Stop Hydration Pack Mold in its Tracks

hydration-bladder-dryerJust when you think all of the useful outdoor gadgets have all been invented, along comes something like the Zerogoo that makes you slap your head and say, “why didn’t I think of that?” Those of us that use hydration systems are always fighting mold and “goo” that seems to love the moist environment. We hang them upside down, we leave the out in the sun, but there’s really no good way to get the things dry.

The Zerogoo is a small electric fan that snaps into the opening of a Camelbak® bladder. Just pop-off the bite valve so the air has an escape path, flip the switch on the Zerogoo, and go get some lunch or unpack the rest of your gear. According to the inventor, Trent Ballentine, it takes about an hour for the Zerogoo to dry a hydration bladder.

camelbak-hawgI’m a huge Camelbak fan and have been using one of their small hydration packs, called a H.A.W.G.®, for about five years. It’s just big enough to pack some snacks for me and kids, or even a lunch. I’m on my second hydration bladder and I’m probably due for another. I’ve got a long cleaning brush for it, but if I procrastinate at all about getting it clean and dry after a weekend in the backcountry, I can count on it being good and grungy the next time I want to use it.

Let me know if you use a hydration pack and I might give a few of these away in June.

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8 thoughts on “Stop Hydration Pack Mold in its Tracks

  1. This gadget is really cool. I so hate molds and its bad effects to my kids, one of my boys got a bad allergy with the toxic mold. Thanks for sharing the video on this.

  2. Ben – I use the coat hanger trick, too. Clean it as best you can with a brush, then fill it with water and add some bleach. Let that soak for awhile and rinse it 3-4 times.

  3. I use the ol’ freezer trick too. Another nice little idea is to take an old wire coat hanger and bend it to make a framework that keeps the bladder from collapsing on itself, keep the cap open and voila, dry bladder. That and it saves room in the freezer. Does anyone have good tips for cleaning out the bladders once the ‘goo’ does get in it? I just wash and use a bottle brush, but always wonder if it’s as clean as it should be…

  4. The freezer! Great idea, although I pretty much “own” the freezer in the garage with all the milk jugs I keep in there for the ice chest. Putting more camping stuff in that freezer might lead to marital problems 🙂

    Hey Michael – sounds like you’re in the same boat I am – dad and water-bearer!

  5. Jim has a great idea to put the bladders in the freezer empty, or with a little water in them. The extreme cold will prevent mold from forming. That is a great tip and one to pass on.

  6. Something that I have always done with my hiking bladders as well as bike water bottles that has kept them mold and funk free… Put them in the freezer empty, or you could even leave some water in them so you can have ice cold water on your next trip… try it out…

    Jim Bradley – Husky Hiker’s last blog post..Weigh-in Week 21

  7. I Love my Camel back water pack. We bought 2 small ones for our ever thirsty kids. They can carry their own water and they are proud to have a backpack on our hikes.

    I have 4 bladders and 2 backpacks. Our old child carrier had a pouch for the bladder. Now i just use a small day pack because the kids can walk.