Articles | Volume 9, issue 2
Research article
11 Oct 2016
Research article |  | 11 Oct 2016

Do low-cost ceramic water filters improve water security in rural South Africa?

Jens Lange, Tineke Materne, and Jörg Grüner

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Cited articles

Ahammed, M. N. and Davra, K.: Performance evaluation of biosand filter modified with iron oxide-coated sand for household treatment of drinking water, Desalination, 276, 287–293,, 2011.
Ali Baig, S., Mahmood, Q., Nawab, B., Shafqat, M. N., and Pervez, A.: Improvement of drinking water quality by using plant biomass through household biosand filter – A decentralized approach, Ecol. Eng., 37, 1842–1848,, 2011.
Barth, M.: Belastung und Beanspruchung durch biologische Arbeitsstoffe bei Kühlschmiermittel-Exponierten in der Metallbearbeitung, Dissertation, Heinrich-Heine-University Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf, 2003 (in German).
Bielefeldt, A. R., Kowalski, K., and Summers, R. S.: Bacterial treatment effectiveness of point-of-use ceramic water filters, Water Res. 43, 3559–3565,, 2009.
Brady, M. J., Lisay, C. M., Yurkovetskiy, A. V., and Sawan, S. P.: Persistent silver disinfectant for the environmental control of pathogenic bacteria, Am. J. Infect. Control, 31, 208–214, 2003.
Short summary
Here we investigate the suitability of a specific low-cost water filter for drinking water treatment in households of rural South Africa. Distributed in the field, none of 51 individually tested water filters produced water without distinct contamination, and more than one-third even deteriorated hygienic water quality. We therefore recommend frequent monitoring of the filter performance at the point of use and identify dip slides as an efficient tool to assess critical contamination.