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These Water Purification Tablets Remove Water-Borne Nasties for Potable Water Anywhere

When it comes to making questionable water sources potable, the best water purification tablets are a handy and reliable way to kill potentially dangerous microorganisms in water and therefore make it safe to drink. Whether you’re backpacking through the Himalayas in Nepal, spending a week in the Canadian wilderness or living in an area often affected by natural disasters, you may be in a situation in which you’re forced to drink from a questionable water source.

When it comes to picking the best water purification tablets, it’s important to weigh the factors that are most important to your needs. For example, if you want an option as part of your emergency hiking kit, small, individually wrapped tablets can be easy to take on the go and use without any extra equipment. And while we’re primarily focusing on tablets for this round-up, they’re not the only option worth considering. Liquid drops can be fast-acting and purify a larger quantity of water, for example.

Two key numbers to look at when shopping for water purification tablets are quantity and time. Many tablets are designed to purify one quart of water per tablet, while others purify one quart of water per two tablets. Likewise, it’s important to check how fast-acting these tablets are. Some of them require waiting at least 30 or 35 minutes, depending on the harmful viruses you’re trying to remove.

Sarah Morlock and Jonathan Zavaleta write about some of the best water purification tablets and drops for purifying water here.

LAST UPDATED

June 2, 2022

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While DEET products may be more familiar by name and their chemical smell, sprays with 20 percent picaridin, like Sawyer Products, offer comparable protection without the harsh odor and oily feeling on your skin.

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The Sawyer Squeeze was (by far) the most common Pacific Crest Trail water filter this year – for the fifth year in a row. It’s a $39, 3 oz / 85 g hollow fiber filter that rids your drinking water of protozoa and bacteria (and floaties). It can be used with Sawyer bags (included with the filter) or with compatible water bottles (Smartwater is the bottle of choice for many hikers).

Halfway Anywhere
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