Whether you are at home or out on a trail, you need clean water to keep your body healthy and hydrated. Though you need a lot of water when you are up for a physical excursion like hiking, carrying, a lot of it isn’t a viable option as it is quite a weight to bear on your shoulders. That is why getting the best backpacking water filter is common among hikers as it provides an unlimited amount of clean and safe water without adding much weight to your back.
But choosing the best backpacking water filter can be difficult though as there are many different types of it, with different sizes, filters, containers, chemicals, and capacities.
That’s why we have taken the initiative and gone through several reviews to list down the 10 Best Backpacking Water Filters In 2020 along with a guide that helps in filtering the right option. Once you have finished reading this guide, you’ll know exactly what type of filter you need.
How To Choose A Backpacking Water Filter – Buying Guide
The size of your water filter matters, as you need to carry it in your backpack and ensure that it fits properly in the limited space. With space, you also need to consider your plan as to whether you will camp for a longer duration or with a group. That is why you need to keep an eye on the dimensions of the water filtering system and try to make a choice that is compact but serves the purpose.
If you are going for an ultralight backpacking, then weight becomes more of an issue as you want to keep everything to a minimum. Thus, go through the type and weight of each filter and consider its match with your plan to sort the best backpacking water filter for yourself.
There are many different types of portable water filter and purifier you can choose from:
- Straw: These water filters work exactly like a drinking draw and let you suck water directly from a source.
- Pump Filters: Pump filters let you pull the exact amount of water that you need so you won’t have to worry about getting too much or too little.
- Gravity: Gravity works by simply letting the water drip down a filter which means very little effort is involved.
- UV Light: UV light works by shining the destructive light waves to kill the bacteria.
- Bottle Filters: Bottle filters are another good solution where you simply fill the bottle full of water, and a filter in the cap makes it drinkable.
- Squeeze Filters: These filters work by attaching themselves onto a bottle or a pouch and work as you squeeze the water through the filter.
- Chemicals: These are simply added to the water and then you wait for them to take effect. That makes them very easy to use and they are probably the lightest option and can easily be stored anywhere.
In most of the water purification systems, the included filter or power source comes with a certain life and needs maintenance from time to time. While some of these backpacking water filters allow just cleaning, others need to be replaced with new supplements, thus adding some more cost to your pocket. To avoid any cost that is not helping your outdoor activity, pay special attention to replaceable parts of a water filtering system, and choose the one which needs no or minimum replacements.
Filter Pore Size
The filter pore size refers to the size of the holes that the water will have to pass through to get to the drinking side and is related to mechanical filters only. This is naturally an important consideration as it affects what can pass through the device and how much it will be able to block off the bits that you don’t want to come through. This is measured in microns and you want this figure to be as small as possible.
Unlike mechanical filters, a UV or chemical purifier leaves you to deal with the level of dirt and inclusions in the water at a manual level and that is where a Pre-filter plays a key role. A pre-filter clears out heavy contaminants and debris. If you are looking for a non-mechanical water filtering system, then make sure that you are picking an option with a pre-filter.
Bacteria, Protozoa and Virus Removal
The most important job for a water purification system is to remove bacteria, protozoa, viruses, and other contaminations that can cause sickness. While bacteria protozoa and viruses can be removed with a purification membrane, viruses are harder to get rid of and most mechanical pumps won’t be able to get rid of this. To ensure protection against all three, you can go with a UV light water filtration or a high-tech filter that can effectively kill all three.
It’s also important to consider what type of container you will be taking on your trip. Some of these solutions work as their own container whereas other solutions will you require to filter the water into your own container. A preferred way to sort the container is to consider an option that comes with an included one.
In case your initial system fails and you still need to make your water safe, it is always good to keep a mechanical filter and a UV or chemical-based water purifier so that you are always covered.
Q: What Is A Water Purifier?
A water purifier is something that will make the water pure (or close to) but does so without a filter. It will aim to kill the harmful elements which can be found in water but won’t be able to take out any sediment or debris which can be found in it.
Q: What Is A Water Filter?
A water filter doesn’t treat the water, instead it aims to take everything out of it which might be harmful. This sometimes doesn’t have the same level of protection as a water purifier, but it will be able to take out the silk and sediment.
Q: What Is More Convenient to Choose A Water Purifier or Water Filter?
The answer to this question depends on your own specific needs. Water purifiers camping tend to be a lot smaller than hiking water filters which make them easy to carry around but they also don’t remove any sediment which could be a major inconvenience to many.
Camping water filters on the other hand can produce clear water straight away as anything else is going to be filtered out. They do however need their filters replacing and are generally a lot bulkier.
Globo Surf Overview
There are many different types of camping water purifiers out there and each of them has its advantages and disadvantages. How you will be backpacking, for how long, and the location, all play a part in what would be the best solution for you. There are other important aspects to consider too such as the weight, replacement parts, and the container that you will have to carry as we have mentioned in our guide.
That is why you need to analyze your situation and think about which features are the most important and how much water you need. Once you are through all these the mentioned factors, we hope that you would be able to pick the best backpacking water purifier or filter for you.