Is the Activated Alumina in Water Treatment Devices Harmful?

Even if you’re reading about activated alumina for the first time, there’s a good chance that you and your family have benefitted from the substance—in fact, it may even be sitting inside the water filter in your kitchen right now.

Activated alumina is a commonly used desiccant with incredible adsorption properties, making it ideal for use in several household and industrial applications. In this blog post, we’ll take a closer look at the use of activated alumina in water filtration systems.

Keep scrolling for answers to all your questions about activated alumina.

What is activated alumina?

Activated alumina is a form of aluminum oxide that’s highly porous. Its micro-porous composition and high surface area make it ideal for the purification of various substances, including water.

How does activated alumina work?

Activated alumina granules are placed at either the point-of-entry or the point-of-use in any water treatment device. As water flows across these granules, the contaminants are adsorbed by the activated alumina. Alumina is effective against several harmful pollutants, including arsenic, fluoride, chromium, and selenium.

The adsorption process is different from absorption. When a fluid is absorbed into a substance, it can leak out or evaporate after some time. However, during the adsorption process, the chemical bonds with the solid material, so there’s no risk of leaking.

Is activated alumina harmful?

Activated alumina is not harmful to the environment or people as it is non-toxic and non-corrosive. However, excessive exposure to aluminum oxide can be mildly irritating to the eyes and skin. Since the activated alumina in all water filtration systems is tightly packed, there’s little chance of exposure.

How to maintain an activated alumina device?

Activated alumina is effective at treating water until a certain point, after which it becomes saturated and needs to be replaced. The device manufacturer usually outlines how frequently the alumina cartridge needs to be replaced depending on the cartridge size and composition of alumina. Additionally, the flow rate and water quality also affect the time between replacements.

The good news is that activated alumina balls can be regenerated through backwashing, which reduces its environmental impact. Your water treatment dealer will likely offer regeneration services. Once all contaminants are removed, the alumina balls can be re-used in water filters.


Sorbead India is a renowned manufacturer of moisture-free solutions with commercial and industrial clients from all over the world. We offer a wide selection of adsorbent products, including activated alumina for fluoride removal, air drying, and water treatment.

Call +91-756-768-8877 or send us an inquiry now for more details about our products.

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