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TOPIC: Cleaning water bottles with straws in them

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May 23, 2011 8:24 PM
Hi all! I have a 72oz water jug with a narrow straw insert connected to one of those sticks that you freeze to make/keep your water cold (I hope you know what I'm describing here). I need help figuring out the best way to clean the straw. I switch between water and crystal light so I can see bits of crystal light stuck/stained in the straw. I've tried soaking it in hot water and white vinegar but I can't get to actually clean inside the straw that well to the point where its grossing me out. Any tips on cleaning reusable narrow straws? Thanks!
May 23, 2011 8:31 PM
Maybe pipe cleaners? They sell them at tobacco shops.
May 23, 2011 8:31 PM
I have the same problem! Once I even went to fill it one morning and it had a little MOLD in it! Yuck! I heat some vinegar and soak it in that and it came off so now I do that every few days or whenever I drink something other than water.
May 23, 2011 8:34 PM
Bottle brushes! ALmost all (including the super cheap ones) also have a nipple brush attachment on the opposite end. Also in the bottle section they should have what look like pipe cleaners but specifically for cleaning Dr Browns bottles, they are nice and long in length and sturdy.

Yes I had tons from my son's bottles and learned they are useful for so many other things!
May 23, 2011 8:52 PM
I stick mine in the dishwasher (where the silverware goes) and it works just fine. Of course I mainly drink water out of them so I'm probably not much help.
May 23, 2011 9:40 PM
This used to drive me crazy until I figured out how to clean mine! I decorate cakes as a hobby and have a little tip cleaner for the icing tips. It's got a brush on one end and a little tiny bottle brush on the other. It's not long enough to go through the whole straw but it is very thin. I put soap on the bottle brush end and use a bamboo skewer to shove the brush completely through the straw and out the other end. I do it a couple of times and then rinse really well. Even if the straw looks clean you'd be amazed at how that brush looks when it comes out! It's the only way I've found to actually clean the thing.

This one is $2.00 at Sur la Table but you can find it at any craft store that sells cake decorating stuff. The bamboo skewers are just those little wood sticks that are sold in the cooking/baking aisle of just about any grocery store. They're usually only a dollar or two as well.
Edited by knittnponder On May 23, 2011 9:41 PM
May 23, 2011 9:47 PM
my kids get bottles like that and al i have found is pipe cleaner but even then I've had to bin a couple due to mould but they drink squash so thats probably why
May 23, 2011 9:47 PM
I use a small piece of paper towel, wet it, soap it, wad it up, and push it back and forth through the straw with a skewer, then rinse!
May 23, 2011 10:32 PM
Thank you! I don't have children so these are all so helpful! I use a bottle brush to clean the bottle but its to big for the straw. I thought I was doing good enough by soaking them but I found a teensy bit of mold on the bottom inside of my straw and flipped out. I mainly drink water as well or very watered down crystal light (its too sweet) so mold can still form with just water.

I don't have a dishwasher sadly...I am the dishwasher. :-)

I do have skewers and will check out these brushes! And pipe cleaners! Thank you!
Edited by InnerPinup79 On May 23, 2011 10:39 PM
May 23, 2011 10:48 PM
I agree with the pipe cleaners and you can get them in different lengths if needed. I have a starbucks iced drink cup that came with a straw and this is how I clean mine. I just soap the pipe cleaner up a bit and scrub the inside of the straw with it the rinse both off. also if you have one of those sip nozzles a baby bottle nipple cleaner works. not sure if someone already recommended that one...
May 23, 2011 10:56 PM
Yep, I use pipe cleaners, too. Seems to be the consensus.
May 24, 2011 5:45 AM
Go to Babies R Us and get those little bottle/plastic nipple cleaners.... A pack of 3 is like $1 and some change. Works great!
May 24, 2011 7:13 AM
Thanks so much! I really didn't want to throw it away. I've only had it for 2 months
May 24, 2011 7:16 AM
Soak in a solution of half water and half bleach. Rinse well.
Edited by sbwood888 On May 24, 2011 7:16 AM
May 24, 2011 8:13 AM

Soak in a solution of half water and half bleach. Rinse well.

Yes! I just make a sink full of bleach water and let our cups soak overnight. It removes any staining, odor, mold, etc.


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