How Long Can Water be Stored in Plastic Bottles?

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Bottled water is a clean, tasty and safe alternative to tap water. And the good news is that there are many bottled water options on the market today.

One of the many reasons people go for bottled water is that it’s easy to store. But the question is, how long can you store water in plastic bottles?

The answer to this question is significant since you want to be sure that the water you are taking is not only clean but also safe to clean.

Continue reading to know how long water can last in plastic bottles and more.

How Long Does Water Last in Plastic Bottles?

How Long Can Water Be Stored in Plastic Bottles

The truth is…there’s actually no expiry date for bottled water. In fact, the U.S. FDA doesn’t even require a shelf life for bottled water.

You can use bottled water indefinitely if stored properly.

However, although this is the case, there are reasons why you might avoid drinking bottled water if it has been stored for too long.

Although the water might appear clear, the plastic bottles present a few issues that you need to look out for. Actually, manufacturers recommend keeping carbonated water for not more than 2 years and 1 year for sparkling water.

Reasons Why You Might Not Want to Drink Old Bottled Water

  • Taste

Old bottled water is not as tasty as fresh water. It tends to have a plain taste because the taste of stored water changes over time.

You should know that even well-sealed bottled water will be exposed to the outside air (in small portions) at some time. And when this air mixes with your water, it changes its taste.

  • Chemicals in Plastic Bottles

Any potential issue in bottled water starts from the bottle itself. Plastic water bottles are either polyethylene terephthalate (PET) or high-density polyethylene (HDPE).

And if these bottles are exposed to heat, the plastic can melt and seep into the water.

Consumption of these chemicals is quite dangerous and can cause different health issues. This means that you should never leave your bottled water exposed to extreme heat.

Effects of Bad Bottled Water on Your Health

Although you need water to survive, you need to be more conscious of the bottled water you drink. Taking water contaminated with plastic has severe effects on your health.

Health implications that you can suffer as a result of taking water that is overexposed to plastic include:

  • Hormone imbalances
  • Impaired immunity
  • Developing cancer
  • Increased risk of metabolic disorders like obesity
  • Congenital disabilities to kids exposed to plastic
  • Reproductive effects like decreased fertility

These are just but a few complications that can arise from taking water exposed to plastic. You thus need to check the type of bottles you get your water from.

If possible, go for water from aluminum water bottles.

How Long Does Water Last in Opened Plastic Bottles?

How Long Does Water Last in Plastic Bottles

After opening your water bottle, the water can only be good for a couple of days. The water in the open bottle will mix with air and develop a stale taste.

And although refrigeration can add a few days to your water, it still won’t last very long.

How to Store Bottled Water Safely

If you’ve been keen enough when going through the article, you must have noticed that the lifespan of bottled water has much to do with how it’s stored.

To keep your bottled water for the longest time possible, store it in a cool and dry place. This will protect it from heat exposure.


Q. Does water go bad in plastic bottles?

Water can go bad in a plastic bottle if the seal is open or if you leave it exposed to heat for a long time.

Q. Can you get sick from drinking old bottled water?

You can get sick from drinking old bottled water if toxic chemicals have seeped into the water. The results may not be instant, but you’ll experience them as time goes by.
Health complications that you might suffer from include hormone imbalances and cancer.

Q. How long can you drink bottled water after opening?

You can drink the water for at least 3 days unrefrigerated.

Q. What bottled water has the longest shelf life?

Carbonated bottled water has the longest shelf life – 2 years.

Q. Can bacteria grow in bottled water?

Bacteria can grow in bottled water if improperly sealed and in warm environments.

Q. How long can you store water in 5-gallon jugs?

You can store water in a 5-gallon jug for up to 2 years.

Q. Can you drink bottled water that has been sitting out?

Yes, you can drink bottled water that has been sitting out if it’s properly stored.

Q. Which plastic is best for water bottles?

PET and high-density polyethylene are the best plastics for water bottles.

Q. How should you store bottled water?

The best way to store bottled water in a cool, dry place devoid of strong odors.

Q. How long can you use reusable plastic bottles?

You can use a reusable plastic bottle for 2 to 3 years.

Q. Are plastic water bottles safe to reuse repeatedly

You can reuse plastic water bottles if you clean them thoroughly to prevent the spread of germs.

Q. How long should tap water last in plastic bottles?

You can store tap water in plastic bottles for up to 6 months.


The length of time for water stored in plastic bottles ranges from a day to indefinitely, depending on how you store it. If the bottle is sealed, the way can last for more than 2 years.

After opening the water bottle, the water can’t last a week. It’ll become stale, and you won’t want to take it anymore.

For your bottled water to last for the longest time possible, just store it in a cool and dry place.

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