Source Universal Tap Adapter lets you refill your hydration bladder in your backpack
By C.C. Weiss
March 23, 2012
Filling up your hydration pack just got a little easier ... not that it necessarily needed to. The Source Universal Tap Adapter is a simple attachment that lets you refill your hydration reservoir through the drink tube rather than the opening in back. You can fill up on the go without ever taking your pack off.
The UTA is basically a valve designed to fit all kinds of taps and water bottles. The system comes with a compatible drinking tube designed to replace the stock tube on your bladder and work with the UTA valve. The tube appears to be built specifically for Source bladders and may not work with other models.
When you need a refill, simply pop the bite valve off the drinking tube with the quick release button, affix one end of the UTA to your water source and click the other end into place on your hose. The adapter expands when your reservoir is full to let you know you're good to go.
If you're refilling from a sink, the pressure from the tap will fill the bladder. When using a bottle, you simple hold the bottle higher than the bladder, so that the water is fed via gravity. Source says a 1.5 liter (50.7 fl oz) bottle will drain into the bladder in about 50 seconds.
If you're carrying a lightweight hydration pack with little more than a bladder and a snack inside, you probably won't gain much benefit from the UTA. On the other hand, if your bladder is buried in a large, multi-day pack filled with supplies, being able to refill it without taking it off could be a big bonus, although maybe not as "groundbreaking" as Source tries to sell it.
The adapter only weighs 17 grams (0.6 oz), so it's a pretty negligible addition to your backpack or pocket. It sells for US$35, which seems a bit steep for something so niche and simple, but it's out there if you have a need for it.
The video below gives a quick demonstration.