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Katadyn Vario Water Filter

by Katadyn
| 1 answered questions

List Price: $89.95
Price: $82.89 & FREE Shipping. Details
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One Size
  • A simple turn engages a ceramic pre-filter for long life in dirty water or a pleated glass fiber filter in normal conditions
  • Produces up to two quarts per minute in the faster flow mode and one quart per minute in longer life mode
  • Replaceable carbon core keeps water tasting fresh; reduces chemicals, odors, and toxins throughout the life of the cartridge
  • Dual piston technology provides maximum output with minimum effort
  • Adapter base attaches directly to water bottles or an output hose can be used to fill hydration systems or larger containers
76 new from $64.90

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Frequently Bought Together

Katadyn Vario Multi Flow Water Microfilter + Potable Aqua Water Treatment Tablets
Price for both: $88.88

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Product Description

FEATURES of the Katadyn Vario Water Filter Combines the two best technologies - ceramic and pleated microfiltration Ultra fast flow (2 liters/minute) Replaceable carbon so water always tastes fresh SPECIFICATIONS of the Katadyn Vario Water Filter Microfiltration Method: Cleanable ceramic disc lengthens life of primary microfilter, 0.3 Micron high surface area pleated glassfiber microfilter removes waterborne bacteria and cysts, Replaceable carbon core reduces chemicals, pesticides and bad taste in water Output: Up to 2 quart (2 liter)/minute Cartridge Capacity: Up to 500 gallons (1875 liters), depending on water quality Weight: 15 oz Height: 6.5" Includes: Prefilter, Deluxe Carry Bag and Cleaning Pad This product can only be shipped within the United States. Please don't hate us.

Product Details

  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 8 x 3 inches ; 1.8 pounds
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • ASIN: B002IAL1IK
  • Item model number: Katadyn
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (188 customer reviews)
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Customer Questions & Answers

Customer Reviews

Very light and so easy to use.
Another thing to remember is that Katadyn is a great company, if you have any issues with your filter give them a call and they will help you out.
Knife junky
There are a lot of water filters out there, but if you want the best look no further, it's worth the money!!
adam shelton

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

234 of 238 people found the following review helpful By Ajulz on December 18, 2007
Color Name: BlackSize Name: One Size
I recently went to the Ecuadorian Amazon and spent a week living in the rain forest with indigenous people. I went on long treks and relied on the Vario to deliver drinking water from streams I passed on the way. The fact that I never got sick is a testament to the effectiveness of the Vario.
It was easy to hook up directly to my CamelBak, so there was no chance of contamination. Whenever I used it, I had it in the "longer life" setting where you pump a little less water per minute, but it passes through both filters inside. I've used several other filters and the speed and ease which I was able to fill up my 100oz Camelbak is far superior to any of them. The pumping motion is easy to use and it pumps a lot more water even on the "Longer life" (slow) setting than other filters.
Overall I think it is a fantastic product that I would recommend to anyone traveling to locations where you don't know if you can trust the water.
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252 of 264 people found the following review helpful By MC01 on July 17, 2008
Color Name: BlackSize Name: One Size Verified Purchase
I agree with consensus of prior reviews that it's good all around, faster than other models, but has some issues w/back pressure & leaking if you pump too fast or while using the "faster flow" setting instead of "longer life". The faster setting bypasses the ceramic filter (your biological nasty filter) and uses only the charcoal (some bio, chemicals & taste, like your average Brita filter).

I bought this instead of Katadyn's Pocket Microfilter (found for $179 on some sites at the time) for 4 main reasons:

1) ability to attach directly to Nalgene bottle. I'll be using this primarily while living overseas in areas w/questionable tap water, so this is a nice convenience. Don't think the Pocket filter allows this.

2)2-stage filter w/activated charcoal to remove chemicals, pesticides & bad taste. This option isn't available w/the ceramic-only Pocket Microfilter, and again was something I want specifically due to where I'm going. If chemicals aren't an issue where you'll be, this aspect might not matter to you.

3) Double-piston design for faster output & ease of use compared to the Pocket Microfilter. Pumping action was simple & ergonomic.

4) Cost. $80 is great compared to $180+. I may regret that mentality if/when this breaks, but for now it's a good deal.

Three things so far that I'm not excited about:
1) Although they state that the paper carbon "cartridge" is good for 500 gallons, the instructions say that the activated charcoal INSIDE the cartridge should be replaced about every 50 gallons or every 6 months, depending on chemical content/taste of the water. I felt deceived after discovering this omission from the reviews I read. Not printed anywhere in their online documentation, but REI does mention it.
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89 of 91 people found the following review helpful By Old Hacker on November 18, 2011
Color Name: BlackSize Name: One Size
Since I've got a lot of water filter/purifiers, I feel I can safely and objectively compare my experience with them in reviewing this Vario. For sure, it's a little heavier and bulkier than say, a Hiker Pro. At it's best, it works great. At it's worst...well, more about that later.

First the pros and cons;

1. It can pump fast and with only mild effort. The bidirectional pump action can really move the water, especially if you have it setup to bypass the ceramic disk.
2. I love the threaded bottle adapter built in to the base. Very nice if you're used to trying to balance everything on rocks!
3. The charcoal bit removes most unpleasant flavors. Mind you, if the water really smells horrible to start with, you're limited with what the charcoal can do.
4. Good instructions, packaging, decent carry bag, little tube of silicon lubricant is a nice touch from a reputable company.

1. It can refuse to start pumping. The wonderful piston/valve assemblies that move so much water can 'air-lock' and stop pumping. And it can take quite a bit of voodoo/fiddling to get it pumping again.
2. Any filter with a ceramic portion needs a silt pre-filter to prevent clogging. This one is no exception. (A silt pre-filter will also greatly extend the life of the pleated paper filter cartridge.)
3. The fragile plastic inlet barb sticks out awkwardly toward the back and is very unprotected. I suspect it's no accident that the inlet barb is always positioned where it can't be seen in the product photos and videos.
4. In my experienced opinion, I believe there is a design flaw in the flow path. On the bottom of the paper filter there is an o-ring that separates the contaminated water from the filtered water output.
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44 of 45 people found the following review helpful By ejwitt on June 3, 2009
Color Name: BlackSize Name: One Size Verified Purchase
I've had mine out multiple times and so far it's worked flawlessly. One item to note is that the intake connection sticks out from the side of the unit and is plastic. I would prefer to have had it covered or protected but I just make certain I pack it so that part won't get stressed.

As others have said, this thing filters water extremely fast. I've not had to use it in situations where the water has been highly contaminated or loaded with sediment so I can't say whether it has issues in those situations. The bottom is sized to screw right onto many water bottles and hydration bladders which saves having to use the outlet tube (included). Since I don't camp every week, I follow the long-term storage instructions on the unit before packing it away. This involves running 1L of water with either Katadyn's water purifier tablets or a small amount of bleach through the unit. Next comes removal of the ceramic disc filter to be scrubbed off, and finally removal of the paper/carbon filter to allow it to air dry. After about 24 hours I put some included silicone lubricant on the O-rings and put it back together. I haven't replaced the activated charcoal yet but it's not difficult to find and not overly expensive. If the unit is dried properly the charcoal should last quite a while.

The filter parts have tabs which are designed to make certain the unit goes back together properly, but I have to wonder if some of the problems reported are the result of improper re-assembly after cleaning.

I will agree with others that it is a bit bulky (it doesn't present any problems for my pack) but it's also pretty light, and compared to some of the more compact units, this one produces a lot more filtered water a lot faster. As with most camping products, the buyer should consider the tradeoffs of ultra-small and lightweight vs. lower expense and more usability.
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