Ask RIDE…How do I clean out my water bottle?

How do you get the taste of energy drink from last weekends race out of your bottles when you just want to drink plain water?

Sayers, QLD.

It’s a horrible moment. The one where you inadvertently pick up a water bottle and take a sip, without prior thought to how long it has been sitting in the garage or worse, what was initially put inside. Never leave a half full bottle where someone may decide to take a drink because if it has anything except water they are in for a nasty shock. Recovery and protein drinks have to be the worst. It’s highly recommended to never take a sip from an old mix – you have been warned.

If a rogue bottle is tracked down with some sport drink left overs it will need a thorough clean. The problem is an after taste is often left in the bottle. A constant reminder in smell and taste of the chocolate flavoured carbo drink from last week is never nice, especially when all you want is some refreshing H2O. A good scrub is not always enough to rid a bottle of taste and odour. There are a number of products and ways however, to ensure your bottle is fully sanitised for the next ride. Here are some suggestions:

— Use hot water (close to boiling) and an antibacterial dish washing liquid. Give the inside a scrub, put the lid on and shake. But be careful because pressure will build up inside the bidon. This is ideal however, for blasting out any funk from the nossle. Point in toward the sink and release the nossle. Continue to shake and squeeze the bottle until all the water is out. Give the outside a scrub too because you hands carry plenty of germs and is the outside is what you touch the most. Flush with hot water and thoroughly rinse with cold. Leave the bottle to dry completely before use.

— Pick up some cleaning tablets or liquid for rinsing baby bottles. These contain plenty of good bacterial-killing ingredients are usually don’t have the harsh element like those in dish liquids.

— Vinegar is a very safe cleaning solution. Poor a couple of cap full into a bottle, shake and leave overnight. Rinse thoroughly with hot water and then cold.

— A few companies make a specific product for this exact job. Camelback has individual tablets for their hydration bladders which can be used for bottles. Another product on the market is call Skweet – a non-toxic powder added to the bottle with a little water, shake and rinse. No soapy after taste here.



Alex Malone is the Technical Editor at RIDE Cycling Review. Follow him on Twitter @alexjmalone.

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Author: design@ride

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