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Reviewed: LifeSaver Jerrycan Water Purifier

Every so often, we find a product that wildly exceeds our expectations. This is the case with the LifeSaver 18.5 liter water purifying jerrycan, a robust and easy to use solution for removing 99.9% of protozoa, 99.99% of viruses, and 99.9999% of bacteria from water, while also improving turbidity from silted sources like glacial rivers and lakes. What I liked most about the LifeSaver was the ease of operation and relatively high flow rate (4 liters per minute). Traditional considerations need to be employed to ensure a clean and clear outlet, but I could otherwise pour (nearly) any manner of watersource into the can and then pump the handle to create positive pressure through the carbon filter. The filter lasts for up to 5,800 gallons of filtration. I did find that the can does not fit in all NATO-style holders as it is taller by nearly 4 centimeters. Although my evaluation of the Life Saver was thorough, it pales in comparison to the breadth of testing performed by Graeme Bell in the real world, which is why we’ve included a brief excerpt of his experience below.

“We are a family who have explored four continents over a continuous seven year period and recently completed an overland journey from Europe to South Africa via the infamous West Coast of Africa. We have filled our Lifesaver jerrycan from wells in Nigeria, Congo, Ghana and Guinea, from oasis in the Sahara and have filtered municipal tap water in Dakar, Lagos and Abidjan. The Lifesaver Jerrycan has stored and delivered clean water to our family and we will, without doubt, continue to utilize the Lifesaver jerrycan as our primary water filtration system for years to come as a simple filter replacement is all that is needed to ensure another 20 000 liters of peace of mind.

However, if you intend to use the jerrycan for extended periods in remote locales we would recommend carrying a spare spigot assembly, this is the weakest part of the unit and the spout may break if knocked. If the spout does break the shower attachment is unusable. The internal spigot release spring mechanism is also prone to failure but can be repaired in the field.” -Graeme Bell, A2A Expedition


Durable construction and BPA free
Will purify 5,820 gallons per element
Removes 99.99% of viruses and bacteria
NSF Protocol P248 Military Operations Certified


Does not fit in all traditional jerrycan mounts

To learn more, visit iconlifesaver.com | $312

Scott is the publisher and co-founder of Expedition Portal and Overland Journal. His travels by 4WD and adventure motorcycle span all seven continents and include three circumnavigations of the globe. His polar travels include two vehicle crossings of Antarctica and the first long-axis crossing of Greenland. He lives in Prescott, Arizona IG: @scott.a.brady Twitter: @scott_brady