What is the best drinking water container: BPA free plastic, glass, wood barrel or else?

Please mention any safe specific company brand.

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  1. 0 Votes

    Just plain glass is one of the safest possible things you can use. Glass is used in labs when they want to be sure chemical solutions inside will not have any effect on the container (and vice versa). Pyrex glass is also fine, it’s simply slightly altered to be able to handle high temperatures.

    There is an interesting exception for glass, which is lead crystal. It’s very beautiful and clear, and can be cut with sparkling edges. Unfortunately, the lead in the crystal does not end up being safe like the rest of glass ingredients. It’s somewhat ironic that the most expensive table glassware is also the worst for your health. The amount of lead from drinking from lead crystal is trivial, but that is not the case when liquids are stored in lead crystal. That should be completely avoided. (All those shows with upperclass British drinking from decanters? Bad, bad, bad. Although they didn’t know it, of course.) THe same kinds of problems happen with the art glass that’s used for stained glass windows, although it’s unusual to see tableware made from this.

    Plastic is usually not the best option for water storage or transportation, except where cost or convenience are critical factors. Not only is creating and destroying the plastic bad for the environment, quite a few kinds of plastic are toxic.

    (Even fast food wrappings leave toxic chemicals on the food! See URL below.)

    You might think wood is safe, and indeed it probably is when the barrels are specifically built to hold water. Certainly sailors have used them for 1,000s of years. Barrels used for wine and spirits will also be usable, but bear in mind that they are often selected for the chemicals they add. E.g., the tannin in wine comes from the wood.

    But also be cautious: Not all wood is safe — so don’t just make your own containers w/o research. Yew, for example, is poisonous. And many other plants are utterly deadly. 

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