The vast majority of people out there will have easy access to safe, clean drinking water, but for many who explore the wilderness or live in remote places, this can be a challenge.
Drinking contaminated water can easily cause serious health issues and knowing you have the tools to purify a water source will give you the peace of mind to go on that hike, explore new places and travel without worry.
Water purification tablets are a fantastic option to carry with you as they are small, lightweight and are efficient at purifying any source of water, whether you get it from a river, well or even tap water.
Our Top Picks
Best Water Purification Tablets of 2020
Water Purification Tablets that are worth mentioning:Table could not be displayed.
Our top 5 Water Purification Tablets
We have done the research, testing out the products and put together a list of our top 5 water purification tablets. Any one of these will offer you a fantastic, safe solution for your drinking water needs but each will have its own advantages, so think carefully about how you will be using them and in what environment.
1. Mightie Company Worlds #1 Water Purification Tablets
First on our list makes a bold claim of being the worlds number 1 water purification tablets, but the evidence seems to back that up! They have a great rating on Amazon, as well as a #1 Best Seller tag.
These tablets are effervescent, clean water in around 30 minutes and can kill microorganisms found in the water source. You will get 100 tablets in each pack that have a shelf life of 5 years and have been given an NSF 60 certification, as well as approval for use by the World Health Organisation.
The only real downsides we found with this product is that each tablet treats up to 0.75L of water, so it isn’t great for those who need a lot of drinking water.
The packaging also gets wet pretty easily and so you need to be careful with storage and use so that you don’t spoil the tablets.
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2. Katadyn Micropur MP1 Purification Tablets
Our next choice are the MP1 purification tablets from Katadyn, another recommended supplier who receives fantastic reviews from its customers. These tablets offer effective protection against many microorganisms, making water clean and safe to drink.
You have the option of buying this product in packs of 20 or 30 and as an added bonus, they can treat up to 1 litre of water, more than some of the other products out there. Katadyn have considered the taste of water after purification and these tablets won’t leave an unpleasant taste.
Ease of use:
It is important to note here that the instructions were not the clearest, so we suggest making sure you understand how to use them prior to leaving for your trip.
Furthermore, you will need to leave 4 hours for these tablets to be fully effective, so they are not for a quick drink when you need it.
3. Potable Aqua Water Purification Treatment (50 Tablets)
We love these water purification tablets from Potable Aqua and it is pretty easy to see why.
Firstly, they come in a handy little bottle containing 50 tablets, and each tablet only takes just over 30 minutes to make water safe to drink.
As well as making water bacteriologically suitable to drink, these tablets work against Giardia lamblia, so offer you an added layer of protection. They claim many emergency organisations and military units use these and we can see why.
How to use:
It is important to note that these are not for regular use and for emergency situations and you need to use two tablets per liter of water. So you will only get 25 liters out of a single pack.
4. Aquatabs AQT100 Water Purification Tablets (Pack of 100)
Many of you will have heard of Aquatabs, one of the leading manufacturers of water purification tablets for the past 20 years.
Each pack comes with 100 tablets and each tablet treats up to 0.75 litres of water. Easy to use and fast-acting, you only need to wait 30 minutes after mixing the tablet into the contaminated water and you will have clean, safe water to drink.
These tablets offer protection from cholera, dysentery and many other water-borne diseases, so you can trust that you will be drinking safe water. We should point out here that the only real downside is that they don’t offer cryptosporidium filtering, so depending on the water source, this may be an issue for you.
5. Aquamira – Chlorine Dioxide Water Treatment Two Part Liquid
The final option on our list differs slightly from the others – as it comes in the form of liquid drops and not tablets.
Using a chlorine dioxide-based formula, it is one of the most effective solutions on the market, with two parts to it that kill bacteria and improve the taste of potted water. Every kit you buy will treat up to 60 gallons of water, a fantastic return for such small containers.
We like the fact that this solution will also help prevent the build-up of slime, as well as killing bacteria, so it is a great solution for those with water storage tanks, such as camping or RVs.
If you do choose this option, make sure you store them carefully, as the bottles can be damaged relatively easily.
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6. Expedition Research LLC TAC-H2O Water Purification Tablets
These water purification tablets work effectively and come with some fantastic customer reviews, a sure sign that you are onto a winner with these.
These tablets will help you get safe, clean drinking water in as little as 30 minutes which is pretty impressive for purification tablets. Each tablet will treat up to 5 liters of water, more than many of the competitors on our list.
This manufacturer has made sure that the tablets will be protected from the elements. This is by storing them in a 4-layer mylar pouch which is heat-sealed. It has a zip-lock and is both water and sunlight proof.
We were particularly impressed with the support manual that comes with these purification tablets. You will get an illustrated, color manual which will tell you everything you need to know about water tablets. A great addition for those new to the world of water filtration and the outdoors.
7. Chlor-Floc US Military Water Purification Water Powder Packets
We’ve put this one onto our list because they are well known for being used by the US Military, a sure sign that these water purification tablets work well and do the job you will need them to do.
This solution works by taking all of the sediment to the bottom of the water bottle, whilst killing any pathogens in the water via the chlorine. Each packet has 30 sachets and each sachet will treat approximately 1 liter of water.
What you will notice with these packets is that they work faster than pretty much any other on the market, treating your water supply within 20-25 minutes. Perfect for those needing an urgent drink or with limited time.
Whilst they do come in a camouflaged pouch and are well protected, it is important to note they only last for up to one year. This is less than many other types out there.
8. DayOne Response P&G Purifier of Water
Developed by the US giant Proter and Gamble, you can trust that they know what they are doing and feel safe using these purification tablets to get safe drinking water.
The packets you get with this product holds 12 sachets of powder, with each packet treating up to 2.5 gallons of water. They will treat unclean water and help remove bacteria, viruses and more from your water supply. You will be sure of safe drinking water with these.
You simply put the powder into a container or bottle of water and keep shaking it for a a few minutes. You then leave it for approximately 30 minutes and you will be free to drink the water within.
These packets last for approximately three years, so you don’t need to worry about using them quickly. Furthermore, they promise to donate purified water to those who need it when you buy these products.
9. Polar Pure
Polar Pure make it onto our list because they are different from the vast majority of others, in the way its used and the shelf life.
You fill up the small bottle with water from your local source and leave it to work for an hour. Whilst doing so, you can fill up a container with the water you wish to treat. Once it is ready, you pour capfuls of the treatment in and wait for 30 minutes for it to work.
This treatment uses iodine crystals to kill off any viruses or harmful bacteria found in your water supply and it will work for up to a fantastic 2,000 liters of water. This means they will last for a long time, even for those active hikers and travellers.
As mentioned at the start, this product will purify water for pretty much indefinitely until you have used up the crystals. This means its shelf life outperforms almost every other option. You just need to keep an eye on it and replace it when the crystals dissolve.
10. CamelBak Cleaning Tablets
Developed by CamelBak, one of the leading water solution companies who have focused on both the safety of the water and the protection of the water bottle at the same time.
These water tablets will filter the water supply and once this has been done and they are fully dissolved, they won’t leave a nasty film, odor or stains around the bottle. It is important to note here that they are only compatible with CamelBak bottles which does limit them slightly.
You will get 8 water tablets in each pack but you can break them up if you need them to fit into smaller water containers. They have also been designed to dissolve quickly, making them an effective option for people on the go.
These tablets are on the expensive side but for those using CamelBak products who want to look after the bottles and their health, then it will be worth the expense.
We hope you have found this article both interesting and informative, guiding you to the best water purification tablet solution for your needs. Each product offers the fundamentals you expect but there are important differences that you should be aware of.
Safe, clean water is so important and should never be underestimated, so take advantage of these portable, effective water purification tablets now, whether travelling or supporting those in areas that don’t have a reliable source of water.
When you would need them
The portable and inexpensive nature of water purification tablets means they can be carried by anyone who wants to be prepared. However, there are some key situations when it would be advisable to have them with you, including:
People travelling through the country with minimal baggage
Most people who work in the countryside or travel, don’t want to carry a lot of baggage and will simply travel on foot with the essentials. Having a pack of water purification tablets are a fantastic solution and one that many rely upon.
Whether there has been a natural or man-made disaster, it is likely that there will be issues with water supplies. The supplies could be contaminated for any number of reasons and it is vital that you get a clean, healthy water supply to those that need it.
It is common for most military units, peacekeeping missions and aid missions to carry these tablets with them in case they are stranded in remote locations or they need to help with a local communities water supply.
Remote and developing locations
There are many communities, in both developed and developing nations that haven’t got water treatment facilities or modern infrastructure. Using water purification tablets allows those communities to get the water they need without the risk of disease and illness, or stop them having to travel long distances to find a clean water source.
Types of water purification tablet
Water purification tablets will generally contain either chlorine, iodine or chlorine dioxide as their main chemical ingredient. The first two are very effective against Giardia lamblia, whereas chlorine dioxide is an effective solution against bacteria, viruses and cryptosporidium.
Here is a brief breakdown of the differences:
This type of water purification tablet contains chlorine, the chemical commonly used in water purification and whilst they are effective, you may find that it leaves an after taste in the water. Furthermore, it is important to note that once the water is treated, there is the potential for it to get recontaminated if left for too long.
A different option for you here and one that is generally viewed as a better option for warmer water. It will still be effective in cooler water and it does also suffer from an aftertaste, but this can be counteracted by using vitamin C once you have finished purifying the water.
Chlorine Dioxide Tablets
The most efficient type of water purification tablet on our list as chlorine dioxide-based tablets will get rid of countless microorganisms, viruses, bacteria etc. The only real downside of using this type is that it will take longer to purify the water, sometimes up to four hours and so not great in emergency situations.
There are some very obvious benefits to carrying and using water purification tablets, especially if you are travelling in the wilderness or visiting less developed parts of the world. It is important to remember that almost all of the world’s water isn’t safe to drink without some form of purification first.
Removes harmful contents
The number one reason to use water purification tablets is that it removes the dangerous and harmful bacteria and viruses found in water, such as cholera and dysentery. The chemicals used in these tablets are chosen because of their proficiency in removing pathogens, viruses etc.
Easy to use
These are one of the most simple forms of water purification you can get, as you simply need a tablet and the water in some kind of container. Throw in the fact that some of the tablets will work in as little as 30 minutes, then you have a quick and easy source of safe, clean drinking water.
Easy to carry
We believe this is one of the biggest selling points for water purification tablets, as you can fit them in your pocket, your rucksack or any other container you are carrying. Gone is the need for heavy, cumbersome equipment that is a hassle to carry. You will be able to move quickly and carry only the essentials.
These are a fantastic solution for those working in emergency situations, such as those working in disaster zones trying to rescue people or provide aid. Above all else, you need to make sure people have a safe source of drinking water and these little tablets will do that for you.
There are some key features to look out for when reviewing and purchasing water purification tablets and these include:
Make sure you look at the ingredients, including the main chemical component, so that you understand what you are putting in the water, what it protects against and how effective it will be. Each of the three main chemicals offers different benefits and we have provided a brief overview at the top of this page to help you make an informed decision.
Water purification tablets take anywhere from 30 minutes up to 4 hours to work effectively, so you need to make sure you choose the right one. If you’re in a rush or an emergency, you won’t want to wait 4 hours but if you plan ahead, these can be a more effective and safe solution.
Think about how many tablets come in each pack and how much water they purify. You may be on a long journey and you don’t want to suddenly run out halfway through. Equally, if a tablet doesn’t purify enough water, then they won’t help you get everyone clean water that needs it.
All tablets will fundamentally do the same thing – purify water, but each one will be intended for a certain type of use. This may be for those walking or hiking in the wilderness, working for military or aid missions, or wanting tablets for an emergency. This is important to think about because some of the tablets are not designed for continuous use and you should always follow the guidance on the packets.
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