Real Advice: How To Properly Clean Your Water Bottle

We all use water bottles every day. Taking the time to really clean them is very important to your continued health. A dish washer will get them mostly clean, but every once in a while it’s a good idea to pull the bottle apart and really clean it. Here’s how we recommend cleaning your water bottle.

For this example, we’re using a Polar Insulated Water Bottle (one of our favorites).

We’re starting with what looks like a clean bottle.
It looks fairly clean at first, but there’s mold growing under that nipple.
See the black notches? They’re the key to getting that nipple out in one piece.
Firmly grasp the nipple and give it a good twist.
The notches should slide behind the columns. This will allow the nipple to pull right out.
It’s pretty easy to pull out, actually.
See all of the nastiness? And this bottle has been through the dish washer!
Thoroughly clean out the nipple.
Carefully clean out the bottle lid as well.
Don’t forget to scrub down inside that bottle!

For this example, I’m using scrub brushes from a Camelbak Cleaning System to get all of the gunk out. When you’re done cleaning, pop the nipple back in and enjoy your thoroughly cleaned water bottle!

35 thoughts on “Real Advice: How To Properly Clean Your Water Bottle

  1. Doesn’t seem to work with the Performance branded bottels, the ‘notches’ (actually, they are ‘tabs’) are too darn big.

    On the gripping hand, CamelBak Podium bottle nozzles do come apart, and need to be cleaned periodically.

    1. That’s a bit ironic, criticizing a N.C. company about water use. The Carolinas have more water than they can handle right now, although it’s not drinkable.

      Speaking of which, are your folks okay?

      1. Hi Zed,

        Thanks for asking– most of North Carolina escaped the worst of the storm, and everyone here was fine (if a little wet, and in need of a few good bike cleanings).

  2. I called Polar… They said their water bottles are completely dishwasher safe in the top rack (and a dishwasher will sanitize them too).

    Instead of going through all that, I just run the bottles & lids through the dishwasher each time I use them. It hasn’t effected the longevity of the bottle at all, and you never have any crud (just make sure to let the inside of the bottle air dry before you put the top back on when storing)

    1. Yeah. You did miss the comment about the bottle he was cleaning already having been thruough the dishwasher.

    2. I also clean mine in the dishwasher. I remove the nipples and put them in the utensil rack so the lids get cleaned all the way through.

    1. Hi Mark,

      Not a bad idea for a future article. We’ve had the best results cleaning helmets just using a sink of hot water and a little bit of gentle dish soap or something like Dr. Bronner’s. When you’re done just thoroughly rinse to avoid the straps foaming up when you sweat on your next ride :). The pads you should machine wash (though we recommend putting them in a mesh bag to keep them from getting caught in the washing machine seals).

  3. Try this ? If work for you. Clean ur bottle 1% of bleach . 100ml water / 1 ml bleach. = 1% . Just put 1% then shake more times .. Rinse ! Regular water shake more – change the water 5 to 10 times . Bacteria gone. Then smell it is ok .👍🏻😉

  4. Try using 1 drop of H2O ResQ as an additive to the water fill the Camelbak bottle squeeze in 1 drop pour out through the bite valve… It keeps the slimy biofilms from building up and your waters much safer… Available at,Water Pure,Technologies. Ialso use it in my water bladder… 1 drop per liter of,water and it works!!!

    The company also has a screw on cap and filter for 3 models of camelbak bottles… here’s the info, it’s not on their website, so you’ll need to call them. I listed their website on the blank provided.

    .$9.95 for cap and filter
    $7.95 single filter repacement
    $24.95 (4) pack filters

    Single filter lasts for approximately 3 months

    Now Available

    The replacement H2O ResQ cap and filter, fits all plastic* CamelBak Chute, eddy and Groove vessels.

    The replacement H2O ReQ cap/filter is a great option for when you need to convert your water bottle into a water-filter container.

    Using Nano Electropositive filtration co-developed by NASA for use on Space Exploration Vehicles this converts your existing Camelbak bottles into the most advanced water filtration device on the planet.

    Removes over 99.99% of bacteria, protoza, and viruses, using a patented 3 in 1 filtration media.

    Tested by an EPA Certified Lab
    Exceeds requirements for filtration water purification.

  5. I had a feeling mold was hidden in the caps. Until now, I would soak them bleach every now and then…. I just take all the tops, put them in a large bowl with the valves open, and soak them overnight in a 50/50 bleach water solution. Then thoroughly rinse them out. Been doing this for years and I am still standing. But I like this approach better! :-)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s