Top positive review
286 people found this helpful
Pretty good, but be prepared for initial carbon
on April 7, 2010
This system is much like everyone mentions. It's light, weighing about as much as 5 quarters. It's compact, about the size of a roll of pennies. The filtration unit seems pretty sturdy and would probably not crack if dropped. The straw seems OK, about the same quality as the flexi-straws you get with $10 plastic water bottles. I'd worry that the straw might crack with repeated use, but it should be fine if you use it only for emergency purposes (i.e. rarely).
As with all carbon-based filters, this one has a lot of dust when you first use it. I forgot this detail and was surprised by the straw full of coffee-colored water on my first draw. There is a note on the unit that warns about this dust (which I didn't notice until later). The note implies that all of the dust would disappear after the first draw. That is not true. I've drawn about 4 cups of water through the system, yet there is still very noticeable dust in the water. It's no longer the color of coffee, more like weak tea. I'm OK with this, but my wife and daughter would complain (of course, they probably wouldn't complain too long if there's no other water).
In sum, I think this is a good product and recommend it for emergency use. But I suggest drawing a few cups of water to remove the carbon before you store it in your emergency kit.