell or taste in the bottom bucket indicates activated charcoal needs changing. Interview with representative
This product is expected to last at least 3 years being used once per day (~5500 gallons) however the exact lifetime is not known; some systems have lasted over 25 years. No warranty is included but in the case of a defective part, the manufacturer changes out the part at no cost. Interview with representative
The Gift of Water system was designed to improve the health of users, remove bacteria and carcinogens, reduce turbidity, improve taste and visual water appearance. Manufacturer specified performance targets include: rapid filtration, user acceptability, and ease-of-use.
Testing by Purdue University in 2013 determined:
- 100% inactivation of the Coli bacteria,
- Effluent turbidity of <5 NTU when the influent water turbidity was ≤ 12 NTU,
- A concentration of 27 μg/L Chloroform (CHCl3) in effluent water samples as the only Volatile Disinfection By-Product found to be present.
- Average free and total chlorine concentrations in the final water samples of approximately 0.54 mg/L as Cl2and 0.58 mg/L as Cl2, respectively.
- An average decreased of 38% of UV-absorbing compounds from the raw to final water samples which implies these compounds are successfully removed by the system.
- An average of 4037 liters of water through the filter before clogging occurred which was determined when the filter reached a flow rate of 2 mL/s, corresponding to a filtration time of 2.8 hours.
- 99.99999% (7 log) removal for the φS1 phage(which infects the bacteria Pseudomonas fluorescens) suspension and 99.99% (4 log) removal for the T4 phage(which infects the bacteria E.coli) suspension
- Under the time periods studied, the water used in experiments at Purdue University were worse than what the Gift of Water filter users would experience in Haiti in coliconcentrations(1.5 – 48.3 MPN per 100mL of sample) and turbidity(0.19 – 6.64 NTU).
Potential hazards might include ingestion of a chlorine tablet, which is why the manufacturer instructs that these be kept away from children. Interview with representative
NoneInterview with representative
Costello, A., 2013, Evaluation of Process Changes on Finished Water Quality for Gift of Water System, Master of Science in Civil Engineering dissertation, Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana.
Van Zyl, N., 2001, Sodium Hypochlorite Generation for Household Water Disinfection in Haiti, Master of Engineering in Civil and Environmental Engineering dissertation, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Boston, MA.
Lantagne, D. S., 2001, Trihalomethane Formation in Rural Household Water Filtration Systems in Haiti, Master of Engineering in Civil and Environmental Engineering dissertation, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Boston, MA.
The Gift of Water system meets WHO and EPA Maximum allowable level of E. coli bacteria in drinking water. It also meets the EPA requirement for virus removal and maximum turbidity limits for systems involving alternative filtration (EPA turbidity regulations).
The Gift of Water purification system was evaluated for flow rate, bacterial inactivation, turbidity, free, total and combined residual chlorine concentrations, volatile disinfection by-products (DBPs), and UV absorbance at 254 nm (as an indicative of the organic compounds present in the water that associated with potential DBP formation) clogging rate, human virus removal and source water quality in Haiti by Purdue University in 2013.
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