Free Shipping on Orders Over $50*

Gear Review

4 5

MiniWorks vs Steri-Pen

I recently bought the MiniWorks but wonder if I should have purchased the SteriPen - seems to do the same job but easier (no pumping etc.)), smaller and lighter. Appreciate any comments. Richard

Responded on

I've considered carrying a SteriPen many times and I know of backpackers who use them, including one Yosemite Backountry ranger, but I always return to my pump filter, the Katadyn Hiker. Primarily because I go through a lot of water and the Hiker weighs 11 oz. (or 9 oz. with a little mod.) and we frequently do not come across creeks for hours at a time on our trips.

Responded on

My husband has a Steri Pen he used on several very intense ultra-light backpack trips. He was able to make it work, and the size and weight were great, but what he found was that it is very finicky. During the process of sterilizing, it will often shut down for various reasons, such as the water being very cold. This means starting over many times to complete the job. Warming it under your armpit can help with the cold water problem, but all in all, he is disappointed with it and doesn't have the patience to deal with its idiosyncracies after a hard day on the trail. He now prefers to use our old Katadyn backpacking filter which is more work, but entirely consistent. He sometimes brings the Steri Pen just for a backup to the filter.

Responded on

I use both a Steripen and the filter. In the spirit of full disclosure, I think the company's that sell the filtered systems should make sure people know there systems do not kill viruses. The Steripen will kill viruses, bacteria and protozea, while the filters will only kill bacteria and protozea. So the Steripen kills more "bad stuff" (the Ultraviolet light destroyes 99.99& of protozoa - including giardia and cryptosporidia, bacteria and even viruses). Although some filters (capable of .018 micro fioltration) can remove viruses and only a filter with activated charcoal can imrpove the taste of the water.