Expanded FAQ for CamelBak Relay™

Use and Care of the CamelBak Relay Filter Pitcher

Do I need to clean the pitcher before first use?
Before first use, we recommend that you disassemble all CamelBak Relay components, except the filter, and wash them with warm water and soap. The filter should be pre-rinsed according to the instruction in the user guide. Never wash the filter with soap.

Is CamelBak Relay dishwasher safe?
All components of the CamelBak Relay are dishwasher safe, excluding the carbon filter.

How do I clean CamelBak Relay?
The Relay system can be washed by hand or in a dishwasher. If you use a dishwasher, use the top rack of the dishwasher and avoid high-heat settings like “sanitary clean” or “heat boost” which may distort plastic components. Never wash the filter with soap or place in a dishwasher.

Do I need to clean the Fresh Filter?
Other than the initial pre-rinse before first use, the filter does not require cleaning. If desired, you may rinse the filter with cool clean water.

What if I accidentally washed my Fresh Filter in the dishwasher?
If you accidentally wash your Fresh Filter in the dishwasher, we recommend that you discard it and place a new Fresh Filter in your system.

I ran the Relay pitcher through the dishwasher and now the latches are too tight (or too loose).
The heat of the dishwasher cycle can affect the stiffness of the latches, and this is normal. The flexible gasket material provides reliable sealing while allowing for variation in latch tightness.

If you are having trouble opening tight latches, it helps to place a finger under the corner of the latch to open it.

A component in my pitcher is broken or doesn’t work. Can I get a replacement?
Relay is covered by our Got Your Bak™ Lifetime Guarantee. Contact our warranty department at for assistance. If you just need to replace your filter, these can be purchased at, Target and other participating retailers. At you also have the opportunity to purchase a filter subscription. Fresh™ filters will be delivered right to your door on an interval that you choose, so you'll always have fresh, great tasting water.

Can the Relay pitcher be stored in the refrigerator? How about the counter?
Absolutely. The compact design of the Fresh Filter means Relay is smaller overall than competing 10-cup pitchers (without giving up any water volume), so Relay fits in more places in your fridge.

Can I put fruit (lemon slices, etc), drink mixes, etc in my pitcher?
CamelBak Relay is designed and intended for use with water only. Anything other than water in the basin will pass through the outlet filter as it pours, taking away the flavor and potentially reducing the life of the outlet filter. Anything you want added to the water should be put into the glass or bottle that you’re pouring filter water into.

Is the CamelBak Relay microwave safe?
Do NOT microwave your CamelBak Relay. The lid contains a magnet that is not microwave safe.

It seems like I need to tip the Relay pitcher more steeply than other pitchers in order to pour the water. Is this OK?
This is normal. In the two-stage filter process, water passes through the outlet filter when pouring. Tipping the pitcher helps flow the water through this filter, and the locking lid and gasket keep the system securely sealed during pouring. In fact you may find that steeply tipping the pitcher is more comfortable and ergonomic than a “shallow” tip.

Why does the Relay™ basin have notches on the lip of the basin behind the latches? Sometimes drops of water leak from the notches. Is this normal?
Because Relay is so fast the air in the basin needs somewhere to escape as the pitcher fills up with water. The notches on either side of the handle are designed to allow air to escape as the filtered water fills the basin or exits during pouring. The latching lid and gasket keep the system sealed against major spills. The vents allow air pressure to equalize during filling or pouring to achieve maximum filter speed.

In certain circumstances, especially when the pitcher is full, a small amount of filtered water can escape through the notches as the pitcher is moved. To prevent this from happening keep the pitcher level when not pouring, and avoid sudden movements that would cause water to slosh inside the basin.

Why are there two marks on the side of the pitcher by the handle?
These marks help with filling the pitcher. The upper line shows the full 10 cup capacity of the pitcher. The lower line is a guide to help avoid overfilling (which could lead to spills from the notches). When filling the basin, shut off the faucet when the water level reaches the lower line; this will allow water that is still running through the filter to reach the basin. See the user guide for additional explanation on how to use the fill line marking.

Performance Certification

What testing has been done on Relay pitcher?
Relay has been tested by an independent third-party laboratory against NSF/ANSI Standard 42 for the reduction of chlorine, taste, and odor. For use with potable tap water only.

Test results indicated the Relay filter removed 97% of chlorine from incoming water for at least 80 gallons of water (on average 4 months’ use at one full pitcher per day).

What does my CamelBak Relay Water Filtration Pitcher filter out of the water?
CamelBak Relay reduces Chlorine, Taste and Odor. Chlorine is the most common cause of objectionable taste in tap water.

What is NSF and why does CamelBak Relay mention NSF testing?
NSF is an internationally recognized, independent testing agency. NSF sets global standards for water filtration systems and other household products. CamelBak has tested Relay according to NSF standard 42 to help ensure the performance and capability of the product.

What does NSF Standard 42 cover? How does Relay perform?
The Relay pitcher and filter was measured against NSF Standard 42, which is used to test filters for removal of chlorine from tap water and to determine filter life. The NSF standard uses a specially prepared water sample with a high concentration of chlorine. The test standard requires a minimum of 50% removal of chlorine over the stated life of the filter.

Relay was tested by a leading independent test laboratory and test results showed greater than 97% chlorine removal, and a filter life of 80 gallons. The 97% removal far exceeds the NSF standard, and the 80 gallon filter life is double the life of major competitors in the market.

How often should I replace the Fresh Filter?
Each Fresh Filter reliably reduces contaminants for 80 gallons, or about 128 refills of the 10-cup pitcher. This works out to 4 months’ use at one full pitcher per day. Note: You may need to change the filter more or less often depending on the amount of water you consume. At you have the opportunity to purchase a filter subscription. Fresh™ filters will be delivered right to your door on an interval that you choose, so you'll always have fresh, great tasting water.

The Fresh Filter

How does the Relay Fresh™ Filter work?
Relay™ filters water at the speed of the faucet and turns it into great-tasting water with innovative Double Filter Technology. The activated carbon Fresh™ Filter effectively removes chlorine, taste and odor as you fill and again as you pour. This unique two-step filter is fast, allowing you to filter water at the speed of your faucet. No more waiting for great-tasting water.

Why does the Relay Fresh Filter have two filter sections?
The filter uses pleated filter material in a two-part filter format, which is key to providing fast and effective filtration. The inlet filter is designed for maximum flow rate so you can fill the pitcher quickly. The outlet filter provides a final filtration step as you pour out to deliver freshly filtered water with every pour.

Why do I need to rinse a new Fresh Filter under running tap water before using it?
Rinsing the Fresh Filter removes any loose particles of carbon and wets the microscopic pores in the filter material to ensure optimum performance. The filter will achieve maximum speed after the first few uses of the pitcher.

Why does the filter run a little more slowly when it is new?
The carbon pleated filter material needs to be fully wetted to provide the fastest flow and best filter performance. The microscopic pores of the media need time to become fully wetted. You may experience slower flow during the first few uses but after a day or two you will achieve the maximum water flow through the filter.

Other pitchers on the market say that the filter needs to be slow to provide good filtration. How do I know the Fresh filter is doing its job?
Some filters achieve efficacy by slowly passing water through a small filter. The pleated media technology in the Relay Fresh Filter achieves a high flow rate without compromising chlorine removal efficacy. But don’t just take our word for it. An internationally recognized independent testing agency conducted rigorous testing to prove that the Relay Fresh Filter achieves the removal efficacy over the rated life of the filter.

My filter dried out and isn’t flowing as fast.
This can happen if the filter is allowed to become completely dry. Simply rinse the filter for 15 seconds on both the inlet and outlet media and reassemble the pitcher. By the next day the filter will be flowing at or near full speed.

Can I use CamelBak Relay to purify my water?
No. The Fresh Filter contained in your CamelBak Relay does not remove microscopic pathogens that may be contained in untreated water. Only use CamelBak Relay with potable tap water.

I have hard water. Will the Relay eliminate mineral hardness from my water?
The Relay Fresh Filter is designed to significantly reduce chlorine in the water. The carbon filtration is not active against minerals that cause water hardness. Hardness also will not impact the performance of the filter.

Does the Relay remove fluoride from my water?
The Relay Fresh Filter does not affect fluoride in water.

What is the Fresh Filter made from?
Like most filters in water pitchers, the Relay Fresh Filter uses activated carbon to absorb and reduce contaminants in the water. CamelBak Relay is unique in that it uses a pleated filter material to provide a larger surface area than other filter types. This helps provide faster water flow without compromising effectiveness, and also longer filter life overall.

Can my CamelBak Relay be used without the Fresh Filter?
Yes. The CamelBak Relay can be used without the Fresh Filter as a water carafe. However, without the Fresh Filter, it will not treat your water.

What happens if I do not change my filter regularly, as suggested?
The filter absorbs contaminants from the water. Over time, it becomes saturated and isn’t able to absorb as many contaminants. If used past the effective life (an average of 4 months of use at 1 full pitcher per day), the filter will remove contaminants less effectively. Changing the filter regularly ensures that you always have refreshing, great-tasting water.

How do I use the dial reminder on the lid?
The filter reminder dial shows a four-month period to help you remember when to replace the filter. When you insert a new filter, set the dial so the pointer indicates the current month. The indicator shows the four-month use period. At the end of four months, you may replace the filter. You can also visit to sign up for a customized filter replacement reminder. At you have the opportunity to purchase a filter subscription. Fresh™ filters will be delivered right to your door on an interval that you choose, so you'll always have fresh, great tasting water.

Since the filter is wet all the time, should I be worried about bacteria growing in it?
No. The filter contains an antimicrobial agent to protect the filter media.

How do I dispose of used filters?
Fresh Filters can be disposed of in household trash. The Fresh Filter is not meant to be placed in curbside recycling or compost.

CamelBak Relay Materials

Is the CamelBak Relay BPA free?
Yes, all components of the CamelBak Relay are BPA free.

What are the pitcher, lid and filter made from?
All CamelBak products are constructed with materials carefully selected for their safety, durability, and ease of use. All materials are BPA-free, phthalate-free and safe for use in a hydration pitcher.

The CamelBak Relay basin is made from Tritan™ plastic. Tritan is a copolyester polymer made by the Eastman Company. Tritan makes CamelBak Relay vibrant, clear, durable, dishwasher-safe and 100% BPA-free and phthalate-free.

The CamelBak Relay lid is an assembly of plastic materials made primarily from food-grade polypropylene selected for exceptional durability and safety. The gasket is made from a food-safe elastomeric material.

The CamelBak Relay Fresh Filer is made of a plant based activated carbon. This carbon is imbedded into a non-woven fabric and then pleated to before installation into the filter tray. The filter tray is made of the same material as the lid, food grade polypropylene.

Is Tritan™ plastic safe? What type of safety testing has been done on Tritan?
CamelBak, in conjunction with rigorous 3rd party testing, has not found evidence of any harmful chemicals leaching into food/beverage surfaces from Tritan material. Recent testing showed that Tritan is safe and meets all FDA and EPA guidelines for material that comes in repeated contact with food.

Are there any phthalates in Relay?
Phthalates are a component added to some plastics to make them soft and pliable. CamelBak Relay is not made with any of the phthalates that are of high concern.


  • Use with potable tap water only. Do not add fruit, juice or substances other than water.
  • Do not fill the pitcher with hot water.
  • All components of the pitcher other than the filter may be washed in soap and water or in the dishwasher. Use the top rack of the dishwasher if possible and use normal heat settings only.
  • The lid of the pitcher contains small parts that may pose a choking risk for young children.