Why Is My Plastic Water Bottle Getting Cloudy (And How to Fix It!)

If you’ve been using reusable plastic water bottle for a long time, you’ve probably noticed that they can sometimes get cloudy. This is usually annoying or even alarming.

So to help you out, we have decided to discuss this phenomenon in today’s post.

Why is my plastic water bottle cloudy?

There are 4 main things that could be making your plastic water bottle cloudy. These are:

1. Minerals

If you regularly use your reusable bottle to store water, the minerals in it can settle on the bottle’s surface, making it look cloudy. Your bottle may even end up looking white.

2. Heat/chemicals

Regularly exposing your plastic bottle to heat can make it soft and disrupt the arrangement of its molecules, making it look cloudy. Because of this, it’s advisable not to clean your plastic bottle with hot water – even when you use a dishwasher, avoid high-temperature settings. If cold water isn’t getting the work done, opt for warm water.

Also, don’t use your plastic bottle or any other plastic container in the microwave.

Apart from high temperatures, chemicals can also make your plastic bottle cloudy. Even some common chemicals like sodium laureth sulfate (SLES) that are present in normal washing liquid can put stress on your plastic and change it.

As such, it’s advisable to use washing liquids that don’t have this chemical. If possible, always opt for plant-based cleaners.

3. Scratches

When your plastic bottle gets a lot of scratches on its inside and/or its outside, it can start looking cloudy.

4. Proteins and fat

If you regularly store milk or other fatty protein-dense liquids in your plastic bottle, their molecules can stick to its surface. So if you don’t clean the bottle thoroughly after using it this way, it can easily end up looking cloudy.

Is it safe to drink from a cloudy water bottle?

If the cloudiness is caused by minerals, it’s safe to use the water bottle – if not, it’s not. After all, the other causes of cloudiness can cause issues. For instance, proteins and fats stuck on the bottle can contaminate any future water or beverage you hold in the bottle.

On the other hand, scratches on the inside of the bottle can trap dirt and bacteria that can then migrate to your beverage and end up in your digestive tract.

How do you remove cloudiness from a plastic water bottle?

The best way to remove cloudiness from your plastic water bottle is to use ice cubes and salt. Just fill your bottle halfway with ice cubes, add a ¼ cup of salt to it, and shake the bottle so that the mixture swirls around.

Repeat this process until your bottle is clear. If this doesn’t work, the bottle has scratches and heat/chemical damage that is beyond help. At this point, you’re better off just tossing it out.

Take care of your plastic water bottle

Ultimately, it’s better to keep your plastic bottle from getting cloudy than to remove the cloudiness afterward. So ensure you wash it thoroughly and protect it from heat, chemicals, and abrasive materials.

And if you can switch from tap water to filtered water as well.

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