If you’ve read my previous article you’ll know that for most of my water filtration needs I use the Sawyer Squeeze Mini™. This little workhorse is rated to 100,000 gallons if maintained properly. Today I wanted to walk you through the steps I take to ensure your filter lasts a lifetime.
Though the Sawyer Squeeze Mini™ will remove most of the turbidity in any water it doesn’t have a dedicated pre-filter meaning dirt and gunk can begin to collect in the filter. This can drastically reduce the lifespan and performance.
In order to help alleviate this problem I employ the use of a bandana as a pre-filter. When I’m dealing with particularly muddy water I simply take the bandana, lay it over the mouth of my water bladder and use my cup to pour the water through. The material of the bandana will help to filter out many of the largest particles. I then proceed to use the filter like normal.
The second step I make sure to do is use the provided plunger to backwash the filter. To do this, fill your plunger up with sterile water (do not use dirty water for this step or your filter will be completely compromised). Place the end of the plunger onto the tip of the water filter where the clean water comes out and force through. This will backwash the large particles back out through the filter eliminating any build up and restoring performance.
Doing these two steps on a consistent basis will ensure you’ve got an efficient and effective water filter for many years.