Katadyn Pocket Water Microfilter
By: Wes Wiedmaier
The Katadyn Pocket reigns supreme as the top microfilter because of its ruggedness, high water output and extraordinarily long filter life.
Water is the necessity of life and the one thing you cannot ignore for survival. If you have a source of water, a microfilter will ensure it is drinkable. With such an importance on having drinkable water, it makes sense to own a long-lasting water filter that you can rely on anywhere. No microfilter does this better than the Katadyn Pocket.
The price of the Pocket may be high for some, but when you equate the cost of extra filters, you're definitely coming out ahead. The next closest Katadyn microfilter in terms of filter life is the Vario at 500 gallons. The ceramic filter used by the Katadyn Pocket will pump out up to 13,000 gallons of clean, drinkable water before it needs to be changed. Extra filter cartridges for the other pumps are $35, so it would cost $875 in replacement filters to clean as much water as one Katadyn Pocket.
Some people may argue that they hardly ever go camping, so they don't need the extra filter life. But as customer reviewers on this site have pointed out, a microfilter is a useful item to own in the case of an emergency or a trip to a foreign country. You will want to have one in any situation where there is a question about the quality of the water you will be drinking. The long-lasting filter in the Katadyn Pocket makes it a multipurpose investment with an incredibly long lifespan.
The Pocket filters water through a ceramic element that is impregnated with silver, the most effective antimicrobial agent. It eliminates most waterborne bacteria, protozoa and cysts. These are the things that can take the fun out of any camping trip. To clean the ceramic element, use the included scouring pad and allow it to dry between uses.
The intake nozzle is placed in the water source, and works as a filter for sediment and other large particles in the water. This is another advantage of microfilters. If you just boil the water or use water-purification tablets, the water will still have sediment, like small grains of sand, and will not be very tasty. On the end of the output tube there is a clip to hold it to the lip of the container you are filling to make it easy for one-person operation. The unit is easy to pump the filter with one hand and filters one quart of water per minute. Compare this to a water purifier squeeze bottle I own. It would take what seemed like 300 lbs. of squeezing pressure to create a trickle of water through the nozzle. Needless to say, the Pocket has replaced that squeeze bottle as the go-to choice for all my camping trips.
At 20 ounces, the Pocket microfilter is respectable in the backpacking weight department. This is especially true when you consider its heavy-duty construction. Go ahead and drop it on a rock. The stainless steel guts and will shrug it off like a heavyweight boxer.
The Katadyn Pocket's long list of industry-best attributes makes it an easy recommendation. Look at it this way, this water filter may last you the rest of your life. How many of the products you buy in the next ten years will duplicate that feat?