Nowadays, in most parts of the world, there is access to any kind of clean water. But when passing through more isolated regions around the globe, it might happen that you need to retrieve water from a lake or a small creek. As we all know, it is very important to stay hydrated during intensive activities, to do so drinking clean and safe drinking water is a must. For this specific reason, Sawyer developed the Squeeze Water Filtration System (also sold as ‘’Care Plus Water Filter’’ in some countries), a compact and durable water filter, small enough to bring on every hiking or cycling trip.
What’s in it?
Although the system is small, Sawyer claims it provides clean and safe drinking water. This because of the Hollow Fiber Membrane which has a 0.1 micron filtering. Sawyer also claims that it can provide you with 375000 liters of clean water before it becomes worn.
The pack we used costs € 35,50 and contains:
- Care Plus Water Filter
- 0,5 Liter Water Bag
- Cleaning Plunger
- Drinking Straw
LONGEVITY: Up to 375,000 gallons
FILTER MATERIAL: Hollow Fiber
REMOVES: Bacteria, Protozoa, E. Coli, Giardia, Vibrio cholerea, Salmonella Typhi, Leptospirosis
WEIGHT: 65 grams
How to use the filter
The filter itself is very easy to use and has a push/pull cap from which you can drink.
To drink the water, fill the included water bag or a PET-Bottle (with similar screw-thread), screw it on the filter and start drinking. If you don’t want to bring the bag or a PET-Bottle with you during your trip, you can use the included straw to drink directly from a creek.
Does it filter as good as they say?
The Filter is certified for 0.1 micron filtration, meaning there is no pore size larger than 0.1 micron in size. This makes it impossible for harmful bacteria (like salmonella or leptospirosis), protozoa, or cysts like E. coli, Giardia, Vibrio cholerae, and Salmonella typhi to pass through the filter.
To test if the filter is proper functioning, we collecting some water from a duck pond nearby. Just to be sure, we scooped some extra dirt in to see if the filter could handle this.
Although we’re not able to carry out a thorough investigation into the possible presence of other pollution in the water. But according to the colour and taste of the water it looks like the Sawyer did a very good job in turning our dirty polluted water into something more clear and safer water to dirnk. Just so you know, we also haven’t been feeling sick after drinking it 😉
If you want to purify the water even further, it is possible to add a drop of Hadex. This addition kills any germs that have passed through the filter. Hadex is a chlorine-like solution.
For the cleaning, Care Plus has added a huge plunger. The idea is to flush clean water back through the filter and let the mess run out. With good maintenance, the filter must last 375,000 liters. Based on 2 liters of drinking water per day, per trip, you can continue to suckle on the filter for a lifetime.
Unfortunately, a Laboratory research into the end result wasn’t available for our test case. But we assume that Care Plus is very careful when it comes to claims regarding the safety of the water. Relying on this, we can say that the Sawyer filter is a very good addition to your equipment. The whole system is practical, compact, and with only 65 gram, it can be taken on even the most lightweight hiking or biking trips. When traveling to a jungle, desert or any other isolated area, this is a must-have accessory.