While plastic water bottles are a favorite way to ensure you get enough hydration throughout the day, many have safety concerns about this storage method. Here’s what you need to know about the safety of drinking water stored in single-use and non-disposable plastic.
Although plastic bottles can be washed, the surface still accumulates bacteria over time. That’s because of the moist conditions of a water bottle, which allow these types of germs to thrive. Consider replacing your water bottle after several months of regular use, since repeated washing and drying can cause the structure of the plastic to break down, releasing harmful chemicals.
Many plastic water bottles contain hazardous chemical compounds called BPA and PET. These substances, which are linked to cardiovascular disease and diabetes, can be released from the plastic because of exposure to light, heat, and storage. Never put plastic bottles in the oven or microwave. Look for BPA and PET-free water bottles, or choose a glass or stainless steel variety.
Keep in mind, however, that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved PET plastics for single-use water bottles, noting that they have not been found to release harmful chemicals even in extreme conditions. In fact, the polycarbonate plastic used for disposable water bottles has been a mainstay worldwide for more than 50 years.
Bottled water sold in the U.S. is considered a shelf-stable product, which means it is safe for use up to two years after the purchase date. While food and beverage items are required to carry this two-year expiration date, the FDA does not note an expiration date for bottled water. It is essential, however, to store bottled water at room temperature or cooler and away from household chemicals, gasoline, paint thinner, and cleaning products.
Understand Plastic Packaging
Single-use water bottles and plastic products have a printed code at the bottom that indicates the specific type of plastic. Avoid those with the number 3, which may contain phthalates, 6, which may include styrene, a neurotoxin, and 7 or PC, which may contain BPA. Numbers 2, 4, and 5 are safe for use.
While is it possible to store water in plastic containers, it’s necessary to take the proper steps to ensure that the water is safe to drink later on. To guarantee consistent storage conditions, consider the use of a climate-controlled storage unit. Treasure Island Storage has climate-controlled storage units across New York City for your convenience. Contact us at (347) 454-7455 to learn more.