February 10

How Does Lifestraw Work

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Water, though a great source of life, can as well take a life if it’s unclean.

There are several quotes revolving around life itself being an adventure. As human beings, we are adventure lovers, and we engage in it from time to time; it might be in the form of hiking, boating, fishing, traveling, running, camping, and so on.

While embarking on any of the above adventures, you will agree with me that water is a necessary company you must have. However, it will not always be easy to carry enough water for your drinking, and mostly, you won’t ever have access to clean and drinkable water.

This could be a real problem, as it results in diseases that could be contracted through the drinking of dirty or contaminated water.

What is a Lifestraw?

A Lifestraw is a water filter of the moderate size used in purifying and filtering water, thereby ensuring its fitness for human intake.

It is first invented by Torben Vestergaard Frandsen. A Lifestraw is a purifying device which is capable of producing 4000 liters (1000 gallons) of drinkable water, hence guaranteeing five years of clean water intake for an individual.

It is 310 mm in length while its diameter is 30 mm. Lifestraw works by filtration, removing all the parasites, viruses, and bacteria initially present in the water, thereby making it drinkable.

It is used by individuals, families, communities, and NGOs distribute it as relief materials to communities lacking drinkable water. This device also serves as a useful tool in areas where they are suffering from a natural disaster aftermath or where good potable water is absent.

What does Lifestraw not filter?

  • Lifestraw can’t filter chemicals such as arsenic. However, this is dependent on the form of Lifestraw
  • Lifestraw does not filter saltwater, such as seawater
  • Melted contaminants cannot be evacuated from water by Lifestraw
  • Lifestraw does not filter out viruses. However, the community size of Lifestraw does.

How does the Lifestraw work?

Lifestraw produces clean water without the utilization of chemical or bacteria treatment; neither is electrical filtration required.

It uses the old form of filtration of water but still gets rid of bacteria existing in the microbiological stages/levels of the water. A chemical, in the form of iodine, was used in killing bacteria in the first set of Lifestraws produced. However, from 2012, Lifestraw no longer contains chemicals, and it’s still as effective as it earlier was as it now uses mechanical filtration.

Lifestraw works by you sucking on it like a regular straw after sticking it straight into the water source. By doing this, water passes through the perforated fibers possessing pores smaller as 0.2 microns in diameter.

Parasites, bacteria, or dirt of any sought are caught up in the fibers, allowing only the passage of clean water. After drinking, you blow air through the straw, thereby cleaning the filter through this process. Within eight minutes, close to a liter of water can be sucked through the Lifestraw.

What does Lifestraw filter?

  • The filtration of parasites, bacteria, and dirt is done by Lifestraw, which prevents one from contracting diseases such as typhoid, cholera, diarrhea, diphtheria, cryptosporidiosis, worms, and so on.
  • It enables the evacuation of nearly all parasitic, microplastics, and waterborne bacteria from contaminated water. It removes 99.9999% of bacteria.
  • It aids the reduction of turbidity and filters it down to 0.2 microns.
  • Lifestraw ensures your protection against weighty metals such as lead. It also protects against the organic chemical matter.
  • It evacuates 99.999% of viruses, for example, Hepatitis A, Rotavirus.

What is the shelf-life of a LifeStraw?

The lifespan of a LifeStraw depends on the particular type it is.

For a LifeStraw Personal, it provides 1,000 gallons of water in its lifetime, which is approximately 4,000 liters of water. Its lifespan is five years. LifeStraw Go has the same lifespan as LifeStraw personal, which is five years.

LifeStraw Home provides 264 gallons of water in its lifetime. It has a lifespan of a year. LifeStraw Family 2.0 produces 30,000 liters of filtered water in its lifetime that gives a family of five, drinkable water for 3-5 years.

LifeStraw Community provides 26,000 gallons of filtered water before it expires, which can carry 100 people within 3-5 years.

Generally, the lifespan of any LifeStraw depends on the particular type and the way it is maintained. 

How to use Lifestraw

As a result of the primary functions the lifestraw possesses, as well as its easy carriage from one place to another, it is used in numerous situations and places.

It can be used during hiking, camping, boating, and running activities, or any other related activities. It can also be used while embarking on a long walk.

Lifestraw has also been developed into water bottles; hence your children can get safe drinking water anywhere. It is distributed as relief materials by NGOs in areas where natural disasters occurred. It is also a helpful tool used for the filtration of water of those living in areas with contaminated water sources that have no access to electricity.

Anyone can use a Lifestraw anywhere. It is quite handy and portable; therefore, it can be carried along anywhere. The personal type is so portable that it can fit in a handbag or backpack.

What more do I need to know about Lifestraw?

Choosing a LifeStraw product is one major thing to note about it. You need to know which type to go for, that suits the purpose you need it for, and of course, your budget.

Forms of lifestraw

Lifestraw Personal portable water filter

This type of Lifestraw is suitable for campers, hikers, and so on. It enables you to drink from contaminated water sources.

It has little or no weight, hence easy to carry when traveling. It is best to have this at hand when you are unsure of how safe the water sources in your destination are. You don’t want to be stranded and end up having to drink contaminated water. 

This product ensures the removal of bacteria, parasites, and microplastics. It has a lengthy lifespan as it filters 1,000 gallons (4,000 liters) of drinking water in 5 years.

Lifestraw Go

It is a water bottle designed with a lifestraw inside. The container is used to scoop water from the source while the lifestraw inside is used in sucking the clean water to your mouth. 

While sucking the water, filtration occurs, enabling only clean water to pass through. It filters 1,000 liters of contaminated water in its lifetime.

LifeStraw Go differs from Lifestraw Personal in that it filters organic chemical and chlorine, which is an advance to what the Personal type has to offer.

Lifestraw Play with lead reduction

This type has the same lifespan as Lifestraw Go. However, its filtering capacity has the strength to filter heavy metals like lead.

It is the best LifeStraw product for kids; it comes with other filtration methods. It can also filter organic chemical matters. It is a kid-friendly product, in that you can be flexible with it. You can decide to have your name or any other thing you want under the cover of the bottle. This product gives you and your kid access to clean water from taps or public water systems.

Lifestraw Home

This product can filter bacteria, parasites, microplastics, lead, chlorine, mercury, and organic materials. It provides 264 gallons of filtered water a year. LifeStraw Home is easily maintained and easy to use. 

It has the same filtering strength as Lifestraw Go. It can carry seven cups of water at once.

Lifestraw Family 2.0

This is the product used in homes. It can take and filter more water than the other types. 

It filters 30,000 liters of water during its lifetime. It can provide drinkable water for a family of five with the durability of 3-5 years. It requires no electricity or batteries for its operation. It can function adequately without the availability of running or piped water.

It is designed to rest on a table and serves as clean storage after filtration. It filters viruses, bacteria, protozoa, and some other chemical substances found in water.

Lifestraw community

LifeStraw community is advanced filtration equipment that filters viruses, bacteria, and microplastics from water. 

It makes drinking water available for the members of a community. It can filter 13 gallons (50 liters) at a go, and it produces 26,000 gallons of filtered water between 3-5 years, which will serve 100 people. It is very durable, even in harsh conditions.

It has a large capacity and can be used in case of an emergency.Lifestraw comes in different forms and shapes, and this determines its features, function, and lifespan a great deal.

Watch How LifeStraw Family Works

How Does Lifestraw Work FAQs

Does a lifestraw remove all bacteria?

Yes, it evacuates 99.9999% of waterborne bacteria. Also, it aids the removal of protozoa present in the water.

Does lifestraw remove viruses?

This is ultimately dependent on the type of lifestraw in question. This is because viruses are very minute in size and can easily pass through the lifestraw’s pores. However, the lifestraw community removes viruses.

Does lifestraw remove chemicals from water?

Regular Lifestraws like Lifestraw Personal is incapable of removing chemicals from water. However, Lifestraw Go, Lifestraw Home removes organic chemical matter like herbicides, pesticides from water as well as chlorine. Water filters that possess the charcoal layer are capable of filtering water with heavy metals.

Can I drink my urine through LIfestraw?

Urine is drinkable through lifestraw as it contains 95% of water and 5% of waste products in which the lifestraw’s filter can turn into a portable product.

However, the filter will not remove the taste or smell of the urine. Generally, urine is not advisable to drink, where there are other sources of water available. However, in an extreme survival situation, you can drink your urine once before you have access to a water source.

How do I know when a lifestraw expires?

A lifestraw has its filtering capacity depending on its type. Also, the water sources you drink form can hasten or fasten the expiration of your lifestraw’s filter.

However, your lifestraw stops working when it has reached its filtering capacity. This is how you know it has expired.

Final words and Recommendation

The type of LifeStraw product you choose to go for should be determined by the number of people it is expected to serve. 

LifeStraw filters are your best bet to ensure that you consume clean and safe water always. They need no external batteries, which might serve as a restriction if there is no power supply. They have been known to fight harmful chemicals in the water. 

Lifestraw Personal cannot filter chemicals and chlorine while Lifestraw Go can filter organic chemicals as well as chlorine. Also, Lifestraw Play can filter all substances, including heavy metals such as lead.

Lifestraw Home, though good, is limited in its filtering capacity and lifespan when compared with Lifestraw Family 2.0. Lifestraw Community, when compared with all other types of Lifestraw, is the best option to go for due to its ability to remove hidden viruses from the water filtered.


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