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5 Ways To Filter Water While Camping

It’s no secret that campgrounds very rarely have good water. Sure, most of it is probably safe to drink, but rarely do we come across campground water that tastes great, and sometimes it’s even stinky or discolored. For this reason, most seasoned RVers use some sort of filtration system.

Picking up an RV water filter sounds easy enough, right? Unfortunately, it requires a bit more effort that you’d think. You see, there are a number of options when it comes to filtering the water you use while camping. Therefore, you might want to do a bit of research before picking up a filter in order to ensure you’re getting the best option for you.

Inline Filter

The first and most obvious answer to your water quality problems is an inline filter. These things are super easy to find, simple to install, and do a decent job of filtering out sediment.

That said, they don’t do so great when it comes to filtering out yucky tastes and chemicals such as chlorine. Still, this option is cost effective for those who only need to filter water once in awhile and it works relatively well. Therefore, this is definitely the best option for part-timers, and some full-timers prefer them over other options as well.

Canister System

Many full time RVers use a canister filtration system. This is pretty simple to install, but does require that you have a place to set the filter. The filters in these systems last much longer than inline filters, making them a great option for those who filter water into their RVs on a daily basis.

Canister systems also tend to do a great job at filtering out sediment as well as odd tastes, leaving all campground water clean, clear, and perfectly potable.

Reverse Osmosis


Reverse Osmosis Water Filter

Reverse osmosis is by far the most thorough water filtration system. That said, it’s also the most complicated to install, especially in an RV.

Additionally, this type of system cleans water so well that it tends to waste quite a bit of it. This means several gallons of water are flushed down the drain. Not only is this not eco-friendly, it also is not great for boondocking. Still, some people choose reverse osmosis and love the super clean water they get in return.


Many RVers invest in Berkey filtering systems in order to provide themselves with super clean drinking water. These countertop water containers are one of the best filtering systems on the market.

That said, we recommend using the Berkey in addition to one of the filtering systems mentioned above. This is because the above filtering systems ensure sediment doesn’t make its way into your RV water lines, while the Berkey filters water after it’s already made its way through your lines.

Filtering Water Bottles

Looking to filter water while out hiking? Water bottle that filter on the go are a wonderful solution. While most bottles aren’t designed to filter anything much dirtier than tap water, there are a few out there that will filter water from a stream or river. These are perfect for those who like to hike long distances and can’t carry enough water to last their entire hike. I particularly like the Lifesaver bottle for this purpose.

While these aren’t the only options out there, they are the most popular and probably the best for most people. I encourage you to weigh the pros and cons of each and pick a system that will give you the clean water you need in a way that is convenient for you.

You may also want to keep in mind that you can combine some of these options, so if you want extra pure water, go ahead and do some doubling up!

About the author: Chelsea Gonzales

Chelsea has the amazing opportunity to take part in full-time RV living and traveling with her tiny tribe. She home schools her five-year-old son as they travel, and takes full advantage of their unique situation by using the entire world as her son’s classroom. A group of total Disney fanatics, Chelsea and her family often find themselves in the Orlando area in order to visit the Disney parks, but they have also visited over 25 of the 50 states with plans to see many more along the way. No matter where her travels take her, Chelsea enjoys riding bikes, gazing at beautiful sunsets, finding new coffee shops, Irish dancing, and sitting around a campfire with her family.

You can join her adventures through her blog, Wonder Wherever We Wander.

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Thomas C. ~ Gloria on the phone and the service man on the Gregory’s Towing truck were pleasant, courteous and very professional”