Sunday, May 11, 2014

Despite The Expense And Requiring A Learning Curve, The Camelbak Groove Water Filtration Bottle Is Awesome!

The Good: Convenient, Durability, Decent capacity, Works well, Replaceable parts
The Bad: EXPENSIVE, Nozzle design
The Basics: The Camelbak Groove Water Filtration Bottle is a durable, expensive bottle for the serious hiker, camper, or worker in a rough and tumble work environment!

Given the work I have been doing of late, my wife has been looking out for me quite a bit. The work I do at nights is very physical and, as a result, keeping me hydrated has become one of my wife’s pet projects. With the inadvertent destruction of my last two filtration bottles at work (sadly, Rubbermaid bottles do not hold up when dropped from a three foot height!), my wife splurged on me with a Camelbak Groove Water Filtration Bottle. Offered in a number of colors, my wife picked up the Graphite bottle for me because of my generally black color scheme for my wardrobe. At a seemingly ludicrous $25 price tag (online) the first big strike against the Camelbak Groove Water Filtration bottle is its price. This is an expensive water bottle, but it makes up some for its initial costliness by the sheer number of parts that can be inexpensively and easily replaced on it.

The Camelbak Groove Water Filtration Bottle is a water bottle with a water filter right in the bottle, which prevents the user from having to use separate devices to filter their water before putting it in their water bottle. The concept is simple and it seems to work well. After years of using the Brita Water Filter, I have found that I am exceptionally sensitive to water quality. If water is not filtered, my body has an adverse reaction. In fact, I can’t drink beverages with ice cubes at most restaurants as a result! So, the closest thing I have to empirical evidence that the Camelbak Groove Water Filtration Bottle actually works to filter water adequately for the past month of use is that I have not had any negative reactions to the water coming out of my bottle when getting tap water at work to fill the bottle!

On a more simple and basic level, where I live now, we have very hard water. When I use the Camelbak Groove Water Filtration Bottle, the water that comes out tastes clean and fresh, without any hints of metal or minerals in the water.

The Camelbak Groove Water Filtration Bottle is a 20 oz. water bottle with a black shaded (though translucent) side with a gray hard plastic loop near the clear rubber nozzle (nipple). The top to the entire bottle is a screw on disc 2 3/4" in diameter, with the water filter on the bottomside projecting down to the bottom of the bottle. The entire Camelbak Groove Water Filtration Bottle is 2 7/8” in diameter and 9" tall to the top of the angled, hard plastic loop.

Access to the main water is another detraction to the Camelbak Groove. The bottle features a translucent plastic nozzle which is essentially a rubber nipple. It folds down into the top of the water bottle and is clearly designed to offer consumers a hands-free experience. Instead of sucking on the top or squeezing the bottle (the sides of the Camelbak Groove are so hard that it is not possible to squeeze the bottle to get water out), the Camelbak Groove features a nipple that is designed to be chewed on. That builds up a pressure and then when one holds the nipple open with their teeth, the water shoots into the mouth.

The issue I have with this is simple; the bottle seems to be designed for hands-free operation, but the nipple is virtually impossible to flip up with only one’s lips and teeth. As a result, the wonderfully sterile dispensing method is easily corrupted by the nozzle design!

To use the Camelbak Groove Water Filtration Bottle, one has to first install the charcoal filter and straw assembly. Fortunately, the directions on the packaging is excellent. The charcoal comes wrapped and needs only to be rinsed for a few seconds before it is usable. Then, place the filter in the straw assembly (which descends from the top of the bottle to the very bottom of the bottle) and twist the straw to the “locked” position. The straw design makes it so that the user can only get water from the bottle when the bottle is in the upright position, as opposed to the common, tip upside down and squeeze method. The result is that the Camelbak Groove requires a bit of a learning curve for most bikers, hikers and campers to use it initially.

Fortunately, the Camelbak Groove Water Filtration Bottle’s filters are very easy to find. As well, the nozzle and straw assembly are replaceable, so the main bottle will easily outlast most of its parts. Having dropped my Camelbak Groove several times in the past month, I can attest to the fact that this is a very durable waterbottle! It has not chipped, cracked or had any issues with the top coming off (which cannot be said of the Rubbermaid bottle I replaced with the Camelbak Groove).

The Camelbak Groove Water Filtration Bottle is a good idea that seems to be executed very well, making it worth the price for those very serious about getting water, filtered, from any source!

For other water-filtering products, please visit my reviews of:
Waechtersbach Fun Factory II 28-ounce Black Teapot
Rubbermaid FilterFresh Water Filtration Bottle
Brita Oceania Water Filter Pitcher


For other kitchen product reviews, please visit my Kitchen Products Review Index Page for an organized listing!

© 2013 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.
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