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Ways to Reuse Polycarbonate Water Bottles
Lately polycarbonate plastic water bottles have been receiving attention because they contain a chemical, bisphane-A (BPA) that can leach into the water and potentially cause health problems. For those seeking alternatives to bottles with BPA, replacement options are available, but what to do with those old bottles with the #7 stamped on the bottom? Below are ideas for those who are conscious of their waste, and do not want to contribute to the landfill.
- Paperweight/doorstop: Fill the bottle with water or sand to create a handy doorstop for the home or office, or a paperweight with an outdoorsy look.
- Training deadweight: Again, filling the bottle with water or sand turns an empty bottle into deadweight one can load up in the backpack when training for a backpacking trip or mountaineering adventure.
- Pee bottle: A must for those who are mountaineering or winter camping and do not want to get out of a warm sleeping bag to relieve themselves at night. Make sure the bottle is clearly labeled so that someone doesn’t accidently take a swig of urine.
- First aid kit: Store small first aid supplies in a bottle to keep them dry. Items such as band aids, 2×2 and 3×3 pads, a small CPR shield, a roll of medical tape, alcohol prep pads, iodine pads, small tubes of creams, and small trauma shears can all fit into a wide-mouth water bottle.
- Lantern: Turn on a headlamp or small flashlight and leave it in an empty bottle. Assembling a few multi-colored bottles together can make a fun alternative to a campfire. Commercially-made lights designed for water bottles are also available, such as the Lightcap200 from Sollight. This water bottle cap uses solar energy to power a light that can be used to create a water bottle lamp.
Climbing and Water Sports
- Storing chalk powder: Rock climbers who use chalk to keep their hands from sweating while on a climb, can store extra chalk powder in a bottle and easily carry it to the crag.
- Dry storage container: Kayakers, canoeists, and rafters can use their old water bottles to keep items dry, such as small notebooks, pens, maps, film canisters, memory cards for digital cameras, and cell phones.
- Anchors: Fill two or three bottles with sand or quick drying concrete, and clip together with a carabiner to create an anchor for the canoe or raft.
Around the House
- Loose change: Old bottles are a perfect place for storing those leftover coins.
- Workshop storage: Can be used to store small items, such as nuts and bolts in the home workshop, or bike parts.