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How Often Should I Clean My Reusable Water Bottle?

I used to have a coworker who was “That Guy”—the one who never washed his coffee cup. Oh, he thought he was cleaning it—at the end of every day he’d rinse it under the tap and leave it to air dry, but that’s like washing your hands without soap. At best, you give yourself the illusion of cleanliness.

three water bottles

This quick rinse and overnight dry always bugged me, which is why I was a little surprised to find myself doing the same thing with my glass water bottle. I’d give it a quick rinse or simply pour any remaining water down the drain, and then leave it for the night. After all, I’m just drinking water from it. Water’s hardly a breeding ground for microscopic nasties, right?

Well actually, water is a perfect breeding ground for microbial life—waterborne critters abound, and an unwashed water bottle, even one that’s regularly rinsed, can quickly become a health risk. What I was doing was no different than my coffee-swigging coworker’s unhygienic habits. I was That Guy, and I didn’t want to be.

Fortunately, glass water bottles are pretty easy to clean. At the end of every day I still rinse my bottle, only now I use hot, soapy water and a bottle brush to reach the inside. I pay special attention to the ridges on the lid, which are easy to overlook. I then let the bottle air dry overnight.

At the end of every workweek, I take the bottle home for some extra TLC. Pelican Glass Water Table Bottles are dishwasher-safe, so I run it through the dishwasher with regular dishwashing detergent and let it air-dry overnight. If your bottle isn’t dishwasher safe, you can rinse it once a week with a soapy water solution and give a thorough brush. Rinse again with clear water after the soap rinse and let it air dry.


Pelican Combo System Salt-Free Water Softener Whole-House Water Filter