Originally Posted by silver creek
Do you have the lithium powered Steripen? My batteries are on their second year.
If a lithium unit is wearing out batteries that quickly, I would return it to Steripen. It is definitely defective.
No, I don't have the lithium version. I do use lithium batteries in the one I do have, which does last longer (maybe 4 gal), but I still carry an extra set of batts on every trip.
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Originally Posted by chi flyfisher
MAD, if you don't mind, what was the failure you had with the Steripen?
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I went to REI today and purchased the Sawyer on their recommendation because of ease of use. I went with the intent of purchasing the Steripen but changed my mind. Almost all of my research focused on the Steripen device so I came home and did some reading on the Sawyer. What I found is that the Sawyer does not address "Viruses", which is of concern to me. Any thoughts on this aspect?
Viruses – Backcountry Drinking Water
This is from the article you posted:
"Even in contaminated water, viruses tend to clump together or with inorganic or organic particles that often settle to the bottom of lakes and ponds. While these viruses are still active, they are trapped in bottom sludge so drinking water taken from the top is much less likely to be contaminated."
I have never had an issue using the Sawyer system, and I believe that as long as you don't collect water from near the bottom, your risk is minimal. Anyway, I always collect my water, regardless of the system I use, from the top third of the water column.
As to how long the filter is supposed to last, I can't remember off-hand, but I believe it's several hundred gallons.
I just went to Sawyer's site, they claim not number of gallons but years of use. Their claim is up to ten years. also, they do sell a version that does remove viruses; no idea the cost of that.
One last thing: I just remembered that the one concern with the system is freezing temps. If the filter actually freezes, it will crack. Which is where the Steri-Pen comes in for me.