Gravity vs pump water filter for camper

Gravity vs pump water filter for camper

One of your main and important equipment when backpacking is a water filter. It is important to filter out all harmful bacteria and parasites that live in waterways. But with all the options for a water filter, how do you know what’s right for you?


As backpackers, we like to count every ounce. If weight is most important to you, you may consider using a purification tablet. This will be the lightest option, however, tablets are not as convenient as gravity water filters or pump water filters.

water filter gravity bag are super lightweight and super small in size(0.33 Kilograms and 10.63 x 4.06 x 2.44 inches).

pump water filter are 8.35 x 5.43 x 2.32, 0.46kg

Ease of access

So when you’re spending all your energy hauling heavy gear up and over rocky terrain, you don’t want to expend a lot of effort on small things.

pump water filter requires you to stay in the water source continuously and not leave it. By far, gravity filters require the least effort because gravity does the job. Using a gravity water filter, you scoop water into a bag and suspend it from a tree or rock, let it drip through a tube, and filter it into your container.

But gravity filters are not suitable for every situation. First, you need a tree or rock to hang the bag from. If not, you have to pick it up, which is inconvenient. You’ll also need a good pool or waterfall to scoop it into the bag. A slow or small cascade will work, but it will take a little time. I used to go backpacking and only have very small shallow pools to collect water from. The gravity filter there will be difficult.

Best for low water supply – pump

The weight difference between gravity water bag and pump water filter is much larger. Depending on the brand, how much weight you can spend may vary. The main difference between gravity and pumping water filters is how much water needs to be collected. The pump is perfect for hiking in areas where you may not have a good supply of water. If the water source is not deep or wide enough to scoop it up, you may want to consider using a pump filter. The pump can utilize a palm-sized pool as long as the pool is deep or running.

Other Points to Note

Gravity and pump filters and water sheets are the three main ways to filter water in remote areas, but not all filters are created equal. There are a few other things to consider when choosing a water filter.

The first thing is you want to make sure it filters out all the things you don’t want. The second is its weight. You may need a stricter filter, and it may be worth the extra weight to you. Another thing to consider is the duration of the filter.

Some water filters can be fixed on site, while others cannot. If your water filter is clogged with silt or dirt, you may want to be able to take it apart and clean it out. Or you can carry a tablet as a backup.

Gravity with pump water filter with tablet

This is really a personal preference when choosing a water filter. They all have their strengths and weaknesses. You simply weigh the options and find the one that works best for you.


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