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Water Filtration for Irrigation – What You Need to Know

Gil Amit
Senior Sales Manager // 08 Jul. 2020
Gil has 40 years of experience in the water sector and oversees irrigation market sales in the USA and Australia.

Irrigation is the lifeblood of any farmer, grower, and landscaper – without water your lawns dry out, and your orchards and fields eventually wither and die.

If you got here, odds are you want to know more about water filtration for your irrigation operations. Getting the water to its destination is just a part of the process, as sometimes you don’t have a clean water source, or you deal with plants that are very particular about the water they need. So how can you get that precious water to your crops and plants, and how can you make sure it’s clean? Let’s look at the most common types of irrigation and water filtration: 

Types of Irrigation Methods  

There are several types of irrigation, with the 3 main ones being surface, sprinkler, and drip 

Did you know that farming, or more specifically – growing crops, began at around 9500 BC? The earliest crops were wheat, barley, peas, chickpeas, and lentils. Irrigation back then was completely dependent on rainfall. 

Surface irrigation 

The oldest “artificial” irrigation method – it involves covering the desired area with water diverted from a water source, such as a river or reservoir. 

Sometime around 4500 BC, the earliest instances of irrigation appeared in the Indus Valley region of India. The inhabitants of the region used water reservoirs and directed water from them in flood channels. In ancient Egypt, farmers utilized the seasonal floods of the Nile river to water their crops. 

This method is not only wasteful, and while it requires less maintenance, it can also bring many foreign contaminants to the fields, as it is hard to control the water quality. 

Sprinkler irrigation 

Whether they are the large pivot sprinklers, stationary large water “cannons”, or smaller, individual sprinklers, it is one of the most common irrigation methods out there. Sprinkler irrigation allows you to better control the area that is watered and reduce the amount of water used. 

Blog landscape Sprinkler Irrigation

Drip irrigation 

The newest of the 3 methods, drip irrigation is (per Wikipedia) “a type of micro-irrigation system that has the potential to save water and nutrients by allowing water to drip slowly to the roots of plants”. The first widespread iteration of drip irrigation using specialized drip heads rather than simple perforated pipes was developed in Israel in the 1960’s as a solution to a major problem in the region – a lack of available water. Drip irrigation allows you to release the necessary amount of water in a slow, controlled manner. 

Types of Water Filtration Methods 

The 4 major types of filters in irrigation are screen, disc, media, and sand separators. Each method provides different filtration levels and is used in different circumstances. 

Sand separators 

Sand separators use centrifugal force to separate various particulate from the water. They are not very common and are usually deployed in systems that pull water from sand-rich wellsprings. The system spins the raw water at high velocities, causing sand and other high-load particulate matter to separate from the water. The most common filtration level is usually down to 75 micron, but can go even lower if needed. 

Disc filtration 

Blog landscape disc

The way disc filters work is by passing unfiltered water through a series of stacked, flat, corrugated rings. Filtration occurs when water passes between the rings, as any particulate above the size threshold is stopped by the rings. Amiad’s disc filtration solutions can filter at the range of 20-400 microns

Screen filtration 

Blog landscape screen

One of the oldest filtration methods, screen filtration uses a metal mesh or a series of meshes to separate particulate matter from water. The water passes through the mesh, and any particulate larger than the holes in the mesh is stopped. Amiad’s screen filtration solutions can filter from 10,000 micron and down to 10 micron. 

Media filtration

Blog landscape media

Media filters work on the same principals of filtration that spring water does. Water passes through layers of matter, such as various sizes of sand grades, gravel, activated carbon and other materials. As the water seeps through each layer, the particulate is filtered down according to the predefined needs. Amiad’s media filtration solutions can filter from 130 micron and all the way down to 1 micron. These are often the larger filters, physically, because the process is slower, so to maintain a steady water flow it requires a large area to go through. 

Blog landscape TABLE2
Amiad’s filtration range – irrigation

Final Thoughts 

Choosing what kind of filtration system is right for your needs is no easy task. You need to first consider the application of the system and the flow rates that will go through it. You may also want to learn which types of filtration systems to avoid

If you need help deciding what level and type of filtration is suitable for your requirements, it is better to consult with a professional. Filtering particulate and organic matter from raw water sources is what we here at Amiad do best. We’ve been doing it all around the world, for over 57 years. If you want to find out what filtration system is best for you,
Contact us and our experts will be happy to assist you. 

Learn how to save resources with the Mini Sigma self-cleaning filter for irrigation. Read more.