It’s important to drink enough water, but staying hydrated can be a challenge if your water source is treated with chlorine — or worse, if it’s legitimately unsafe to drink. Fortunately, the best filtered water bottles can help you reach your hydration goals while filtering out some of the stuff you don't want in your water and improving its taste.
There are essentially two kinds of filtered water bottles: Ones that remove unwanted odors and flavors in tap water, and ones that make untreated water safer to drink. Many water treatment systems use a cost-effective process called chlorination to help eliminate harmful bacteria before it reaches your faucet. Chlorine is safe to drink at low levels, but it can also alter the smell and flavor of the water. If your tap water is safe to drink but you don’t like the way it tastes, a water bottle with a carbon filter can help remove the chlorine and give your water a crisper flavor. However, it's important to remember that a carbon filter is no match for untreated or poorly treated water.
If you plan to use your bottle to filter untreated water when you’re hiking, camping, or traveling, you’ll need a more heavy-duty filtered water bottle. Look for a bottle that’s specifically designed to filter out most dangerous bacteria and protozoan cysts that could otherwise make you seriously sick. But remember, you'll still need to follow manufacturer instructions exactly, and you can increase the likelihood of water safety by boiling or treating with iodine in addition to filtration. And regardless, there are no guarantees here that you're removing everything from your water that could make you sick — but it's definitely better than no filter at all.
Whether you need a filtered water bottle for reasons of health or simply a flavor preference, these filtered water bottles are an easy way to drink safe, crisp-tasting water when you’re on the go.
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1. The Best Filtered Water Bottle For Better-Tasting Tap Water
The 26-ounce Brita Premium filtering water bottle will be your go-to for filtering out the chlorine taste or odor in tap water (though not for filtering untreated water). It contains a version of the activated carbon filter that household-name Brita has become known for, and it also has a convenient carrying-loop around the top.
The bottle is designed to fit into a standard car cup holder and has a leak-proof lid that opens with the press of a button so you can take a sip. It's easy to clean too — the BPA-free, hard-sided plastic bottle is dishwasher safe in the top rack. (Just don't forget to remove the filter before washing.) The manufacturer recommends replacing the carbon filter every 40 gallons, or about every two months, for optimum effectiveness.
Some Amazon users report that it can be difficult to suck water through the filtered straw, but with more than 1,000 five-star reviews on the site, you can rest easy knowing that this bottle really is a fan favorite.
Positive Amazon review: “I LOVE THIS BOTTLE. The school where I teach has really awful smelling and tasting water. [...] This bottle has been an absolute lifesaver. At least in my situation, there is no taste and no smell [...] Worth every single penny.”
2. The Best Filtered Water Bottle For Travel & Outdoor Adventures
The 16-ounce GRAYL Ultralight water purifier bottle is designed to remove about 99.99% of viruses, disease-causing bacteria, and protozoan cysts in accordance with NSF standards 42 and 53, according to the manufacturer. The bottle works sort of like a French press: You fill up the bottle with water, then you slowly push the interior canister with the filter to the bottom of the bottle to produce purified water in about 15 seconds. As water is forced through the filter, it passes through two layers of non-woven ceramic fiber that block particulates like sediments. There, a positively charged mesh of ions to pull out impurities, too, and activated carbon absorbs unsavory flavors, odors. According the manufacturer this water bottle filters out 99% of particulates, chemicals and heavy metals like chlorine and lead, as well as bacteria and viruses.
Each GRAYL purifier comes equipped with a replaceable purifier cartridge that can filter up to 150 liters of water before needing to be replaced. In addition to this white version, the bottle also comes in an amber color.
Positive Amazon review: “Amazing for hiking and backpacking in the cascades, I don’t even bring water anymore, with all the creeks and lakes it’s easy to find a place to fill up and keep moving.”
3. The Best Collapsible Filtered Water Bottle
If you're in need of a space-saving water bottle, look no further than the Katadyn BeFree. This soft bottle's lightweight, 2.3-ounce collapsable design makes it easy to roll up and tuck into a backpack or pocket and holds a liter of water when expanded. That way, you can filter water wherever your adventures take you.
The bottle is BPA-free and has a 0.1 micron hollow fiber filter to remove dangerous bacteria and protozoa that can make you sick, as well as sediment. The manufacturer states that the product's results surpasses EPA standards for drinking water and can be used with cloudy water. Each filter can process up to 1,000 liters of water before you need to swap in a replacement EZ-Clean Membrane filter cartridge.
Positive Amazon review: “I spent several months without access to safe water sources and never got sick once when using this filter. It was super simple to put together and use, particularly cleaning it (which can be a pain with other filter types). At first, I was worried the soft bag wouldn't be able to withstand conditions/take a beating, but it was fairly durable. [...] Overall, I would buy again."
Also Great: Lifestraw Personal Water Filter
The LifeStraw Personal Water Filter isn't quite a water bottle, but the standalone straw can be used to filter water in wide-mouth water bottles or directly from the water source. It weighs just 2 ounces and is only 9 inches long and 1 inch thick — plus, it's super easy to use. It's a must-have for survival, hiking, or travel kits. (Because you just can't be too prepared for a worst-case scenario!)
The LifeStraw's 0.2-micron filter removes 99.9999% of waterborne bacteria and protozoan parasites, and can filter up to 1,000 gallons of untreated water (roughly enough water to keep one person hydrated for 5 years). It meets the EPA drinking water standards for bacteria and protozoa reduction. You don't need a replacement cartridge for this one — just purchase a new one when it becomes difficult to suck water through the straw.
Positive Amazon review: "This is really good. It purifies pond, river, puddle water...etc etc. I think this could be used to help a lot of people who struggle to get access to drinking water. I use it when I go on long walks (day and through the night) in the countryside and the woods, it saves me carrying heavy loads of water in bottles with me."