Removing fluoride from drinking water: Is bone char a good alternative?

Removing fluoride from drinking water: Is bone char a good alternative?


by Lorraine Marie

You’re way ahead of the curve if you’ve decided to remove fluoride from your water. After all, there are still municipalities thinking “hey, let’s be smart and fluoridate the water!” When we peek back at history, the rush to fluoridate public water involved very little thought, just some circumstantial evidence regarding dental health, combined with the too-hasty social fervor to jump on the bandwagon of “science has a solution for everything.”

The science showing how questionable fluoridated water is came later, but too late. The brainwashing had begun. There is reluctance to loosen the grip on tightly held beliefs, apparently…even half a century later.

Now we have a different scenario: when we decide to de-fluoridate, it seems we still don’t have enough answers to make a 100 percent sure choice about the filter we should use to accomplish the task. There are too many variables, such as the level of pollutants in the pre-treated water, pH level, how quickly the water passes through a particular filter system, etc, to allow us to find nice neat little test results that provide an obvious answer.

For example, some will point to activated alumina for fluoridation removal. It is said to be 98 to 100% effective, as long as you get the flow rate just right. There is an additional bonus of also removing arsenic and lead. The fluoride is mostly gone, but now there can be activated alumina to get out of the water.

Reverse osmosis sounds like alumina déjà vu: 90 to 95% of the fluoride can be removed, but it takes two to four gallons of water to capture one fluoride-free gallon. That gallon is basically devoid of life force, requiring the addition of other ingredients to boost it back up to life-supporting status.

Then there is bone char. It is said to be the oldest method of freeing water of fluoride GAC-2060-BC-2Tcontent, with up to a 90% removal rate. How bone char and activated carbon differ may be pertinent to your search for the best water filtering method. Bone char is made with animal bones that are heated to 1,292 degrees F., in low oxygen conditions, which enhances the product’s adsorption abilities. For vegans, it may not be an option. In contrast, activated carbon is similarly processed, and can be derived from animal or vegetable sources.

Dr. Richard Sauerheber, professor of chemistry with University of California, has looked extensively at the fluoride issue, and believes bone char filters are the most effective.

Getting rid of fluoride in your drinking water can also boost your health, since other unhealthy contaminants can be removed via filtering. Activated carbon filter methods can, according to the Natural Resources Defense Council (consulted since they are not sellers or promoters of any particular filter brand), rid water of chlorine, disinfecting products, heavy metals [think arsenic, cadmium, copper, iron, lead, mercury, zinc], parasites, pesticides, radon and volatile organic chemicals, such as dichlorobenzene, methyl tert butyl ether and tricholoroethylene. The Environmental Protection Agency says radio-nuclides can be removed with granular activated carbon. I could not determine for sure if thallium is removed with activated charcoal filtering, but it is used in hospitals for internal poisoning from thallium.

So yes, take action to avoid poisoning yourself. The bone char filters may be the best route. I think about the village in Alaska, Hooper Bay, where the town’s fluoridated water system malfunctioned and 296 residents were poisoned. It was 1992. Most of the victims had severe GI pain as well as symptoms associated with heart malfunction. One person died. Fluoride can be nasty stuff, obviously, and there is evidence it may bio-accumulate in the body.

It’s clear that treated carbon products have an impressive history of service to health and well-being.

Just one more example: if you are dealing with an algae issue, Ohio State University reports using activated carbon, combined with a membrane filter, for “significantly” reducing algae toxins. To truly make the best water filtration choice, it’s wise to invest in a thorough water test and determine what is in your water to start with.

Click here to read our latest blog post: "Fluoride Opponents Win Court Decision".

See all our fluoride filters here.


We now carry Bone Char filters, GAC for Chlorine removal and GAC for Chloramine removal. We also sell bulk Bone Char and GAC by the lb. Bundle up and get added protection from fluoride
and heavy metals.

See all our GAC products here.  We've got a variety of counter top and under counter combinations to choose from. Feel free to contact us for more information:  509-685-0933.

We love to talk about your water treatment needs.

Thanks for stopping by!


5 thoughts on “Removing fluoride from drinking water: Is bone char a good alternative?

- is bone char kosher ? - is bone char from sick cows with BSE etc ? - is boe char from cows fed with anitbiotics BGH etc ? - does alumina have risk of adding aluminium/fluoride compounds even if is NSF approved ?
March 2, 2020 at 15:02pm
Ganvo Andrew

Thanks for this. I would like to know. How do I go about using bone char to remove fluoride from a borehole water that I would later drink. Doesn’t it have side effect in the drinking water? Waiting for your reply in anticipation. Thanks

March 2, 2020 at 15:02pm
Tommy Khosla

Hi Lorraine,
Lovely article. I have been researching the benefits of both bone char and also binchotan. I am personally not a fan of filters and was wondering if you had any advice at all about how to use bone char in a way which is similar to the way in which binchotan is used – where one simply soaks a piece of the charcaol in the water for several hours, whereby it will absorb all the toxicities. I was wondering if it would be possible to use bone char in such a way, and if so, in what quantity and how long this would be effective for?
Many thanks and warm regards,
Tommy :)

July 27, 2017 at 06:52am

Hi Lori. We have bone char filters that will remove chlorine as well as fluoride and other contaminants but it is best to follow it with another carbon filter. So having a double housing system would be best. We have counter top and under counter models. We don’t sell any alkaline filters. Sorry.

We’ve also just added two wide spectrum filters with bone char, carbon, zeolite and alumina made in the USA by Cuz’n Water Filtration. They remove fluoride, chlorine and a lot of chemical contaminants, as well as sediment and scale/ They are inline filters for under the counter and are long lasting. The one for the tap is good for 25,000 gals or 3 years. We also just added refrigerator filters for under counter that are universal for all refrigerators and last 1 year.
You can view them here:

January 19, 2017 at 08:35am
lori green

I am looking for a bone char fluoride filter/chlorine filter that doesn’t remove minerals and alkalizes it. I need one for the kitchen and one for the shower (can’t get whole house one).

January 19, 2017 at 01:42am

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