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Your Location :Information>Tips for Purchasing 2018-08-10 15:27:54

I'm an avid hiker and camper — and I always pack this company's water filter and insect repellent

Resource:  BUSINESS INSIDER Keywords:  Clean Water, Flexible Bottle


(1) Sawyer filters purify water of contaminants down to the level 0.1 microns, removing bacteria, chemicals, viruses, metals, and more.

(2) The company's insect-repellent products have been proven effective against ticks that carry Lyme disease, mosquitoes that carry Zika, Dengue, and West Nile, and myriad other insects as well.

(3) Sawyer International has embarked on a mission to bring clean water to millions of people around the globe, especially those in developing nations who are most at risk for illness or death caused by a lack of safe water.

When I go camping, hiking, or even for a road trip, I always bring along a Sawyer water filter. I also bring along plenty of water, so frankly I've hardly used the thing beyond initial testing to make sure I was comfortable handling it. Which I was, because here's how you use a Sawyer S3 Water Filter:

<1> Fill the bottle with up to 20 ounces of water

<2> Attach the filter to the top of the bottle

<3> Squeeze and swirl the flexible bottle for about 10 seconds

<4> Drink right from the tip of the filter or squeeze purified water into a vessel of your choice.

Got all that? Good.

As simple as the process of using a Sawyer water filter is, there's a lot going on behind the scenes.

The company's proprietary hollow fiber filter system was developed based on research into kidney dialysis technology, and the filters represent some of the most effective water purifying hardware around. Sawyer filters purify water down to the 0.1 micron level; for reference, a single micron measures about 0.0004 inches. The average human hair is some 75 microns in diameter. So to purify down to one-tenth of one micron is... amazing. And reassuring. I would feel more than confident dipping my Sawyer bottle into any puddle anywhere, or any stream, lake, river, or under any city tap, and drinking the water that flowed through the filter.


But more often than not, I'm not faced with any of those water sources as my only source of hydration.

According to the World Health Organization, more than 880 million people lack reliable access to clean drinking water. Water is a matter of life and death for all of us, but for too many people, then, it is an everyday matter. Sawyer International, the charitable arm of the company driven by the mantra #WeKeepYouOutdoors, is changing that one filter at a time. The initiative has set itself a goal to supply water filtration systems to people in more than 70 developing countries, hoping to change statistics like this one: Every 20 seconds, a child dies from water-borne sickness.

So far, it looks like Sawyer's mission is on track to make a major impact, as daunting as the challenges they face may be. The company reports a 75% reduction in water-borne illness in one Ecuadorian village they outfitted with filters. A Pakistani school reported an attendance rate jump from 72% to 90% once Sawyer filters had been installed, ensuring students had access to safe water.


In Liberia, Sawyer is committed to bringing clean water to everyone currently lacking access to it by 2020. Yes, everyone in the country. They are tracking their progress with GIS software monitored by independent, US-based research teams from Calvin College.

Most Sawyer International efforts are centered around the critical issue of clean water and, by the way, there's a lot you can do to get involved and help. But beyond water filtration, the other products the company makes are also critical for safety, whether we're talking about the family during a weekend camping trip or an entire village. Their product lines include sunscreens, first aid kits, and insect repellents. And it's on the latter that I want to focus. Why? Because like the filters, I know and use their repellents, and I've come to trust them based on my firsthand use.

Sawyer makes two distinct types if insect repellents: Repellent designed for use on gear and apparel, and repellent designed for use directly on the skin. The gear and clothing repellent uses an odorless but powerful compound known as Permithrin to ward off ticks, mosquitoes, and other unpleasant characters. For insight into how powerful the stuff is, the solution is a mere 0.5% Permithrin, yet will last for as many as six wash cycles or for more than 42 days. I spray the stuff on my tent, sleeping bags, boots, and other items when I go camping, and we apply a misting of it to our son's shirt and shorts at the start of every week of summer camp.

The insect repellent designed for use on the skin uses a 20% Picaridin solution that offers about 12 hours of repellent action against myriad insects. Used in concert, these repellents are the safest way I know of to enjoy the backwoods without bringing back viruses, or even just a bunch of itchy bites.

When used by whole communities, these repellents, along with Sawyer water filters, might just be one major step toward reducing the number of people who get sick or die in any given year.

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