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  1. #1
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    Default Sawyer squeeze cleaning

    Is there any other trick to improving flow rate besides regular back flushing?


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  2. #2
    Registered User colorado_rob's Avatar
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    If you're like me, and let a Sawyer Squeeze sit for a long time after flushing with regular tap water, there's a good chance you might have hard water deposits (mostly calcium, I believe) in the filter material. I was unable to fix mine using the standard method of soaking/flushing with vinegar, but you might try that. I simply bought a new one and now only flush with distilled water if I'm not going to use it for a while.

  3. #3
    Wanna-be hiker trash
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    I’ll be honest, the main reason I went with the sawyer mini instead of the squeeze is that they’re so cheap I can toss it and buy a new one each season. Eliminates almost all of the backflushing and storage problems.
    Colorless green ideas sleep furiously.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by colorado_rob View Post
    If you're like me, and let a Sawyer Squeeze sit for a long time after flushing with regular tap water, there's a good chance you might have hard water deposits (mostly calcium, I believe) in the filter material. I was unable to fix mine using the standard method of soaking/flushing with vinegar, but you might try that. I simply bought a new one and now only flush with distilled water if I'm not going to use it for a while.
    Good points. Thank you. Do you use straight vinegar?


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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sarcasm the elf View Post
    I’ll be honest, the main reason I went with the sawyer mini instead of the squeeze is that they’re so cheap I can toss it and buy a new one each season. Eliminates almost all of the backflushing and storage problems.
    That’s an idea.


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  6. #6
    Registered User lonehiker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heliotrope View Post
    Good points. Thank you. Do you use straight vinegar?


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    Yes, Sawyer recommends flushing with straight vinegar. They will also recommend using hot water to flush as well. I don't remember the temperature limit, but it can't be over a certain temperature as it may damage the filter. Check out their website.
    Lonehiker

  7. #7

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    watch this it covers the best way i know to clean the sawyer

    https://youtu.be/vtmdm9Q0pek

  8. #8

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    I had the filter deposit issue. Now I only back flush with vinegar.

  9. #9
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    I have a Mini.

    One thing I know about low pore size sterilizing filters (having used them in my profession) and have observed also in my Sawyer Mini is that air will not flow through a wet filter. I have always been confused by people's complaints about the flow rate of the Mini as mine has always worked fine. Perhaps I just don't care or know better, but it works for me. I often wonder if some people's problems are that they have air bubbles trapped in the filter and thus have a slow flow rate as wherever there is air, nothing is going through the filter. I have observed this effect when filtering. I will attach the grey straw to the clean side and suck water through the filter to get it flowing. If I notice that I have to suck fairly hard I will invert the filter (dirty side up) and blow some water backwards and jiggle to get the air to come out of the filter. After this, water flows noticeably better. You can try yourself. If you drain the filter and attach the grey hose to the dirty side and blow, you will not be able to force any air through. If you then attached a dirty water bladder and did not get the air out of the filter, no water will go through.

    After I got the air bubbles out and water will flow, I attach the grey hose on the clean side to an adapter attached to a clean water bladder. Then I hang this from a branch and let gravity do the filtering. Because it is a closed system, the flow will stop when the clean side bladder is full. I go back in a few minutes to attach another bladder if I want more water. After I'm done filtering, I remove the dirty side bladder first and then do a quick back flush by squeezing the clean side bladder, being careful to to force air into the filter. Tapping the filter seems to help dislodge some of the gunk. I only squeeze a few oz of water through. By doing regular small back flushes I've never had a problem with clogging, and with this system, there's next to no extra time or work involved. One disclaimer is that I've only done relatively short section hikes, so I can't make any claims about long term effectiveness but I have no reason to think it wouldn't work for a thru or a LASH.

    When I get home, I run some white vinegar through and let it soak for a while. Then I flush with tap water. I then flush it with distilled water and let it dry. (each time making sure I get the air bubbles out, as above). After several years, it still seems to work like new.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by D2maine View Post
    watch this it covers the best way i know to clean the sawyer

    https://youtu.be/vtmdm9Q0pek
    That’s very helpful. Thanks.


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  11. #11
    Registered User colorado_rob's Avatar
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    Great informational video, thanks D2 !

    My observations on the mini vs. regular, as I have both: the thru-put (flow rate) on the regular is definitely better, but the mini does work.. Basically, I tend to carry the mini when solo, the regular when with my wife. Though recently I've kinda switched back to the regular sawyer. Not much weight penalty for the additional flow rate.

  12. #12

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    After each use, I shake the heck out of it, slinging water out the "dirty" side. Surely that dislodges some of the sediment or leaf particles that got inside!
    It hasn't seemed to slow down yet. I did, once, do a backflush. Also, if I forget to do it after my hike, then before the next hike, I do the bleach thing... I mix the bleach 10% in the squeeze bag and run it through the filter. Then I run a bag of clean water through the filter. Now both the filter and the bag are clean and rinsed.

  13. #13
    Registered User Venchka's Avatar
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    This thread confirms and reinforces my decision to buy the BeFree filter and Hydrapak Seeker 2 liter soft canteen.
    Y’all have fun!
    Wayne

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by MtDoraDave View Post
    After each use, I shake the heck out of it, slinging water out the "dirty" side. Surely that dislodges some of the sediment or leaf particles that got inside!.
    I do thos too any time I get water. I also slosh the last few ozs of dirty water around with the filter still in place to dislodge and move any larger particles that I can then just dump out of my dirty water bag.

  15. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by MtDoraDave View Post
    After each use, I shake the heck out of it, slinging water out the "dirty" side. Surely that dislodges some of the sediment or leaf particles that got inside!.
    I do thos too any time I get water. I also slosh the last few ozs of dirty water around with the filter still in place to dislodge and move any larger particles that I can then just dump out of my dirty water bag.

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by Venchka View Post
    This thread confirms and reinforces my decision to buy the BeFree filter and Hydrapak Seeker 2 liter soft canteen.
    Y’all have fun!
    Wayne
    Yes because those never clog


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  17. #17
    Registered User Venchka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by D2maine View Post
    Yes because those never clog

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    Mine hasn’t. I do soak it in distilled water before storing it. The 2 liters per minute flow rate is nice.
    Wayne

  18. #18

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    I clean my Sawyer's, mini and regular, following the instructions that come with it and haven't had any trouble. Dropped the first one off the deck onto the driveway and broke it. Can't blame that on anyone but myself. And for a more objective view of the BeFree. https://www.halfwayanywhere.com/trai...filter-review/

  19. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by D2maine View Post
    watch this it covers the best way i know to clean the sawyer

    https://youtu.be/vtmdm9Q0pek
    Thanks for sharing this. While I have not had any noticeable issues with my Sawyer, this is a good practice for cleaning and long term storage.

  20. #20

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    I got one of the first sawyer sawyer squeezes when they first came out. Tested it on tap water, put away. It dried out. Tried to use it 6 mo later.....barely passed water. NEVER worked again. Even after prolonged soaking in water, vinegar, etc. Nothing worked. I threw it away rather than send back to sawyer. Even though i had talked to them on phone, and followed their directions.

    Many yrs later i tried a mini, successfully. Have had no issues with it or another squeeze. Always backflush, but never let dry out. I store mine slightly wet (tap water has chlorine), and package in double ziplock ,with a wet paper towel in the outer ziplock. Rewet towel every few months.
    Last edited by MuddyWaters; 07-13-2018 at 17:47.

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