The Best Stainless Steel Water Bottles (Review & Buying Guide) in 2021
Consider these stainless steel water bottles as a reusable, economic alternative to plastic water bottles
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BY Zach Faulds / LAST UPDATED ON November 14, 2020
As a growing number of people have become more environmentally conscious, customers have been moving away from plastic water bottles. Reusable stainless steel water bottles are an environmentally friendly, durable, and economic alternative to plastic water bottles. Stainless steel bottles will not rust and are available in a variety of colors, patterns, shapes, and sizes. These bottles often contain a leak-proof lid and are completely insulated to keep your cold beverages ice cold and your hot beverages hot for hours at a time.
Stainless steel water bottles are ideal for a variety of outdoor activities, including sporting events, hiking, fishing, yoga, and climbing. Whether you are looking for great value, excellent insulation, travel options, or versatility, we took a look at the best stainless steel water bottles on the market. Read on to see which option is the best fit for your needs.
Available in a variety of colors and sizes, ranging from 18 ounces up to 40 ounces. Two caps are included with this bottle: a stainless steel screw cap and a sports cap with straw.
- Completely resistant to oxidation and corrosion
- The double-wall and vacuum seal keep cold liquids ice-cold for up to 24 hours or hot liquids hot for up to eight hours
- Sports cap with straw has been known to be defective
- Responsive customer service team will replace the lid or refund if necessary
Holds up to 20 ounces of liquid and comes in six varieties of colors. Thermalock Vacuum Insulation helps to keep your cold liquids cold for up to 18 hours.
- Autospout lid contains a convenient pop-up straw
- Lid is 100 percent leakproof when closed
- Fits perfectly in most vehicle cup holders
- Fairly difficult to thoroughly clean all parts
- Inspect straw, mouthpiece, and inside of the lid when cleaning
Keeps your beverages ice-cold for up to 24 hours and hot for up to 12 hours. Features a double wall of insulation to prevent condensation on the exterior.
- Leakproof spout lid allows for easy drinking
- Innovative hinge lock keeps the lid out of your way
- Lid has a wide loop handle for easy carrying
- Occasional defects with bottles
- Doesn't always hold ice as long as advertised
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Benefits of Stainless Steel Water Bottle
- Environmentally friendly: Using a stainless steel water bottle that can be reused over and over will prevent any plastic water bottles from being recycled, and even better, they will not end up in a landfill.
- Durable: Stainless steel water bottles are built to last for many years. Compared to plastic or glass water bottles, they can withstand drops and will never melt in your dishwasher.
- Keeps drinks cold: Maybe the most obvious benefit, stainless steel water bottles can keep your beverages ice-cold for up to several hours at a time.
Types of Stainless Steel Water Bottles
It is common for stainless steel water bottles to be made from 18/8 stainless steel. This means that the stainless steel contains 18 percent chromium and 8 percent nickel. This is an extremely durable product that is completely rust-resistant and will hold up over time. Make sure that your stainless steel bottle does not contain aluminum, which can easily dent and is not dishwasher safe.
Another type of stainless steel water bottle is the 304 grade stainless steel. This type of stainless steel is made up of no more than 0.8 percent carbon and at least 50 percent iron. This type may be priced higher than comparable products, but it has proven to be 100 percent resistant to corrosion and rust. It is extremely heavy-duty and, in most cases, completely dishwasher safe.
Double-walled stainless steel water bottles provide maximum insulation to keep your water or cold beverages ice cold for several hours at a time. The two layers of stainless steel combine to allow the bottle to regulate itself. The exterior of the bottle will feel like the ambient temperature, while the liquid inside will remain ice cold.
Hydro Cell specializes in insulated bottles for a variety of sports and outdoor activities. The bottles feature double-walled insulation and a vacuum seal. The company produces bottles, ranging from 18 ounces to 40 ounces in size, as well as replacement lids.
Headquartered in High Point, N.C., Contigo has become an extremely reputable company with additional warehouses in Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Israel, and Latin America. Its beverage containers all come with a lifetime guarantee. In addition to water bottles, the company produces coffee mugs, Contigo produces fitness bottles, water bottles, shaker bottles, and more.
Founded in Japan, this reputable company is now headquartered in California. It manufactures drinking vessels specifically designed for fitness enthusiasts that are now shipped all over the world. In addition to water bottles, Takeya produces tumblers, kids bottles, cold brew pitchers, and more.
Stainless Steel Water Bottle Pricing
- Under $10: Stainless steel water bottles in this price range provide excellent value. These bottles are high quality, but if you are looking to keep your beverages ice cold for several hours, you may want to consider a higher price point.
- $10-$20: This is the most common price range for stainless steel water bottles. Most of these bottles are made from durable stainless steel and will keep your drinks ice cold for multiple hours at a time.
- $20 and up: Stainless steel water bottles in this price range may be priced at a premium, but they are typically the highest quality. These bottles contain double walls of insulation, vacuum seals, and leak-proof designs.
No matter what price point you purchase your stainless steel water bottle, insulation is essential. You want your cold beverages to stay ice cold for several hours, and most models can even keep your hot beverages very warm for multiple hours at a time. The best insulated stainless steel water bottles feature two walls of insulation and will maintain a consistent temperature inside the bottle for hours at a time.
Purchasing a stainless steel water bottle with a high-quality lid is extremely important. The best lids are 100 percent leak-proof, create a vacuum seal, and will prevent any spills while drinking or traveling. As long as your lid can vacuum seal your beverage inside, you won't have to worry about traveling with your bottle in your vehicle or tossing it in your backpack for long camping, hiking, biking, fishing trips, and more. Some bottles even feature a straw for convenient drinking on-the-go or while playing sports.
Purchasing a stainless steel water bottle that is completely dishwasher-safe can be a game-changer. Always check with the manufacturer or instruction manual before cleaning your bottle in the dishwasher. Some bottles are only top-rack dishwasher safe, while other products are hand wash only. You may also want to consider a bottle brush to thoroughly clean your stainless steel water bottle, and even if you wash all parts, make sure to thoroughly inspect it before using it.
- Budget-Friendly: Compared to other types of water bottles, jugs, and reusable dishware, stainless steel water bottles are a budget-friendly product. As a bonus, this product is extremely environmentally friendly. You can save a plastic water bottle from being recycled or even ending up in a landfill by using a stainless steel water bottle as your main drinking vessel.
- Travel: Stainless steel water bottles provide excellent travel companions. Not only do most models fit inside your vehicle cup holder, but they are also typically 100 percent leak-proof, feature a vacuum seal, and can easily fit inside your tent, backpack, or bag while traveling or on long hiking, fishing, backpacking, climbing, trekking, or camping trips.
- Warranty: Most reputable companies will offer some type of warranty with the purchase of their stainless steel water bottles. Some companies are known for their insulated bottles and have built a reputation on their products. Sometimes lifetime warranties are even included with your purchase, which covers any bottle that starts leaking or no longer keeps your beverages ice cold for a long period of time.
Best Stainless Steel Water Bottle Reviews & Recommendations 2021
- Before using your stainless steel water bottle, make sure to wash it thoroughly. If using detergent, make sure the detergent is properly rinsed out before first use.
- Make sure that your water bottle is made from stainless steel and not aluminum. Some products advertised as steel are aluminum-based, which can be easily dented and should not be cleaned in the dishwasher.
- Make sure to fully secure and tighten your lid before placing it in your luggage or backpack. If using your bottle for the first time, it may be a good idea to test the bottle first to ensure it has a vacuum seal and is completely leak-proof.
- Make sure you read all directions from the manufacturer or your instruction manual before placing your bottle in the dishwasher. Some models are dishwasher safe, while others are top-rack or hand-wash only.
- Stainless steel bottles are safe to use, but if you ever notice any off-tastes or contaminants in your water bottle, contact the manufacturer immediately before using,
Q: Are stainless steel water bottles safe to drink from?
Yes, stainless steel is safe, BPA free, and doesn't contain the chemicals found in plastics that can cause severe health risks. Grade 304 or 18/8 stainless steel is safe to use at any temperature.
Q: What's the best stainless steel water bottle?
Our best overall stainless steel water bottle is the HYDRO CELL Stainless Steel Water Bottle, but there are several other great options available. Make sure to read our reviews to determine if another option is the best fit for your needs.
Q: How long does a stainless steel water bottle last?
Stainless steel water bottles are extremely durable and should last for several years. In general, experts say that you can expect your stainless steel water bottle to last an average of 10-12 years before it starts showing signs of needing to be replaced. If your bottle stops retaining ice or becomes cold to the touch, consider ordering a replacement.
For a high-quality stainless steel water bottle, consider the HYDRO CELL Stainless Steel Water Bottle, featuring two high-quality caps, or the Contigo Stainless Steel Water Bottle, designed to keep your cold liquids cold for up to 18 hours.