Water (Treatment) Wars

Is an ultraviolet light, like a SteriPen, better for treating filtered water than iodine tablets?
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Is an ultraviolet light, like a SteriPen, better for treating filtered water than iodine tablets?

Question:

Is an ultraviolet light, like a SteriPen, better for treating filtered water than iodine tablets?

Submitted by - Jason - Blakely, PA

Answer:

My opinion is yes, a device that uses ultraviolet light is usually better than iodine or chlorine dioxide tablets for treating water to prevent disease. UV light works fast, kills all the harmful life in water, and leaves no taste. And if you have filtered the water, you are in really excellent shape to use UV light, which works better when there's no particulate matter in the water. When you're considering water treatments, however, there are often many variables. Group size, reliability, speed, weight, and the conditions you expect to encounter on trail might all be factors that change your priorities. I've written about some of those issues in the past and you might benefit from reading up before you rush out and buy anything. Good luck!