Sawyer Micro Squeeze vs. Original Sawyer Squeeze [Video]
In this video, Dawn and I give the new Sawyer Micro Squeeze and the original Sawyer Squeeze an out-of-the-box test run, and compare the two in size, flow rate, and package inclusion. We also nearly freeze our fingers off collecting water, and Dawn gets distracted by multiple dogs. The Micro Squeeze is Sawyer’s new filter for 2018, not to be confused with the two-ounce Sawyer Mini, which has a slower flow rate than the Sawyer Squeeze.
Here’s our rundown of the Sawyer Micro Squeeze compared to the original Sawyer Squeeze. More details on the filters below.
Overview of the Sawyer Micro Squeeze vs. Original Sawyer Squeeze
Sawyer Micro Squeeze
Weight: Two ounces
Longevity: Up to 100,000 gallons
Kit includes: Sawyer Micro Squeeze, one 32-ounce pouch, a drinking straw, cleaning coupling so you don’t have to carry the plunger, spare gasket.
Weight: Three ounces
Longevity: “Lifetime,” which presumably means until you lose it.
Kit includes: Sawyer Squeeze, two 32-ounce pouches, inline adapter so you can plug it into the hose of your hydration bladder (requires surgery on the hose), gravity tube and bag for filtering at camp.
Sawyer Micro Squeeze Details
The Sawyer Micro Squeeze works the same way as the original, with a .1 micron absolute filter (hollow fiber membrane), which holds microfibrous tubes that trap the bacteria and prevent them from contaminating the drinking water.
The Micro Squeeze comes with a new type of pouch, made of softer and lighter material, which is more flexible as well. Durability has been an issue with the original pouch, so we’ll see how this one holds up. The opening is redesigned as well, which should make it easier to fill from standing water sources.
Both filters have the push-pull cap so you can drink right from the filter. They also thread onto standard water bottles.
Like the Squeeze, the Micro Squeeze shouldn’t be allowed to freeze, and Sawyer recommends backflushing after every trip, as the flow rate will slow down after repeated use.
So What Do We Think?
The main difference with the Micro vs. the original is that the Micro is one ounce lighter and more compact than the original, while still maintaining essentially the same flow rate. The new bag is also softer and more durable, and we love the cleaning coupling so you can backwash the filter with a bottle if you don’t want to carry the plunger.
I’d recommend either the original Sawyer Squeeze or the Micro Squeeze for long-distance backpackers. I used the original on my AT hike, and have found Sawyer’s filters to be easy to use, durable, and capable of a fast flow rate as long as they are backflushed periodically. Some people opt for treatment drops to avoid the hassle of filtering, but hollow-fiber membranes take care of grit and silt along with the harmful bacteria, and I’ve always found non-crunchy water more pleasant. And yes, some people choose not to filter or treat their water, but we do recommend treating water in the backcountry. Better safe than sorry. Giardia sucks.
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