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In this paper, we present a systematic evaluation of the effects of local clays and the manufacturing process on the performance of ceramic water filters (CWFs) impregnated with silver compounds, which are used for point-of-use water treatment in developing countries. Mineral composition, silver sorption/desorption, and strength are the important characteristics that influence effectiveness and durability of CWFs during transport and use. Laboratory tests were conducted on ceramic samples obtained from five CWF factories around the world to determine their mineral composition, silver sorption/desorption, and flexural strength. The results of this study showed that clays that contain traces of crystalline albite or crystalline pyroxene have better sorption of silver species than those that do not. The results showed that the Freundlich model provided the best fit for both ionic silver and silver nanoparticles for all of the ceramic materials that were tested. Thus, this model can be used to optimize the manufacturing process and the application of silver. Silver nanoparticles were desorbed more slowly than ionic silver, so they last longer in the ceramic material. Water that contains a high concentration of divalent ions is not recommended for preparing solutions of silver nanoparticles due to aggregation of the particles, which limits their sorption by the ceramic materials. In this study, the mineralogy of the source materials was found to have the most significant influence on the strength of ceramic filters.