GRAYL Water Filtration Cup – Review


Whether you’re at home, on the trail, or halfway around the world, the GRAYL is the perfect source for crystal clean water. When it comes to portable filtered water it doesn’t get any easier than the french press GRAYL Cup. Ever since we laid eyes on these filters we’ve been dying to take it out and taste the difference. After a long hike into the backcountry, there’s nothing better than a glass of mountain fresh river water.

First Impressions
Before we even had a chance to examine the GRAYL, we were instantly blown away by the packaging. No plastic used in this package, the all-cardboard cylinder is constructed to fit the GRAYL like a glove. The un-boxing is easily comparable to any Apple product. Once we finally got our hands on the GRAYL we couldn’t ignore the attention to detail and craftsmanship. The premium quality didn’t stop at the packaging, it was woven throughout every aspect of the cup. We also immediately took note of the weight and the fact these cups are crafted like a stainless steel thermos rather than a cheap plastic water bottle. The inner system and cap is crafted from 18/8 stainless steel (chemical leaching free), and food grade silicone seals the BPA-free plastic filter shell. Other than changing out the filters, this system will easily last you years or even decades to come.

In Use
Like a typical guy we totally ignored the instructions which are clearly printed on the packaging, and if you miss those, they are also included on the insert brochure. Not that you need instructions to use this filter, but there are a few things worth reading. The operation of this cup is identical to a french press. You fill the outer cup, insert the filter cylinder, then slowly press down. Depending on they type of filter (3 to choose from), it can take between 7 – 30 seconds to filter a full glass of water. Make sure the lid is removed and avoid cupping your palm over the top of the inner cup (by doing so allows the air to escape as you filter the water), then apply consistent downward pressure. It’s a much easier process if the cup is resting on a hard surface rather than holding it with both hands. This system is dead simple and you will never get contaminated water mixed with the clean water. Once the water is filtered the removable locking lid prevents spills regardless of movement or the position of the cup. I wish my travel coffee mug included this feature. To open the drink spout, simply press the locking grey button then flip and re-lock into place.

Depending on the destination, the GRAYL’s filter can be customized to the water conditions. Choose from three types of filters; Blue Tap (filters chemicals, heavy metals and improves taste and smell), Green Trail (filters chemicals, heavy metals, protozoa and bacteria), and Orange Travel (filters chemicals, metals, bacteria, protozoa and viruses). Each filter will last about 3 months or 300 cycles, and has a shelf life of one year once opened. The Blue Tap filter is made with an activated carbon filter whereas the Green Trail and Orange Travel filters are made with a patented three filtration technology. These filter are super light, portable and can be removed and replace within seconds.

We tested our Green Trail filter in our home, at the office, on the trail, and in the mountains. We did a simple Chlorine and PH test on our tap and river water and immediately saw the difference between unfiltered and GRAYL filtered water. The performance in all occasions was far superior than any portable filtration system we’ve tried in the past. Don’t waste your time with those pumps, river straws, or systems that make you wait for gravity to do its work.

-Ridiculously fast and easy to filter
-Replaceable filters
-Optional filter types
-Sealable lid and drinking spout
-Easy to disassemble and clean

-A touch heavy for those super long hikes or climbs

Final thoughts
The GRAYL is one serious portable filtration system that by far exceeds our expectations. It has already made a home in our day-to-day routine and is a no brainer when it comes to our outdoor excursions and travel expeditions. Our only wish is they eventually come out with a mountain biking bottle style.
Choose for a few different styles and 3 filter types.

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Tap water chlorine test. Before and after filtering through the GRAYL Cup. Yellow/orange coloration indicates high levels of chlorine.