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Sawyer Mini Filter and Gravity System.

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Sawyer Mini Filter and Gravity System.

Old 08-10-22, 03:53 AM
  #76  
djb
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Mev, with the Sawyers you've used, how often did you do the backwashing thing, and if it's something you did, was it always a noticeable help?

It would stand to reason that the actual cleanliness particulate wise, would be a big factor no?

Safe travels
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Old 08-10-22, 04:00 PM
  #77  
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Originally Posted by djb View Post
Mev, with the Sawyers you've used, how often did you do the backwashing thing, and if it's something you did, was it always a noticeable help?

It would stand to reason that the actual cleanliness particulate wise, would be a big factor no?

Safe travels
I did backflush multiple times, perhaps every two or three months.

The kit comes with a syringe that fits over the nozzle to backflush and I had it with me on longer trip to use as needed. Unfortunately, I didn't bring it with me on this trip to try with the one that drips slowly but will experiment on return.

Agree that the level of particulate should matter in how much things clog up. To that regard, there are likely a few different use cases:

- on an extended basis, I've used the filter in places where there is an existing water system but I'm being safe in case the treatment standards differ from back home. I don't necessarily expect a lot of particulate matter.
- alternately one could be filtering from flowing water where you expect more particulates. Example comes to mind growing up in Colorado where I was told to be cautious of giardia bacteria in mountain streams- also along the way are standing water (not as preferred as flowing)

So suspect what water gets used affects how much any filter might clog.
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Old 08-10-22, 04:19 PM
  #78  
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Dank vel
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Old 08-10-22, 05:24 PM
  #79  
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Just to re-iterate on the topic of backflushing, I repeated this from the initial post:

Originally Posted by Tourist in MSN View Post
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In the photo below I am holding the filter at the end of my flip top cap on my water bottle to back flush the filter, use my other hand to squeeze the bottle. Note the arrow points towards the bottle because I am BACK flushing the filter which uses reverse flow to wash out any particulates that entered the filter inlet. This is not a Smartwater bottle, but I got this idea from someone on Youtube that was using a flip top Smartwater bottle and lid for back flushing. I discuss this more in a note below. The syringe can do a more robust job of back flushing, I plan to continue to carry the syringe on trips for when a robust backflush is needed.



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3 - I looked at some youtube videos on the filter before I bought mine. In one of those videos, someone demonstrated that you could use a Smartwater bottle with the flip top Smartwater lid to do a very fast back flush on the filter instead of using the syringe. I carry water bottles with the same type of lid as Smartwater. I have gotten into the habit of giving my filter a quick backflush after every time after I use the filter, since it takes almost no time at all to do so when you have a bottle right there with a bottle lid that works for that.
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I am not saying you HAVE TO backflush it that often, but since it takes almost no time at all, why not? Before I put the filter away, I grab my water bottle and shoot maybe half of a shot glass of water through it to rinse out any particulates and microbes that accumulated. Less than a minute of extra time. Maybe 2 percent of my filtered water is used to backflush.

I have used three ceramic filters over the years. (And a Pur with a replaceable filter media.) I mentioned in post 1 that I had problems with the MSR ceramic. I have two ceramic filters by Katadyn. The Katadyn Combi is a great, but very heavy ceramic filter. Have used the Combi many years in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area on the Minnesota/Canadian border, many of the lakes there are quite clear. Same with my many trips kayaking on Lake Superior which has exceptionally clear water. Looking at the water in some of these lakes, you would think that there are no particulates that can clog a filter. But, over the years I have learned that cleaning off the ceramic filter every few days greatly improved performance, much better than waiting for the filter to become nearly clogged. In this case, cleaning of a ceramic filter that had not yet clogged up badly was very quick. Backflushing a Sawyer is quite similar to cleaning off the ceramic filter, you are removing the particulate matter and any microbes that accumulates on the filter media intake. Thus, from my experience with ceramic filters, I just expected to frequently backflush the Sawyer filter when I initially bought it. And doing the quick backflush that I am doing, that is far more time efficient than opening up my ceramic filter, getting out my Scotch Brite pad to clean it off, etc.

I am keeping my Katadyn Combi ceramic filter, not sure if I will ever use it again, but it also has a replaceable activated carbon filter that could make that the better filter if there were any contaminants that adsorb to carbon. That is if I go somewhere and know in advance that such precautions would be advisable, which unfortunately you likely would not know in advance.

Before and after a trip, I still do a robust backflush with the (included) syringe, as a forceful backflush will reduce the chance of any preferential pathways from developing in the filter media, as noted in manufacturer's recommendations.

Perhaps I am a bit more careful about my water supply and equipment for my water supply than most since most of my professional career was working with ground water.
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