gear review: Hydroblu Versa Flow water filter
The Hydroblu Versa Flow is a squeeze-type water filter that is lightweight, inexpensive and easy to use.
MY REVIEW POLICY
Hydroblu sent me the Versa Flow to test and review. Regardless, I’m under no obligation to give it a favorable review. As an independent gear reviewer, my policy is to review only items that I have used on multiple backpacking trips and that I feel are quality products worthy of recommending. If I don’t like a product, I send it back and don’t review or recommend it.
Hydroblu Versa Flow water filter
I had been using the Sawyer Squeeze water filter on backpacking trips for three years, and when the flow rate slowed down and didn’t improve with backflushing, I was ready to purchase a new one. Then Hydroblu sent the Versa Flow to me and after using it on 15 days of backpacking trips in 2019, it’s now my preferred water filter.
Both ends of the filter have internal threads for attaching to standard water bottles and containers. One side is marked “in” for attaching to a container filled with unfiltered water (I use the CNOC Vecto), and the other is marked “out” for the filtered water to flow through. Attach the “out” side to a water bottle or one of the Hydroblu collapsible canteens and collect the clean water.
For more info on my hydration gear and how I filter water, see: My Ultralight Backpacking Hydration & Filtering System.
- filter material: hollow fiber (0.1 micron)
- removes: Bacteria, Protozoan cysts, Giardia, Cryptosporidium, E. Coli, Salmonella and more
- filter life: up to 100,000 gallons
- threading: attaches to standard 28 mm plastic bottle
- flow rate: 1 gallon in 5 minutes
I received a kit that included the filter, two collapsible canteens, a silicone hose, and a hose clamp. The collapsible canteens are similar to soft water bottles (i.e.: PlatyBottle) sold at outdoor retailers and include a handle at the top (great for carrying water), and a carabiner attached to bottom of the canteen, good for clipping it onto your pack.
How to Use the Versa Flow filter
- Fill a container with unfiltered water from a stream, lake or other water source. I use the CNOC Vecto, which has threads that are compatible for attaching the Versa Flow.
- Attach the “in” end of Versa Flow filter to the unfiltered water container.
- Attach the “out” end of the Versa Flow to a water bottle or a Hydroblu collapsible canteen (included in the Versa Flow water filter kit) for collecting the filtered water.
- Squeeze the container filled with dirty water to push it through the filter and into the clean water container.
Backflushing the water filter
Using the sports cap on a water bottle filled with clean water, hold the sports cap over the “out” valve on the Versa Flow filter and squeeze all of water through the filter. After I’ve done this a couple of times, I shake the water out of the filter and any debris lodged in the filter should fall out.
What I like about this filter
- the small size doesn’t take up much space in my pack
- the caps on each end prevent water from leaking, especially useful when you have the filter in your pack
- the clear window on the side of the filter shows when it needs cleaning
- it has a great flow rate
- it’s easy to backflush
So far, there’s nothing that I don’t like about the Versa Flow, but as I continue to use it, I’ll provide updates to this post.
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links for some items, which means that I make a small commission if a purchase is made. This does not change the price of the item. Regardless, the items listed here are owned by me and are purchased with my own funds. All reviews are honest and not paid for by any company. Thank you for supporting this blog!