Information about Make a water filter with Fizzics Education | Kids Science Experiments

Create a water filter

Create a water filter

Follow FizzicsEd 150 Science Experiments:

You will need:

Three plastic cups

Two water bottles (to run two different versions


A rubber band

Old stocking material (or Kitchen cleaning wipe)

Sand and gravel with material of different sizes

Water and dirt

Create a water filter science experiment - materials needed
1 Create a water filter science experiment - dirty water to filter

“Dirty water to be filtered”

Make a a cup of dirty water and set to one side.

2 Create a water filter science experiment - cutting the bottle

Cut the bottom third off each end of the water bottles.

3 Create a water filter science experiment - cloth tied at the end of the bottle

Using the rubber band, tie a piece of cut stocking or kitchen wipe onto the opening of the water bottles. Make this fairly strong as it will need to hold the weight of the sand and gravel.

4 Create a water filter science experiment - adding gravel to a filter

In one water bottle add sand first and then gravel, in the other bottle put the gravel in first and then the sand. The idea is to see if the order of filtering materials makes a difference to how well the water is filtered… all about variable testing!

5 Create a water filter science experiment - pouring dirty water into a filter

“Water filter in action”

Balance each of the two bottle upside-down in the remaining cups. Pour the dirty water into each water bottle and see how well the dirty water gets filtered!

6 Secchi-Disk

A Secchi Disc for determining water turbidity

You could test how well you’ve filtered water using a secchi disc (full instructions here).

7 Create a water filter science experiment - water at the end of first filtration

Also, try measuring the pH before and after the water filter experiment… did it make any difference?

Why Does This Happen?

You have created a simple water filter! The sand and gravel particles act as a sieve, trapping larger material from filtering down with the water as it travels downwards. Filtering such as this occurs in the natural environment as well. There are many communities who rely on underground aquifers which have accumulated over millions of years as water has filtered through the soil to the bedrock.

A classic example of an underground aquifier is Australia’s Great Artesian Basin which covers much of Queensland and South Australia with extensions into the Northern Territory and NSW.

You can create a simple model of soil horizons that produce these natural water filters by alternating different sands and gravel in a clear container.

Learn more!


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