Pros and Cons of Plastic Water Bottles

Written by kimberly turtenwald
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Pros and Cons of Plastic Water Bottles
Plastic water bottles are recyclable. (Thinkstock/Comstock/Getty Images)

Because the human body requires a recommended eight glasses of water per day, people often carry water bottles with them so they can have access to water at all times. Because of the convenience of plastic, many of these water bottles are made from it. These bottles offer some advantages, but they also have some disadvantages.

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Many people use plastic bottles because they are convenient and disposable, whereas bottles made from stainless steel or other reusable materials must be carried around when empty. When the water is gone from a plastic bottle, you can simply get rid of it and move on to the next bottle. This can be both a pro and a con for using plastic water bottles. If you choose to recycle the plastic bottles, the disposability becomes an advantage. However, if you throw the bottle into a nearby garbage can instead, you are contributing to waste that takes a long time to degrade, furthering pollution.


When you need to take water on the go, having a container to transport it in is essential. Plastic water bottles offer that portability. All you need to do is grab the bottle and go. Plastic is lightweight and can easily be carried with you wherever you go. If you run out of water while you are away from home, you can simply refill your plastic water bottle or carry more than one with you at a time.


Plastic water bottles can be easily reused. While it is recommended to wash out the bottles before refilling them, they are easy to refill when you don't have access to a new bottle. However, if you don't wash a plastic bottle before using it, you increase the chances of harbouring bacteria and making yourself sick. For this reason, some people refuse to reuse a plastic water bottle and use a new one each time.


The chemicals companies use to make plastic bottles are relatively safe, according the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA). However, some people prefer to avoid as many unnecessary chemicals as possible. For those people, using plastic water bottles is not the best option. While the amount of chemicals that transfers into the water from the bottles is small and acceptable by FDA standards, for some people, even a little bit is too much. Not all chemicals that are being released into water have yet been identified, however, which means all future health risks have not been discovered.

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