- Sep 12, 2017
- Killeen, TX
Steri-Pen works okay on clear water (pristine mountain stream, NY hotel room tap water). The key thing to remember is that it only works properly on water that is relatively clear/transparent. If the water isn't pretty clear then the ultraviolet light may not reach all the water in the container and kill the bacteria and amoeba that may be present. It does NOTHING to remove sediment or fecal matter. If you are trying to sanitize sewage or ditch water, the water will still taste and smell like sewage or ditch water, and any fecal matter will still be there to flavor your food or instant coffee. I spent a year in the Congo in 2010-11. You need a FILTER (I used a Katadyn filter) to remove the particles (mechanical filtration through paper, ceramic, or micro-porous media) of whatever is present in the water (making it cloudy), and you need a CHARCOAL filter to absorb any unpleasant tastes, odors, or chemicals (think NJ canal water, or run-off from agricultural chemicals or insecticides) that may be present. Good filters will remove 99.99% of any viruses, cysts, particles of fecal or other mater, and the charcoal will make it all smell and taste like bottled spring water. Using the Steri-Pen on that final filtered water will kill the last 0.01% of the stuff that slipped past the filter like viruses and smaller stuff that may still be present in the filtered water. For a battery-free final solution, you can then use water disinfectant tablets that release Chlorine Dioxide to do the final disinfection of your water (Chlorine Dioxide takes 4 hours to do the job) without leaving any unpleasant taste or smell behind. Any time you suspect the water that you just filtered may have giardia, cryptosporidium, bacteria, or viruses in it, you SHOULD use some sort of disinfection in addition to the filtration and charcoal absorption. Just using the Steri-Pen on your CLEAR water will probably kill any remaining bacteria, but any smell or taste or particles will still be there . . . . . . . . . I hate coffee that tastes like ditch water and I don't want to see unidentified particles floating in my drinking water.Got ya. I’ll have to look into it.