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Best 5 Ways to Open and 2 Ways to Prevent STUCK Water Filter Housing!

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Summary

Can’t get your water filter housing open to change the filter? No matter how hard you try and how hard you push it will not open?

Today you’ll learn five techniques to get that housing open so you can change your water filter, and two things you can do to make sure it doesn’t happen again. 

It seems so easy, doesn't it? You just unscrew the filter housing, remove and replace the filter, and you’re good to go, right? Well sometimes you just can’t get it unscrewed.

Here are 5 great tips from the pros to help you out! 

    1. Turn your water supply off. You probably have a shutoff on the supply line located before the filter. If you don't, then go to the hydro panel and turn the pump off.

    2. Relieve the water pressure on the lines before you attempt to unscrew the housing that holds the water filter. To do so, turn a faucet on inside the house to relieve the pressure and let the water run until it slows to a trickle. Then shut off the water after the filter housing to keep the water from the house from draining back.

    3. Place a bucket under the filter housing. If the housing has a relief button push that to make sure all the pressure is gone. Make sure that the filter housing is securely fastened. Brace the plumbing while unscrewing the housing and take it off. Remember, you will be turning the housing to the left...“Lefty loosey, righty tighty!”

    4. If it does not come loose, you will need to try the following: 

      a) Using a blow dryer to heat up and expand all of the outside of the housing until it becomes noticeably warm to the touch. Then knock it with a hammer and remove with the filter housing wrench.

      b) Use two filter housing wrenches together, one for each hand and twist the housing with both wrenches. Find the filter housing wrenches we used most right here!

      c) You can sandwich two filter housing wrenches together and add pipe to give you more leverage.

      d) Use a metal filter wrench, which is stronger and longer than the typical plastic one. You can buy these on Amazon in a number of sizes. If that doesn’t work, you can always add on a piece of pipe to that wrench.

    5. The last alternative I'd recommend is a Lisle Strap wrench like the one in the video below. You just wrap it around your housing and with a ½” socket wrench, add some torque to release the filter housing. You can even add a piece of pipe to the socket wrench for more torque. Find it on Amazon, here

Once you have the filter housing removed, clean out the housing and replace the filter. BUT FIRST... 


HERE ARE 2 WAYS TO PREVENT A STUCK WATER FILTER HOUSING!

To lessen the possibility of your filter housing getting stuck again in the future, I highly recommend you do these two things before replacing and tightening it.

    1. Always make sure that you check the bottom of the filter housing for o rings left behind from the old filter before putting in the new filter.

    2. Use some plumber’s clear silicone grease and or replace the o ring so you don’t need to tighten it so much to begin with to keep it from leaking. We sell this on our website because it is used often - shop it here!

And there you have it, friends! Remember, if you follow these last two steps, you will have an easier time replacing your water filter housing the next time.

 

 

For more great videos on water filtration, troubleshooting and maintenance, click here.  

Video Transcript

Gary The Water Guy:
Can't get your filter housing unstuck? You try and you try with the filter wrench that comes with it, but you just can't open it to get that filter out? Well, in this video, I'm going to show you five techniques for opening that up, and two techniques to make sure it never happens again, starting right now.


Gary The Water Guy:
Hi, I'm Gary The Water Guy, and I simplify water filtration to help you conquer crappy water for your family. So it sounds so easy, right? You just use the wrench, you put it on the filter housing, you turn it, and you replace the filter, right? Well, there's a little bit more to it than that, but let's start with the basics.


Gary The Water Guy:
So the first thing you want to do is you want to shut off the water going to the filter housing. So you'll have a ball valve or some kind of a shutoff valve anywhere before the filter housing, just follow the plumbing back. And then coming out of the filter housing, anything that's downstream of it, just open the faucet, run the water until it slows right down to a trickle. Once it's slowed down to a trickle, then shut off any valve that's after this. And the reason you're doing that is so the whole house doesn't drain back down once you do get this open.


Gary The Water Guy:
Now, if you have a pressure release up here, push that and hold it down until you no longer hear hissing, or any water comes out, or just again, slows right down to a trickle. Now what you've done, you've released all the pressure inside the filter housing. So grab your filter wrench and give it a turn. And remember, "Lefty loosey, righty tighty," as my wife always says. So you just turn it to the left. Now, always grab a hand up here to brace yourself against the filter housing, and always make sure that the filter housing is securely fastened to the wall or some kind of a plywood or something like that, so you can put full force on here to open it.


Gary The Water Guy:
Now, of course, it doesn't always open like that, right? So you may need some help to get it open. So I've got a few ideas here of ways that you can use to get that filter housing off. So one is using two wrenches. So there's a couple of different ways that you can use that. You can put one wrench on like this, one wrench on like this, and then use two hands, or even in worst case, two people, to turn it to get it off. So, that's one way you can use two wrenches. Another way that you can use it is the two wrenches together to get some leverage. So some people might say, "Well, no, you can just use one wrench and a pipe, right?" Well, the problem with that is these wrenches are not very strong. The ones that come with the systems, these plastic ones.


Gary The Water Guy:
But what you can do is you can put two wrenches on like that, and then this is a length of ... I don't know, what is this? About two and a half feet or something like that, of AVS pipe. You can slide that over, and that gives you that extra leverage to open that filter housing. So, that's another way that you can do it.


Gary The Water Guy:
Now something else that you can try at home is you can use a blow dryer. And so what you do is, whatever's on the outside, so in this particular filter housing, the cap is on the outside. So what you can do is you can heat that up with a blow dryer, it takes a while, but you have to heat it up until it's noticeably hot and you have to heat it around all sides. And what that does, that expands it a little bit so that again, you can use the filter housing wrench that comes with your system to undo it.


Gary The Water Guy:
Now, you have to be careful when you're using that technique, that you're heating up the outside. Whatever's on the outside ... So this one, as you can see, on the outside is the cap, the inside is the canister. But on this one, for example, the canister's on the outside. You see? So you'd have to heat up this part of it and have that expand.


Gary The Water Guy:
Another great tool for making this simpler, and one that I normally use on a daily basis, I use a metal filter housing wrench. It's stronger and it's also longer. So you can slide it on like this. I bought this at Amazon, but you have to make sure you get the right one for your 20 inch or 10 inch big blue whatever size filter housing you have, because they only fit each particular one. So that's the tough part, is finding the right one. But I've had great success with that.


Gary The Water Guy:
So you've tried heating it up, that didn't work. You've tried the wrench that comes with it, that doesn't work. You tried the two filter wrenches together with a length of pipe, that didn't work. So for extreme cases, I found this Lisle strap wrench worked really well. And again, it's something I just picked up on Amazon. I'll just tighten this up a little bit, so it's a bit of a challenge. And then you can run this around it like so, and then you put an extension up through here, and a half inch socket, half inch drive. Thread that up there. And then you can tighten it up like that, and it provides the torque to turn this. And in super, super difficult situations, I found this works really well. And you can even add a length of pipe onto this to give you even more leverage.


Gary The Water Guy:
So those are some great ways to remove that filter housing that you just can't get off. Now to make sure that you don't have problems with that in the future, one very important thing you need to check, and that is once you have removed the filter, you've gotten the filter out, you've dumped it out, have a look in the bottom. Have a look down, way down inside the bottom there. I don't know if you can see it with the light or not, but you need to make sure that from the old filter from this time or the previous time, that the little O ring seal that was on the bottom and the top of some of the filters, isn't stuck down there.


Gary The Water Guy:
I've seen filter housings that have been super hard to get off, and when I finally get them off, I look inside, and there's two or three of these things stuck on the bottom. And I say to the customer, "Did anyone have trouble getting this filter housing on in the past?" "Oh yeah, the last guy said it was just a bear to get on." Well, that's because he didn't check inside to these things.


Gary The Water Guy:
The other thing you can do to make the removal of the filter housing easier in the future is you could use plumber's clear silicone grease. This is a great product. You just apply it onto the O ring. I'll put a link in the description down below where you can get it from our website. But you just put it onto the O ring and seal it. Then you don't have to tighten it quite so much to make sure that it doesn't leak after you've re-installed the filter and you've set it all up

.
Gary The Water Guy:
And for some more great videos on water filtration and troubleshooting, maintenance, et cetera, go up here and I'll see you there.

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