Portable Water Purifiers Review

Portable water purifiers buying guide. Buy a good quality portable water purification system so you can drink the water safely where the clean drinking water is hard to find.

Portable water purification systems are designed to purify the low quality tap water and pre-filtered water from lakes, streams and during the emergency. Due to its small and portable size, water purifiers are easy to carry almost anywhere; camping, hiking, fishing or if traveling abroad, where the quality of water is questionable.

Their advantages over filter systems are that they can eliminate the danger of the micro-size viruses; they are smaller and faster, but they are not as efficient where water is very dirty and requires a great deal of sediment removal.


There are different types of portable water purifiers where the most popular ones purify water by using the activated charcoal adsorption, UV lights or chemicals. According to the article from Wikipedia about portable water purification systems, the ideal system includes two or more systems combined. One of the systems filters the water first, by using the membranes with 0.2 microns porosity and disinfects the water by using the iodine or chlorine or UV lights. The best example of the compact size water purifiers is SteriPen.

SteriPen portable water purifier overview

SteriPen handheld and portable water purifiers are probably the most popular small and compact devices in North America for treating water. These products are using ultraviolet or UV technology to disinfect the water fast and safe.

Using UV light in water purification is highly popular method to treat the water. UV lights are very effective where water is not murky but clear. SteriPen will make the microbes found in polluted water much less dangerous as the UV light will affect their ability for reproducing. SteriPen portable water purifiers can destroy more than 99.9% of viruses, bacteria, protozoa and other harmful microorganisms without affecting the PH value, taste and other properties of water.

SteriPen offers several products, based on the application. They feature three categories; products for outdoors, products when traveling and during the emergency such as flooding or hurricanes. Every product from SteriPen should be used to treat clear water or moderate turbid water, while discolored and dirty water should be pre-filtered. Coffee filter or bandana will do the work also but in that case, you should purify one liter of water with two SteriPen treatments.

Note: Every handheld SteriPen water purifier should be used per instructions. It is essential to agitate the water by stirring it with the device to ensure the uniform UV treatment.

Campers and hikers are always looking for the solution to decrease the weight they are carrying. Instead of carrying lots of water bottles or drink un-treated water from the river or lake, handheld water purifiers are the good solution. SteriPen has several such products and they are light, durable and efficient.

SteriPen Journey LCD  is one of the popular products for outdoor activities. It is built to treat water approximately 8,000 times before you need a new one. It has a neat LCD display which informs you when your water is ready to drink, when to replace the battery and number of uses.

Ultraviolet light is turned ON when the sensor detects the water, and in a matter of seconds, it kills the viruses, bacteria and protozoa from the polluted water. It actually takes 48 seconds to purify half liter of water.

The system comes with two settings; to purify a liter of dirty water you simply have to press the button once, or twice for half a liter. The LCD shows the countdown, and the smiley face appears when the purification is done. It takes approximately 90 seconds for SteriPen water purifier to purify one liter of water. It is recommended to agitate the water untill the light turns OFF.

One of the disadvantages when using portable water purifiers with the UV lights is that the treated water has to be clear, not muddy and full of dirt.  Another possible drawback with the UV light purifiers is that they are powered by batteries (two CR123 batteries per unit), so in order to keep it running spare one or more should be carried.

SteriPen SidewinderSteriPen Sidewinder

SteriPen Sidewinder is another portable water purifier that uses the UV lights but no batteries. This is a hand-powered unit that uses a handle and few gears to run the UV. It is bigger than original SteriPen products, such as Classic or Journey.

It takes Sidewinder only 90 seconds to purify one liter of water. The only thing you have to do is to fill the unit with water and crank the unit up so the UV light can treat the water. SteriPen pre-filter is included, which removes the particulates.

Other popular handheld water purifiers are MSR purifier system and Sport Berkey purification bottle.


Portable water purifiers are great travel companion wherever you go; camping, hiking or any outdoor activities and where quality of water from natural sources is a concern. During the emergence even tap water might be contaminated, and that is the reason why portable and mobile purification systems are must to have.

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