How to build a water treatment system

How to build a water treatment system

Equipment you’ll need:

  • Four plastic cups with holes in the bottom
  • One plastic cup with no holes in
  • Four cardboard rings to support the cups
  • Filter paper
  • Activated charcoal
  • Sand
  • Gravel
  • Dirty/muddy water


  • Fill four plastic cups with the materials, leaving small holes in the bottom for the water to filter through
  • Leave a fifth cup empty, this will collect the water at the bottom
  • Place a cardboard ring around the top of the empty cup to support the next cup
  • Next, place the filter paper cup on top
  • Followed by the charcoal
  • The sand
  • And finally, the gravel

  • Pour dirty water into the gravel cup
  • Wait, patiently, as it filters through your treatment system
  • Observe the clean water collected in the bottom cup
  • Place the cup alongside the dirty water to compare