Page Type Gear Review
Object Title Guardian
Manufacturer Sweetwater
Page By GuitarWIzard
Page Type Apr 27, 2002 / Apr 27, 2002
Object ID 234
Hits 3090
Water purifier designed for backpacking, hiking, or international travel
0.2-micron filtration destroys viruses, removes bacteria and protozoa
Easy to pump: lever style handle & dual action pump
Only takes 5 min. to purify 1 liter of water using ViralStop™ drops

Water bottle adapter - Allows you to pump the water right into a water bottle
Cleaning brush - For convenient easy cleaning


Viewing: 1-7 of 7

mconnell - Apr 28, 2002 11:08 am - Voted 5/5

Untitled Review
This is by far the best filter I have used. I don't have the virus filter but I do have a pre-filter. My first filter element lasted 2 seasons until being done in by glacial sediment. It is quite easy to pump and moves a lot of water. When cleaning the filter is needed, it is simple to disassemble the filter and clean it with the included brush.

A word of warning about the filters. Make sure that you store the filter disassembled. The filter element either needs to be dry or store it in the freezer. Prolonged wetness will cause the internals of the filter element to fall apart. This happened after about a month of leaving my filter together when I forgot to unpack it after a trip. (There were probably nasty things growing in there by then as well!).

The real down side to this filter is the weight, but if I was in an area that really requires filtering water, this is the filter I would carry.

Andy - Aug 29, 2002 10:52 am - Voted 5/5

Untitled Review
When I started backpacking I didn't know a thing. I bought a Sweetwater Guardian because it was one of the cheapest filters, and I liked the way it worked. I did not make a mistake! Several years later and countless gallons of fresh water later I'm still using the same filter (I had to replace the cartridge once).

For the money, it's got to be one of the easiest filters to use and clean. It also pumps surprisingly fast.

The one downside is that it is a little bulky. However, when I bought it I was willing to sacrifice size for price.

Alan Ellis - Dec 2, 2002 8:04 am - Voted 5/5

Untitled Review
Very light, easy to use, durable, and pumps fast. The pumping action is easy on the can get a lot of leverage which makes pumping faster. I used this filter for years until discovering Aqua Mira drops. I still take it when I am going somewhere where the water isn't clear. Highly recommend this filter.

vicsabum - Feb 20, 2003 8:00 pm - Voted 4/5

Untitled Review
I chose it because of its versatilaty (it can be used in clear mountain streams to dirty mexico puddles), its weight (kinda high at 14oz, but lighter than equal filters), and pump speed/ease. Soon after getting it I pumped less than two gallons of snow run-off water through it and it hopelessley clogged. Multiple cleanings never restored flow, so I ended up sending it back. Cascade Designs was very helpful and prompt and sent me a brand new filter. Since then I haven't had a problem. I've always let it dry in the sun, then stored it assembled in the stuff sack and have had no flow problems yet. I use the silt-stopper and it takes a little bit for the water to actually start flowing into your bottle after you start pumping, but once it is flowing, it fills fast. Very strong, I've dropped it a few times and it still works.

All in all, a solid product that surpasses all other filters in its catagory. Just remember, a clogged filter means it is doing it's job.

kovarpa - Feb 6, 2004 11:49 pm - Voted 5/5

Untitled Review
This is my first filter and so far the only one - it's been doing great job for 3 years now, filtering all sorts of water, including glacier streams... It clogged after approx. 2 years of use (at least once a month), I just replaced the filter and has worked fine again. In my opinion, it pumps fast, easy on arms and is quite easy to pack. Overall, I am very happy with my purchase.

WildMan21 - Jan 3, 2005 4:17 pm - Voted 3/5

Untitled Review
While being light, easy to pack, and fairly easy on the arms, the Sweetwater Guardian proved to be flimsy compared to other filters I have used. Having two hoses (one for the stream and the other leading to a cap that fits the top of a Nalgene), causes it to be far less efficient and heavier than it needs to be. Further, on a backpacking trip in Zion National Park, Utah, we had a lot of problems with clogging and the threat of a broken handle.

tarol - Feb 9, 2006 5:31 pm - Voted 5/5

Untitled Review
I bought this filter back in 1999 and it's the only piece of gear I've never wanted or needed to replace! (Meanwhile I've been through many tents, sleeping bags, sleeping pads, stoves, cookware sets, etc.)

I love how easy it is to pump. I love how you can clean and scrub the filter in the field. I love the optional silt-stopper (especially helpful for places like Zion NP where the water is very silty!) The filter cartidges last me several years and I've been overall very very happy with this filter!

Viewing: 1-7 of 7