Berkey Instructions


1 – Upper Chamber (has holes for the filters)
1 – Lower Chamber (has a hole for the spigot)
1 – Spigot Kit which contains:

  • Spigot
  • Two washers (some are flat, some are beveled, units vary)
  • Nut

1 – Lid
1 – Lid Knob with Screw (N/A for Berkey Light)
2 to 8 – Filters (will have as many as you ordered)
2 to 6 – Blocking Plugs (0 for Travel Berkey)
1 – Priming Button (the tan donut)


  1. Ensure you are working in a clean environment. We recommend that you wash your hands before beginning as this unit will be touching the water you drink.
  1. Lower Chamber
    1. Assemble the spigot with a washer on each side of the wall of the lower canister.  If you have a beveled washer, the beveled portion of the washer should be touching the unit.
    2. ENSURE A STRONG HAND TIGHTENING.  You may need to use the spigot itself as a handle to help tighten things.
    3. Check for leaks by filling up lower unit and placing in a dry sink. Ensure the spigot assembly does NOT leak before you operate (especially overnight).
  1. Filters – If you purchased white ceramic filters, you can skip this step – ceramic filters do not require priming.

Upper Cham­­ber / Installing Filters

  • Place one of the large black washers on the main filter stem
  • Place each main filter in the upper chamber with the washer going in between the main filter and the stainless steel.
  • On the bottom of the upper chamber, screw on the wingnut until tight.
  • Plug remaining holes with included plugs. These can be removed if you purchase more filters to fill up the spots. You may have either white blocking plugs, or white or black cork plugs. If your unit contains white screw-type plugs, when installed, from top to bottom you should have:
    • Blocking plug
    • Clear washer (these may be stuck together)
    • Stainless Steel
    • Clear Washer (these may be stuck together)
    • White Wingnut

  • If you have fluoride filters, install them on the bottom of the primary filters.
  • ONLY TIGHTEN FLUORIDE FILTERS 4-6 TURNS. They will likely NOT be tight, and that is NORMAL!
  • Use caution when filters are installed, and avoid excessive movement

  1. Filter Quality Test (for Black Berkey filters only)
    • Ensure that your lower chamber is not leaking from the spigot
    • Put water in the upper chamber
    • Add 4-5 drops of red food coloring to turn the water red
    • Ensure the water is not red as it filters
    • If water is red, check for leaks around each filter and re-tighten them as necessary
  1. Allow system to filter 3-4 tanks of water to flush out any impurities before using.
  1. Make sure you never fill the upper chamber up while the bottom chamber is full. Remember, the sum of the water in the upper and lower chambers can never exceed the capacity of the lower chamber. If it does, you will have a BIG mess.
  1. You only need to re-prime things if they have sat dormant long enough to completely dry out.


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