How Often Do I Need to Clean My Reusable Water Bottle?

Metal, Glass or Plastic: How To Clean Any Water Bottle  

While there’s no hard and fast answer to the question of how often to wash your water bottle, most manufacturers agree: Water bottles should be cleaned at least at the end of every day of use. Personally, washing my water bottle isn’t always high on my priority list, but after reading up on the topic, I aim to try harder.

Here’s the scoop on the recommended cleaning methods for various types of bottles. Don’t forget to wash all caps and lids too, paying special attention to nooks and crannies where germs can hide.

  • Stainless steel and aluminum: You might think metal would repel germs, but they can thrive in any moist environment. Since these types of bottles typically have narrow openings, you may want a good bottle brush to reach down inside. Use plenty of water and a little soap and be sure to rinse well.
  • Glass without a sleeve: Easy-peasy, just put it in the dishwasher.
  • Glass with a rubber or silicone sleeve: Wash by hand with soap and warm water. Check around the top of the sleeve for grime and gently remove the sleeve if you can. Most of these types of bottles can also be washed in the dishwasher with the sleeve on.
  • Plastic: These are actually the most likely to harbor germs, so it’s important to wash them with soap and water every day. Remove any lingering odors by allowing them to soak overnight. Rinse well and air dry.
  • Insulated and/or painted bottles: These should be hand-washed.

Got stuck-on grime?

Try putting half a cup of dry rice and warm water in the bottle with a drop of dish soap. Put the lid on and shake!Rice in Water Bottle

Funky bottle smell?

If your bottle starts to smell a little “off,” fill it with hot water and let it sit overnight.

Smelly Water Bottle

Moldy o-ring?

Bottle lids sometimes get a bit of mold on the plastic or rubber gasket. Try submerging it in hot water for an hour and then cleaning it with a scrubby fabric or brush. If the seal leaks or the gasket is cracked or warped, it may be time to replace it. Inexpensive replacement rings are available online.
comment_2Do you clean your water bottle every day? We’d love to hear from you—what have you found that works best? Let us know in the comments below!


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