Camping: Cleaning Hydration Bladders

Camping: Cleaning Hydration Bladders

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When I was in the service I was witness to some guys putting some tobacco sauce inside someone’s hydration bladder. I remember thinking it was pretty funny at the time, but changed my mind when I saw how hard it was to actually clean one out.

This post shows how to easily start cleaning hydration bladders with efferdent.

I don’t know how effective this would be to remove oleoresin capsicum from a water bladder, but I know that many backpackers (and military servicemen) use the method below to clean out their hydration packs.

Efferdent, or any generic brand of anti-bacterial cleaner tablets used for cleaning dentures is gentle enough for sterilizing the inside of water bladders.

To use, fill the hydration bladder up to about 2/3 of capacity and drop 1 Efferent tablet into the bladder for each Liter of water.

Before long, the tablets will start fizzing and turn the water in the bladders blue.

The fizzing oxidizes any bacteria present in the bladder, killing and dissolving it.

For maximum effect, tip the bladder over and make sure the blue solution touches all surfaces in the interior of the bladder.
When the blue water turns clear in that classic Efferdent way, rinse the bladder out thoroughly with clean water, fold it up and recap until next use. The biggest thing to remember is to only fill to 2/3 capacity, and to rinse it out VERY well.

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