Steripen durability

lumis17

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May 15, 2016
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74
I just got a new Steripen Ultra, but before I could use it for the first time I knocked it onto my hardwood floor. When I tried to use it I got the sad face and bulb icon indicating the bulb is broken or used up. Unfortunately, since I hadn't used it before I don't know if it came defective or if my drop busted something in it. Just curious how much others have beat up their Steripens and if they kept working.
 

Jordan Budd

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Aug 8, 2012
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NW Nebraska
I've had mine for 3 seasons and haven't had an issue with it. It gets thrown in the pack and whatever happens to it happens.. getting crushed, banged around, etc. Just keeps working, the only issue I had was when it was running out of battery. My fault because I didn't put fresh ones in at the start of the season. I've really never had an issue, it's been great for me.
 

jmazz

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Aug 14, 2017
Messages
23
Location
Kansas
I use mine 2-3 times a day, every day. Last year I knocked it over on my counter and it stopped working. I contacted them and they sent me a replacement which hasn't had any issues but I'm much more careful now.
 
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lumis17

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May 15, 2016
Messages
74
Thanks for the replies! This Steripen was going to be in addition to my gravity filter so I'm not too worried about it breaking again in the future, but I'll probably be babying it just in case. Just wanted to see how much abuse they can handle.
 

Desk Jockey

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Apr 5, 2015
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2,428
Mmm...I had grown to like my steripen for solo and shirt trips. I use a gravity filter for groups. I hadn’t expected it to be so prone to damage. No issues with mine but reinforces my thought that I need to carry iodine as a back up.
 

horse43

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Jan 5, 2017
Messages
16
Mine has been good for a few season nows. But it's kept in the case until it goes into the Nalgene then back in the case and pack.

Check in with their warranty dept. I'm not sure how sensitive their bulbs are, but I bet it would be hard to have something survive a good drop onto something hard.

Anything electrical can always fail, have at least a lifestraw or tabs as backup. The added weight it negligible.
 

Desk Jockey

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Apr 5, 2015
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Mine has been good for a few season nows. But it's kept in the case until it goes into the Nalgene then back in the case and pack.

Check in with their warranty dept. I'm not sure how sensitive their bulbs are, but I bet it would be hard to have something survive a good drop onto something hard.

Anything electrical can always fail, have at least a lifestraw or tabs as backup. The added weight it negligible.
What do you use for a case?
 

1000yrds

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Feb 23, 2019
Messages
87
It certainly was unreliable for me! It worked fairly well when tried at the kitchen sink, although after getting out in the field I wished I had spent a lot more time with it under conditions a little more closely related to the back country than my kitchen. I had lots of trouble even turning the thing on and off (female, not much hand strength here). When I originally posted my adventures with the thing last summer, I got half a dozen responses from other women who had the same difficulty with the on/off switch. Plus when I did get it turned on, it kept cutting off before the cycle was complete so I had to start over. Plus a widemouth bottle is required. Plus extra batteries. The weight of these "accessories" eats up any weight savings over my ULA Amigo Pro gravity filter. Sitting by a buggy creek stirring and stirring is also not my idea of an easy way to purify water, especially after being accustomed to a gravity filter. YMMV, of course. The Steripen I bought went back to REI and I would never consider purchasing another. Even pumping (which puts my back into spasms) or "better living through chemistry" is far better than this gadget, IMHO.
 

ndbuck09

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Joined
Feb 16, 2015
Messages
378
Location
Boise, ID
I've had my steripen since 2011 and it still works as good as new. It's been to Colorado a handful of times, Montana a handful of times, Alaska, all over here in Idaho and who knows where in between. Been in my backpack all these years and still works awesome. I'm talking around 50 nights a year in a tent the past 4 years too.
 

mj23polaris

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Dec 26, 2016
Messages
318
I'm on my 2nd classic dropped first one without the cap on the end and took a chunk of glass out of the end, used it the rest of the trip didn't shit my pants 3 weeks later. Still have it on a shelf.

Current one has cracked glass been using it for over a year on a weekly basis. No beaver fever yet.

Sent from my XT1650 using Tapatalk
 

nickstone

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Dec 19, 2013
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459
Location
El Dorado County, CA
I know that the Classic can not be run over by a Yamaha Big Bear 400 and survive first hand. Other than that mine have been pretty durable, and I'm pretty hard on stuff.
 

bradb

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Jan 8, 2013
Messages
548
Mine worked very good on my recent Yukon trip. I carried it in the soft neoprene case which does have a hard plastic insert in it to help protect the end
 
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lumis17

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May 15, 2016
Messages
74
FWIW, I got a new Ultra Steripen in the mail and it's working good. The lady I talked to at Katadyn was very helpful and overall it was a very quick and painless process to get a replacement.
 

afdiamond1

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Joined
Sep 9, 2016
Messages
36
Location
Texas
I've used a steripen classic for the past 4 years. No issues with it at all. My friend has had two different steripen adventurers and has had failures with both of them. I keep mine in the neoprene case and wrap it with something like a fleece vest to protect it. I always change out batteries before every trip (AA Lithium) and carry aquamira drops as a backup.
 

dutch_henry

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Joined
Mar 5, 2018
Messages
38
Location
New Hampshire
Mine died a quick death when a friend dunked it into a quart bottle without the battery compartment fully sealed. Operator error for sure, but now I took it as a cautionary tale and went back to my old Katadyn filter. That one's been running, with normal maintenance, since the 1990s.
 
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