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PostPosted: June 18th, 2021, 2:56 pm 
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Joined: May 2nd, 2018, 2:43 pm
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So I have a Gravity Works 4L filter. Worked great in the field but here is the frustration...

This is my second filter cartridge that has crapped out on me after just a couple of use. Have no idea what I have done wrong. I followed the storage suggestions to the letter ( I am wondering if perhaps I let the cartridge air dry too long with cap off??). Now, yet again, I cannot get any real functional flow from the filter cartridge.

I looked online for a new filter cartridge replacement and they are expensive and quite hard to find. (I don't think they make them anymore? )

Wondering if anyone has any suggestions .... or if anything, could recommend a new filtration system?

I don't trip very remote or too often anymore (just a couple of trips a year). But I have gotten a nasty parasite before and I don't want to repeat that!

Thx

JB


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PostPosted: June 18th, 2021, 3:24 pm 
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Joined: January 3rd, 2010, 5:59 pm
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Location: Kanata
I've not used that system before, but with my gravity filter - MSR - I run water through in backwards to clear the cartridge. I also sometimes give it a few good wacks against my palm, or tree and that seems to help clear it also.
Sometimes I need to 'prime' the line before water will flow through at a regular rate. I pull the hose off the filter, allow water to make its way down from the bag into the line, then reattach the filter. For some reason that helps significantly with flow, even with a freshly cleaned filter.

rab


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PostPosted: June 18th, 2021, 3:43 pm 
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Joined: October 25th, 2020, 3:18 pm
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I've had mine (2L) for over a decade and the original filter is still doing the trick, but it has slowed, for sure. A few things that I find help, though you may have tried them already:
-Hang it relatively high so all the parts are fully extended
-Backflush, as rab mentioned
-Remove the hose from the clean water bag and blow into it up through the filter, so you're kind of backflushing with pressurized air. This seems to remove whatever microscopic gunk is in there and lets it flow decently. I find it takes about 10-15 mins to fill up the 2L bag.

Hope this helps.


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PostPosted: June 18th, 2021, 4:18 pm 
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If your open to a suggestion. Buy and master a kelly kettle. Boils water fast. Never lets you down and if course also replaces your stove.


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PostPosted: June 18th, 2021, 4:35 pm 
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Joined: January 3rd, 2017, 1:48 pm
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Location: St. Catharines, Ontario
I have the same system and have been using it for 5+ years without issue.

I find it's really important to make sure you get all the air out of the system or it locks up / runs terribly slow. I take my full dirty bag, hook everything up and let it start running, then kind of go back and forth elevating the dirty bag and clean bag until no more air bubbles are coming out.

After my clean bag is full I back flush it a bit by letting the clean bag sit higher then the dirty bag for 30 seconds. Then discard whatever is left in the dirty bag. Even running very clear water from big lakes seems to yield a little sediment when you back flush.

When I get home I mix up a weak bleach mixture (10 drops in 1L of water) and fill my dirty bag and let it sit for an hour, then run it through the filter into the clean bag and let everything sit another hour again. Then I take my back flushing syringe and back flush about 2 cups of clean tap water through the filter, and rinse the bags out.

Let everything dry for a week or a month or two if I forget about them. Then package back up for the next trip.

Hope this helps. I certainly had some frustration with it until I figured out that getting the air out of the system was so critical.


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PostPosted: June 18th, 2021, 4:39 pm 
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Location: Brampton
I had one completely blocked up a couple of years back. I was able to restore it to near new functionality by filling the dirty bag with a bleach solution, filtering the whole bag, backflushing, and repeating.

I did this several times, changing the water. At first, it went quite slow, as expected. It got better and better.

I think bleach really helped - I used about double the strength that they recommend, and I repeated the process several times with new water, filtering the whole back and backflushing the whole bag and then changing the water. Running a bleach solution through it before storage will also help, killing bacteria before it has a chance to plug the filter.

It does help to backflush the thing every time you filter a bag of water. Run a little bit through and backflush it before hanging it up and letting it do its thing. Then, every few days, backflush a whole bag.

And as others have mentioned, this system really gets gummed up by air. Try squeezing the air out, priming the line, or whatever trick you can think of to get the air out of the system. Backflushing a little bit back and forth also helps with this.

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PostPosted: June 18th, 2021, 5:55 pm 
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Joined: May 2nd, 2018, 2:43 pm
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Thx for very much for the quick reply everyone. Great advice. I will give these suggestions a try.

KN


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PostPosted: June 18th, 2021, 6:10 pm 
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Joined: May 16th, 2012, 8:39 pm
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I'll ditto all the above. We use a Platypus system (4L). Back flush and air purge are really helpful, well better than helpful, necessary.

I also use a coffee filter (MEC screen mesh) plus some cloth to pre-filter the dirty side. The water may look clean but I think it keeps sludge to a manageable minimum and reduces the likelihood of the filter clogging. If you have any covid PM 2.5 filters lying around you could likely use those too.

The cleaner the water going in the less work on the filter.

M Eh!


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PostPosted: June 20th, 2021, 2:53 pm 
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Joined: January 11th, 2005, 4:58 pm
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Location: Manitoba
Much good info has been posted. Max height. Backflow to remove AIR as well as dirt. Test filter before each trip. Pre soak/saturate/wet your filter if required before a trip.

I was with a group that had a NO flow gravity filter at the start of a trip. The owner rejuvenated it after looking up this FAQ, "My filter has little to no flow, what should I do?" here https://sawyer.com/water-filtration/faqs/

The gravity filter in question was a Gravity Works=MRS=Platypus filter but the above Sawyer reference was helpful.

Also see backflush and disinfect info here, https://www.platy.com/ca/faq?cat=faq&fo ... filtration

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PostPosted: June 22nd, 2021, 7:09 am 
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Location: Cambridge, Ontario
I love the gravity works filter. I can't stand the thought of going back to a hand pump. I've never had an issue. I back flush a little with each bag. I also filter relatively clear water free of particulate. Don't think this system is as up to handling mucky water.


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PostPosted: June 24th, 2021, 10:39 am 
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Joined: July 9th, 2003, 11:48 am
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Location: Back to Winnipeg
Backflushing my filter between trips as we speak.

Definitely purging the air out of the tubes helps the flow. Like the idea of detaching the top tube and having flow freely before re-attaching the filter.

M eh, How do you use the coffee filter - collect lake water in a pot and pour it through the filter into the reservoir (instead of filling the reservoir directly from the lake)? Or have you integrated it somehow?

My gravity filter (MSR) mentions a pre-filter on the bag's outlet parts that should also be cleaned of particulate, but as far as I can tell it's nothing that detaches or anything. I just put under the tap at home but can't really tell whether that cleaning anything. Anyone know anything about cleaning there pre-filters that are integrated in the gravity-bag outlets?

Pat.

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PostPosted: June 24th, 2021, 2:13 pm 
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Just as you describe with no integration - we are roughing it after all ;). Had an older single cup wire basket filter I was going to through away, a cloth/polyester? bag, and cook pot. Insert filters into the dirty bag and cinch closed as much as practical, take the pot, fill and then filter. If I miss the filter, I miss. I rinse the cloth with some cleaned water after use. Every couple days I hang the cloth up to thoroughly air dry and enjoy some sun (when available). Neither the basket nor the cloth weigh that much and pack small as well.

Depending on what the water is being used for we may also 'wand' it with a UV light e.g. drinking straight versus cooking. Often use just the wand while we are on the go, or prep some water beforehand.

M Eh!

yarnellboat wrote:
M eh, How do you use the coffee filter - collect lake water in a pot and pour it through the filter into the reservoir (instead of filling the reservoir directly from the lake)? Or have you integrated it somehow?
.


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PostPosted: June 24th, 2021, 4:13 pm 
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Location: Kanata
Yarnell,
I just give mine a wipe every now and then, especially if the water has been quite silty, or flow is really slow. Not sure it is much more to it than what we can see, the fine screen at the outlet.
Wonder if forcing water through it backwards would help clean it?

rab


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PostPosted: June 24th, 2021, 5:03 pm 
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Location: Southern Ontario
I switched away from the MSR sweetwater last year to a Platypus 4L last year, I found it slows down fast even with very clear, clean lakes, back-flushing and getting any air bubbles out does the trick for me every time. I just recently picked up a BeeFree 1L as an easier method for while on the go for long days and a good backup to I suppose. Now if i could just keep the mice from chewing through the damn hose :-?

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PostPosted: June 24th, 2021, 5:23 pm 
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Joined: July 9th, 2003, 11:48 am
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Location: Back to Winnipeg
I thought the pre-filter (in my MSR Gravityworks) was built in to the quick-connect outlet, and that I was missing how to access it or take it apart for cleaning - upon closer inspection, the pre-filter is a screen that sealed on the inside of bag before the outlet. So yeah, the only way to clean that screen/pre-filter is just giving it a rinse.

P.

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