Founded at the base of the Wasatch Front mountain range in Utah, we have the perfect proving grounds for water filtration. We are outdoor enthusiasts, hikers, backpackers, and survivalists, and love being outside. Our goal is simple. We wanted to create a water filter that we would use and not break the bank to buy.
Why Buy Direct?
We chose to sell our water filters direct to you so we could keep the price down. Sure we probably won’t sell as many filters as we could if we sold them through a big box sporting goods store, but they would increase the price. We believe everyone should have access to clean and safe drinking water.
Let's Keep It Simple
We chose to only offer a few products because we don’t want to be everything to everyone. We made products that can be used in everyday life, whether that is traversing the urban jungle for your 9-5 or you are racing across India in a tuk-tuk. We are all about adventure and creating cool experiences. Our products are simple to use, are chemical free and don’t require any electricity or a ton of accessories. They are virtually plug and play to use and then they get out of your way.
Stay thirsty and stay safe.
How Do Water Filters Work?
Water is a basic necessity of life but drinking dirty water can be deadly. Every year 6 million deaths are attributed to waterborne diseases. There are various methods of water treatment but using a water filter is the safest and easiest way to keep your water clean.
There are two classes or types of water filters based on how they filter; Size Exclusion and Absorption.
Size Exclusion uses a "round hole, square peg" method. As a square peg will not fit into a round hole size exclusion prohibits contaminants from passing through the filter by using smaller holes than the size of the contaminates. Imagine trying to push a basketball through a garden hose. The diameter of the hose is too small for the basketball to fit. The pore size or hole size of a filter using size exclusion is large enough to allow water through but small enough to keep contaminants such as E.coli giardia or viruses from entering the filter.
The two most common filtration mediums using size exclusion in water filtration are hollow fiber membrane and ceramic filters.
Absorption works by attracting the chemicals and contaminates at a molecular level and trapping them in the filter medium. Like a strong magnet, filters using absorption attract and hold on to contaminants while allowing clean water to pass through the medium. Using absorptive filter are the only way to remove chemicals bad taste and bad odor from water. The one downside to absorptive filters is that they can fill up. There is only so much a magnet can pick up before it cannot pick up any more. These types of filters need to be replaced more often than filters using size exclusion.
A common medium that uses absorption is Activated Carbon. You can find activated carbon in most pitcher filters, refrigerator filters and most other water filters.
Activated Carbon - What is it?
Activated carbon is a term for a manufactured carbon either coal-based or coconut shell-based. The process is varied for each medium but essentially the carbon is exposed to oxygen to create tiny pores in the carbon at a molecular level. It is these pores that absorb contaminants by chemical attraction.
There are two sources of activated carbon used in water filtration. One is a coconut shell-based carbon where the husks of coconut shells are burned and then processed. The other type is a coal-based carbon. Both of these types of activated carbon take on three forms in water filtration; granular, block and impregnated fiber.
Granular carbon is the most popular form of activated carbon for water filtration. It is comprised of tiny loose granules that require the water to pass through them . The benefit of this type is that it has a significantly high flow rate. Water can travel easily through the carbon while still getting exposed. A negative aspect about granular carbon is over time pathways or channels can develop in the granules so water may not be exposed to the carbon.
Block carbon is the most effective form in water filtration because of the high exposure rating to the water. As it sounds, a block carbon is a single compressed medium. No pathways or channels can develop in a block form. The downside of this form is it has a very low flow rate. Water has to be either pushed or pulled through the medium with some force such as with a pump style water filter.
When activated carbon is impregnated into a fiber the result is a medium that has a high flow rate and a high exposure rate. The compressed fibers ensure no pathways or channels are formed. Either types of activated carbon, coal-based and coconut shell-based carbon can be used in an impregnated carbon fiber. For this reason the Oasis has an impregnated activated carbon fiber as a medium.
Activated carbon is only effective as long as the carbon can absorb the contaminants. The effectiveness of activated carbon is slightly decreased over time but can be re-activated through a process that can be done at home.
The benefits of activated carbon are many and should be an element in everyone's water treatment arsenal.
Why Our Carbon Fiber Is Better
The main vision behind the Hydroblu and Renovo MUV was to design a filter system that adapts first to water contamination and second to how the user intends to filter their water. We are using some very innovative filter technologies but one that is often overlooked is the Activated Carbon Fiber (ACF). Most people think this is the same activated carbon that is found in most every other water filter on the market but this isn't the case.
Most filters that use activated carbon are using it in either block format or in granular format. Block Activated Carbon (BAC) is manufactured by fusing together smaller activated carbon particles to form one large solid filter block. The intricate maze developed inside a block of carbon is where the filter action happens. The other common use of activated carbon is granular or powdered activated carbon (GAC or PAC). GAC, PAC and BAC are made from a variety of carbon based materials such as coal petroleum and nut shells (coconut is very common) or fruit pits.
Why Activated Carbon Fiber Is BEST
Because of the small size of the Hydroblu & Renovo MUV filter and the ability to use in low pressure systems (hydration reservoir, bottle filtration) traditional activated carbon filters wouldn't provide adequate contact time or would restrict the flow too much to be useful. There are many products on the market that still use these types of filters but they are generally only good for slightly improving the taste. We wanted to provide both a high flow rate and high levels of filtration so we had to consider alternatives such as Activated Carbon Fiber (ACF). The most important aspect of ACF is the mass transfer coefficient is 10-100 times higher than granular activated carbon. This results in absorption rates that are 10-15 times greater than that of granular activated carbon filters. So water can pass through the filter at the same speed of a typical granular activated carbon filter but because of the higher absorption rate the ACF filter can remove 10-15 times the amount of contaminants.
The secret to the increased effectiveness of ACF is at the microscopic level. The reason activated carbon is used for water filtration is because the highly porous surface of the carbon is able to trap and hold onto (absorb) the contaminants in water. If this surface can be made to be more porous, it will perform better. ACF filters have much smaller and better distributed pore structures. For example a typical GAC pore structure will consist of 70% macropores (large pores 50nm or greater) 20% of mesopores (2-50 nm) and 10% of micropores (2nm or smaller). Basically the GAC is primarily composed of pores that are 50 nanometers or larger. An ACF filter is the opposite; 70% of the structure is micropores (2nm or smaller) 20% of mesopores (2-50 nm) and 10% of macropores (50nm or larger). So while the GAC is mostly made of larger macropores the ACF is largely made up of micropores. This larger volume of micropores creates more surface area for absorption.
The Activated Carbon Fiber which we use is far superior to the activated carbon filters found in most any other water filter currently available. ACF has superior flow rates, higher absorption speed and isn't prone to the negative effects of channeling which plague GAC or PAC filters. Because of this the filter can remove more contaminants at better flow rates than anything else. The filters are more costly to manufacture but we consider those increased costs to be a reasonable low price to pay for a vastly superior technology.