CrazyCap 17oz Review
Cons: Can't filter particulates, doesn't adapt to many other bottles, small bottle size
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Our Analysis and Test Results
The Crazy Cap is our favorite UV light system. It's our favorite because of its lightweight design that's easy to carry anywhere you go. We also love that you can purify water while simply touching the lid, and walking away. No hands needed to swirl or press for purification. It has a long battery life that'll last at least a week after a charge, and it's incredibly durable. If you're planning on traveling internationally or already live in a place where waterborne viruses are a problem in municipal water, this is a wonderful, easy product.
This UV filter is a purification system that uses a 278nm wavelength to destroy bacteria, protozoa, and particulates.
This wavelength, when in contact with microorganisms, scrambles their DNA, not allowing them to reproduce. It offers two modes. The first lasts for 60 seconds, which kills about 99.1% of contaminants, while the crazy mode (90 seconds) kills 99.99999%. This is not a filtration system, so don't expect it to rid the water of particulates, chemicals, or pesticides. It's a great system for front country use or while in the backcountry. If you're in murky water sources, use a handkerchief to filter out larger particulates.
Durability & Maintenance
There isn't much to this system. We used this bottle over the course of 1.5 months, using it every day. We love how durable the bottle is and how easy it is to maintain. Just don't lose the charging cord!
On average, we would use the "normal" mode three times per day. Through this time, we had to charge it once every two weeks. If you do the math, you're looking at about 60 filter cycles of 17oz of water before needing to recharge it. Charging is easy. Simply plug it into a USB port, and wait for about 1.5 - 2 hours. You can also use this trick on the trail if you have a solar-powered battery pack, but expect charging times to vary based on the system you have. To clean it, simply empty the bottle, and put it on crazy mode (90 seconds) and the bottle will be sterilized.
The bottle that comes with the set also seems to be quite durable. We've taken it skiing, hiking, and used it while working from home. It's also been thrown around quite a bit in the car. After all this, the color is still intact with just a few scratches from accidental big drops. The bottle itself hasn't deformed, even after accidentally dropping it on a pile of rocks, completely full.
While we didn't have any issues with the Crazy Cap, we must speak to some of the online reviews we've read. While negative reviews are few and far between, a few people mentioned that their crazy cap didn't work after two months of use. Others, however, heralded it for great performance after they traveled to exotic locations for 2+ weeks, such as Africa and Mexico, where water-borne viruses are a concern. Overall, our experiences show this to be quite an awesome at-home and exploration device. Use it anywhere with fewer charges and huge battery life!
The bottle that comes attaches can treat 17 oz of water, which is about 0.5 liters. If you wanted to store more water, you could easily get a larger, compatible bottle, or simply bring a collapsible bottle with you. This means it would take about 2 minutes to purify 1 liter of water.
If you wanted to purify it to remove the most contaminants, you're looking at about three minutes for one full liter. While this isn't the fastest time out there, it earns a higher score because treatment is completely hands-free and easy.
Weight & Packability
The bottle and filter weigh 12.6 oz, with the top weighing just 3.15 oz (with the charger).
Our testers are fans of collapsible bottle storage systems, so this isn't the item we'd use for a backpacking trip (plus, what happens if the battery shorts?!) but its one we'd definitely bring along if we're traveling and purifying filter water from sinks or taps. The bottle itself is light enough to hike with. Plus, it insulates really well, keeping warm beverages warm, and cold ones, cold. We tested this out by putting tea into the bottle. It stayed warm for over 8 hours but slowly decreased in temperature during that time. Still, impressive insulation.
Ease of Set-Up
Super simple. Collect the water you need and hit the button. No need to pump, squeeze, push. Everything is hands-free, so treatment time isn't a bother in the least, unlike other UV systems and bottle purifiers.
The shorter design actually fits well under most sinks and it can scoop up water from deeper sources with ease. It's also a great companion while out on a fishing or any type of boat-based trip (it has an IPX7 waterproof rating). The downside is you need to be able to reach the water source to collect from it. Make sure you collect from the top of the water column to avoid particulates, as this bottle can't filter those out. Or bring a handkerchief along as a prefilter (with an extra bottle) if you know you're going to come in contact with them.
Ease of Filtration
Hit the button twice for "normal mode", and fives times for "crazy mode". To check battery life, hit the top one time. After you've hit the button, all you have to do is sit back and wait. You can even collect water, hit the button, put it back in your pack, while you continue hiking. Super simple and one of the only products that'll allow you to filter on the move.
The cap will tell you what you need to know using a color scheme. For example, it if glows red, you know it needs a charge. You know the bottle is working when the cap glows blue. When it stops glowing, the process is over. To check if this actually was working, we took the top off and looked at the light. Since UV light is hard to see, we took it into a dark room and shone it on a piece of white paper. Then, you can actually see the UV light is intense. Overall, this is one of the easiest systems to set up and use, and the only hands-free system that'll allow you to filter on the go. When you're ready to recharge, attach the lid charger, plug it into a USB port, and wait for 1.5-2hours (depending on your power source).
This UV purifier offers some of the best value on the market. If the lid stops working (or the bulb burns out) you can buy a new one quite easily. However, the bulb is said to have a lifespan of 236,588 liters, which equates to 62,500 gallons. Obviously we didn't get to test that many liters yet, but if it's true, the cost of 100 liters is just about three pennies, which equates to amazing value. Assuming that the lid doesn't kick the bucket before its alleged longevity, we definitely have a winner here. Another reason this model is our favorite UV purifier.
The Crazy Cap is an exceptional UV purifier that's won our hearts and an award for its unbelievable performance. At the touch of a button, you can make clear, disease and virus-ridden water into clean and drinkable agua. This is not a filtration unit, so it won't get rid of particulates. But it's at home on a hiking trail, while traveling, or at home. The UV light can also purify surfaces that you touch (like computer keys) at the touch of a button. A necessity when trying to stay clean and safe.
— Amber King