In terms of filter media, activated carbon (AC) is by far the most widely used household filter. It is natural (usually from coconut shells), sustainable, affordable and efficient. It is the best filter medium to remove chlorine from water and is compatible with all other water filtration technologies, which explains why it is used in almost every type of filter system. Carbon filter can be compressed carbon block filter, loose carbon ball or granular granular activated carbon (GAC). There are differences between GAC and carbon block filters, which are more suitable for some applications than the other type.


Removal of contaminants

When removing pollutants, both types of activated carbon are used to treat tap water to remove chlorine, chlorine by-products, volatile organic compounds, and basically all the pollutants that can be absorbed by carbon. When we check the removal efficiency, there is a difference between the two forms of filter media - carbon block filters are the undisputed winner in this category. The reason is the contact time. Due to the uniformity of carbon block, the contact time between water and carbon is longer, which means that the contact time of pollutants and carbon is longer. Because GAC is not as dense and uniform as carbon block, water passes through faster, thus reducing the time for carbon to adsorb pollutants. Therefore, if you want to remove chlorine from tap water more effectively, you can use a carbon block filter.


Pressure drop

Another notable difference is the pressure drop. Any filter media blocking the water will cause a pressure drop. Some filters can cause pressure drop, carbon filter is one of them. Because they are very compact and water takes longer to pass through, the pressure loss is higher for carbon block filters. This is not the case with GAC filters. Loose particles allow water to pass through faster, with lower pressure drop compared to carbon block filters. In systems where it is important to avoid pressure drop, GAC filters are a better choice (for example, filters used in shower, bathtub and even refrigerator filters).



Although the surface area of carbon block is large and can absorb more pollutants better, most carbon filters should not be used for more than 3 to 6 months. In terms of durability, there is no significant difference between the two filters, unless one filter is injected with silver or other bacterial inhibitors and the other does not. Carbon filters treated with antibacterial agents are called antibacterial filters, which have longer service life and better protection against bacterial growth. Since carbon filters may accumulate sediment and organic matter, these filters tend to accumulate bacteria, which is not a problem for filters that are replaced every three months or so, but they do become a problem in the filters, which are designed for long-term use. To prevent such problems, carbon filters are often treated with silver or zinc nanoparticles that prevent the proliferation of bacteria and viruses.


Application area

Due to its large surface area and compactness, carbon block filter has more applications than particle filter. Carbon block filters can be used as separate filters for countertop, sink and in-line filters to remove chlorine and improve the taste and odor of tap water. However, in most cases, carbon filters can also be used in combination with other filter media to enhance the overall pollutant removal capacity of the filter system. For example, carbon blocks are used as pre filters and / or post filters in reverse osmosis filter systems, or as prefilters in UV purification systems. In the reverse osmosis system, carbon block filter can protect the reverse osmosis membrane from chemical degradation caused by chlorine and other disinfection products. GAC is used in Shower Filters, refrigerator filters, filters designed for drinking fountains, or as reverse osmosis filters or other submerged multistage filters or polishing filters in whole filters.


So, particles or carbon blocks?

Although carbon block filters are clearly the winner in terms of filtration efficiency, in some cases, the use of GAC filters is a better choice. For example, GAC filter is a better filter medium in shower filter, and its pressure drop should be minimum. With a carbon block filter, this is not possible at all. In multistage systems, the location of carbon filters varies - carbon filters are usually used as prefilters and GAC as post polishing filters. Do not use GAC filter to replace carbon block filter in RO system. There are reasons why the manufacturer decided to place the carbon block filter upstream of the RO membrane. Generally, as much chlorine as possible should be removed from the water to protect the film from the corrosive action of chlorine. If you are looking for high quality activated carbon, please buy it from Yongruida Official. These activated carbon come from the best activated carbon brands in the industry, such as honeycomb activated carbon, columnar activated carbon, etc.