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Sawyer Squeeze Water Filter
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Dean F.
(acrosome) - MLife

Locale: Back in the Front Range
Viruses on 07/25/2011 22:49:38 MDT Print View

The 0.02 micron "viral" filter that Sawyer makes is meant for people traveling in third world countries where getting hepatitis from the tapwater is a real concern. For the United States backcountry the 0.1 micron filter should cover you. IIRC it JUST BARELY misses the FDA criteria for a water purifier, as opposed to a water filter- I think that to be called a water purifier a device must remove 5 log of viruses, so 99.998% removal FAILS.

But most viral human-pathogen contamination in North American water sources comes from human waste, as opposed to bacterial or protozoan contamination which can come from stock or wild animals. So if you are in the back country you're probably safe as long as you aren't downstream from a sewage treatment facility or outhouse.

But make your own choices (HYOH).

Kevin Kingma
(MrKingma) - F
Comparing the 2 Sawyers on 08/08/2011 17:42:01 MDT Print View

I'll be buying my first Sawyer filter system soon and need to choose between the SP121 and SP131 filter elements. I can get the SP121 for $30. Anyone have any opinion/info. as to which would be better? Would squeeze and gravity flow rates be similar between the two filters? Are the SP131 squeeze bags reliable or likely to get holes if accidentally scraped against rough granite? (I'll be using the same setups with needed connectors as nicely described in the previous posts - thanks.)

Michael Davis
(mad777) - F

Locale: South Florida
Re: Sawyer Squeeze Water Filter on 08/08/2011 18:48:07 MDT Print View

When I saw Randy's post about this filter on another forum, I immediately ordered one. Since I am anti-chemical (except for backup) and anti steripen (mine failed) this seemed to be the ticket to lightening up from my gravity filter.

I was not disappointed. As a matter of fact, I am thrilled with this setup!
(A big Thank You to Randy).

From my digital scale:

Filter = 2.5 oz
2 L Pouch = 1.0 oz
Backflush syringe = 1.2 oz

Grand total = 4.7 oz

BUT, for a weekend you don't need the backflush syringe, so....

Weekend total = 3.5 oz

BTW: I have noticed several medical professionals post on here that irrigating a wound is very important. The syringe that comes with the Sawyer Squeeze would be perfect for that.

Ben Crocker
(alexdrewreed) - M

Locale: Kentucky
Sawyer on 08/08/2011 18:55:56 MDT Print View

This filter looks nice. I would love to get A couple of opinions, though. Can I leave a backup option at home? Can you screw this on a bottle and suck water out like you can on the Frontier Pro?

Tyler H
(ctwnwood) - F

Locale: The Palouse
Sawyer has lots of videos on youtube on 08/08/2011 21:40:30 MDT Print View

I guess you can't embed on BPL, should have known better.

Edited by ctwnwood on 08/08/2011 21:41:02 MDT.

Kevin Kingma
(MrKingma) - F
best Sawyer filter on 08/21/2011 16:38:38 MDT Print View

1) Do the Sawyer squeeze bags appear to be as durable as similar size Platypus bags?

2) Would the older style Sawyer filter (SP 121/122) connected to a 1L Platy bag with an inch of tubing as a squeeze system work as well/fast as the new SP 131 squeeze system?

David Vo
Re: *** Update 7/18/2011 *** on 08/22/2011 01:24:57 MDT Print View

My heart sank when I read about needing an extra scoop for the bag. Why doesn't someone make a bottle or bag with a large opening on one end and an attached filter on the other? For example, a Clean Bottle ( with a Sawyer Filter on one end. That way you can scoop the water up, even from shallow sources, cap the scoop side, attach a filter on the other end and squeeze to filter. I am still looking for the ultimate filter setup and almost all the ones I read require carrying some sort of hacked Gatorade bottle to be used as a scoop.

Kevin Kingma
(MrKingma) - F
@ D. Vo on 08/22/2011 10:21:54 MDT Print View

I agree, that is one of the flaws of this new system. The squeeze system requires a squeezable water collecting/feed bag. No mfg. makes a lightweight bag that has a reliable zip lock top that will hold under squeeze pressure and that has a bottom connection port to attach to the filter.

My suggestion would be to make one using something like a Sea To Summit 4 Liter Ultra-Sil Dry Sack (0.9 oz.). It has a large top opening for reasonably easy water collection, and a roll top closure with stiffener that should withstand / aid in squeezing water thru a filter. The connecting port to a filter could be easily DIYed using parts from USPlastics.

(and thanks for reminding me about the **update** post. It sounds like the Sawyer squeeze bags are not as sturdy as a platypus bag.)


Locale: Western Michigan
Sawyer Squeeze Water Filter AND PURIFIER systems on 08/22/2011 13:32:31 MDT Print View

I have been “lurking” on this thread since its inception and feel it’s time to disseminate some facts and information from my personal experiences. One reason for me delving deeply into the water aspects of backpacking recently is because with my compromised immune system due the two stem cell transplants for multiple myeloma cancer. I cannot take ANY chances with ANY source of water. I have use chemical and filters to treat water prior to my dx of 2003 and after 2003 the Sawyer SP 125 PURIFIER in a GRAVITY MODE. I have a Squeeze system with a SAWYER SQUEEZE BAG (1.5L) (1.0oz set up and a SP 121/122 FILTER when I have backpacked with my grandchildren (ages 11 to 9) so they can get into the act of “making water” for their use. I also have a GEIGERRIG Hydration Engine system set up for use with the Sawyer SP 125 PURIFIER for areas that I will have difficulty with my Sawyer SP 125 PURIFIER gravity system (drawback to this system is weight).

Now to the posting above:

“I agree that is one of the flaws of this new system. The squeeze system requires a squeezable water collecting/feed bag.”

>>>> If you use a Sawyer’s squeeze bag (eg. SAWYER SQUEEZE WATER BAG 64oz/1.9L (1.0oz), with the necessary parts and tubing connected to a SP 121/122 FILTER or a SP194/SP190 PURIFIER you can squeeze water into any container.
My system: SAWYER WATER FILTER wet (.1 micron) (3.65oz) /SAWYER SQUEEZE BAG (1.5L) (1.0oz), HOSE ASSEMBLY 1.25oz/FLUSHING SYRINGE (1.12oz)/STUFF BAG (.35oz) - 6.2oz
If you purchase the Sawyer bag (s) (use as a squeeze bag backup) for a collection bag with your SP 121/122 FILTER ….you have a light system (see above and you further lighten this system by eliminating the FLUSHING SYRINGE (1.12oz) & STUFF BAG). Using a SP194/SP190 PURIFIER WITH a Sawyer squeeze bag is DIFFICULT to produce the flow compared to the SP 121/122 FILTER or a hand pump FILTER….I would NOT recommend from my experiences. I have NOT use a Sawyer product with a Platy bag so I cannot give any feedback on that.

“No mfg. makes a lightweight bag that has a reliable zip lock top that will hold under squeeze pressure and that has a bottom connection port to attach to the filter.”

>>>>Checked out GEIGERRIG Hydration Engine ( ) 3 L RESERVOIR - 4.0oz very Bomb Proof and while this system is a "squeeze system” it uses an internal pressurized system that is quite unique, that will force water through the SP 121/122 FILTER or a SP194/SP190 PURIFIER with ease BUT at different rates. I believe the Sawyer bag (though it does not have a zip lock top) will be reliable, though further testing/use on my part is needed to make any definitive statements. Check out at Sawyer for further information and/or clarification on this issue.

Heading to Isle Royale Nation Park with the wife for nine trip tomorrow to walk the Minong Trail for the second time take in some wilderness. (There are issues with water in certain areas on the island but beyond this discussion.)


Tony Wong
(Valshar) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Sawyer Squeeze Water Filter AND PURIFIER systems on 08/22/2011 13:59:36 MDT Print View

I just came back from a 16 day JMT trip and used my old "black" 1st gen Sawyer Filter (not the purifier) for the whole trip.

For this trip, I used a squeeze bag system of 1 dirty water 1L Platypus and 1L Platypus for clean water.

System worked well enough, but my hands got tired after 3L of water....was filtering for my buddies.

The Platypus bags really can take the abuse and held up fine.

Backflushing was simply squeezing the clean bag to force water back through the filter.

After 16 days, it did seem like the Sawyer was slowing down a little bit...maybe needed a more complete flushing from a faucet, but worked good enough or I was simply impatient or tired on the trail at the end.

I am very interested in getting the squeeze bottle system to see if the rate of flow is better than the inline filter that I am using.

Anyway, thought I would share....old filter can be adapted to function like the new squeeze bottle one.


David Vo
Re: Re: Sawyer Squeeze Water Filter AND PURIFIER systems on 08/22/2011 14:09:56 MDT Print View

@Tony - Can you clarify which 1L Platypus you used exactly? Soft bottle? Plus bottle? Hoser?

Tony Wong
(Valshar) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Sawyer Squeeze Water Filter AND PURIFIER systems on 08/22/2011 15:00:17 MDT Print View


Sorry about the lack of details on the Platypus.

I am using the soft bottles, 1L, for my rigged Squeeze bottle knock off system.

I have a few of the old, discontinuted Platypus filter links that allow me to screw onto the Platypus bottles on either end of the Sawyer filter to make my connections.

NOT using the Big Zip closure system.

I use Sawyer as a gravity filter in camp with a 4L Platypus water tank, that has a zip lock closure system that is just OKAY.

Was a bit harder to seal up tight with cold water and wet hands.

My water tank is a few years old, so wonder if it is losing the "softness" that made it soooo easy to close when brand new.

Once sealed, you can squeeze the water tank too....even lean on it to apply pressure....not sure I would sit on a water tank though.


Kevin Kingma
(MrKingma) - F
Sawyer squeezer on 09/12/2011 23:46:31 MDT Print View

The squeeze bags supplied with the SP 131/2 are probably like the new packaging I've seen for laundry detergent and pet foods, sturdy enough to resist granite scrape holes and almost as strong as Platy bags.

The Geigerrig system bag is a little heavier than I want, but I enjoyed the video they have of throwing one out of a truck going 100mph to show how sturdy it is!

Optimally, the water collection bag would have an open top to make collecting and cleaning the bag easy (the Sawyer squeeze bags wouldn't work to collect water in shallow desert springs). The best water collection/dirty water bag seems to be a sil-nylon bag with stiffener/roll top. It seems others have made/used these for gravity systems, but I haven't read anything about their use in a squeeze system.

water collection on 09/13/2011 03:08:20 MDT Print View

ziplock can be used to collect very shallow water, then pour into other container

Mike Muralt
(mmuralt) - F
Making your own dry sack water filter system on 10/12/2011 07:47:25 MDT Print View

Has anybody taken a ultra-sil dry sack and used parts from USPlastics (or something else) to add a water tube coming out of the sack. Seems like it would be difficult to get a good seal with this slippery material. If you've succeeded I'd like to know how you did it. Thanks!

Laura Lee Hughes
(hughesl) - F
Sawyer Squeeze Water Filter on 10/20/2011 17:54:37 MDT Print View

Just used one of these in the Grand Canyon last weekend. Very light, very quick and easy to use. It can be awkward to try to fill the "dirty" water bag because it is such a small opening, but we used a cup when we couldn't find a place where the water was "falling" to make it easy to fill the bag. The bags seemed durable but on the third day we developed a pinhole in the bottom of the larger bag. We could still filter easily but it created a drip of dirty water down the side of the bag. For anyone who has trouble with their hands from repetitive motion activities, squeezing the bag to move the water through the filter is a great alternative to traditional water filters. We filtered a lot of water very quickly. One person was filling dirty water bags (we took two), one person was squeezing the bag attached to the filter, and the other was holding the clean water containers. The threading on/off of the filter to the bag was very quick.
I have been unable to see how to use gravity to make this system work since we always had to force the water (by squeezing the bag) to push it through the filter.

Rakesh Malik

Locale: Cascadia
Re: Sawyer Squeeze Water Filter on 10/21/2011 13:06:54 MDT Print View

My experience so far has been similar. One of my two bottles, the smaller one in my case, started leaking a bit around the rim where the nozzle is. So far, that's been the only problem with the filter.

I've forced the water through the filter every time also, otherwise it takes quite a while. I think it would work by gravity alone, but pretty slowly. Maybe if you hang it high enough to have a larger hydrostatic head it would work reasonably well, but I haven't tried that.

I also found that the push-pull filter makes a handy faucet for washing one's hands; I place the bag full of water under one arm, tip it downward with the valve open, and squeeze gently with my arm. Quite convenient. :)

Stephen Barber
(grampa) - MLife

Locale: SoCal
Another leak on 10/21/2011 13:33:30 MDT Print View

My squeeze filter also started leaking on the third day of use. The leak was at the end of the throat base. Sawyer claimed I had been "wringing" the bag (voids the warrantee), which I did not. Still, they replaced the bag, which was nice of them.

I still like the system, it's certainly quicker than my gravity Sawyer/Platypus system, but I'm hesitant about depending upon a system which starts leaking dirty water within a few days of use.

John Smith
(CSNeoM4A1) - F
Question on 10/21/2011 13:52:28 MDT Print View

Are these failures you guys are having simply the dirty water bag? Or they the filter itself.

Could dirty water bag failures be fixed by using a platy bag instead?

Andy F
(AndyF) - F

Locale: Ohio
Re: Another leak on 10/21/2011 14:05:22 MDT Print View

Yeah, a platy would work. I already carry a 3 liter one, and plan on that being my backup in case the dirty water bag fails.

Mine isn't leaking, but it has seen little use yet. I purchased it a little over a month ago, and it came with a piece of paper stating that the bags are not covered under warranty. This makes me think they've had quite a few issues with the bags. ;)