Best Water Bottles – Plastic, Stainless Steel, Glass, Aluminum ?


Which water bottle is the best, or the safest? What about choices of materials? Here are a few thoughts.


BPA-Free Plastic Water Bottles

Plastic water bottles are a good choice for many short term uses. They are convenient and available in most stores. Store them in a cool location to avoid getting that ‘plastic’ taste.

They are the lightest weight method of carrying water, although susceptible to breaking open or being punctured if dropped.

Plastic disposable water bottles are designed for single use.

Note that BPA (Bisphenol A) is a toxic compound used to make plastics and resins. However it is no longer being used by well-known water bottling manufacturers.

#1 PETE (polyethylene terephthalate) is considered safe and is used for water, soda, and juice bottles.

When storing plastic water bottles, implement ‘first-in, first-out’ rotation (use the oldest first).

Mrs.J uses this neoprene holder / sling which perfectly holds a plastic water bottle for when she’s out walking:
Neoprene water bottle holder - great for walking
‘NEOSLING’, Adjustable Neoprene Bottle Holder


Stainless Steel

It’s a very durable material and is difficult to break, or even dent.

Stainless steel is fairly light weight versus the benefits of it’s strength and durability.

It will not rust.

Liquids will stay cooler slightly longer than aluminum. Though double wall vacuum seal solves that problem!

In an emergency, water can be boiled for purification directly in the bottle — on a burner, hanging over a fire, sitting in hot coals, etc.

Some say that water tastes better coming from a stainless steel bottle rather than plastic (though glass is better in the non-taste department).

No risk of ingesting potentially harmful chemicals which may leech from the walls of some plastic bottles over time.

The most popular stainless steel water bottle:
The most popular stainless steel water bottles
Hydro Flask 32 oz Double Wall Vacuum Insulated




THE best choice for taste, while glass has zero effect on aftertaste.

Glass is heavy.

Glass will break.

Liquids will stay cooler much longer than stainless steel or aluminum bottles.

I have two of these:
Glass water bottle for drinking water

Glass Bottle with Silicone Sleeve


Aluminum Water Bottles

Aluminum weighs less than stainless steel or glass, making them a good choice for long hikes or backpacking where weight might be a concern.

Similar to stainless steel, in an emergency you can boil water in aluminum bottles.

Aluminum is a robust material that will not break easily, although it may dent if dropped – depending.

If you are concerned about BPA, ‘most’ aluminum bottles are BPA free. Read the fine print though…

Popular aluminum light weight water bottle for hiking
321 STRONG 500 mL (16.9 Fluid Ounce) Aluminum

NOTE: Clear bottles: They can be left in direct sunlight for 8 hours and the Ultraviolet will destroy organic micro organisms in the water – purifying it. This has become standard water treatment in third world countries.

How to Purify Water with Sunlight

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