Marks Daily Apple
Serving up health and fitness insights (daily, of course) with a side of irreverence.
26 Feb

How to Choose a Safe Water Bottle

WaterBottleFaceOffI’ve made my stance on bottled water quite clear before, but I’ll go ahead and reiterate: bottled water is a joke. It’s completely unnecessary, unless you’re in a nation with unsafe water quality, and the plastic bottles make for excellent landfill fodder. You could reuse the bottles, but then you’ve gotta worry about the plastic leaching into your water, especially the more you refill and reuse them (and don’t ever stick ‘em in the dishwasher). Poor taste is one thing – I can’t expect a person to happily drink tap water that tastes terrible – but tap is perfectly safe to drink, especially if used with a simple filter. And if it weren’t, most bottled water wouldn’t be any better, since it’s often just repackaged tap (check the label or cap – if it says “from a municipal source” or “from a community water system” or anything along similar lines, it’s tap water). Sparkling water in glass bottles is justifiable (tap isn’t bubbly, after all, although you could make it so at home, and the glass bottles are definitely reusable (I like filling them with homemade salad dressings).

But if you’re just after fresh drinking water, the tap will be fine. You can buy a filter if you like – I do, myself – or you could locate a nearby freshwater spring, if tap isn’t cutting it. The best water I’ve ever tasted came from a campsite faucet in Lake Tahoe. You could taste the minerals; it was like drinking from a fresh water stream before it got dangerous. I swear, if it didn’t mean a eight-hour drive each way, I’d get all my water from that tap. Oh well. I’m getting off topic. Just don’t buy crate after crate of water in plastic bottles is the essential gist of my spiel.

Still, bottled water is undeniably convenient, which is why it’s probably so popular (along with unfounded fears regarding tap water safety). I can’t ignore the convenience factor. I like it myself. Most people just reuse their old plastic bottles, those simple, unassuming polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles. It’s an environmentally friendly gesture, but it’s one that may promote health issues, including the leaching of DEHP – a potent carcinogen – with repeated use. And, of course, there’s always our old friend, Bisphenol A, to contend with when plastics are involved. He turns up in the darndest of places, but that doesn’t mean you should simply throw in the towel. Avoid those old plastic bottles. Then there are the glass bottles. Safe? Yeah, but they’re also heavy and fragile – not the ideal water vessel for active individuals like our readers.

A better option is to go with a permanent water bottle expressly designed for the purpose. There are dozens on the market, but it usually comes down to a standoff between bottles made of polycarbonate plastics, aluminum, and stainless steel. Let’s see if we can find a clear winner.

Polycarbonate bottles

PlasticWaterBottle

These are the “safe” plastic bottles; the permanent ones. They’re incredibly durable, and they exude an air of impermeability. They don’t wither under heat, like the PET bottles, and they maintain their shape. Plus, they often come in neat colors and attractive mesh shoulder slings. All the cool kids are using them, but should you?

I’d stay away. Polycarbonates have been proven to leach BPA into drinking water. There are no good reasons to take any chances considering the reams of animal data showing definitive deleterious effects outlined in the last BPA post.

But what about “BPA-free” plastic water bottles? Despite BPA-free claims I remain skeptical of plastic water bottles. With misinformation and the unregulated state of bioaccumulating pollutants, for my money there are much safer options.

Aluminum bottles

AluminumWaterBottle

Aluminum is a solid choice. They’re pretty durable and very light, but they’re also expensive. Aluminum water bottles have become pretty damn trendy, if that weighs on your decision at all. Sure, trendiness can be annoying and all, but at least it shows people are becoming more aware of the folly of buying several plastic bottles of water a day – and that’s always a good thing. Is aluminum the way to go?

I hesitate to give my unequivocal affirmation. While the newest (post 2009) aluminum water bottle models from Sigg are claiming to be free of BPA, all their earlier stuff has it in the interior lining. So, the most recent Sigg bottles are probably safe, but as for the bottles from other, less reputable companies? I wouldn’t take a chance. Sigg is the biggest name in the aluminum water bottle game, and if they’re only just now ditching the BPA (a move momentous enough for the president to turn into a public statement) in their bottles, I’d be careful about buying aluminum bottles from other companies. And definitely avoid filling an aluminum bottle with acidic liquid (not that PB folks are big lemonade drinkers or anything), which can cause the aluminum itself to leach.

Stainless Steel bottles

stainlesssteelwaterbottle

Stainless steel wins, in my book. Sure, it’s a bit heavier, but it’s a proven material, and it won’t leach (and if it could, you’d have pure steel running through your veins – a net win, if you ask me). If you’re attacked by a mountain lion, your stainless steel water bottle becomes a dangerous weapon. You can fell the vicious beast, wipe the blood off, then immediately take a sip of refreshing water. You think polycarbonate and aluminum bottles could do that? Please. Wild animals in this country have (sadly) seen more than enough used condoms and faded cans of Budweiser to last them a lifetime. They’d laugh at your plastics and pseudo-metals (who ever heard of a metal that a ten year-old boy could crush underfoot?). If you tried to face down a big wild cat with a polycarbonate bottle, you’d better hope that feral felines are highly sensitive to trace amounts of BPA.

Seriously, though, stainless steel is the best choice, followed closely by reputable aluminum bottles. With steel, you don’t have to worry about weird chemicals, nor do you have to spend a ton of cash to keep up with a trend, making it the clear choice for anyone interested in a durable, reliable permanent water bottle. Kleen Kanteen appears to be a trusted manufacturer.

What do you use to transport your H20? Is there anything I’ve overlooked? Any additional safety concerns? Share your infinite wisdom in the comment board!

You want comments? We got comments:

Imagine you’re George Clooney. Take a moment to admire your grooming and wit. Okay, now imagine someone walks up to you and asks, “What’s your name?” You say, “I’m George Clooney.” Or maybe you say, “I’m the Clooninator!” You don’t say “I’m George of George Clooney Sells Movies Blog” and you certainly don’t say, “I’m Clooney Weight Loss Plan”. So while spam is technically meat, it ain’t anywhere near Primal. Please nickname yourself something your friends would call you.

  1. Woot: This post is making me firsty! Just started using a stainless steel travel mug this AM for my coffee. How timely!

    brian7972 wrote on February 26th, 2010
  2. Love my stainless steel water bottles- yeah, they dent occasionally if you are klutzy like me, but I think that just lends a certain street cred.

    I have a stainless steel thermos for hot beverages too. It keeps things hot for about 24 hours,and stays on heavy rotation in the wintertime.

    Crazy Diamond wrote on February 26th, 2010
    • Stainless steel water bottles are super unsafe. Do a search on Google for “stainless steel water bottles recalled” .

      Read this before you take another sip -

      http://canarypapers.wordpress.com/2010/04/16/digging-to-china-and-back-the-search-for-a-good-water-bottle/#comment-2412

      Aqua wrote on December 7th, 2012
      • You sir, are a moron.

        I followed your directions. Did a Google search for “stainless steel water bottles recalled.” Reading the first several pages, I found only that it was revealed that some aluminum water bottles contained BPA in the past. Also found a warning about toddler’s tongues getting stuck in stainless steel bottles.

        Then I went to your little link…in which the author said that he would not buy stainless steel bottles because they are made in China, and he did not like that.

        SO…”super unsafe?”. I think not. Just hope other people who read this can disregard your comment.

        Charles D. Greenstein wrote on January 2nd, 2014
  3. Those are good reasons, but for some people the only one that will matter is the one they’re too oblivious to think of: bottled water is several dollars per gallon (at least). Even with a filter tap water comes out to only 10-20 cents per gallon. Seems pretty obvious to me.

    Unfortunately I’m not a fan or the screw-on caps on most metal bottles (nor the straw or squeeze tops on most plastic bottles now). Luckily I have some old PP/5 (Polypropylene) bottles with flippy/clicky tops – they are supposed to be BPA-free.

    John wrote on February 26th, 2010
    • John,

      I know that Klean Kanteen makes sport (flippy/clicky) lids that fit their bottles. I have this combination. It is another appendage in my life.

      Madtastic wrote on March 3rd, 2010
  4. I have been using a BPA coffee mug and when im done with my coffee, i wash it out and fill it with water. But now Im going to have to invest in a stainless steel waterbottle!! :)

    Athena wrote on February 26th, 2010
  5. lol. Loved the part about wild animals laughing at our plastic/aluminum water bottles. If a mountain lion was attacking i find a rock or stick, not my water bottle. But still. Very fun read.

    Paul Von Tersch wrote on February 26th, 2010
    • Haha I was thinking the same thing. I am guessing it was a joke, love the sense of humor Mike.

      I have been wanting to buy a water bottle for a while now but never knew which one to buy. I ran in a 5K run 1 week ago and received a free plastic water bottle. I think its time to buy a stainless steel one!

      Todd wrote on February 26th, 2010
      • Some stainless steel ones have a plastic coating. Or at least they have something in them that you can taste, I don’t know what.

        Henry Miller wrote on February 26th, 2010
  6. Hey Mark, I just started following your blog a few weeks ago and I love how much I’m learning from you. I’m currently training for the Madison Ironman (my first one) and I’m reevaluating my food intake. I LOVED your post yesterday…so informative!

    As for water bottles, I’ve been struggling with this topic for awhile now. I want to be “green” and drink safe water. At this point, I use the Ice Mountain sport bottles. I will use one and refill it for a day or so and then recycle it. I like these bottles because I can squoosh (sp?) it and the water is easy to swallow. I find the metal containters too difficult to drink out of – especially when I’m running. I’m afraid I’ll chip a tooth or something. Any suggestions??

    Jen wrote on February 26th, 2010
    • The correct spelling would be squish :)

      Thomas wrote on January 29th, 2014
  7. I have a stainless steel bottle that gives my water a metallic taste… it makes me a bit wary of it.

    Stephan wrote on February 26th, 2010
  8. I’ll stick with reusing plastic bottles, assuming I refill the bottle fewer than 3,400 times a day I should be in the clear.

    rob wrote on February 26th, 2010
  9. Sigg bottles have been around forever, and that’s what we use primarily. They’ve been great!

    John Sifferman wrote on February 26th, 2010
  10. Are water filters really necessary? I don’t even know exactly what they’re filtering, and whether they’re taking out too many good minerals along with the supposed bad stuff they’re removing. Already we know they are engineered to leave the flouride in which is a dubious benefit so … I am 50/50 on filtering the water I get in my house. Anyone have thoughts on that?

    Matt wrote on February 26th, 2010
    • I personally filter my water to avoid the chlorine. Whether or not this is a solid benefit I’m not totally sure, but I do know my water tastes better when it’s been filtered.

      Elizabeth wrote on February 28th, 2010
  11. Do some reading on fluoride in our tap water and how it got there. The bottom line is that fluoride is a flat our poison, and areas that have banned it (like most of Europe has caught on) have no more tooth decay that other areas.
    For that reason I have a whole house filter to get rid of that poison. There’s a reason why toothpaste tubes say to call poison control if you ingest it. Then there’s chlorine and other junk. I don’t buy bottled, but mine is filtered before it ever enters the house .

    Dave, RN wrote on February 26th, 2010
    • Fluoride in drinking water goes back hundreds of years….naturally. It’s in the well water of Florida. That’s how “they” found out fluoride lowers the incidence of cavities. By huge amounts, I might add.

      I can’t speak to if Europe has banned Flouride in drinking water or not, but most people use fluoride toothpaste!

      Fluoride is not a problem….unless you are a dentist.

      OnTheBayou wrote on February 27th, 2010
      • yeah but natural fluoride(green tea etc.) is completely different than the silicoflurides artificially added to drinking water. The junk they put in water has been proven to cause bone cancer, thyroid dysfunction, and dental fluorosis.

        Silicofluorides (SiFs) are a group of Fluorides produced as a by-product during the manufacture of phosphate fertilizers. Approximately 90% of the Water supply in the USA is fluoridated with Silicofluorides. Types of Silicofluorides include:

        - Disodium Hexafluorosilicate (Na2SiF6) (also known as Sodium Fluorosilicate; Sodium Silicofluoride)

        - Hexafluorosilicic Acid (H2SiF6) (also known as Hydrofluorosilicic Acid; Fluorosilicic Acid)

        Sodium Fluoride (NaF) consists of 28% Fluoride + 72% Sodium. It is a by-product of Aluminium refining that never occurs in nature.

        Sodium Fluoride is very easily absorbed by the body but excessive intake is toxic. This form of Fluoride is an active constituent of some commercial brands of Toothpaste and is the form of Fluoride that is added to the Water supply in some countries. Approximately 10% of the Water supply in the USA is fluoridated with Sodium Fluoride.

        kev wrote on February 28th, 2010
        • Please stop fearmongering. As OnTheBayou mentioned, fluoride ions exist naturally in water everywhere. They have the proven benefit of strengthening tooth enamel and reducing tooth decay. Fluoride ions (F-) accomplish this by replacing hydroxide ions (OH-) in the major component of tooth enamel, hydroxyapatite Ca5(PO4)3OH to produce fluoroapatite Ca5(PO4)3F. Fluoroapatite is a naturally occurring mineral that is stronger than hydroxyapatite.

          The fluoride found in green tea and the original fluorine containing compound used to fluoridate drinking water may have different chemical compositions, but as soon as they dissolve in water, the fluoride ions that they produce are chemically identical.

          Could you provide some evidence to back up the claim that “The junk they put in water has been proven to cause bone cancer, thyroid dysfunction, and dental fluorosis.”?

          Anyone who wants to find more information on the subject should take a look at the wikipedia entry which is full of citations that should clear up any confusion you may have: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Water_fluoridation

          Sam wrote on March 3rd, 2010
        • My personal proof that fluoride is dangerous includes: 1) the fluoridosis of my teeth resulting from drinking fluoridated tap water growing up (and I started having root canals when I was 7 despite good hygiene…) 2) severe brain fog after drinking it 3) I have to sleep several more hours/night when I drink it 4) I’ve suffered from severe cystic acne for over 20 years (starting before puberty), and just recently found that it completely goes away if I avoid grain and fluoride. If I drink even natural fluoride in spring water I break out in near boils on my chin. I have to avoid it not only in water but in teas, broths (animal bones), juices, etc. 5) I only stopped getting cavities and root canals once I stopped consuming fluoride.

          Hayyah wrote on October 29th, 2011
  12. I have a filter on my fridge and ice machine (pure source 2) and a plastic BPA free 28 oz bottle. Love it…

    arthurb999 wrote on February 26th, 2010
  13. I didn’t see your comment, Matt. You can get filters to get rid of fluoride. Do a web search. My whole house one was pretty expensive, but since I had the money I though it worth it. And it’s not just that it has “dubious benefit” it’s that is a toxic waste product of the aluminum industry. It’s a fascinating story of politics how it ended up in our water. Fluoride is VERY bad stuff.

    Dave, RN wrote on February 26th, 2010
    • My town actually does not put flouride in the water. I’m just wondering if my un-filtered water is a bad idea, or a passable idea. I find it hard to believe that a run-of-the-mill fridge or Brita filter would take out more bad than good.

      Matt wrote on February 26th, 2010
      • It’s hard to avoid consuming it in large doses when the water supply spread it to our foods — it’s in tea leaves (some is natural but some is absorbed from the water), animal bones (and therefore bouillion/broths), commercial juices, foods processed with water, and much of what is sprayed on non-organic produce. Some people like me have bad reactions to even small amounts of fluoride and others are allergic to it (reports say allergies are rare but I know several people with them). Levels in water are high enough that with all these other fluoridated foods entering our system, it’s at toxic levels. Mild to moderate dental fluorosis is very common and even that much is too much as it shows the bones have also been damaged. Whoever supports water fluoridation is a tool or is selfish because such people don’t think of what those who can’t drink it are supposed to do – avoid restaurants, quit our jobs to make all our food from scratch, and only eat in our filtered homes??

        Hayyah wrote on October 29th, 2011
  14. Flouride strenghtens tooth enamel. Yes, in high doses it is a poison. Guess what? so are a lot of things at high doses: prescription medicine, trace minerals taht we get from plants, ethanol, even water. In regards to calling flouride a poison and saying it is a byproduct of industry. “so what?” Sodium flouride is sodium flouride, the origin is irrelevent.

    Logi wrote on February 26th, 2010
    • You’re right. Source is irrelevant. Regardless of the source, it is a poison. there’s a good reason it’s now recommended to mix baby formula with non-fluoridated water. start here http://www.fluoridealert.org/
      It also causes at the very least flouridosis. My brother has this, and it made his teeth pretty ugly.
      Grok did not drink flouridated water. Europe has caught on and gotten rid of it. We should too.

      Dave, RN wrote on February 26th, 2010
      • “Grok did not drink flouridated water”

        He didn’t drink water that was fluoridated, but he most certainly drank water with fluoride since it’s naturally present, often significantly, in fresh water sources. The difference is a matter of scale and concentration control (fluoride is sometimes actually reduced from a natural supply due to overabundance). So too much may be unhealthy, but *none* is unnatural in the metaphorical Grok sense.

        jsadberry wrote on February 26th, 2010
      • “Regardless of the source, it is a poison.”

        Right, just like lots of things are poisons at very high levels, but beneficial at low levels. Not that hard to understand…

        Personally, I think fluoride in toothpaste is a good idea. In water, its seems more dubious. People can successfully take care of their teeth without adding fluoride to water.

        FDgreen wrote on March 1st, 2010
        • I have a relative who runs a community water system; they have a whole house filter for their water. nuff said.

          mamead wrote on March 3rd, 2010
  15. I’ve not tried a stainless steel bottle, but love my Sigg aluminum bottle. I do enjoy picking up a bottle of Fiji when I’m out though. But normally have my purple Sigg in the car at all times.

    Sterling wrote on February 26th, 2010
  16. Love my stainless steel bottle. Holds up well on the MB, hiking, softball, etc.
    No funny taste or smells.

    Grok is Softball! wrote on February 26th, 2010
  17. My fiancee uses one of those pretty glass water containers with the designs on them (only for the office); I’m using aluminum, for now, but will upgrade to stainless steel.

    hypnotik wrote on February 26th, 2010
  18. Innate-Gear (.com) is a fair-trade company that makes great stainless steel bottles. Their FAQ section has tons of information on the benefits of SS and being BPA free.

    Rich wrote on February 26th, 2010
  19. Mark, I don’t share your concern about BPA free plastic water bottles.

    “But what about “BPA-free” plastic water bottles? Despite BPA-free claims I remain skeptical of plastic water bottles. With misinformation and the unregulated state of bioaccumulating pollutants, for my money there are much safer options.”

    According to Wikipedia (me relying on Wiki=LOL) “There are seven classes of plastics used in packaging applications. Type 7 is the catch-all “other” class, and some type 7 plastics, such as polycarbonate (sometimes identified with the letters “PC” near the recycling symbol) and epoxy resins, are made from bisphenol A monomer.[5][18]

    Type 3 (PVC) can also contain bisphenol A as an antioxidant in plasticizers.[5]

    Types 1 (PET), 2 (HDPE), 4 (LDPE), 5 (polypropylene), and 6 (polystyrene) do not use bisphenol A during polymerization or package forming.”

    So in other words, producers now make water bottles out of plastics that don’t use BPA in the manufacturing process, but you are still skeptical of plastics. So much for fact based skepticism.

    Logi wrote on February 26th, 2010
    • Logi,

      I hear what you’re saying. If you take a look at one of the links though you’ll read:

      “REI, for instance, vowed to stop selling BPA-laden products back in 2008, a great step by a company known for its good customer service and equally good outdoor gear. What they may not have known was that their popular SIGG USA brand water bottles and liquid containers, which are made primarily of lightweight aluminum, contained an interior coating laden with BPA. Yet the bottles still touted “BPA-free” on the exterior. The company has since offered to exchange the offending bottles for shiny new ones. Some faithful H20 sippers are still waiting.”

      Or how about this?

      http://www.nrdc.org/thisgreenlife/0902.asp

      When you read enough of these types of articles and understand that BPA was once widely used in plastic water bottles and considered safe it’s enough to raise some amount of skepticism.

      Why bother with plastic water bottles at all when there are better options widely available.

      Mark Sisson wrote on February 26th, 2010
      • HDPE bottles are cheaper and more durable (and leak resistant) than aluminum, stainless, or glass and don’t leech anything. It’s the same material refillable and non-refillable milk jugs, and bulk bottled water come in.

        You can’t generalize about plastic polymers or metals- you need to learn exactly what each is made from to make a good decision about it’s safety.

        Tyler wrote on February 26th, 2010
      • Mark,

        If BPA could be found in Aluminum bottles that were labelled as BPA-free, than why would you assume that stainless steel bottles are any more safe? Are they subject to tighter regulation?

        Also, how do we know that there won’t be a study released somewhere down the road that shows that the chromium and nickel contained in most stainless steel alloys could leach into your water and have some kind of deleterious effect? I doubt that will happen, but it certainly is a possibility.

        Sam wrote on March 3rd, 2010
        • At least chromium and nickel are trace elements your body can use, unlike BPA. I don’t ever remember having any doctor or dentist recommend a daily dose of BPA to keep you healthy.

          Skott wrote on May 4th, 2014
  20. “Innate-Gear (.com) is a fair-trade company that makes great stainless steel bottles. Their FAQ section has tons of information on the benefits of SS and being BPA free.”

    I’m sure they have information about the benefits of SS over plastics because they are selling SS. I do agree that BPA free is a good thing though.

    Logi wrote on February 26th, 2010
    • Actually they don’t bash plastics, and explain why they use them for parts of their bottles. I liked them for their social responsibility in manufacturing and distribution– something most companies could do better on.

      Rich wrote on February 26th, 2010
  21. I just have to say that I love my kleen kanteens, I have 4 of them, one is for me, one for my husband, one for the pup, and a small one (12oz) that I use to ferry raw goat’s milk to and from work for coffee. I also have a 5th stainless 27oz one at work that we got as part of a wellness program. The biggest challenge is when filling them up from the filtered water dispensers as you can’t see how full it is while under the spigot.

    TexasPrimalSurfWahine wrote on February 26th, 2010
  22. I want to stand up and applaud the mountain lion paragraph. Genius!

    James wrote on February 26th, 2010
    • Mark,

      I must say you possibly have one of the most popular blogs in the world, if not THE most popular. I checked around 2:30 pm EST to see if you had your post up today and you did not. I check 15 minutes later and you have 27 comments. Kudos to you – keep it up, you never disappoint!

      Todd wrote on February 26th, 2010
  23. Mark- I think you really “missed the boat” leaving out HDPE (white) bottles. These are the original Nalgene bottle material. They last forever, leech nothing, and add no flavor. Their flexibility and lid quality make them very durable in extreme altitude and temperature changes.

    http://www.nalgene-outdoor.com/store/detail.aspx?ID=30

    I’ve trusted these bottles in my laptop next to my backpack for over a decade, and they’ve never let me down.

    Tyler wrote on February 26th, 2010
    • These contain BPA.
      http://www.nalgene-outdoor.com/technical/bpaInfo.html#faq
      “Our decision to phase out production of the Outdoor line of polycarbonate containers is in response to consumer demand for products that do not include Bisphenol-A (BPA).
      We are confident that the bottles which contain BPA are safe for their intended use. However, because of consumer requests for alternative materials, we have decided to transition our polycarbonate product line to Eastman Tritan™ copolyester.”

      Em wrote on February 26th, 2010
      • Polycarbonate and HDPE are two entirely different plastics. Polycarbonate is made via the polymerization of bisphenol-A and phsogene, whereas HDPE is made via the polymerization of ethylene. There is no reason to believe that HDPE products would contain any bisphenol-A.

        From the link you provided:

        “Question: Are other Nalgene consumer products manufactured with BPA?
        Answer: No. We manufacture consumer bottles and containers in HDPE, PP, LDPE, PET, and most recently, Eastman Tritan copolyester and Stainless Steel (by Guyot Design). Each of these materials is manufactured without BPA.”

        Sam wrote on March 3rd, 2010
  24. Stainless steel all the way for Dh and myself. Tried everything else – big winner!

    Jeanie wrote on February 26th, 2010
  25. My husband and I bought stainless steel water bottles from Whole Foods market about a year ago and I love them! (made for Whole Foods with their logo on the bottle). No funny taste or anything, and while I didn’t think I would like the cap at first, I love having that convenient spot to hold the bottle by my thumb or fingers. I currently use a PUR water filter but would love to get a more permanent fix to get rid of fluoride or chlorine. I’ve read reverse osmosis is the way to go?

    Midgy wrote on February 26th, 2010
  26. So what’s your stand on Reverse Osmosis water that comes in plastic bottles? I know people say water doesn’t have a taste, but honestly Penta and Kirkland Signature brand are the best waters I’ve ever tasted. On a side note. I HATE DRINKING WATER and I can happily drink Penta or Kirkland Signatures Premium Drinking Water. I just checked the bottle and I didn’t see “from a municipal source” or “from a community water system” on it. It looks like it contains added minerals and it does say that it’s “Purified by Advanced Filtration, Ozonation and Reverse Osmosis Technologies”. I’ve tried filters but even Brita to me puts out a less desireable taste. I wont even drink water from restaurants, I’m that picky….So should I just empty my plastic bottles into a reusable bottle?

    Christina wrote on February 26th, 2010
  27. No mention of animal bladder canteens or hollowed out gourds? Very primal, with the added bonus of being eco-friendly, right? I think I’d look pretty snazzy out on the trail with a handpainted gourd on my hip or a camel stomach. They must be available somewheres?

    Pandora wrote on February 26th, 2010
  28. Tap water? No thanks. I don’t like flouride in the water I drink. You need some serious filters to get that industrial waste out. Good well water is best.

    zach wrote on February 26th, 2010
    • As stated above, many sources of well water contain fluoride in them naturally. Depending on where you live you may have to process your water to make it completely free of fluoride.

      Sam wrote on March 3rd, 2010
  29. I’ve got several Sigg bottles, but after reading this article I think I might add a stainless steel to my collection to see how I like it…Good stuff to think about, Thanks!

    kennelmom wrote on February 26th, 2010
  30. I’ve been wanting to get a stainless steel water bottle, but I’ve heard that Kleen Kanteen bottles end up imparting a metallic taste to the water. I’ve been looking at CamelBak stainless steel bottles. Has anyone tried them?

    It also concerns me that most, if not all, stainless steel water bottle are made it China. Do these companies do lead testing to make sure that their bottles are safe?

    How about one of those old style water bags, you know… the ones with animal fur on the outside, and they’re made from a goats stomach or something like that. I can’t remember what they’re called, but if Grok was going to carry a water bottle, that’s what he would use.

    CavePainter wrote on February 26th, 2010
    • I have kleen kanteens and none of mine have imparted a metallic taste. I am one of those people who does taste the difference between brands of bottled water. Putting your mouth on the mouth of the bottle does not taste like putting your mouth on the tub faucet. And yes I did that when I was a kid to infuriate my Mom.
      I had similar concerns about the manufacturing in China. Kleen kanteen has a page on their website about their manufacturing in China and the quality control steps that they take. I truly wish that US manufactured products were available.
      And no, I don’t have any financial interest in kleen kanteen, I just really like my bottles.

      TexasPrimalSurfWahine wrote on February 26th, 2010
  31. I actually snickered out loud about when reading about doing battle with my water bottle. I feel so much more Grok-like now toting my SS water bottle across campus now! Thanks, Mark!

    Chris Sturdy wrote on February 26th, 2010
  32. Let’s not forget how much water it takes to manufacture and transport a plastic water bottle….almost 7 times the amount actually in the bottle…

    http://www.treehugger.com/files/2007/02/pablo_calculate.php

    Think Green wrote on February 26th, 2010
    • or how much money it costs to recycle. I encourage people to watch the series called BullSh** by Penn and Teller on HBO (I rented from Blockbuster). One episode covered all the BS about recycling.

      Midgy wrote on February 26th, 2010
  33. I guess i am more caveman, as i use an old fashioned bota (sp?) bag. Its’ leather and yes, it leaks. Not so much if you use it often. It takes some care to, gotta keep it clean and completely dry it out every few days. I also have a canvas bag for outtings into the hills. As for lions, well i have something for that to, but we will leave that up to your imagination!

    Wolfman wrote on February 26th, 2010
  34. I have a couple SIGGs that I use and love, but maybe I’ll make the switch to SS and continue this new trend.

    I’ve recently been reading that tap water (at least here in the U.S.) goes through much more stringent testing (more tightly regulated) than bottled water does, therefore making tap water safer overall. Any truth to this?

    Hugh wrote on February 26th, 2010
  35. I’m currently using a glass bottle with a flip top. It was cheap $2.99. I wouldn’t take it on adventures, but to have while sitting at my desk – it’s great!

    christina wrote on February 26th, 2010
  36. Couldn’t agree more! Our water is perfectly safe but tastes like crap. We bought an RO system with faucet for $500 installed. We have two water dispensers plus a bunch of stainless that the kids, Rose and I use when we go out. I had my water tested and it is cleaner than Dasani…so there!

    mikecheliak wrote on February 26th, 2010
  37. i love our stainless steel water bottles we have. thankfully our town is one of the few that doesnt fluoridate its water, but it does add quite a bit of chlorine. and you can tell when they do it too, the stuff coming out of the taps starts smelling and tasting like a swimming pool. i couldnt drink water for the first week, i puked it up the second i drank it could have just been pyschological but that smell did it to me.
    luckily since then we’ve moved and have well water, a nice house filter and a fridge filter (just comes with the fridge).

    carly wrote on February 26th, 2010
  38. I have the Aquasana under sink water filter and the water tastes amazing. I wont drink out of the tap. I also have their shower filter, which is an important topic I feel should be discussed as well. Tests show that your body can absorb more chlorine as a result of a 10-minute shower than if you drank eight glasses of the same water, due to absorption through your pores and more importantly through steamy chlorine vapor in your lungs.

    Comparison Chart

    leeboy4130 wrote on February 26th, 2010
  39. At a convention recently I was given a (some-form-of) metal drink bottle with the Vendor’s logo on it as an attendance gift. It’s probably aluminium, I guess. What concerns me is that, when it’s quiet at work, I can hear either the contents (water) or the bottle “ticking,” like you’d imagine you’d hear if the water was carbonated – which it isn’t. Out of sheer paranoia I’ve stopped drinking my water from that bottle.

    Does anyone know what that noise was likely to be, or if I have good reason to be wary of it?

    Cheers,
    Ben

    silverbenz wrote on February 26th, 2010
    • Apparently, this noise is due to water that gets in between the two layers of the water bottle (usually happens if someone accidentally put the bottle in the dishwasher, but can happen if the layers didn’t have a super great seal).

      Air moves in and out of the layers when the temperature changes, causing those hissing, popping sounds like carbonated water.

      Brianna W. wrote on June 25th, 2014
  40. Mark, I agree with you that stainless steel is the best, but one thing you left out is that you can boil the water in a stainless bottle if you’re camping. Another bonus!

    primalMike wrote on February 26th, 2010

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