Submissions     Contact     Advertise     Donate     BlogRoll     Subscribe                         

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Q&A Why carry a water filter?

Guy Filtering water from a riverRecently a reader named Randy asked:

Q. What are the pros and cons of a water filtration system. I am thinking of purchasing one but it almost seems that I would be just hauling another piece of gear.

A. In my opinion a water filter is one of your most important pieces of gear you can carry. Without water, your pretty much screwed, and if you do find water without the proper filtration you still may be in trouble. There are some nasty diseases that you can get from drinking untreated water, some can actually kill you.

Pros & Cons of carrying a water filter in your BOB, or hiking backpack:


  • The ability to treat any water you find in the wilderness.
  • Safety - As I mentioned above, there are a lot of microorganisms in untreated water, most water filters will get rid of these germs.
  • Faster than boiling water. If your on the go, a water filter is quicker and easier than having to stop, build a fire and boil water.
  • Taste - A lot of people say that drinking filtered water tastes better than drinking boiled water.
  • Boiling will do nothing to get rid of herbicides and pesticides, a good water filter can filter out hazardous chemicals.


  • If you plan on being out for an extended period of time, even the best filters will not last forever. A good canteen for boiling water will out last any filter.
  • Boiling water is the safest way to get rid of unhealthful contaminants (except for chemicals), and is pretty much idiot proof. Filters, if not hooked up properly can fail to do the job.

Top Water Purifiers & Filters:


1 comment:

  1. I have used every type of filter/purifier on the market and none of them have been as effective and simple to use as the Lifesaver bottle. I have two bottles, one for home and one for travel. I noticed one of the prior reviewers remarked on his discolored well water remaining discolored once it was filtered through the lifesaver. While the lifesaver bottle will filter out all microbiologicals including bacteria and even viruses it will not filter solutions such as the saline from salt water nor will it remove all of the color that is associated with a solution. For example, if you run tea or coffe through the filter the result will be clean water but the color of the water will mainsome of tea coloring. Personaly, I have drank water from some bad sources such as the great dismal swamp and stagnant ponds and the result is always the same, clean, pure water.