Be sure to slowly squeeze the water through the filter, giving the filter fibers time to fully saturate. The initial flow rate may seem slow but will increase as fibers become wetted which usually takes approximately one liter of water.
Back Flushing Process
To maximize the effectiveness and longevity of your filter, Sawyer recommends back flushing your filter after each outing. The fibers are very robust, so please be FORCEFUL in your back flush process. When using the syringe, do not be gentle. It will only form paths of least resistance instead of blowing out the particulates that may be trapped in your filter. When using the faucet adapter, hold the adapter on the faucet and ‘turn the water up’ to ensure particle(s) removal. Do NOT use soap when backwashing your filter.
Before storing your filter, Sawyer recommends sanitizing your filter. This process is simple: Back flush filter. Run a standard bleach solution (fragrance free) through your filter (one cap of bleach per quart of water). Let air dry and then store in a cool, dry place OR store wet and clean before using.
Non-Back Flushed Filters
In case you forgot to back flush your filter after your last outing and flow seems too little or diminished, soak the filter in hot tap water (not boiling) for about an hour and then back flush using hot tap water. REMEMBER to back flush FORCEFULLY! When using the syringe, do not be gentle, it will only form paths of least resistance instead of blowing out the particulates that may be trapped in your filter. When using the faucet adapter, hold the adapter on the faucet and turn the water up to ensure particle(s) removal.
If after above steps your filter still seems to be clogged Soak the filter in hot tap water for about an hour and then back flush using hot tap water. If this doesn’t work, it could be dried calcium. Soak the filter in vinegar for 1/2 hour and then back flush with hot water. You may have to repeat this a few times to get it all the way clean. Make sure you back flush with all the force you can – hold the faucet adapter on the faucet and turn the water on. The filters are tough and can take more force than you can give with the faucet adapter.