Best Hydration Water Bladders Compared

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Searching for Hydration Bladders? Take a look at the best Bladders of 2017, Pros & Cons and what to be aware of before buying them online or in a store.

Hydration is serious business when it comes to running. The average American is often said to drink far less water than is optimum for their bodies. You can typically get away with this if you’re just going through the motions of daily life, but when it comes to running it tends to catch up with you much more quickly.

Below you’ll find a curated list of the best hydration bladders currently available. Through research, testing, and meticulous review we’ve distilled a list of the five best options currently available. At the end there is some additional information on how to care for a bladder, frequently asked questions, etc.

Last Updated: May 2, 2017
By Shalline Omondi:

In our most recent update to this buying guide, we have done quite a bit of research, and added a good amount of helpful information to help with your search for the best option for you.

In addition, we have also scoured reviews and other sources to see what others had for questions and concerns. As a result we have come up with some frequently asked questions, which you will find near the bottom of this guide.

Osprey Hydraulics Reservoir
  • Osprey Hydraulics Reservoir
  • 5 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Anti-microbial bacteria prevention
  • Price: See Here
Aquatic Way Reservoir
  • Aquatic Way Reservoir
  • 4 out of 5
    Our rating
  • BPA-FREE anti-bacteria materials
  • Price: See Here
Platypus Big Zip LP Reservoir
  • Platypus Big Zip LP Reservoir
  • 4 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Quick-release hose and shutoff valve
  • Price: See Here

10 Best Hydration Water Bladders

 

Osprey Hydraulics

The first thing that stuck out to us about the Osprey Hydraulics Reservoir is has a 1/4″/6.35mm hose which allows water to flow almost effortlessly. The exterior of this bladder has handy capacity marking also which removes any guesswork you might have to make when checking your levels. If you’re turned off by the taste of plastic (lets face it who isn’t?) this bladder may be for you. The material is a Metallocene PE with taste-free film (BPA/PVC free) plus a antimicrobial formula to which works to stop the buildup of bacteria and mold. If all this weren’t enough the low profile of this bladders’ build keeps the weight of the water consistent and close to your body. This is a particular boon for runners.
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About the Product:

- Backer plate help to shape the reservoir, keeping it low-profile so it won’t mess up the ballast of your backpack
- Pour shield extends the collar (almost like a funnel) to make filling and pouring easy
- Has a welded chevron baffles to help prevent too much sloshing and to maintain the shape
- Has a magnetic sternum strap that you attach can attach to you pack, giving the magnetic bite valve a spot to rest while out of use
- Well formed bite valve offers fast and easy water flow

Specs:

Size: 15 x 7 x 3.1 inches

Capacity: 2 or 3 liters, depends on size

BPA- Free: Yes

Material(s): Metallocene PE Film
Pros
  • Internal baffles help prevent sloshing
  • Maintains a low profile structure
  • Bite valve allows fast water flow
  • Extended pour shield make refilling much easier
Cons
  • Has a bit of a plastic taste at first

Aquatic Way

If you’re looking for a no frills and economical bladder to meet the basic need of easy access to water on the go a great place to turn is to the Aquatic Way Bladder Water Reservoir. This bladder is a good choice for a variety of reasons, but most of all it checks most all of the boxes you’d want checked. It’s made from food-grade BPA-Free and FDA (if you trust the FDA) approved materials, has leak proof seam technology, it is easy to clean and dry using its large opening, and best of all it has insulation that allows the water to resist quick temperature change. It may not be as finely engineered or calibrated as some higher end bladders, but the Aquatic Way Bladder Water Reservoir offers a great bang for your buck.
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About the Product:

- Extremely well constructed from thick TPU that is pressure-treated and wear-proof. Manufactured with built in leak proof sealing technology.
- BPA-Free and FDA approved material, has antimicrobial properties
- Oversized opening, ideal for cleaning and easy access. Drying is a breeze and you can even scoop ice cubes directly from the fridge into the bladder
- Soft yet durable mouthpiece, has a 90-degree turn mouthpiece. Easily accessible shutoff valve, no leakage.
- Neoprene insulated tube cover helps water stay cold on hot days and vice versa on cold ones
- Shop with peace of mind. Sixty day100% money back guarantee

Specs:

Size: 1.13 x 6.5 x 15 inches

Capacity: 67.6 oz

BPA- Free: Yes, FDA approved

Material(s): thermoplastic urethane
Pros
  • BPA-Free
  • Constructed of FDA approved material with antimicrobial properties
  • Oversized opening allows easy refilling and cleaning
  • 100% money back guarantee
Cons
  • May not be ideal for extreme situations

Platypus Big Zip LP – 3 Liter

Sometimes simplicity is best, and this is one thing you can certainly say about the Platypus Big Zip LP Reservoir, its simple. Its design is straightforward yet effective and its low profile makes it a great match for small running packs. Its got a slidelock opening at the top making access to the reservoir no problem at all. This system also stands up well to leaking in our experience, in that it doesn’t. The addition of silver-ion antimicrobial properties keeps things fresh and a quick-release hose and valve pairing make drinking and refilling easy. Overall this is an excellent choice for any runner.
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About the Product:

- Proudly manufactured in the USA
- Made from BPA-free polyethylene with silver-ion antimicrobial finish delivers fresh, sanitary and taste free liquids
- Has a wide opening with patented Slidelock™ closure is easy to refill and secure
- Lightweight, streamlined design is meant to ride flat in your pack — minimizes sloshing around and overall load
- Quick-release hose and shutoff valve make drinking and refilling the bladder a simple process

Specs:

Size: 17.2 x 8.8 Inches

Capacity: 101 fluid ounces

BPA- Free: Yes

Material(s): thermoplastic urethane, stands up extremely well over time
Pros
  • Refilling is easy with the wider opening and Slidelock closure
  • Low profile design
  • Limited sloshing
  • BPA free
  • No plastic taste
Cons
  • Probably not ideal for rougher activities

Geigerrig Hydration Engine

If you’d like a slightly higher grade than your average Camelbak the Geigerrig Hydration Engine is one solution. Don’t be put off by the fact it looks a bit like an IV bag. This is a great concept of a bladder and works extremely well, especially if you’re running at any type of altitude. The bladder of the Hydration Engine is composed of two chambers and is built to fit into almost any pack. One key feature of this bladder we really loved is the slide top which allows for the entire top of the bladder to be open. No more fussing with a port or gasket. The slide top allows for easy refilling, cleaning and most problematic of all drying. The bite valve also works exceptionally well letting you get a healthy supply of water (without sucking too hard) but not inundating you either. It may set you back a bit more than some other options price-wise but what you get in return is unparalleled performance and durability.
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About the Product:

- Some highlights in no particular order: slide top, industrial grade water tube, reservoir, and power bulb
- The pressure bulb and pressure tube provides a delicate mechanism to pressurize the hydration bladders thus utilizing the patented two chamber system
- Handy On/off switch on the bite valve prevents leaks
- A key differentiator: the slide top built by Hydrapak provides an indestructible seal that is leak free and retains the pressure of the Geigerrig system
- The quick release valves make it simple and easy to disconnect the tubes and leave them positioned in the hydration pack while you remove the reservoir for to refill or dry
- Bladder material is fully reversible and dishwasher safe

Specs:

Size: 16.72 x 7.25 inches

Capacity: 50 Oz

BPA- Free: Yes and dishwasher friendly

Material(s) thermoplastic urethane, stands up extremely well over time
Pros
  • Can be pressurized with a pressure bulb
  • Valves can be easily removed with a quick release disconnect
  • Dishwasher safe
Cons
  • The pump bulb could come loose under harsh conditions

Camelbak Antidote 70oz

Camelbacks are such a well known and loved product that they have almost become synonymous with hydration bladder themselves. Is your Camelback full? So we are starting was the most logical. Camelbacks are smartly designed, have a good track record of durability, and can easily be matched with a line of backpacks/bags also produced by Camelbak. The Antidote is the flagship product of Camelbak and it has a BPA-free reservoir that comes in three different sizes to match just about any need. The valve is user friendly, effective, and won’t cause you any aggravation. Moderately priced, the Camelbak Antidote offers excellent value and is a simple and highly dependable hydration solution.
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About the Product:

- CamelBak Antidote reservoir has an access port which makes it filling it a breeze, the cap has also been redesigned and is easy to open/close
- Cleaning the reservoir is easy, the port is big enough that you can fit your hand or a toothbrush inside
- Has a Quick Link™ connection system so it’s easy to disconnect the drinking tube if you so desire
- The low-profile fit means leads to comfort and stability
- The Antidote has a built in baffle which is designed to stop water from sloshing all over the place and increasing tension on your back.
- Big Bite™ valve is super easy to use—just bite and swig; HydroLock™ valve shuts off water, making sure you don’t end up with a flood in your pack

Specs:

Size: 18 x 8 x 3.5 inches

Capacity: 70 Oz

BPA- Free: Yes

Material(s) Polyurethane
Pros
  • The large access port makes refilling and cleaning super easy
  • The Quick Link system allows the drinking tube to be easily removed for cleaning
  • Built in baffles reduce sloshing inside the bladder
  • Camelbak's Big Bite valve provide fast flowing hydration
Cons
  • The large closure may leak some when thrown around, or used under rugged conditions

Hydrapack First Wave Water Bladder

To each one of those athletes occupied with exercises including hieghts,speed and an high state of physical effort in extraordinary conditions, you will require a particular gear in respect of or for your body's hydration. To specify, the best, is a hydrapak first wave water bladder to go with you in whatever extraordinary conditions you are presented to. It is more than a repository
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About the product.
Hydrapak is the Original First Wave Military Water Reservoir. It conveys an amount of up to 1liter of water or more. The change in its plan is progressive contrasted with other ordinary drinking systems.This sort is novel based since it has just a single crease on it which makes it hearty yet exceptionally unique.It has a bladder which is twice as thick and as harder than typical bladders.

The water bladder is intended for most extraordinary states of exercises and operations. Its dependability, adaptability and solidness highlights makes it a definitive water stockpiling framework in the market for intense operations. The US Military uses this stockpiling and conveyance framework for extraordinary operations.

Specs.

Capacity:2 Liter/70 -Ounce

BPA Free: Yes

Size:6.75 x 12.25-Inch

Material:Polyurethane.

Pros

·         It is reversible and with an anti-microbial properties to help in cleaning and avoiding bacterial infections.

·         It is durable and built for a lifetime of tough use.

·         It can be frozen or filled with water of up to a maximum temperatures of 170F/77°C

·         It also contains a No- Leak lifetime guarantee.

·         It has been tested and used by the US Military.Which makes it best for harsh environs.

 

Cons

Most users complain of the hose connection problem,sometimes it comes bigger or smaller.you have to check to avoid such instances.

GoFriend Outdoor Hydration Bladder

It is a high quality bladder great for any outdoor activities that one can engage in including,running,walking,cycling hiking among others.it has a capacity that goes upto 3 litres.it fits so well in any back pack this makes you stay hydrated during all your adventures.
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About Product.
It has a foldable design which makes it easy to carry around,it has the antibacterial material that is good for use at any given time, its dual opening design allows you to clean and fill at any given conditions, it has the self lock feature that makes it easy to dissemble when cleaning and storing or sometimes when you need to replace its parts. Can easily fit into pocket and can store water at a cool temperature in case it is very hot.

Specs.

Size: 15.94*7.87 inches / 40.5 x 20cm

Capacity: 3L/100oz

BPA Free: Yes

Material:Food grade EVA.
Pros

·         Its foldable design makes it easy to carry around even in your pockets.

·         Easy to clean due to its self lock feature,that makes its easy to dissemble.

·         Its dual opening makes it easy to fill at any given condition.

·         Can keep water upto -20 degrees cold in a hot weather ,you feel right at home with it in any activity.

 

Cons

Can develop leaks when the hose is not well tightened to the bladder.

Raniaco Hydration Bladder

Now this is the only thing that will keep you going for an extra mile every time you feel like giving up.it keeps you sufficiently hydrated with its 2 litre constant and steady supply of water flow.it is very good for outdoor activities like hiking, running, cycling just to name but a few. This bladder sis easy to use and also healthy for the body system. The sealing is as easy as opening it., it’s just like sipping soda from a straw, drinking from this bladder is almost as easy once you open the bite valve with your teeth.
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About product.
This bladder is easy to slip in your bag or backpack since it has a shape cap that doesn’t stick out hence uses very minimal space and can leave the rest of space for your other gears, when it comes to cleaning it up, it’s the simplest thing you will need to do. You just need to scrub or rinse out the inside of the bladder, then refill it to keep on enjoying the liquid in, it also doesn’t leak hence nothing to worry about. The material in question is also used to since it has the anti-bacterial qualities and is healthy to prevent health issues from arising during vigorous activities and it is also free from BPS and BPA

Specs.

Size. : 16 x 6’7

Capacity: 2litres

BPA Free: Yes

Material : Imported Food – Grade TPU
Pros

The Raniaco hydration bladder is comprised of material from immaculate, straightforward and tough polyurethane that does not contaminate the earth with BPA and BPS. 

This bladder can likewise endure extraordinary temperatures 0f up to - 20 to 50˚C and can disregard up to 100 pounds of water weight, so it will be conceivable to remain in conditions with a wide assortment of circumstances. 

This water bladder is effectively filled and with a vast stockpiling limit which is less demanding to fill and a seal that is watertight.

Cons

It has the taste of plastic at the first taste.

Deuter Streamer 2.0 Hydration Pack

Deuter 2 litre streamer is the best hydration tool for sportsmen or humans that love the daily routine workout whilst keeping their body’s water on check and on prescribed levels. It comes in a trendy packaging that makes one want to drink enough water, it has unique features like dirt guard that prevents it from getting dirt during transportation which makes it one of the best bladders, with its transparent look.
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About Product
This particular bladder is unique in that it is easy to clean due to its special molecular properties of the bladder which acts as anti-bacterial to keep the user healthy.it also has a taste free bladder unlike most of the bladder do.it has a special film in that help keep water for a longer period without forming mildew, its top opening is leak proof and also has a full width that makes it easy to clean ,its most unique feature of all is its dirt guard that is fitted in the mouth piece like a cap hanging at the end of the mouth piece that prevents germs during transportation.it also has the helix valve which acts as a drip proof ,can be closed and opened just by simply turning it a quarter inch anticlockwise and clockwise.

Specs.

Sizer:16" X 8 1/8".

Capacity:2ltrs.

BPA Free: Yes

Material:Polyethylene
Pros

It is very easy to clean and fill with its top opening and leak proof feature.

It is hygienic since the unique bladder that makes is made with anti bacterial properties that prevents infectious bacteria from forming in the bottle.

Holds 2litres of liquid with an easy flow of liquid without interrupting the flow of your activity.

The dirt guard it poses is so unique in a way to prevent it from getting dirt during any transportation or carriage.

Has the helix valve that also prevent leakages as it is easy to close and open by just a little turn

Cons

It has a taste of rubber due to the rubber that is on the mouth piece,but goes away after sometime.

Source Outdoor Widepac

This product has a wide opening to enable easy filling and cleaning, it is also available in 3 different dimensions which makes it easy to pick which one suits you the most, a full flow of liquid is achieved with just a simple bite due to the presence of the helix valve,not only that it also has no plastic taste when drinking its content,it has tube that appears shorter due to it 90 degree model which decreases the excess tubing to create a perfect angle for drinking water.
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About product.
Widepac hydration bladder has some features that make it stand out from others, that includes the helix bite valve that give a nice flow of liquid with a simple bite on the mouth and also helps prevent leakage, it also is BPA and phthalate free. Has a liner like glass that makes it lack the plastic taste effect unlike some of the other bladder, it has the dirt shield as well that prevent dirt from getting to the valve, it has the grunge guard that stop bacteria development to assist in promoting a healthy water bladder.

Specs.

Size:2 x 6 x 14 inches

Capacity:1.5 -3 ltrs.

BPA and BPS Free:Yes

Material:polyethylene
Pros

It has a Wide opening that enables fast and easy cleaning, filling and also draining.

The glass like liner helps to prevent the plastic taste when taking the water fr5om the bladder, and also helps prevent bacteria from building up.

It is available in more than one dimensions hence brings out the variety aspect of this bladder.

The availability of the circle helix bite valve that helps the flow of the liquid with just a smooth bite.it is also in built to help prevent leakages.

Has an airtight sealing with its side closure that also helps to prevent leakage

Cons

most clients experience challenges while segregating the hose from the bladder for the first time. 

Hydration is one of those things you really have to stay on top of, it can sneak up on you. You may be sitting there thinking, yeah, yeah — I know this, I’m fine, it doesn’t apply to me. If that’s actually true then great! But for the rest of us a refresher never hurts. According to one source:

Women need 2,700 milliliters daily, which is a little more than 90 ounces. Men need even more — 3,700 milliliters per day, or 125 ounces, according to the Food and Nutrition Board of the Institute of Medicine.

Thats a lot of water. How to make sure your intake levels stay up in the recommended zone? There are many ways, but one simple one is to get a good bladder and make sure it’s always tucked in your pack. This is particularly important for trail runners or ultra-marathoners. So, you need a bladder, but which one? Like so many products today the number of options has proliferated dramatically making choices more complicated. If you have a bladder you like by all means stick with it, but for those thinking about purchasing their first bladder or needing to replace an old one we’ve done some legwork for you.

 

The Criteria We Used When Choosing The Best Hydration Bladders For Running

Since the early 90s the hydration bottle can be considered to be the relatively new invention in the outdoor gear market. They were first seen in the cycling world where athletes wanted to access water but in a hands-free way. Initially hydration bladders were just sold in hydration packs. But it didn’t take long for all backpack manufacturers to realize this was a very convenient way to drink while hiking, backpacking, running, and many other sports. Today literally all sporting backpacks have hydration bladders that are compatible in a way. They can either be as simply as a hole for the drink tube or as complicated as multiple compartments and ways to thread the drink tube through the shoulder straps.

Hydration bladders are not the same as  water bladders. Though water bladders have a few  similarity to the hydration bladders because both can described as  water containers that are more soft sided. Though you can not attach water bladders onto a back pack. They also do not have straw, hence no ease of drinking directly from the water bladder. They serve well in camps and boats while hydration is specifically for hiking experiences.

Having the best hydration bladder is very important not only to runners but also to athletes who engage in various sporting activities and that’s why we make sure to give you the best hydration packs in the market. We look at several factors when we were looking at the different hydration bladders from different brands, these features were:

The Size of the Hydration Bladder and its Compatibility

The major thing to think about is whether the bladder will be a good fit with the compartment found in the backpack. Most bladders have similar shape however they have little variations. But most important factor is the size. Almost all the bladders come in sizes of 2 liters and 3 liters capacity, though some are smaller like 1 liter. The best bladder to use would be the 3litres bladders since they cost similar to the other bladders (1 liter and 2 liters), the 3 liter bladder ill offer more water capacity. Though the bladder will have to be refilled. Though it’s not appropriate for small packs as it won’t fit in. If you need something that is more versatile, opt for a larger bladder, for those who look for bladders with specific purposes, go for a bladder that will suit your pack. Though larger bladders are perfect, it is best to opt for a size perfect for you.
A 1 or 1.5 Liter bladder: They are perfect for minimalists with regards to size, preferred by kids and commuters. It is preferred for trail runs and quick hikes.

A 2 Liter bladder: The area the most popular type/ option. They are best for skiing, hiking or snowboarding. Perfect for those who don’t like filling up the bladder frequently. It offers a good amount of fluid/ water for the day.

A 3 Liter bladder: They are most versatile bladder of all. It is perfect for athletes who don’t want frequent refills and tend to need water in large amounts. This capacity of hydration bladder offers 1 option of having little or plenty of water.

The Profile Bladder

The profile of the bladder is crucial. Some bladders have narrow profiles while others with wide profiles. Some bladders become fat or flat when filled with water. Before buying a bladder it is good to consider take the hydration pack. Bladders that are compatible with packs have inbuilt sleeve. Check the sleeve to know how narrow and wide the sleeve is, this will help you to determine the type of bladder to pick from. Most ideal profile of bladders tends to be long narrow because they fit into many hydration packs.

 

The type of opening of the Hydration Bladder: Screw cap, Fold Top or Zip Top

When considering the type of  bladder opening on your hydration bladder, you ought to consider the ease of filling the bladder, the filing environment, and how easy it is to open or close the bladder opening. There are 3 types of openings of bladder: Screw cap, Fold Top or Zip Top

The Fold Top Bladder Opening:

This kind of opening: the tops part flip up, then folds over; then once they are folded over, slide the closure over on the top, this prevents the bag from experiencing leaks. It is the best bladder opening if you have to fill up your bladder when filling up in streams or any other outdoor water points especially where there are limited sources. It is easy to wash and clean, especially when it’s turned inside out.

The Zip Top Bladder Opening

A little similar with bladder openings of the fold top design. Having great a resemblance a big size zip look pack, that has a closure. The closure fitting at the overtop part of the zipper.  They are more easy to use however; they take longer to have them opened up, than bladders with the fold top. These bladders are great options to those athletes who fill up at streams that flow slowly or at home tap. Though they more easy to clean compared to the screw top bladder, they are much harder when it comes to cleaning than the fold tops bladders. You will have to use a brush since they cannot be flipped inside out.

The Screw Top Bladder Opening

These bladders tend to take more time in opening and closing, than both the zip top and fold top bladders, even though when looking at basins that are shallow, they are the perfect option. These models are horizontally or diagonally held horizontally when being filled up; this allows them to get filled faster and more easily. Perfect for environments like camping restrooms and public restrooms, where you will not want the coming into contact with surfaces that you suspect are not clean. You can also have them completely topped off, unlike the zip & flip top closures that you must leave at the top part. A little amount of air, to avoid spilling.

 

The Size of the Bite Valve of the Bladder

The size of the bite valves are different and vary in type. Most will feature the locking mechanism. Some valves are bigger in size, while other valves tend to be small. The size determines how hard or easy you will suck water from the bladder, via the tubes. In summary this means, large bite valves are harder to suck fluid via the tubes (if you don’t have the pressurized system) Small valves are sufficient, even though they cannot offer large water flow, which is provided by  medium valves. Medium valves can be said to be the perfect option to go for among all the runners.

For the locking mechanisms, we have 2 types which are: switch and turn valve. But switch mechanism tends to be most preferred because it is easier to use and clean while doing some workout or exercising sessions. Turn valve is fairly hard in terms of use and might get stuck, when sugary drinks are stored in them and cleaning was not done properly. This is not a big deal, because most bladders will have an interchangeable tube & valve options. Therefore, if you like a different type of tube or valve but want to keep the reservoir, then simply have it changed out.

How easy it is to clean the Bladder?

Cleaning the bladders can be difficult. Many hydration bladders will have parts that are difficult to be cleaned and dry; this makes it a good place for bacteria. Bladders vary in how difficult or easy they can be cleaned. For those who only put water into their bladders, frequent cleaning of the bladder is not necessary. But for those who use sugary drinks, you have to make sure there is no sugar residue in the bladder during cleaning. There are 3 main parts to clean: mouthpiece, the bladder and the hose. When buying your bladder, take into consideration on how hard or easy it will be to clean the bladder. Look for bladders with wider mouth, as this will allow you to easily flip it inside out. Then easily fit your brush inside, for a more thorough cleaning. Make sure that you are able to carefully disassemble your bladder (the hose & mouth piece) with no difficulty. Most bladders will have a mechanism that is quick-release which allows the hose to be disconnected easily. In case your bladder does not have this function, this means the bladder will be difficult to clean.

To have a Pressurized System or a Non Pressurized System.


A pressurized system in a hydration bladder will have two chambers. The first one is for water and the other for air. By using a pressure pump, you are supposed to blow the air up so that you have a reservoir that is pressurized. Water will come out of the bite valve minus any sucking. The real advantage of pressurized platters: they permit for plenty of novel uses when working out. Also they are able to keep the tubes more cleanly and free of any bacteria. They also need fewer cleaning sessions. Never the less, if you use sugary drinks in the bladder, you will need to clean the tubes whether it’s a pressurized system or a non-pressurized system. This is because sugar residues need intense flushing, using soap, brush and warm water; to come out.

The Hose Compatibility of the Bladder

Look for release mechanism that is quick and it ought to be vertically oriented. Most of the hydration hoses tend to connect to the bladder using a quick release mechanism, which eases the opening and closing process of the bladder.  Most manufacturers will use similar system which has maximum compatibility; you have the bite valve or hose replaced with models you like. Though you will find some bladders with mechanisms which are oriented horizontally, having a specific attachment. When another model of the hose is plugged in (orientated vertically), it will stick out. Normally on the side of the bladder instead of it sitting up & down in the bladder. This will interfere with the durability of the bladder. Make sure there is maximum compatibility.

 Other factors that were considered were:
Amount of water to take daily

In general its highly recommended that we take  17-25 oz. of water per hour for hydration during endurance activities. The range is dependent on the air temperature and your exertion level. We generally take 18 oz. an hour for most activities (more when it gets hot). Based off this metric, you can determine how much water you should plan to carry (if there are no water sources to fill up).

Winter Season Tips.

When the temperature drops below the freezing point, there are chances that the water inside the bladder will freeze, even at the mouth piece and hydration tube. To avoid this make sure that you blow the water back, then clear the bladder’s’ hose after every sip of water you take. Or better get tubes that are made specifically for the winter season, they cover the hose part with neoprene. This acts as an insulator of the hose, preventing the water from freezing.

More tips about sizing of the hydration bladders.

  • Common Sizing – Most hydration bladders use a similar shape but they all vary a little bit. More important is the size. Almost all bladders come in two-liter and three-liter sizes, and some come in even smaller sizes (1 liter = 33.8 ounces or a little more than a quart). The best one to use is the 3L hydration bladders because compared to 1L and 2L bladders they are about the same price and weight but give you 50 percent more water.
  • Preferred Size – The best one to use is the 3L hydration bladders because compared to 1L and 2L bladders they are about the same price and weight but give you 50 percent more water. Though a larger hydration bladder is perfect, it’s good to check which size is best for you:
    1 Liter (or 1.5L): A great size for minimalists, commuters, or kids. It’s perfect for quick hikes and trail runs, or if you intend on filling up often on the trail (if you’re out for a day or more).2 Liter: The most popular option. This is best for those taking off for a day hike, ski, or snowboard into the back-country. If you’re not a fan of constantly filling up, this is a great option. It provides a sufficient amount of water for most of the day (depending on how thirsty you are!)3 Liter: The most versatile of all sizes. This is perfect for those who don’t plan on filling up or are in need of a lot of water. This size of hydration bladder size gives one option of carrying a lot or a little water.

It is very important that you practice good hygiene, cleaning your reservoir consistently, and caring for it properly after use. Cleaning instructions are as follows:

  • Start with hot (almost boiling) water then add bleach / baking soda (2 tablespoons).  Mix this solution thoroughly inside. Hold the bladder up just above your forehead as you continue applying pressure to the bladder’s  bite valve, make sure the solution runs via the tub also.
  • Allow the bladder’s reservoir and the cleaning mixture soak for roughly 30 minutes
  • Rinse  the reservoir using  hot water together with non-chemical soap. Be certain you’ve cleaned all the bleach before resuming use. You may also take a toothbrush (or other small brush) and gently scrub the interior of the  bladder’s reservoir
  • Once you are sure the bladder’s reservoir is  thoroughly clean, make sure you air dry so that no moisture ends up trapped inside the bladder. Sometimes stuffing clean rags inside can help to this end.

 

FAQ

We have done some extra research, looking into what many other were asking when searching for similar products. As a result, we have put together a few frequently asked questions which might be helpful in your search.

Q. What is a Hydration Bladders and a Water Bladders?

A. Hydration bladders are not the same as  water bladders. Water bladders have a few  similarity to the hydration bladders because both can described as  water containers that are soft sided. Though you can not attach water bladders onto a back pack. They also do not have straw, hence no ease of drinking directly from the bladder. They serve well in camps and boats while hydration is specifically for hiking experiences.

Q. Which size should I get?

A. Most hydration bladders use a similar shape but they all vary a little bit. More important is the size. Almost all bladders come in two-liter and three-liter sizes, and some come in even smaller sizes (1 liter = 33.8 ounces or a little more than a quart). The best one to use is the 3L hydration bladders because compared to 1L and 2L bladders they are about the same price and weight but give you 50 percent more water.

The best one to use is the 3L hydration bladders because compared to 1L and 2L bladders they are about the same price and weight but give you 50 percent more water. Though a larger hydration bladder is perfect, it’s good to check which size is best for you:
1 Liter (or 1.5L): A great size for minimalists, commuters, or kids. It’s perfect for quick hikes and trail runs, or if you intend on filling up often on the trail (if you’re out for a day or more).

2 Liter: The most popular option. This is best for those taking off for a day hike, ski, or snowboard into the back-country. If you’re not a fan of constantly filling up, this is a great option. It provides a sufficient amount of water for most of the day (depending on how thirsty you are!)

3 Liter: The most versatile of all sizes. This is perfect for those who don’t plan on filling up or are in need of a lot of water. This size of hydration bladder size gives one option of carrying a lot or a little water.

Q. How does one clean the  hydration bladder?

A. It is very important that you practice good hygiene, cleaning your reservoir consistently, and caring for it properly after use. Cleaning instructions are as follows:

  • Start with hot (almost boiling) water then add bleach / baking soda (2 table spoons).  Mix this solution thoroughly inside. Hold the bladder up just above your forehead as you continue applying pressure to the bladder’s  bite valve, make sure the solution runs via the tub also.
  • Allow the bladder’s reservoir and the cleaning mixture soak for roughly 30 minutes
  • Rinse  the reservoir using  hot water together with non-chemical soap. Be certain you’ve cleaned all the bleach before resuming use. You may also take a toothbrush (or other small brush) and gently scrub the interior of the  bladder’s reservoir
  • Once you are sure  the bladder’s reservoir is very  clean, make sure you air dry so that no moisture ends up trapped inside the bladder. Sometimes stuffing clean rags inside can help to this end.

 

Q. How often should I clean it?

A. This is a bit down to personal preference (and how much you use it). A few times a year is likely good or even less if you care for it well after use.

Q. How much should you plan to drink daily?

A. In general its highly recommended that we take  17-25 oz. of water per hour for hydration during endurance activities. The range is dependent on the air temperature and your exertion level. We generally take 18 oz. an hour for most activities (more when it gets hot). Based off this metric, you can determine how much water you should plan to carry (if there are no water sources to fill up).

Q. Can I drink other liquids from it besides water?

A. Of course you can, but in our experience strongly flavored drinks will have a lingering effect. If you must drink alcohol from it we highly recommend you get a separate bladder for this. Hints of tequila don’t go down particularly well during a 5k.

Q. How should I store my bladder when it’s not in use?

A. Make sure that it is completely dry, roll it up and stow it in the freezer. This will ensure nothing can grow in it. If you’ve got limited freezer space anywhere dry will do.

Q. Where can i Buy Quality water Bladders?

A. You can purchase quality bladders on any sporting equipment retail store and also in online stores.


Here are some sources we used while conducting our research:

Sources

  1. Running Competitor, How to Properly Clean a Hydration Bladder , Sporting Website,
  2. Bicycling, The Best Ways to Clean a Hydration Pack Bladder, Sporting Website,
  3. Backapacker, Cleaning a Hydration Bladder, Sporting Website,
  4. Seal Grinder Pt, Top 10 Hydration Bladders, Fitness Website,
  5. Basque MTB, Hydration Bladder Reviews: Camelbak, Dakine and Osprey, Sporting Website,
  6. Survival Mastery, Best Hydration Bladder: How To Choose The Right Hydration Unit, Consumer Website,
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