This post may contain affiliate links, which means that if you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, I’ll receive compensation at no extra cost to you.
What to Look for When Buying the Best Personal Water Filter for Survival
Finding the best personal water filter for a SHTF situation can make the difference between survival and death. Water filters are designed to remove the bacteria and parasites out of the water. Protozoa, such as Giardia are approximately 8 to 12 microns. Bacteria, such as Salmonella and E. coli are between .2 and 4 microns. Viruses, such as hepatitis, are .004 to .1 micron. The best personal water filters will filter down to between .2 and .1 absolute. That means even the best ones won’t filter out many of the viruses. If the SHTF emergency is a pandemic and you’re in an urban setting, you may need to take another step to insure safe drinking water. Find the one that removes the most pathogens, based on micron size.
You want a personal water filtration device to be small enough to make it easy to carry and won’t weight you down or add a lot of bulk. You need to maximize the space in your bugout bag and keep it light enough that you can carry it easily across rugged terrain if necessary, for several days or weeks. The mini versions of most personal water filters are the lightest and easiest to carry, but of course, they can’t filter as much water.
The best personal water filter also should be budget friendly. While you often get what you pay for, that doesn’t mean that more expensive is better. It may just be more expensive. Some of the top names in personal water filters cost around $20, although you can find the same brands and models offered at some sites for as much as $80 to $100. Always compare prices.
Check the number of gallons it will filter. Keep in mind, the average person uses about one gallon a day. The amount of water the filter processes makes a huge difference. If you’re going backpacking and want an emergency water filter, in case you get lost, it’s not nearly as important. In a SHTF situation, you don’t know how long it will take until you have a stable, drinkable water supply.
The best personal water filter should be easy to back flush. Blowing out the debris is the easiest way to clean a water filter. However, some also come with a kit to back flush the filter. No matter how good the filter is, if it’s clogged with debris you won’t get the estimated number of gallons.
No matter if you have the very best personal water filtration system there is, it won’t filter out chemicals. You can remove most chemicals by distilling the water, which is an easy process you can use if there is a problem with chemical contamination. If you’re worried about viruses, it doesn’t hurt to have a UV water purification pen that takes only 90 seconds to kill viruses. As with all readiness, there’s no such thing as being overly prepared.