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Choosing a Suitable Water Filter for Backpacking

Water availability or lack thereof can be the determining factor on whether your adventure trip is exciting or not. As you plan your trip, you always have to factor the water issue. Is there enough water at your destination? Is there a water source close by? Is the water safe enough to drink? Trying to figure out all these questions can be tiresome; hence the reason why you need to find a solution fast that will make your backpacking experience worthwhile.

The use of water filters and water filtration techniques has really transformed hydration issues for backpackers over the years. As the availability of clean safe water is becoming less and less guaranteed, backpacking water filters are a big value that cannot be understated. There are various types of water filter solutions, which you can choose based on your exact needs, price, functionality and any other aspect you would want to put into consideration.

Types of water filters

1.      Bottle filter

A bottle filter has a built-in filtration element. Some of them use a suction which is provided when you sip from the mouthpiece, while others work like a coffee press appliance. There are others that also use the UV light. An example of a bottle filter is the Aqua Vessel Insulated Filtration which is best suited for daytime hikers who can refill the bottle at a water source while hiking.

Pros

  • The treatment process is quite easy and you can drink the water immediately.
  • The element can be replaced easily.
  • It is lighter and costs less than other methods of filtration such as pumps or gravity filters.

Cons

  • It is not suitable when large amounts of water are needed.
  • Proper cleaning of the element is required.

2.      Straw filter

This method is best suited for when you need water on demand. The cylinders have an inbuilt element that allows you to sip directly from the source. It was originally designed as an emergency water treatment method, but its use has grown in popularity especially for long distance runners. An example of this filter is the LifeStraw which has a hollow-membrane filter that cleans the water as you sip.

Pros

  • It is suitable for when you need to drink water immediately.
  • It is affordable in comparison with other filters.
  • It is light to carry around.

Cons

  • It can only be used by one person at a time.

3.      Gravity filter

This method requires a reservoir. Most models come with containers and an inline filter, though the actual setup provided in the water containers can vary from model to model. An example of a gravity filter is the Platypus Gravity Works model.

Pros

  • It operates via gravity.
  • You can treat large amounts of water at a go.
  • The element is replaceable.

Cons

  • The treatment process is slower than the other filter methods.

Final thoughts

Of all water filter options available, there is none that can be described as the best, because each is dependent on different needs. However, the technique used is the same for all of them. So you can settle for a suitable choice and enjoy your backpacking adventure!

 

 

 

 

 

Water Filters and How They Operate

I can bet at any one time we have all assumed that water is safe to drink just by looking at it. Notably, even the clearest water (at least to the naked eye) contains particles and impurities that can prove to be very harmful to your health. These impurities usually referred to as contaminants include parasites, microscopic bacteria, and protozoa which if ingested can be fatal to your body. Research shows that water-borne diseases such as cholera, typhoid, and dysentery are responsible for 2 million deaths per year.  Due to the high level of contamination of water sources, a solution to address this problem is absolutely necessary. This is where water filters come to the rescue.

So what exactly is a water filter?

A water filter is a device used to remove or reduce impurities in the water such as chlorine, lead, magnesium, bacteria, parasites and many more. They also prevent further accumulation of bacteria, algae, and fungi. The concept is quite simple. The filter traps all undesirable elements and lets clean water pass through. This is achieved through the use of a material which has microscopic pores or holes. These pores which are usually less than 1/1000th of a millimeter (diameter) which allow water molecules to pass through, but are too small for bacteria and viruses to fit.

Water filters vary in size, depending on the intended use. The larger majority use home filters, which use activated carbon to treat the water. Activated carbon is preferred because a small amount has a very large surface area. Imagine this; just a single gram of activated carbon has the surface area of four tennis courts! This means that a large surface area in a compact volume has very small pores which can absorb a lot of organic compounds and pollutants.

How does activated carbon work?

Activated carbon is essentially oxygen-treated charcoal. The oxygen “activates” the carbon and opens the tiny pores between the carbon atoms which then absorb the harmful substances. So when contaminants in tap water try to flow past the carbon filter, the pores immediately trap the harmful substances at the carbon’s surface. As a result, you are assured of clean, odorless water.

The process is in two main steps;

  • Water filtration

Once you install a water filter, the water flows through two carbon water filters which will prevent contaminants and other unwanted and harmful substances such as dirt, chlorine, sediments and heavy metals from passing through.

  • Water disinfection

After the carbon filtration process, the next step is the disinfection process, which goes through another filter. This filter may have a purifier installed, which eliminates substances such as E-coli and coliform bacteria that are most harmful especially to children. Water disinfection is a very important step because it is the final step to ward off infections caused by drinking untreated tap water.

Final thoughts

The consequences of drinking untreated water can be very severe, if not fatal. Water filters are the biggest assurance that you are drinking clean, safe water. Most of them, especially for domestic use are quite affordable and easy to install and operate. They also come in a variety of ways, such as a flask or decanter that can sit on your countertop or on your refrigerator, or a faucet that can be mounted directly on your tap. My parting shot? Filter your water. It is beneficial to your health, your wallet and to the environment!

 

 

 

 

Best Alkaline Water Pitcher –Top 5 Reviews and Buying Guide 2018

Ever wondered how you can neutralize the acid in your body? Well, alkaline water is how!

Drinking alkaline water has proven to be highly efficient when it comes to neutralizing the amount of acid we consume our modern diet which is highly acidic. Alkaline helps our bodies to take it easy by assisting the neutralization process.

Effective alkaline water pitchers will offer faster and easier access to alkaline water. This means that buying the best alkaline water pitcher is critical. However Before buying one here is what you need to know.

What You Need To Consider Before Buying Alkaline Water Pitcher

First! Let’s establish that alkaline water pitchers will offer you low cost; simple, low maintenance means to get a daily supply of high pH alkaline and healthy water. Water pitchers are basically containers that have a lid portion that incorporates a reservoir and filter to hold the tap water.

The tap water you put into it is passed via the filters and then collected at the bottom of the container. Just by tilting the pitcher, you can then pour the sanitized water out. So, how should you decide which design or model to buy?

Size

Size is a huge determinant because the size of your pitcher ultimately depends on how large your family is or whether you live alone, or you have a small family. Most pitchers range between 1-3.5 liters or about 4 to 8 cups, sometimes even more.

You also need to consider the size based on your daily needs, for instance, if you travel a lot you may have to buy one that is easy to carry around every time you travel. If you need an alkaline water pitcher for family use only, then you may get the 3.5-liter size. In all in all make sure the size you opt for can fit in your refrigerator for you to keep the alkaline water cold.

Type of the Filter

In our top five reviews, we will look at the multi-stage filters. These types use anything from special mineral stones, mineral balls and resins to activated carbon. The filter is much better when it has a more substantial total of stages.

Those with a large number of stages serve a dual resolve because they filter the water and also add soluble minerals making sure the pH is increased. If you would prefer a pitcher that will have the capability to filter fluoride, you need to know that not all pitcher have the capacity to do that, therefore, make sure that you check whether the model you are eyeing mentions that feature.

Filter Capacity

Most pitchers have an average duration of between 1-3 months, based on how much water the filter cartridge will treat your water before you replace it. The best thing to do is to get a filter that will last you longer.

Continually buying replacement filters will cost you added expenses depending on the company. Some companies use proprietary filters which means that you are required to purchase the replacement cartridges from them exclusively meaning that you have to uphold their pricing policies.

Filter pH Capacity

Neutralization of the water can only work if the pitcher can be able to maintain high pH level above 7.5. The best models keep the pH level above 9. The water pitcher’s output pH levels are highly dependent on the pH levels that are already existing in your tap water.

Digital Timer

This extra feature tends to be very useful because the timer will inform you if the cartridge is ready for replacement.

Filter Replacement Gauge

A gauge will indicate that their present filter is not filtering water anymore. Since you will not always remember the last time you replaced the gauge or how many gallons you used, this feature will come in handy.

Cost

Well, at the end of the day, we always buy what is within our budget. Alkaline water pitchers tend to be cheaper than the alkaline filters. The prices of some are decent and affordable. Look out for company discounts and also the pitchers that you can afford.

This means that you also have to consider the replacement costs. Sometimes you may find a product at an affordable price only to find out that the replacement is more expensive. So carefully consider how often you might require to replace the cartridge and way your options wisely.

Top 5 Alkaline Water

Comparison Table

RankModelCapacity in litresAction
1Wamery Alkaline Water Pitchers (Editor’s Choice)2.0Check Price
2Dragonn Alkaline Water Pitcher System
3.5Check Price
3Lake Industries Alkaline Water Pitcher2.5Check Price
4Santevia Water Alkaline Water Pitcher2.0Check Price
5Claro Alkaline Water Pitcher(Multi-Color)3.5Check Price
  1. Wamery Alkaline Water Pitcher

This Wamery pitcher is certified by a reputed research and trade association, Water Quality Association, in the US water treatment industry. The received certifications by the company are similar to the NSF 372, 53 and 42 certifications. This means that you can trust the quality of the pitcher.

The pitcher is also BPA free, so it doesn’t contain harmful chemicals. It has the LED indicator located on the lid that lets you know when the filter needs replacement. This model can hold up to 8 cups maximum, and it is 10-11 inches tall.

If you continuously use the pitcher, it will require about three refills per day; this means that when used carefully it can use it efficiently for a month. It can even last for two months if it has less use in the household. The company provides an extra filter for free, meaning that you have guaranteed use for about 2-4 months.

You can trust this model to remove the chemicals and impurities in your tap water, including the nasty chlorine smell and taste. This pitcher offers a pH level of about 7-10 on average which is the range required to clean local tap water. It has a capacity of about 42 gallons. It also has some nice design feature for a reasonable price.

Pros

  • Company provides an extra filter for free
  • LED filter indicator is handy
  • The pricing is reasonable
  • The filter is certified and are effective for purification
  • The pH level raises by a decent margin

Cons

  • The longevity of the filter is short
  • Capacity might be on the lower side for a big family

 

     View price on Amazon

 

  1. Dragonn Alkaline Water Pitcher

This model has an increased capacity compared to Wamery because it has a capacity of 3.5 liters. This means that if you have a large family, this pitcher will be perfect for you. It also comes with a LED indicator and a 7-stage filter. This also makes it superior compared to Wamery water pitcher.

This brand has a solidly designed lid that won’t fall out place when you pour the water out. Despite having a larger capacity, this pitcher will fit your fridge meaning you can be able to keep your water cold. It has filter indicators that will show you when its time to replace the filters.

The cartridge provided by the company is designed to last for about two months. This pitcher also removes heavy metals, impurities, and chlorine when the water passes through the 7-stage filters. The taste of the water is also better.

However, compared to Wamery, it has weak alkaline levels. When you look at the price, the pH levels in the filtered water are disappointing because it is not high. The average is about seven which is not such a bad bud not any good either.

The filters of Dragonn alkaline water pitcher have an increased water capacity and a decent longevity. We also love the solid construction of the lid. However, if you prefer water with high alkalinity, this pitcher may not be for you.

Pros

  • The filter capacity is 3.5 liters which are generous
  • The lid fits tightly
  • Comes with an excellent 7-stage filter and LED indicator

Cons

  • The pH levels are lower than average
  • Needs proprietary filter cartridges

View price on Amazon

 

  1. Lake Industries Alkaline Water Pitcher

This pitcher also has a 7-stage filter and it is most preferable for people who are on a budget. It is made from suitable plastics and food grade AS that are BPA free rated. It has a 2.5-liter capacity which may suit few individuals and smaller families as well.

It can comfortably fit into the refrigerator because it has a slim design. Even though like the Dragonn pitcher, it lacks substantial pH levels, you can be able to notice the difference after filtering the water. The lid doesn’t fit well which is a downside because the water splashes out.

Lake Industries have a reputation for being affordable, and this pitcher will effectively purify your tap water. It can last up to three months which is a good thing.

Pros

  • Has a compact design and excellent 7-stage filters
  • Filters may last for three months
  • Budget-friendly

Cons

  • The lid doesn’t fit well
  • You need to but the company’s filters

 

View price on Amazon

 

  1. Santevia Water Systems Alkaline Water Pitcher

This model comes in four different colors giving you attractive choices. The lid comes with a countdown clock that will let you know when it’s time to change the filter cartridges. The lid makes it easy to fill up water, and the pitcher looks very solid. Since the lid has an auto close function, it is convenient.

However, there have been reports that the countdown timer tends to be a bit flimsy and can easily break down. The pitcher has a capacity of 2.0 liters which may not be the best for a large family or frequent household use. The filter also has a very low lifespan since it can take time out within a month of daily use.

This pitcher will give you mineralized water with vital minerals like calcium and magnesium. The alkaline level is about 7.35, and it creates alkaline line water that tastes better and helps you live a healthy life. It removes contaminants like chlorine, heavy metals, and industrial pollutants and adds valuable mineral as mentioned earlier.

Pros

  • The pitcher is available in multiple colors
  • The lid has an automatic close function
  • There is a countdown timer on the lid

Cons

  • The timer can be easily damaged
  • The alkaline capability is low

 

View price on Amazon

 

  1. Claro Alkaline Water Pitcher

This pitch is also available in multiple colors. You have an option of a pleasing green shade, white and blue. The green pitcher easily attracts the eye. They are also very affordable and have a capacity of 3.5 liters.

The filters have LED displays that are meant to warn you when the filter needs replacement. The bonus has a bonus offer where they give you a free replacement when your cartridge expires for the first time. The cartridges by the company are also very affordable.

Pros

  • The lid comes with a LED display to notify when replacement is needed
  • Company offers free filter cartridge replacement for the first alternative
  • Come in multiple colors

Cons

  • May not fit in the small refrigerators
  • Performance is average compared to other pitchers.

 

View price on Amazon

 

What’s Our Pick?

There are so many alkaline water pitchers in the market. However, it always comes down to filter quality, capacity, cost and other relevant factors. Our favorite from this list is the Wamery alkaline water pitcher, the design and engineering behind it are much better, and it is NSF and WQA certified which is a bonus.

All of all the five pitchers in our list, this pitcher is suitable for household use in small families and travelers as well. The size can fit in any fridge with large or small. It also has a high pH level meaning that the water will taste better and will also be healthy.

The Bottom Line Is

No matter what the experts say, tap water is not safe to drink! Alkaline water filters are one of your safe options for ensuring that you keep your lifestyle healthy by consuming water free from chemicals and impurities.

An alkaline water pitcher seems to be the cheapest option if you want to jump on the healthy bandwagon. These top 5 pitchers will help you purify your household drinking water.

Pro tip: Getting an alkaline water pitcher could be the most significant investment you will have made to protect the well-being and health of your family!

 

Best Inline Water Filter – Top 5 Reviews and Buying Guide 2018

Wouldn’t you want to filter your home water using a suitable filter that will lie between your appliances and water line?

Well, we will walk you through some of the water filters that will help you ensure that the water you consume in your house is 100% healthy and pure. An inline water filter saves you a lot more space than other filters.

However, looking for an ideal inline water filter for your home can be a little confusing because there are so many in the market. No worries! We will look into our top inline water filters in the market. But first…..

What You Need to Consider Before Buying Inline Water Filters

Purpose

Much like water softeners, inline filters are water purifiers that you plumb into your supply line. They help by purifying every single drop of water that goes through it, which is why you need to consider why you need one in the first place carefully.

Inline filters are always on, so there is no on or off option. They can be used for specific appliances or as faucet purifiers. So to know what you are really looking for in an inline water filter you need to find out what your drinking situation. However, you need to know that if you use an inline filter through your kitchen faucet, you will be required to replace it more often.

Effectiveness

Once you determine why you need an inline water filter in the first place, then you have to make sure that you get one that will do the intended purpose efficiently. Believe it or not, not all filters filter your water as per your expectations.

At the end of the need, you have to buy a brand that will be at least 99% effective. By doing so, you will be making sure that you get a model that’s top-performance and supplied you with water that’s clean, free of contaminants, odor, chlorine taste, and improved taste. To make sure if the model works as per the manufacturer’s claim, you need to check if it comes with NSF/ANSI and WQS certificate seals.

Location

You have to figure out where you will be launching your ninjas. Generally, the filters are about 10 inches long meaning that they aren’t as lightweight as you expect. So if the filter comes with mounting hardware, you’re in luck! If it comes with no mounting hardware, then it’s wise to get one.

What we mean is, you have to make sure that the purifier has enough space around it for you to be able and install and change the strainer without any strain.

Lifespan of the Filter

Figuring out where you will launch the filters means that the changing fitters are what makes the water filter work. This means that the number of times you get to change the filter depends on the model you choose.

The period can last from 3 to 6 years and sometimes even more. If you want to save on your replacement costs for new cartridges, then you should make sure that you get a model that will last longer. Go for the filters designed with quality materials they will have longer lasting strainers.

So make sure you look at the yearly cost of replacing the purifier according to the recommendations given by the manufacturer and the costs involved.

Brand

Sometimes you need to check the brand before buying a product, some brands speak for themselves! Some brands have been around for a couple of years, and that means that it has taken them the same number of years to build quality filters that meet all your expectations and needs.

Ease of Installation

I’m sure you wouldn’t want to have a difficult time installing a filter, no one like unnecessary headaches. This is why you need to examine whether the model you want to buy is easy to install. Make sure that the filter comes with manufacturer instructions and installation tools that way you will be able to set it up. Also, make sure that it is extremely easy to replace the filters in the unit you want to buy.

Replacement Costs

You need to make sure that you check the annual expenses you might need to replace the purifier. To do this, always check the manufacturer’s recommendations and the cost that is involved.

The Top 5 Inline Water Filters

Comparison Table

RankingBrandCapacity(in gallons)Buy Here
1Filtrete Under-Sink Advanced Water Filtration ( Editor’s Choice2,000Check Price
2Watts Inline Filter
(Runners Up)
20,000Check Price
3Culligan EZ-Change Icemaker? Drinking Water Filter3,000Check Price
4SmartWater GE GXRLQ Inline Water System750Check Price
5Whirlpool Inline Water System1,500Check Price

 

  1. Filtrete Under-Sink Advanced Water Filtration

Remember when we said that sometimes it helps to go for a well-known brand, well this is a widely known company. As the name suggests, this water filter is fitted beneath your skin which means it vastly improves the quality of your water and taste.

You can connect it to the bathroom or kitchen faucet, and it takes less than thirty minutes to install which makes it easy to install. With this filter, you have to attach it to the sink for you to get safe and clean water through the tap.

Since it is attached to the sink, it helps reduce bad odors and chlorine content that get into your household water. There is an electrically charged medium within the system that’s used for attracting and filtering the water contaminants. Like magnets, they remove the unwanted water components easily.

It is a handy design which makes it easy to use. The system is also worth the cost because it works well. It has a lifespan of 6 months and can hold 2000 gallons. However, the NSF has not tested or certified it, so that’s a downside.

Pros

  • Can be used as an under skin faucet purifier or for both appliances
  • Easy to install
  • Cost-worthy

Cons

  • Not tested or certified by NSF

 

View price on Amazon

 

  1. Watts Inline Filter

The operation of this filter is as simple as the name. Considering that this filter is not an under-the-sink purifier, it is significantly huge with a capacity of 20,000 gallons. It’s also very convenient because you can use it to purify water for your ice maker, coffee machine, or other appliances.

The company assures a lifespan of five years. It also won’t go all funky on you because it has bacteriostatic properties. It will also help reduce scale buildup, gets rid of chlorine taste and smell. It is certified by Water Quality Association, but it’s not NSF certified.

This filter, however, can’t work for contaminated liquid or seriously dirty water. It also has brass connectors for a secure fit. However, after the water goes through this filter, the quality of water is improved tremendously.

It has the most prolonged lasting inline water capacity which means you will use it for a number of years. This is a bonus because most water filters last only a couple of months.

Pros

  • It goes for a five-year span because it is bacteriostatic
  • Has a more secure connection because of the brass connectors
  • It’s easy to install
  • The quality water output is good

Cons

  • The installation kit is sold separately

 

View price on Amazon

 

  1. Culligan EZ-Change Drinking Water/Icemaker Filter

Just like the name suggests, this filter is perfect for refrigerators and ice makers. The filters are easy to change because it has screws that make the process practical and convenient. The screws are into the wall with the purifier plugging into it. It is therefore easy to also replace it.

The filter also removes bad tastes and odors from the water, reduce lead, chlorine, cysts like giardia and cryptosporidium, atrazine, turbidity, class 1 particulates, and lindane from your water. This means that it’s the best option if you want to drink water that tastes and smells better.

It has a 3,000-gallon lifespan. It can filter 5000 gallons constant water for about six months without having to replace the cartridge, this means that’s the filter can last about 3-4 years. The company, however, makes no bacteriostatic claims about it.

It takes just a few minutes to install the filter because all you need to do is connect the inlet and outlet tubes with fittings that are quick to connect. This means that the replacement is also easy. If you are big on brands, then you can’t go wrong with this filter because Culligan has a reputation for its products both internationally and locally over the years.

Compared to other systems, the product cost is very friendly. The water is also improved immensely since after being treated in the system it smells and even tastes better.

Pros

  • Easy installation and removal
  • Can’t be horizontally mounted
  • Low replacement filter price and low unit price
  • The water obtained after purification is good quality

Cons

  • The head unit takes up more space because it is a bit bulky

 

View price on Amazon

 

  1. SmartWater GE GXRLQ Inline Water System

This design is quite easy to connect to the icemakers or fridges with an existing waterline and those without. If you happen to have the GE icemaker/fridge, it will be easy to install this feature because it has a space that’s entirely dedicated to the filter.

It also has premium feature certified by NSF/ANSI meant to reduce life-threatening asbestos, chlorine-resistant cysts, lead, and about five other contaminants that tend to make the water unsafe for consumption. It has a lifespan of a typical inline water filter, which is six months, meaning that it can hold up to 750 gallons.

It has a twist-lock filtration mechanism that makes installation easy, as well as the replacement process. The compact design will offer you better tasting drinking water and ice from your refrigerator. And the best part is, you don’t even need any tools for replacement.

Pros

  • Easy to install and replace the purifier
  • The lifespan is reasonable for a household
  • The taste of the ice and water is improved

Cons

  • OEM replacement purifier cost is actually higher than that of the unit price

 

View price on Amazon

 

  1. Whirlpool Inline Refrigerator and Water Filter

This inline water filter is perfect because it is not only for Whirlpool refrigerators but other brands as well. It is meant to be put in the back of your unit. It has a convenient push in the fittings that make the installation easier.

It is designed to remove impurities and offer you with clean and safe water and ice as well. It removes impurities like dirt, chlorine, limescale and also capable of removing sediment materials or particles present.

It can hold a capacity of 1,500 gallons with a lifespan of about six months. It has been tested and certified by NSF which means you can trust it to make your water clean.

Pros

  • Easy installation
  • It is economical compared to other brands
  • The purified water has good taste

Cons

  • Some people have complained about leakages

 

View price on Amazon

 

What’s Our Pick!

The Filtrete under sink inline water filtration system is our pick because it can be put under the sink to vastly improve the taste and quality of the water running through your taps. You can comfortably fit it in your kitchen or bathroom faucet in less than thirty minutes.

It reduces microbial cysts, sediment, chlorine taste and odor. This is an excellent alternative for people who don’t have a full water filtration system in their kitchen faucet because not only is it easy to install; you can also change it after six months.

Conclusion

When it comes to the perfect balance of filtration and size, the inline water filters come in handy. If you want to protect your investment or appliances, then it is necessary that you get one. The inline water filters will save you as much space as possible while making your water pure.

These top 5 inline water filters can be installed in less than an hour, and the service and maintenance of the units are minimal.

Please note: if your household water is extremely bad, you might want to consider getting whole house filtration system from brands like Fleck, Aquasana, or Waterboss