Home Fit Gear Reviews Fit Gear Review: The Camelbak Groove Filtered Water Bottle

Fit Gear Review: The Camelbak Groove Filtered Water Bottle

by Erika Nicole Kendall

You asked for reviews, so now you’re gettin’ ’em! Let’s see how a weekly Fit Gear Review goes, shall we?

Once upon a time, I wrote this post, and said the following:

The one most wasteful, most useless, most pointless source of trash in the United States… is bottled water.

I can hear you now…

“But… [insert excuse]..”

…no.

[…]

As we focus this week on increasing our water intake, think about it – are you using bottled water to get by? Are you wasting your money (and, at the same time, complaining about the cost of living healthily?) Well, don’t. This is one expense that you could stand to avoid. If you’re in an area that really and truly has horrible water (which, believe it or not, isn’t as common as you’d think), buy the giant gallon jugs and recycle them. Research the brand you’re buying, and make sure that they’re not serving you the same tap water you think you’re escaping.. but those little bottles are wasteful and unnecessary.. seriously.

…which was met with the following:

I’m sorry, but I just can’t get behind the anti-bottled water campaign. You said comparing bottled water to soda wasn’t accurate. But that’s just the choice I have to make. When I go to classes I have to drink something, so I stop by the convenient store or the soda machine in school. There’s bottled sodas, waters, teas, juices. And almost all of them are in… plastic containers!!!

How can you be pro-health and anti-bottled water?! You post stories against people drinking soda but then also tell them they shoudln’t drink bottled water.

….and then, the following question was asked:

What are we supposed to do?

Realistically, someone would’ve had to just take the L. Buy larger bottles so that, hopefully, you’d buy fewer bottles. Or just get acquainted with your local tap. (Considering the brand of bottled water you’re buying, you very well may have been getting acquainted with your tap already.)

Alas, I have a suggestion. Remember the Fitness Magazine event I attended in May? Well, inside the swag bag I received, were Camelbak Groove Filtration Bottles, one insulated and the other one standard. The Mister instantly pounced on the standard bottle, and I went ahead and kept the other for myself.

It’s been a little over a month that I’ve been using it and, I’ve got to tell you, it’s flown seamlessly into my daily routine. I love this thing. Like, I love it. I use it so much that I’m unwilling to dismantle my bottle to take pictures of the pieces for y’all. I’m using it, and dang it, I’m thirsty.

The large white strip inside is where the filter goes. The gray at the top that wraps around the head of the bottle is where the loop for connecting with a carabiner is located. The gray at the very top is the bite valve. And, of course my bottle is pink. Also: I don’t want to hear a word about how messy my desk is.

The Groove, both insulated and standard, is a BPA-free 20oz bottle that comes with a plant-based carbon filter (more on that later) located in the middle of the straw. The bottle comes with a replaceable “bite valve” that can only be activated if it is flipped up, and it takes actual effort to open it. (This is great for people like me, who routinely throw their bottle in their purse of gym bag without thinking.) The “bite valve” opening requires – yep, you guessed it – the user to bite down on it before beginning to suck the water through the straw. As water travels through the straw, it meets the filter which will treat it for excess chlorine as well as any other weird tastes. I’ve used the bottle in three different states now, and every time the water has tasted the same. Because of the size and length of the straw, you don’t have to tip the bottle back in order to drink it all, and the straw works perfectly fine without the filter.

The bottles both share a few similarities. Both the standard and the insulated kinds have these weird painted stripes on the side which are kinda cute, but I suspect they may help a bit with gripping the bottle. The top of the bottles also have these relatively large loops at the top which could connect to a bag using a carabiner or a regular clamp. Really, the only difference between the two is the fact that the insulated bottle has an outer layer – it looks like the original bottle is rapped in an “outer bottle” with about a half-inch worth of space – which will keep the condensation from your water from dripping.

I love this bottle for a few reasons:

1) I don’t have to tilt my head to drink out of it. I have this innate fear of lifting my head when I’m on my bike or my treadmill, and flying right off of it because I’m not paying attention. I refuse to be one of the greatest treadmill falls of all time, and I’m certainly not about embarrass myself in my own neighborhood… or any neighborhood. Shoot.

2) The filters last quite a while. 48 gallons, to be exact. You gallon-a-dayers will be happy to know that the filters go pretty cheaply, in comparison to how many gallons that $10 would get you in bottled water… not to mention the amount of waste involved. Yuck. For a filter – not a purifier – it’s pretty good.

3) The bite valve is durable, yes, but it is also replaceable. So, when my precious little angel chews on my bite valve like it’s a piece of sugar cane while she’s drinking, I can know that she won’t be ruining my entire bottle, just my bite valve.

And 4) having this on hand means that, no matter where I go, the water will always taste the same. Traveling to a new place with different water can absolutely be jarring. And, to help save yourself from the added frustration (light, though it may be), having this on hand is a huge help.

I wish I could find something I disliked about the bottle, but I don’t. Both The Mister and I lost our bottles in our rental car from Philly (insert epic sad faces here) and we went right around the corner and bought replacements. The bottle rocks. If your tap water is tragic and you’d like to avoid bottled water… this can absolutely be your answer.

The average price in stores is somewhere around $25 for the standard bottle and $30 for the insulated one, but of course Amazon has better prices than that. The standard bottle currently sells for around $15-$19, with the insulated going for $26. Bite valves are available there as well for cheaper, as is extra filters. Just in case you wanted to stock up. (And if you’ve got precious little angels, you’ll probably want to make sure you do just that.)

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13 comments

Kaycee June 21, 2012 - 1:28 PM

Not to hijack your post, E, but is there a filter you recommend? I spend most of my time at home, so drink lots and lots of tap water, but want to get a filter.

I luckily have a BPA free bottle and I’m rarely out of the house for much longer than a couple hours, so that holds me over.

Erika Nicole Kendall June 21, 2012 - 2:20 PM

Working on it!

BAnjeeB June 21, 2012 - 2:08 PM

I’ve become quite fond of my brita filtered bottle. I work in DC so drinking the water here is basically like sucking on a pencil (IMO). I’m especially appreciative of it when I don’t have to buy a bottle of water in the airport. It’s not as nice as a Camelback (I love Camelback though), but it is 24 oz. and gets the job done.

Biolobri June 21, 2012 - 3:52 PM

I bought a Camelbak insulated eddy from REI (thank you, Google Offers) a few months back. I LOVE it. Mine is “lavender” – pink internally, blue externally to give a very fun, colorful pink-purple-blue motif that is as fun as I am. Even better than the color, the straw means I drink a LOT more water than when I would just fill my mug at my desk. Plus, when the bite piece stopped staying put, Camelbak replaced the entire cape/straw/bite piece for free, no questions asked.

My ONLY complaint is that I wish the INSULATED bottles held more (mine is only 600mL). They have bigger bottles, but I wanted the insulated one since I play a lot of outdoor sports where my water bottle sits in the sun for hours. Hot water is not refreshing.

Cristy June 22, 2012 - 10:35 PM

I’ve never heard of this filtered bottle, but I’ll have to look into buying one for myself since I prefer drinking filtered water! Thanks for the review.

Krishna June 23, 2012 - 10:05 AM

I have to agree that I love my Camelbak filter. I found the bite valve a little annoying at first but now I love it. I carry mine with me EVERYWHERE. It’s also great for my little boy because he tends to knock things over and there is less spillage.

Laurie June 28, 2012 - 9:56 AM

I didn’t realize this existed. Thank you for the tip!

As a side note I forgot my 32 oz BPA free bottle at home yesterday which I fill up at my work cafeteria twice a day and ask my hubby if I wasn’t grumpy at the idea of having to buy a multitude of little plastic bottles at the caf.

The man is a saint and ran to a store to buy me a gargantuan 50oz plastic water bottle that got me by for the day and I definately didn’t forget my bottle today.

Funny how if a healthy routine is disrupted you really miss it.

Laurie June 28, 2012 - 9:59 AM

Actually I could have filled up a 16 oz bottle over and over but dear lord how time consuming.

Kitana January 8, 2013 - 7:05 PM

Ahh, I’ll have to check this new kind out! I had my own Camelbak bottle (sans filter) and it eventually cracked on me. I totally used to go for bottled water, but really it’s because the water here in Arizona has a really gnarly aftertaste. Maybe I’m spoiled on water after living in MI, but it’s really hard me to drink straight out of the tap here. I just put filtered water in my reusable bottle, but you’re right, buying bottled water is extremely wasteful!

Thanks for the protip!

sydney January 20, 2013 - 10:10 PM

OMG I love, love, love Camelbaks. I received one at a company retreat, lost it, and ended up buying two more to replace it (one for work and one for home). I am going to buy another one and keep it in the car. I don’t have the one with the filter but I love the fact that I can drink them in any position and they don’t leak!!! And the fact that they are BPA free and reasonably easy to clean is another big plus.

christine November 14, 2013 - 1:52 PM

I’m gonna have to check into this..I drink alot of water at work and out of the cooler its like playing Russian roulette with your intestines

milaxx May 25, 2015 - 4:05 PM

Please continue the reviews. I have gotten several useful items from them.

Erika Nicole Kendall May 27, 2015 - 9:31 AM

<3 <3 <3

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