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Iron Removal : One Filter or Two - Pro's & Con's - Tamilnadu

I live in an apartment complex in a village near Kumbakonam, Tamil Nadu. Our borewell water has 3.1 mg/ltr iron.

Since we (the apartment owners) did not arrive at consensus on installing iron removal filter, About 1 year back, I installed an iron removal filter specifically to my flat. I have a separate sintex storage tank. I tested the filtered water and it did not contain any iron.

But 2 months back, the builder had agreed and installed an iron removal filter catering to all the flats. But the test shows that the filtered water has 0.16 mg/ltr of iron.  I am continuing to use my own iron removal filter also. ie the output from the main filter is given as an input to my own filter and the filtered water gets stored into my own sintex tank.

My questions:

(1) Is it proper to use an Iron removal filter when the water has very little amount of iron (0.16 mg/ltr in this case)?

(2)Since the maximum iron is filtered at the 1st stage (I could see the complete redness in the backwashed water), I could see no redness during the backwashing of my filter. But the backwash water's colour is black. The resin used is  black in colour. Now I am worried whether the resin's life will come down drastically due to this type of use.

Please advice on best course of action possible.

R Balaji




Dear R. Balaji,

I noted that you had installed your own iron filter and subsequently, the builder installed an iron filter which allowed the supply to the entire building to be with iron within permissible limit, i.e less than 0.3 ppm.

Since you are now getting water with iron content within limits, I would suggest you stop using your own iron filter. If it all you want to use your own filter you can consider doing this only if the main/centralized iron filter is not in operation or not removing iron down to the specified limits.


Ion Exchange


Dear Mr. Balaji,

It is really appreciable to note that Builder has installed Iron removal plant.
Iron content from common treatment plant is well below the permissible limit.

Therefore you can safely use the water.

Iron forms the compound from black to red color. Therefore the back wash water that removes the iron is black in color. Nothing to worry about. You may safely continue to use your filter if you desire.

Prof. R. V. Saraf
Viraj Envirozing India Pvt. Ltd.

21 Radhakrishna, Near SBI
Paud Road, Pune 411 038
Tele/Fax: (020) 25433445
E Mail:


Dear R. Balaji

As such the desirable limit of Iron in drinking water is 0.3 mg/l (as per Drinking water Specification BIS:10500-1991 ammended in 1993) and you are getting 0.16 mg/l in your supplied drinking water, therefore you are not needed to filter or treat your drinking water.

Please also note the high concentration of iron in drinking can be removed by the use of simple candle filter available in market. However some precaution is needed to clean the ceramic candle filter periodically as filtration will become slow due to the deposition of iron on candle filter.

Thanking you

Dr. Ashok Kumar
Q/no. B-50
shyamali colony, Doranda
Ranchi -834002

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