First Look Gear Review

SteriPEN Freedom Review

Backpacking Water Treatment

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  • Currently 4.0/5
Overall avg rating 4.0 of 5 based on 1 review. Most recent review: December 11, 2012
Price:   $120 List | $57 online  —  Compare prices at 1 resellers
Pros:  Effective against viruses, lighter than other SteriPEN models, USB charger works with solar charger, no need to carry extra batteries
Cons:  Need to send in for repair to replace battery, electronic method is not as reliable as a filter, does not strain out debris, limited to use with certain containers
Manufacturer:   SteriPEN


The SteriPEN Freedom has some unique qualities that make it a more attractive option than other SteriPEN models such as the SteriPEN Adventurer Opti and the SteriPEN Journey LCD:
  • You can use the micro-USB charger to charge it with a solar charger rather than worry about carrying extra batteries or needing an electric outlet. This would be better on the go.
  • it weighs 30 grams less than the Adventurer.
  • it eliminates viruses (which makes it more effective than a filter, and a better choice for international travel.)

However, if traveling in North America where viruses aren't a concern, we would still recommend the Platypus GravityWorks over this SteriPen model, for these reasons:
  • The combined weight of the Freedom plus a hard-sided water bottle to use it in, plus the solar charger would still likely weigh more than the Gravityworks plus a water bladder.
  • Adding an electronic element to something as vital as water treatment unnecessarily complicates the system, and raises the probability that it could malfunction when you really need it. There is nothing to break on a gravity filter, so it is more reliable.
  • The rechargeable battery is integrated, so if that battery stopped working or starting dying more quickly, you cannot replace it yourself, but have to send it in for a repair.
  • The Freedom has the same limitations as other SteriPENs: it does not treat water on the threads of the bottle, it can only be used with certain containers, and it does not filter out particulate from your water.

Check out our full Water Filter Review to read more in depth about the different water treatment options available.

Other Versions

SteriPEN Adventurer Opti
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  • Small, compact UV water purification
  • Lightweight
  • Doubles as a flashlight
  • Cost - $90

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  • Creates safe drinking water
  • The UV lamp provides 3,000 water treatments
  • Cost - $50

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  • An eco-friendly and portable UV water purifier
  • Makes clean water available when no power source is available
  • Cost - $100

McKenzie Long

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OutdoorGearLab Member Reviews

Most recent review: December 11, 2012
Summary of All Ratings

OutdoorGearLab Editors' Rating:   
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Average Customer Rating:     (0.0)
Rating Distribution
1 Total Ratings
5 star: 0%  (0)
4 star: 100%  (1)
3 star: 0%  (0)
2 star: 0%  (0)
1 star: 0%  (0)

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Table of Contents

    Related Review
    The Best Backpacking Water Filter and Treatment Systems

    The Best Backpacking Water Filter and Treatment Systems

    A detailed comparison of 17 water treatment methods for backpacking and travel.
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