Keep your kids healthy this year with expert tips on how to clean a water bottle!
Sport and water bottles are important back-to-school supplies, especially as we continue to battle COVID-19. Water bottles help keep children hydrated so they can think better and learn faster. But if a bottle isn’t properly cleaned after each use, it can harbor nasty germs that could make your child sick.
Adults also face health risks from dirty water bottles. When was the last time you thoroughly cleaned the one on your desk, in your car or in your gym bag? Rinsing it periodically with plain water doesn’t eliminate bacteria.
How to clean a water bottle
To get the facts on how to clean a water bottle I asked the experts at the Family and Consumer Sciences division of the Ohio State University Extension Office. Extension Educator Kate Shumaker said the best way to wash/clean a plastic water bottle will depend on the bottle itself.
“If it is top-rack dishwasher safe, then the high water temperature and heat drying of a dishwasher can be beneficial,” Shumaker said.
If your water bottle is not top-rack dishwasher safe, Shumaker recommends these steps after each use:
- Handwash it with hot water and dish detergent.
- Remove any parts of the bottle that can be taken apart.
- Use a scrub brush or dishcloth to clean the outside of the bottle.
- Use a small bottle brush to clean the inside of the bottle, as well as any straws or drinking spouts.
Sanitize that smelly water bottle
If your water bottle develops a funny odor or the liquid you drink from it has an odd taste, it might be time to sanitize it, Shumaker advised.
- Fill the bottle with one part vinegar to five parts water.
- Let the mixture sit in the bottle overnight.
- Rinse well.
Shumaker said it’s very important to let water bottles dry properly after cleaning.
“Even though this is a ‘water’ bottle, trapped moisture can be the enemy here,” she said. “Wash and allow the bottle to completely air dry between uses. Do not put the bottle away or re-assemble it when it’s wet.”
The majority of our customers at Totally Promotional order personalized water bottles with their logo or message for different occasions. We prefer they handwash these bottles instead of placing them in a dishwasher to keep the custom designs looking their best. We also do not advise using boiling water to clean most plastic bottles to avoid melting and/or other damage.
Clean. Drink. Succeed
Hydration is key to good health but not if you’re drinking from a dirty water bottle. Follow these easy suggestions and kick off a great school year for you and your child!
For more tips on staying safe and healthy this school year, visit the Centers for Disease, Control & Prevention (CDC) website.
This blog was originally published Aug. 3, 2018, and updated on July 28, 2020.