How long does bottled water last? (3 signs)

In this brief article, we will answer the question how long does bottled water last, three signs that it has gone bad

How long does bottled water last?

According to the U.S Food and Drug Administration, bottled water has an expiration date of two years for non-carbonated water and one year for sparkling water.

Why is water bottled?

Bottled water is available all around the world for the consumption of safe water. There are many multinational companies that sell bottled water. In many countries bottled water is the only way to consume safe water.

Water is a basic necessity and every person around the world needs it for survival. Water is bottled for the reason of convenience, and quality assurance. It eradicates the concern of drinking polluted water and is a good substitute to tap water.

Bottled water vs filtered water:

Tap water has poor quality and that’s a known fact even in countries where water comes from filters. Filtered tap water still has a large amount of contaminants depending on the area, condition of the water pump, and condition of pipes.

To avoid that bottled water is considered a safer choice than filtered water. The contaminants are removed in the production of bottled water and the smell factor is also eradicated. All of this makes bottled water a healthier choice to tap water.

Shelf life of bottled water:

Contrary to popular belief bottled water expires after two years of production. There is a commercial expiration date available on the bottle but even if there isn’t the bottle expires after two years.

By the expiration of the bottle, we don’t mean that water goes bad after two years but the plastic of bottles starts to leach into the water. This leaching of plastic greatly affects the quality of potable water and causes toxicity in it.

How does a water bottle expire?

Water bottle has a shelf life of two years and it should be discarded after that. Bottles of water are made of high-density polyethylene and packaged to remove all the air from it. After two years of using it the compounds in it start to leach out.

The leached out substance goes into the liquid stored inside the bottle and causes contamination. This contamination of water by plastic bottles may be toxic in nature. It can cause serious harm to the endocrine system, nervous system and may cause neurological problems.

Why does the water bottle expire?

The leaching out of plastic compounds into the liquid is not a continuous or sudden process. It is a slow process which gains speed slowly but what initiates it matters the most. some of the reasons why plastic bottle contaminates water are :

Due to storing the bottle in direct exposure to sunlight, this significantly affects the quality of bottle and the quality of water itself

If the water bottle was exposed to heat or placed in storage trucks. The storage of water bottles is the most important factor when you want to keep it safe. Storing it in direct heat causes the plastic to deteriorate quickly which effects the quality of water

If the bottle has direct exposure to hoot surfaces or contaminated areas. Sometimes the deterioration of plastic starts in storage spaces as there are hot cars present there.

Contamination of water:

Even though bottled water is considered safe as compared to tap water or even filtered water. Bottle water still has the ability to go bad in terms of quality. It is due to contaminants present in water which makes it unsafe to consume.

The contaminants do not enter the bottle when in storage unless the bottle is damaged. Sometimes even before production of bottled water is contaminated. The contamination of water by a single microbe may cause fatal diseases in many people

To avoid contamination, you should buy bottled water from companies that assure quality. Another way is by storing a water bottle in proper conditions, washing it often. And disposing it off sooner. The more you use the plastic bottle the dangerous it becomes for your health

How to tell if bottled water is bad?

Bottled water is the most shelf stable product if stored in proper conditions. Water in general does not go bad and it stays safe for consumption. But if you think your bottled water has gone bad, you can recognize it by following indications:

  • If bottled water starts to give off odor, it is a direct indication that water has gone bad. Water does not smell so it is easy to recognize the bad smell of water.
  • If water looks bad, or any change in color happens. Water has no color so color development is pretty big indication of contamination
  • If water bottle looks wrinkled, damaged or yellow; these are indications of possible contamination of water


In this brief article, we have answered the question how long does bottled water last, three signs that it has gone bad