View Full Version : What can i do with a moldy water filter?

02-15-2008, 13:47
Hi, I just got a Katadyn Hiker Pro filter for christmas, for my thru hike this spring. The day after christmas, i put it all together to give it a test run. when i was done, i just put it in its bag, all together. i didnt touch it until about a week ago, when i removed the element and was surprised (although looking back i really shouldn't have been) to find that both the plastic sheet wrapped around it and the element itself had some black spots of mold. i have been reading online and the general consensus seems to be that you should pump through some water mixed with a little bleach to clean out the filter when you're done using it. my question is, will this cure my existing mold problem, or is it meant only to prevent mold from growing in the first place? if it's already moldy, do i just need to buy a new element? i would appreciate any advice. thanks.

Appalachian Tater
02-15-2008, 13:53
Bleach solution kills existing mold. It does not prevent mold from growing except by killing existing mold.

It is unlikely that the mold would actually harm you even if you didn't bleach it. A lot of people even have mold growing in their kitchen faucets.

To prevent mold, flush your system with bleach solution, disassemble it, allow all pieces to dry thoroughly, and store it unassembled.

02-15-2008, 14:12
I'm no mold expert but I have spent a lot of time around sailboats and moldy conditions. After flushing it with the chlorine solution let it air dry outside in direct sunlight. Most mold doesn't do well in dry environments with direct UV light.

02-15-2008, 17:19
The concern is whether the fungus has damaged the filter element. Since I don't use a filter, I doubt it matters.

Most of us have fungus and other critters growing on our skin, under our nails and in other dainty and not-so-dainty places.

02-15-2008, 17:23
I had the exact same thing happen with my Katadyn hiker (except I let my filter sit for 11 months with water from Kinsman Pond in it). I tossed the filter element in the trash (it might be salvageable, but better safe than sorry), got a new element, cleaned the pump housing well, and it was as good as new--no problems on a 3-week trip this fall.

02-15-2008, 17:42
Every time I use my Katadyn Hiker Pro I unscrew the filter and pore out the remaining water. There is always a little in the filter. This saves weight and helps the filter from getting funky.

02-15-2008, 21:43
I have two Katadyn Hiker Pro filters and have experienced slight mold with both of them.Just run a small amount of bleach through the filter before putting it away and empty most of the water out and you should be ok for your next trek.

02-15-2008, 22:57
After having this same problem and consulting with Pur (or Kathdin now) I have come to this conclusion: Do clean out the filter as stated above with the weak bleach solution. But do NOT put the element back in the filter for storage. Keep them seperate in a mesh bag, or use a discarded dessicant pack to keep the element and filter body stored with (still seperate). This is the only problem I have had with this filter, but if you use these recommendations you will not have any future problems.
The reason that mold is still growing after you think the element is dry is because it will be almost impossible to get out all the water. Try this to understand what I mean. After you consider an adequate time to dry out, shake it or tap it on a flat surface and then look inside. You will discover small water dorplets even after a week of drying.

02-18-2008, 17:42
thanks for all the advice, i will try it out