Bottled water comes in handy when you are outside in a hot day, when you are practicing in the gym or in any other scenario in which you feel a sudden thirst. The bottles are easy to carry and they come in different sizes. But have you ever wondered if they can be stored for a long period of time, in case there is a sudden ecological disaster, an earthquake or a zombie apocalypse? If you have, the answer is yes – bottled water can remain fresh and drinkable for a long time, but under certain conditions.
How to properly store bottled water
Water sold in plastic bottles feels at its happiest when it is in a dark and cool spot, out of any direct sunlight. That is why a basement may be a make a good storage option. However, if you keep any cleaning supplies, toxic materials, paints or chemicals there, you should think of a different spot, since it can easily become contaminated. Stacking dozens of bottles of water in your fridge is also not a great idea. When exposed to low temperatures for a long period of time, the plastic bottle changes its shape and it may even start to leak.
Pictured: Correct temperature to store water in plastic bottles
Similar are the results when you keep that type of water in a heated or sunny environment. In fact, high temperatures will not only give the bottle an unappealing form, but they will also spoil the quality of the precious resource stored in it. Heat will cause the plastic to release two dangerous chemicals – bisphenol A and antimony. Bisphenol A, also known as BPA, has qualities similar to estrogen, while antimony is believed to be a carcinogen and a key trigger to many diseases of the heart, lungs and many others.
Pictured: Negative effects of BPA on human health
Standard expiration date
If you take a closer look at any prepacked bottle of water, you will notice that it has an expiration date, which can vary from six months to two years. The range of this period is determined by the products used in the making of the bottle itself. If it does not contain BPA, its expiration date is likely to be longer than the usual.
It is best if you avoid consuming the water beyond the advised date. After all, any type of plastic containers is not made for long-term use. Still, if you do not have any other source of hydration, even expired bottled will do. When stored the right way, bottled water can preserve its qualities even after the printed date on the label.
Drink while it is still fresh
Be wary, however, if the water has already been opened. Even if you have kept it a cool and dark place, the contents in the bottled may be contaminated by other things like bacteria and countless other microorganisms. Therefore, you will dodge a bullet if you don’t drink bottled water that has been first opened a week ago. Some experts even advise to follow this rule even if that period is only 24 hours.