How to remove algae from water cooler bottles

Written by jennifer leighton
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How to remove algae from water cooler bottles
Water coolers can be breeding grounds for green algae. (AdrianHancu/iStock/Getty Images)

Algae grows quickly and will multiply if exposed to a water supply and sunlight. When water cooler bottles maintain a minimum level of water and have direct sun exposure, algae may grow, causing water contamination. Algae can be removed from water coolers with some simple disinfection methods.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Household bleach
  • Water

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  1. 1

    Empty all contents of the water cooler bottle. Gently shake the bottle upside down, removing as much algae residue as possible.

  2. 2

    Fill the water bottle with tap water, adding one tablespoon of household bleach per 4.5 litres of water. As a rough guide, most cooler bottles contain about 20 to 30 litres of water.

  3. 3

    Secure the lid on the water bottle. Agitate the water bottle, shaking it to ensure the bleach solution is evenly distributed.

  4. 4

    Let the bleach solution sit in the water bottle for a minimum of two minutes and a maximum of five minutes.

  5. 5

    Empty the contents of the water bottle.

  6. 6

    Rinse the water bottle with fresh tap water until all traces of the bleach residue are completely removed.

  7. 7

    Allow the bottle time to air dry completely before reusing.

Tips and warnings

  • Do not mix bleach with ammonia or other cleaning products.
  • Avoid breathing bleach fumes and only use bleach in a well-ventilated area.

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