Why use the Best Portable Water Filter?
Because of the small sizes, portable water filters can be easily packed into a backpack making it the ideal for purifying water while on the go and enjoying events such as camping, hiking or traveling. In addition to that, portable water filters are an essential component of most emergency aid kits and soldier kits because of their efficiency and ease of use. These uses of portable water filters make them a must-have gadget for every individual specifically for those who frequently perform outdoor activities and usually live on the go. So always consider checking some best portable water filters reviews for your health and being.
There are several options available in the market to choose from and choosing the best portable water filter can be a daunting task. The abundance of portable water filter brands in the market today makes it quite difficult to know which filters are more convenient and efficient than others. And because of this, it is of utter importance to understand how these devices work, what you should consider when purchasing a portable water filter and the different types of portable filters are currently available in the market and moreover this that how efficient these water filters are against various different types of contamination.
What’s the Difference Between a Water Filter & Water Purifier?
Despite the fact that water filters and water purifiers are used as interchangeable terms, yet they do not actually mean the same thing. Read on carefully to understand the definition of each term.
Water filters are more popular than purifiers and these filters help remove or reduce the impurities you can find in the water. The impurities they clean or eliminate includes but not limited to iron, nickel, lead, mercury, chlorine, chromium, copper, and more. Though they don’t remove all the bacteria and viruses from the water, they effectively decrease their number, and they efficiently remove certain species of bacteria overall. Always do some deep research for the best portable water filters reviews before buying one.
On the other hand, the term water purifiers mention the units that can remove all the bacterial, viral, and parasitical contaminants in the water. The water purifies models do a great job of removing any bacteria, viruses, protozoa, and parasites in your drinking water, but they do not remove any other contaminants. This is why water purifiers are more difficult to find and use. That is why usually manufacturers choose to develop purifiers that work in combination with a water filter.
How Does Water Purify Itself From Filtration With the Best Portable Water Filter?
A portable water filter is a device that makes water potable and safe for drinking by removing contaminants and impurities found in water via a fine physical barrier. By passing water through a barrier, heavy impurities such as copper, nickel, lead, chromium, chlorine, iron, sediment, sand, fluoride, pesticides, Sulphur and mercury as well as some species of bacteria and protozoa, are removed or reduced.
That’s scary? We know right! Just know that by removing and eliminating all those above-mentioned contaminants from your water by owning a portable water filter, you also eliminate the possibilities of run into these diseases, viruses, and bacteria; Giardia, Dysentery, Diarrhea, Hepatitis A & E, Cholera, Typhoid.
The barrier that most water filters use usually comes in the form of a replaceable container and contains several layers of leaky and absorptive material. The materials sometimes also include a porous cloth for trapping large residue and activated carbon with which, impurities bind to. Because activated carbon has such a high surface area, it is extremely effective at trapping contaminants.
Hence, by far you get the idea that it’s beyond worth it to filter your water. By filtering the water and removing impurities from, you are guaranteed to save your immune system by the contaminants that do not even smell or you cannot even taste their presence in water.
The Top 7 Aspects to Consider When Buying The Best Portable Water Filter
Drinking clean water is and should be one of every person’s top priorities, no matter where you live or traveling to. Whether you’re out camping in the mountains or traveling in foreign countries, you must always make sure that the water you drink is appropriately clean and healthy. Portable water filters offer an easy and effective solution to the clean water problem on the go. Generally, portable water filter models are small enough to fit in a backpack, and they’re efficient enough to clean every source of water.
What’s daunting here to think is that finding the right portable water filter for sure seems like a daunting task at times. There are a lot of models available in the market, and it’s difficult to know and tell which one performs better than the other. Read on to know what factors to look for when you go on to choose a portable water filter, how a water filter works, what types are there and what should you have on priority according to their respective pros and cons, and why you should use such a filter when you’re traveling.
There are a lot of things one should take into consideration when looking and shopping for a portable water filter or a water purifier. Here are the key factors on which basis you should look for.
There’s no point in buying a portable water filter if it’s not lightweight and is uncomfortable to carry around when you travel. You should always take the filter’s weight into consideration before deciding on a model because when you are on the go, every ounce matters while packing hiking backpacks. Most portable water filters are small, minimally weighted and compact, but their weight varies according to their design, filtering technology used, and their construction materials, so weight is a completely vital aspect to one’s camping or hiking trip because make sure packing of your portable water filter does not add in killing your back.
Every portable water filter removes the contaminants from the water at a specific rate. Some of them produce a couple of ounces of clean water every minute, whereas others can produce nearly 20 ounces of water in the same timeframe. Using a unit that’s capable of filtering the water quickly can be an advantage if you plan on traveling or camping with a large group of people. So, choose the one that produces clean water at an adequate flow rate as it’s fairly important to quench your thirst quickly and effectively.
Point here to be noted is that every filter holder has a limited lifespan and come in different sizes. Some models might last for a few weeks, while others can be used with good results for even a few months. Filters vary the amount of water and filtrate the volume all at once, working it through the carbon or charcoal system to reach water to the mouth. Filter capacity also influences the practicality of filtration speed. But, the highest quality portable filters use long-lasting filter holders. Some portable filter models also let you filter up to 264 gallons of water with a single cartridge, whereas others can clean up to 100,000 gallons of contaminated water.
Ease of Use
In spite of the fact that portable water filters are small and dense, not all portable water filters are convenient and easy to use. Some water filter models come with detailed installation and briefing instructions, and you may have to take the instructions pamphlet along with you when you travel to make sure you set the water filter up properly wherever you go. On the other hand, some models are extremely simple to use, and you simply have to draw water through them and drink it, as if you are using a straw.
The best approach to finding a water filter that matches your budget is to set a budget before you start browsing for one. Just like all the other products you can buy, potable water filters come at different prices and buying the most expensive model doesn’t guarantee you’re getting the best model. Plenty of efficient models come at cheap prices, so you can get a small and functional unit at a great price.
When you think of investing in a water portable filter, you obviously will want to invest in a model that appears to be a durable one. So, you can also derive the durability of the materials used. Almost every none out of ten people are buying the portable water filters for the outdoor world, so while purchasing, you need to make sure will it hold up to the elements and rough inscrutability of nature? Moreover, you must obviously want to invest in one that will also provide with much accident protection up to a greater extent.
Maintenance and cleaning is another very important aspect to take into attention while purchasing the best portable water filters that remove chemicals and viruses. Filters make water cleaner and safer for drinking by capturing the impurities and waste products found in the contaminated water as it passes through the filter container. As obviously the continuous usage of the model without cleaning leads to blockage of dirt and other contaminants can negatively affect the efficiency of the product. That is why it is essential to know how and what is the process to clean the particular portable water filter you are purchasing and how frequently it should be cleaned and how often containers are expected to be replaced before purchasing a specific filter model.
Types of Portable Water Filters
Best Portable Water Filters as you will see in our thorough reviews below is that there is more than one type of portable water filters. Even though they lead to similar results, each type of portable water filter filters the water in its own way. Read on and have a look at how they do it and the highs and lows of using each type of portable water filters.
Bottle filters are quite popular portable water filter as it has the advantage of being useful even when you do not have to filter your drinking water. Besides the fact that it is easy to use, bottle filters can also be used simply as a bottle when you are sure that the water source is safe and healthy and you don’t need to filter your water before drinking just by removing the filter’s container and using just the bottle. Although most bottle filters use fiber filters to decontaminate water, yet some specific models as an alternative use solid block activated carbon filters.
Some models work like the straw filter that depends on suction to induce the contaminated water through the filter. Others like the activated carbon block filter work differently as it creates a uniform matrix using activated carbon which has been treated and compressed. This activated carbon absorbs chemicals and is more efficient at capturing parasites and bacteria. This is also because activated carbon is made up of millions of extremely small pores found between its carbon atoms, it is a very efficient filter container especially since a single gram of activated carbon presents a surface area of approximately 2,000 meters on which contaminants can be trapped. Bottle filters are also portable water filters that remove chemicals.
Pros. & Cons.
- Effective at minimizing and decreasing the heavy metals, arsenic, and many other contaminants in the water
- Effective at blocking the bacteria and viruses especially parasites from reaching to your drinking water
- Activated carbon block filters allow beneficial minerals to remain in the water
- Does not lessen the dissolved salts like fluoride and nitrates
- Does not reduce cadmium
Straw water filters are the lightest portable water filtration solution available in the market. Just like it’s in the name, unlike normal straws, this portable straw filter usually looks like overly large straws, but they work exactly like regular straws as well. Moreover, it is extremely easy to use, as all you have to do is to get close to the water source and draw the water in the mouth using the straw filter.
Not like a regular straw, this filter requires a more powerful draw to make it work, but the filtration process is relatively quite easy and straightforward. Straw filters use holders made out of hollow fiber membrane and most of them average 25-30 cm in length and 29-35mm in diameter with the ability to filter somewhere between 700-1000 liters of water. These fibers are tightly merged together, so the water has to pass through a lot of fiber layers before reaching the actual straw you’re drawing on. The fibers are also very porous yet small. This is also a reliable portable water filters that remove chemicals.
Most membranes use holes that are 0.2 microns wide, so that’s one hundred thousand smaller a 2 cm hole. Woah! The water passes through the holes make its way to the straw, and all the bacteria, viruses, and parasites or other sediments in the water that are larger than the hole are trapped and are not able to pass. So, basically the water you end up drinking after the straw filtration contains no residue, bacteria or sediments. That means the water that enters your mouth from the straw filter is for sure safe and potable for drinking.
Pros. & Cons.
- Efficiently removes all sediment and contaminants including but not limited to viruses, protozoa, parasites and cysts
- Proficiently captures the particles that cause the water to taste and smell bad
- The holes in the membrane get easily clogged with debris, sediment, and bacteria over time, so change on a regular basis required
- Not very capable of removing dissolved contaminants like chlorine, heavy metals, and more
While they are not extremely small as the straw and bottle filters, but pump filters are still small enough in size to take up just a small amount of space in your backpack. With the pump filter method, a small lead line is connected from the filter to the water source and another from the filter to the recipient whereas, water is drawn using a small hand pump.
Some manufacturers use fiber filters, while others use ceramic filters while combining the filtration techniques with a block activated carbon filter. Fiber filters work somehow like the hollow membrane filters of the straw filter. Ceramic filters are also great at mechanical filtration and are especially effective against asbestos. These pump filters are porous and have a micron size of 0.5 – 1. But, because of the micron size, some bacteria and viruses can pass through the filters and for this very reason, some manufacturers combine it with the activated carbon method. Well, this is a reliable portable water filters that remove chemicals.
The activated carbon has zillions of extremely small pores between its carbon atoms where each gram of activated carbon offers a surface area of up to 2,000 square meters, and the contaminants in the water are trapped on this surface. Read on the below-mentioned pros and cons of using an activated carbon filter.
Pros. & Cons.
- Improves the water’s smell and taste
- Activated carbon filter can be used up to 1 year without any change
- Beneficial minerals in the water are not eliminated by this filter
- The filter needs to be cleaned and changed otherwise it may act as a breeding ground for captured bacteria
- Some bacteria are able to pass through the pores of carbon granules because they are large
Gravity filters are greatly ideal for trekkers, campers, and emergency preppers because it doesn’t require a constant water supply to function. It is also of great use for travelers traveling to remote areas where clean water is difficult to come across. For gravity filters, there are several options that are one of the best portable water filters reviews.
In this type of gravity filter, two containers are placed above each other. Water is discharged into the container placed on top of the other and gravitational pull then causes the water to pass through a filter into the container below. At the bottom of the container below is a tap which is then open to access filtered water. The gravity filter uses a mixture of ceramic and activated carbon filters to contaminate water and because of this combination, the filtered water is free of any harmful contaminants and safe for drinking.
Pros. & Cons.
- Ably removes bacteria, protozoa, and parasites from the water
- Able to remove some herbicides, pesticides, and other man-made contaminants
- Can filter out chlorine from the water
- Filter containers can last for up to one year of use
- Larger than other types of water filters mentioned above
- Is made out of multiple parts and the first container can contaminate the second if it’s not kept correctly
Even though UV filters are not very frequently used by campers or hikers, yet there are some good UV portable water filters out there. These filter models run on batteries, so they have higher operating costs. One of the advantages of using UV filters is that they’re relatively quite effective against bacteria and parasites.
Pros. & Cons.
- Works fast
- Not much effective for beneficial minerals
- Effective against bacteria, viruses, protozoa, and parasites
- Run on batteries
- Effectiveness is directly proportional to the relatively cleaned water such as its effectiveness decreases as the water is dirtier
- Does not have any effect on heavy metals or chemicals like chlorine
By now, we understand from this best portable water filter reviews and comprehensive buying guide that finding the right portable water filter is not a difficult task once you know what to look for. These modes can be installed and used with ease, while transforming almost all sources of fresh water into clean potable water.