nomadic life guide

Katadyn Combi water filter Review

Born in Switzerland Katadyn have been in the market for many years now and their filters are carried in millions of rucksacks all over the world, but is the Combi any good?

We have used this piece of kit extensively in Wales, Scotland, Spain, Greece, Sri Lanka and the Caribbean so we feel well placed to review it.

The first impression that you might get when first seeing as combi is that its quite a lump,27cm long 6cm wide and weighing 580g. You may be thinking “can I justify such a whopper of a water filter in my pack?”

Our suggestion is that you should.

This heftiness is justified by its truly brilliant build quality. The thing feels solid, a truly robust piece of kit that wont let you down.

The combi has a two stage filter, cleanable silver-impregnated ceramic and an optional replaceable activated carbon filter to remove chemical contaminates and bad flavours. Filtering out all particles above 0,2 microns and a ceramic filter life of up to 50 000 litres make this one of the best portable filters on the market today. The combi filters about 1.2 litres of water a minute.

The combi is capable of making even very heavily contaminated water drinkable, this will of course shorten the life of the filter and make cleaning a more frequent necessity. It is always best to find the cleanest water source available.

We find de-constructing and constructing the unit for cleaning purposes really simple, although it seems some people find it difficult. How frequently the filter needs cleaning largely depends upon how dirty the water you are filtering is. It can be done, in the field in less than 2 minutes.

We found that while filtering quite heavily sedimented water in Scotland, it needs cleaning every few litres, but with clear water it can go a couple of hundred at least.

The intake hose is plenty long enough to be practical yet not so long as to be inconvenient. The intake valve needs holding away from the bottom of the water source in shallow water to avoid sucking sediment.

The pump action can be quite resistant, making pumping large quantities of water hard on your arms. Your not going to want to pump more than maybe 5 litres in one go, I cant think of many circumstances in which you would need to however.

A nice carry case is provided to keep it tidy in your pack.

Performance 9/10

Design 9/10

Value for money 10/10

Overall rating 10/10 top piece of kit, highly recommended

To buy a Katadyn Combi on Amazon click here