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A backpacking water filter can provide access to safe, clean water while you explore off the beaten path. After all, pathogens and other harmful particles exist in both flowing and standing water.

Being an amazing backpacking water filter, you can enjoy fresh-tasting water and peace of mind. Backpacking filters come in many sizes, shapes, and configurations, plus filtration levels.

Choosing the right option for your needs depends on a range of factors, though. From what type of filtration to choose to the application of your filter—whether for emergencies at home or filtering water in the wild—there’s a lot to know.

We’ll compare the best backpacking water filter and treatment systems to deliver the best reviews so you can make an informed decision.

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Overall:

JTTVO Backpacking Filtered Bottle

  • Removes 99.9% of Harmful Waterborne Contaminants
  • 4-Stage Filtration
  • Filter Life of Up to 1500L
  • BPA-Free
  • Great for Outdoor Activities

How we conducted the test:

We got a team of evaluators and tried a number of products from different brands to see which will give peak performances according to specific purposes. We also logged in the number of hours that we spent in testing the models.

17 TESTERS

28 PRODUCTS TESTED

52 HOURS

Top Choices on the Market

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Product

JTTVO Filtered Bottle

JTTVO Filtered Bottle

Benefits

  • Filter Life of Up to 1500L
  • 4-Stage Filtration
  • Built-in Compass and BPA-Free

Specs

  • 2.6 x 2.6 x 9.8 inches
  • 9.4 ounces
  • Flow Rate: 550ml/min
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LifeStraw Personal

LifeStraw Personal

Benefits

  • Filter Life Up to 4000L
  • Advanced Membrane Microfiltration
  • Durable and Ultralight

Specs

  • 8.7 x 1 x 1 inches
  • 2.08 ounces
  • Flow Rate: 3L/min
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Katadyn Hiker Pro

Katadyn Hiker Pro

Benefits

  • Removes Bad Taste and Impurities
  • Fitler Life Up to 1150L
  • BPA-Free and Lightweight

Specs

  • 3 x 3 x 6 inches
  • 11.2 ounces
  • Flow Rate: 1L/min
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Survivor Filter PRO

Survivor Filter PRO

Benefits

  • Removes 99.9% of Bacteria and Viruses
  • Meets EPA Standards
  • Filter Capacity Up to 2000L

Specs

  • 3.2 x 2 x 6.5 inches
  • 8.2 ounces
  • Flow Rate: 500ml/min
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Sawyer Squeeze

Sawyer Squeeze

Benefits

  • Lifetime of Filter Life
  • Removes 99.9% Harmful Contaminants
  • Meets EPA Recommended Removal Rates

Specs

  • 9.5 x 4 x 3.5 inches
  • 3.2 ounces
  • Flow Rate: 1.5L/min
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Platypus GravityWorks

Platypus GravityWorks

Benefits

  • Made in USA
  • Filter Life Up to 1500 Liters
  • Gravity Works Filtration System

Specs

  • 13.2 x 2.8 x 5.8 inches
  • 15.2 ounces
  • Flow Rate: 1.8L/min
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6 Best Backpacking Water Filter Reviews 2020

Here are six good backpacking water filters reviews with their corresponding features, highlights, and some of it's flaws.

JTTVO
  • Removes harmful contaminants
  • Improves water taste and eliminates odor
  • 4-Stage Filtration System
  • BPA-Free
  • Built-in Compass on the top

1. JTTVO Backpacking Filtered Bottle

9.8
Rating
.55 LPM
Flow Rate

Filter Capacity:
1500 Liters

Filtration Media: 
Hollow Fiber Membrane 

What We Like:

Medical-grade filtration makes JTTVO’s bottle combination being the top pick available in the market. The filtered bottle removes chlorine in tap water, but it can also reduce chemicalsmetals, and even protozoa.

A .01-micron membrane means nearly everything is filtered out—plus, there’s medical-grade cotton, antibacterial beads, and coconut shell activated carbon. The multi-layer filtration is excellent for keeping your water safe at home or on the trail.

Each filter lasts around six months (about 396 gallons’ worth), and the filtration straw is easily replaceable.

What We Don’t Like:

Drinking through the straw can take a bit of effort, but it’s necessary since the filter is in the straw. If you have trouble with straws in general, this bottle might not be ideal.

Also, a vent hole that prevents pressure buildup may make the bottle prone to leaks. Keeping it mostly upright—and the cap on—can help avoid leakage.

Conclusion

Wherever you plan to go, if safe water is a priority, you can trust JTTVO’s bottle. The multi-layer filtration provides peace of mind and better taste, whether you’re drinking from a lake or the tap at home.


LifeStraw
  • BPA-Free
  • Removes 99.9% waterborne impurities
  • You can drink anywhere
  • Surpassed EPA Standards
  • Durable and Light

2. LifeStraw Personal Water Filter

9.5
Rating
3 LPM
Flow Rate

Filter Capacity:
4000 Liters

Filtration Media: 
Advanced Microfiltration Membrane

What We Like:

LifeStraw’s personal water filter is super-portable and easy to use. You can scoop water into any container and then drink through the straw. Dropping the device into your hiking pack of even a deep pants pocket means you’re always prepared and hydrated.

You can filter up to 1,000 liters with one straw, removing over 99 percent of waterborne bacteria, protozoan parasites, and contaminants up to .2 microns. Those figures surpass EPA filter standards, making the LifeStraw a worthy choice.

What We Don’t Like:

While it’s great for emergencies, you probably won’t want to lie on your belly to drink from a stream with this straw while camping or hiking. Pairing it with a water container is ideal, but on its own, it’s a helpful tool for survival packs and emergency kits.

Conclusion

From sipping water from questionable sources to getting hydrated while stranded in the wilderness, LifeStraw helps you do it all. It’s not our top choice for everyday use, given the lack of water storage, but keeping this ultralight backpacking water filter in your pack means safe water no matter what.


Katadyn
  • Removes bad taste and odor
  • Lightweight
  • Eliminates 99.9% waterborne microorganism
  • Portable Safe Hydration for any outdoor activities

3. Katadyn Hiker Pro Water Filter

9.4
Rating
1 LPM
Flow Rate

Filter Capacity:
1150 Liters

Filtration Media: 
AntiClog Tech with Micron GlassFiber

What We Like:

Whether you carry a hydration pack or bottle on your travels, the Katadyn Hiker Pro water filter will keep everything full. The attached hose from the filter unit can pour water into any container, but it also connects to your hydration bladder for easy use.

The lightweight backpacking water filter operates via a hand pump, and its clear canister shows the filtration as it happens.

What We Don’t Like:

While this setup is an ideal water filter for camping or hiking, it’s not the most affordable choice. Replacement filters are not economical, but it’s understandable given the level of protection the filters afford you.

Conclusion

Filling your hydration pack with healthy and clean water is easy with Katadyn’s pump filtration system. Especially for those traveling in groups, this mass-refilling pump may be the perfect backpacking solution.


Survivor
  • Reduces 99.9% of virus and bacteria harmful to health
  • Meets EPA Drinking water standards
  • Made of heavy-Duty Materials

4. Survivor Backpacking Filter PRO

9.1
Rating
.5 LPM
Flow Rate

Filter Capacity:
2000 Liters

Filtration Media: 
Carbon and Micron UF Membrane

What We Like:

Independently tested at multiple US labs, the Survivor Filter PRO ensures removal of over 99.9 percent of viruses, protozoa, and bacteria. You can also request copies of the tests from Survivor Filter—which helps promote confidence in the product.

Triple filters achieve filtration to .01 micron, and a fast flow rate means you can get a drink quickly, too.

The hand pump makes it straightforward to fill bottles and packs on the trail or in an emergency. Plus, the product comes with a lifetime warranty from Survivor Filter.

What We Don’t Like:

The filter must be immersed in the water, which can be a struggle depending on water depth or container size. Backpacking water filter pump reviews also cover concerns over the speed of filling bottles versus competitors.

Conclusion

As a backup water filter or a whole-family filtration system in emergencies, Survivor Filter PRO comes with plenty of support from the manufacturer.

We like that they offer responsive customer service for any concerns, and their attention to cleaning up water to .01 microns.


Sawyer Squeeze
  • Great for Outdoor Activities
  • Removes 99.9% of bacteria such as salmonella, E.Coli, and Cholera
  • Meets EPA Removal Standard Rates
  • Very Simple to Use

5. Sawyer Squeeze Water Filter System

8.8
Rating
1.5 LPM
Flow Rate

Filter Capacity:
Lifetime Warranty

Filtration Media: 
Micron Absolute Fibers

What We Like:

Sawyer Products offers one of the smallest water filter backpacking tools on the market. The .1-micron filter fits in your hand, weighs only two ounces, and even screws onto standard water bottle tops.

You can use the filter on top of water bottles or attach it to one of the included personal water pouches. Either way, the BPA-free pouches are easy to pack and store, ensuring you can always scoop up and filter water on the go.

The filter also removes over 99.9 percent of protozoa and bacteria, plus filters up to 100,000 gallons.

What We Don’t Like:

With a lot of on-trail use, the squeeze bags tend to give out. If you don’t use them heavily, this isn’t a concern, but for backpackers, it can be a problem—especially since the bags aren’t exactly economical.

Conclusion

Sawyer Products’ squeeze system offers a lot of flexibility—use the filter on a bottle, the pouch, or even in a gravity-fed system when you set up camp. Its versatility makes it an excellent buy for a range of scenarios.


Platypus GravityWorks
  • Antimicrobial and BPA-Free
  • Meets EPA and NSF Guidelines
  • Eliminates Harmful Waterborne contaminants
  • Made in USA

6. Platypus GravityWorks Water Filter System

8.6
Rating
1.8 LPM
Flow Rate

Filter Capacity:
1500 Liters

Filtration Media: 
Hollow Fiber

What We Like:

The Platypus GravityWorks system provides safer water in emergencies or at your campsite. If you have a lot of people to hydrate, the system is a welcome addition to your pack.

This is one of the best gravity water filter backpacking. It removes over 99.9 percent of bacteria and protozoa. It’s easy to fill and continues “running” as long as you need it to. And you can filter as much as 1,500 gallons with one cartridge.

What We Don’t Like:

Disassembling the bladders for cleaning can be a challenge. There’s also a concern over the thickness of the water pouches, and therefore the durability of the unit.

Conclusion

For long-term water filtration in emergencies or while camping, this setup is a simple way to ensure everyone gets clean and safe water. Plus, it’s a hands-off filtration method that doesn’t require pumping or pouring.


How to Pick the Perfect One for Your Needs

Choosing the perfect one for your next backpacking trip is a tall order. You want safe, clean—and hopefully tasty—drink that won’t make you sick. But what features should you look for when choosing the a backpacking water filter? Here’s what to look for.

Consider Group Size and Needs

For solo backpackers, you will likely want a lightweight and portable water filter. But if you’re traveling with a group, the ability to fill multiple bottles is a priority.

On the other hand, if you’re shopping for filtration in case of emergencies—or for survival prep—then a high-capacity system is ideal.

Determine the Filtration Level You Need

Filtering tap water is vastly different from filtering H2O from natural sources. Of course, in some places, pathogenic bacteria contaminate municipal water, too.

But in general? You want higher-level filtration for backpacking and hiking purposes. Being able to zap over 99 percent of the bacteria, protozoa, and other contaminants from your drinking water is vital for survival.

The same applies to survival scenarios since you never know what will happen to water sources in the event of emergencies. In contrast, if you want a handy and lightweight water filters for use all over the urban landscape, less filtration is doable.


How to Use It?

Whatever type you choose, you’ll need to learn how to filter water while backpacking. For drinking straw varieties, you need to suck the water through the filter tube. Most manufacturers recommend soaking the filters first.

For other varieties of filters, you need to immerse the filtration unit in the water directly. Some require you to pour water in, and gravity does the rest. You’ll need to read the manufacturer’s instructions for details.


Backpacking VS Filtered Water Bottle for Camping or Hiking

Choosing a backpacking-specific filter is crucial because of the level of filtration available. Most water bottle filters focus on water taste and smell.

The bad news?

They’re not removing protozoa, viruses, bacteria, and other nasties from your H2O. So, choosing a backpacking filter that passes stringent testing requirements is a must for backpackers and campers who are filtering raw, untreated water.

Then, the only question is whether you’re catering to a group or bringing emergency supplies for yourself only. This will determine the size and range of your filtration equipment.


Final Verdict

JTTVO Filtered Water Bottle

jttvo

Out of all the top rated water filters for backpacking, our favorite is the JTTVO Filtered Bottle. It makes filtering your water fast and convenient, and you can take the water source with you.

At the same time, stringent filtration standards mean the H2O is safe to consume. JTTVO concentrates on removing contaminants that could make you sick—and ruin your trip.

Plus, what’s easier than drinking from a straw? You don’t have to pump anything, pour anything, or pre-treat. No pills, powders, or chemicals are necessary, either. Just fill the bottle with water, insert the filtration straw, and take a sip.

Ready to grab your JTTVO Filtered Water Bottle to prep for your next hike or backpacking trip?


How about checking our article about Filtered Water Bottles? Do you need a water filter pitcher for your home? For other Water Filtration Devices, click on the link.