Abstract Arsenic (As) poisoning of groundwater has caused a devastating health crisis in Bangladesh and West Bengal (India). A high concentration of iron (Fe) is also present in groundwater of this region. A simple Fe removal ceramic filter was developed by local manufacturer and currently employed in rural households of Bangladesh. The aims of this study were to investigate the Fe and As removal performance of this filter and proposed a modification in order to enhance the As removal efficiency by introducing additional source of Fe (iron net) and iron oxidizing bacteria. Technical and social performances of the filter were assessed by filed survey. The field data suggested that the filter is very effective in Fe removal through oxidation and co-precipitation process. Arsenic also was removed and removal efficiency was highly depended on the initial concentration of Fe and As in groundwater. This simple Fe removal filter showed high user acceptance, satisfaction and sustained use. A simple modification of this filter using iron net and iron oxidizing bacteria substantially increased 18% more As removal. This study suggested that modification of this simple and inexpensive filter could be applied for the simultaneous treatment of As and Fe in the As contaminated region.