Water Treatment

Need help getting started? Read our four-part guide to backcountry water treatment:
Part 1: Proper Hydration
Part 2: Keeping Your Water Supply Safe
Part 3: What’s in Backcountry Water?
Part 4: Methods for Making Water Safe

The best water treatment, reviewed and curated by the Trailspace community. The latest review was added on October 1, 2019. Stores' prices and availability are updated daily.

Recent Water Treatment Product Reviews

rated 5 of 5 stars
Sawyer MINI

Compact, lightweight, and efficient. A perfect companion for the trail. You'll never know that it is in your pack. This is a great filter for backpackers, day hikers, and even those taking to the trail for an extended time. I felt perfectly confident with every use. It clearly worked well as I had no negative effects drinking from lakes, streams, and ponds. This little filter is so small and light you'll never know that it is there. Easy to use and easy to maintain. This is my go-to filter far any… Full review

rated 5 of 5 stars
Katadyn Hiker

A good alternative to treatment pills. I have used the older PUR version of this filter for the past 20+ years to purify all our drinking and cooking water each hiking day. Find a flowing water source if possible, they say 20 feet of tumbling water is somewhat clean. I would not expect this filter to clean water from a stagnant pond that horses use.  I have tried treatment pills, but don't like the idea. I cover the inlet filter screen with a double paper coffee filter held in place by a rubber… Full review

rated 5 of 5 stars
MSR Miox

Amazingly light, and extremely effective purification. I have used this for over 12 years and NEVER had an issue with it ! I have used this device for over 12 years; and in guiding groups of up to six people, I have NEVER had anyone suffer any stomach ailments or discomfort. Ever! But I do not use it the way the manual suggests. By using dirty murky water in the purification reservoir,  I found that friends' MIOX devices eventually corroded the electrodes and rendered them unusable. Instead, what… Full review

rated 4 of 5 stars
HydroBlu Go Flow Water Gravity Bag with Versa Flow Water Filter

Hydroblu's Go Flow Water Gravity Bag with the Versa Flow Filter is a lightweight, efficient way to filter for a group of people. Comparable to the Sawyer Mini, the Versa has an impressive flow rate. Water filtration can be tricky to navigate. Factors like external temperature, filter flow rate, and weight might go into your choice. If you're into ultralight backpacking, chances are that you've owned a Sawyer Squeeze or a Mini. But the birth of Hydroblu's Versa Flow Filter has me intrigued. Offering… Full review

rated 3.5 of 5 stars
SteriPEN Adventurer

Unlike mechanical filters this kills bacteria, protozoa and viruses, but it will not filter out debris, so it is best used with clear water. Also requires batteries. I have used the Steripien Adventurer for several mountain trips where I was guaranteed running water. I was attracted to it because, unlike other means of filtration, it also kills viruses. The idea is simple but genius—UV light disrupts the DNA of the nasties and destroys them and/or disrupts their reproductive potential. That said,… Full review

rated 5 of 5 stars
LifeStraw Original

The LifeStraw is incredible. It makes drinking on the trail super easy. The LifeStraw is great! I love taking this with me on day hikes and especially when I’m backpacking. It’s super lightweight and doesn’t take up much space at all. At first the material of the LifeStraw concerned me. It didn’t feel like it’d be the best quality. But it has held up fantastic! It‘s good quality plastic. It’s just really lightweight! The instructions are simple. Uncap both ends, place the wide end… Full review

rated 4.5 of 5 stars
MSR HyperFlow Microfilter

More efficient than the TrailShot and lighter than the MiniWorks, this filter is ideal for solo trips where water is free flowing and clear. Filters protozoa and bacteria, but not viruses. Weighing 221g, MSR claim the Hyperflow filter works down to 0.2microns and will filter 99.99% (see the caveat there) of bacteria and protozoa with an output of 2.75l per minute though you'd have to be pumping pretty hard and fast to achieve anything like this kind of flow rate. The cartridge has a 1,000l lifespan… Full review

rated 4 of 5 stars
Katadyn Hiker

A quality water filter by a reputable company. Always works and has some versatility. A little bulky if you are trying to travel slick and light. I have been using this filter for about 9 or 10 years. I have two of them and they both have worked quite well over the years. I have not had any issues with them being dependable. I really like that this setup comes with a handy storage bag, and there is a long hose provided to enable an easy reach to the water source. The hose floats to keep the hose… Full review

rated 5 of 5 stars
Sawyer MINI

Light, handy, and reliable. Out of several water filters I have and use, this one is the most convenient and sees the most adventures. We have three of these Sawyer Minis in our family. They work really well and are lightweight and easy to use. They connect to a variety of bottles and bags as long as the screw top/threads match up. Fill the bottle and screw on the Sawyer. Then either squeeze the water into another container or drink right from the filter. Doesn't get much easier. Get creative and… Full review

user rating: 5 of 5 (6)
Platypus GravityWorks Filter System 2L Pump/Gravity Filter
$90 - $109
user rating: 5 of 5 (6)
MSR Guardian Purifier Purifier
$350
user rating: 5 of 5 (4)
Katadyn Combi Pump/Gravity Filter
$187 - $219
user rating: 4.5 of 5 (28)
Sawyer MINI Bottle/Inline Filter
$16 - $39
user rating: 4.5 of 5 (19)
Platypus GravityWorks Filter System 4L Pump/Gravity Filter
$110 - $119
user rating: 4.5 of 5 (15)
Katadyn Pocket Pump/Gravity Filter
$314 - $369
user rating: 4.5 of 5 (9)
Aquamira Water Treatment Drops Chemical Treatment
$14 - $16
user rating: 5 of 5 (2)
LifeStraw Original Bottle/Inline Filter
$20
user rating: 5 of 5 (2)
Grayl Ultralight Purifier
$60
user rating: 5 of 5 (2)
LifeStraw Go Bottle/Inline Filter
$40 - $44
user rating: 4.5 of 5 (6)
Katadyn Micropur MP1 Purification Tablets Chemical Treatment
$10 - $14
user rating: 4.5 of 5 (5)
Katadyn BeFree 0.6L Bottle/Inline Filter
$36 - $39
user rating: 4.5 of 5 (2)
Aqua Research H2gO Prime Purifier
$99
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Katadyn Gravity Camp 6L Pump/Gravity Filter
$76 - $89
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Katadyn Exstream/MyBottle Virustat Kit Accessory
$35
user rating: 5 of 5 (1)
Katadyn Gravity BeFree 3.0L Pump/Gravity Filter
$55 - $69
user rating: 4 of 5 (51)
Katadyn Hiker PRO Pump/Gravity Filter
$50 - $84
user rating: 4 of 5 (32)
Sawyer Squeeze Pump/Gravity Filter
$35 - $49
user rating: 4 of 5 (31)
Katadyn Hiker Pump/Gravity Filter
$52 - $74
user rating: 4 of 5 (26)
SteriPEN Classic UV Water Purifier Purifier
$70
user rating: 4 of 5 (9)
SteriPEN Adventurer Opti Purifier
$80 - $99
user rating: 4.5 of 5 (1)
Katadyn Carbon Cartridge Accessory
$20
user rating: 4.5 of 5 (1)
Potable Aqua Iodine and Taste-Neutralizer Tablets Chemical Treatment
$12
user rating: 4.5 of 5 (1)
Potable Aqua Water Purification Tablets with P.A. Plus Chemical Treatment
$13
user rating: 4 of 5 (2)
Sawyer Water Filter Squeeze Pouch Accessory
$9
user rating: 4 of 5 (2)
Sawyer Select S1 Bottle/Inline Filter
$29 - $44
user rating: 4 of 5 (1)
Vapur MicroFilter Bottle/Inline Filter
$35
user rating: 4 of 5 (1)
Platypus Meta Bottle + Microfilter Purifier
$50
user rating: 4 of 5 (1)
Potable Aqua Pure Purifier
$100 - $119
user rating: 4 of 5 (1)
Katadyn Hiker/Hiker PRO/Base Camp Replacement Element Accessory
$40 - $49
user rating: 3.5 of 5 (42)
MSR MiniWorks EX Pump/Gravity Filter
$90 - $99
user rating: 3.5 of 5 (30)
Katadyn Vario Microfilter Pump/Gravity Filter
$10 - $94
user rating: 3.5 of 5 (23)
Katadyn Base Camp Pump/Gravity Filter
$70
user rating: 3.5 of 5 (17)
MSR HyperFlow Microfilter Pump/Gravity Filter
$100
user rating: 3.5 of 5 (4)
MSR MiniWorks Pump/Gravity Filter
$40
user rating: 3.5 of 5 (1)
Potable Aqua Chlorine Dioxide Water Purification Tablets Chemical Treatment
$12
user rating: 3.5 of 5 (1)
MSR Trail Base Water Filter Kit Pump/Gravity Filter
$140 - $149
user rating: 3.5 of 5 (1)
SteriPEN Ultra UV Water Purifier Purifier
$100 - $109
user rating: 3.5 of 5 (1)
SteriPEN Classic 3 UV Water Purifier Purifier
$63 - $79
user rating: 3 of 5 (10)
LifeSaver Bottle Bottle/Inline Filter
$109
user rating: 3 of 5 (3)
LifeSaver Jerrycan Pump/Gravity Filter
$225
user rating: 3 of 5 (2)
Katadyn Drip Gravidyn Pump/Gravity Filter
$295
user rating: 3 of 5 (2)
MSR SweetWater Siltstopper Accessory
$25
user rating: 3 of 5 (1)
Sawyer Select S2 Bottle/Inline Filter
$56
user rating: 3 of 5 (1)
Potable Aqua Water Purification Tablets Chemical Treatment
$9
user rating: 2.5 of 5 (2)
LifeStraw Mission Gravity Water Purifier Pump/Gravity Filter
$120 - $129
user rating: 2 of 5 (4)
Katadyn Mini Pump/Gravity Filter
$110
Aqua Research H2gO Global Purifier
$99
NEW!
MSR Emergency Home Water Filtration System Bottle/Inline Filter

available Spring 2020
NEW!
MSR Thru-Link Bottle/Inline Filter
$40
available Spring 2020
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