How to Clean a Platypus Bladder (3 Simple Steps)

Having a hydration bladder is a great way to enjoy being out in nature while staying hydrated at all times. No more cutting your hikes or adventures short because you don’t have access to clean water.

If you want to keep your hydration bladder clean and usable for years to come, you should follow this guide on cleaning a Platypus Bladder.

You can clean your Platypus bladder using these three easy steps:

  1. Soak in warm water with a cleaning tablet
  2. Scrub and rinse
  3. Allow it to air dry

In this article, you will learn the in-depth steps to cleaning your Platypus bladder as well as what should be avoided.

Platypus Bladder

Steps to Clean Platypus Bladder

Follow these three easy steps to fully clean the Platypus bladder and keep it functional for many uses.

Step 1. Soak the Bladder

Fill the bladder halfway with hot water from the tap. Add in a little bit of cleaner. There are a variety of options for cleaning products, most of which may already be in your kitchen. Dish soap, vinegar, baking soda, and lemon juice are all common effective cleaners. These can be used individually or in combination with each other.

Alternatively, you can use a cleaning tablet that is effervescent in place of the cleaning products. No matter which cleaner you use, let the bladder soak for at least five minutes and no longer than thirty minutes.

Over a sink or basin, pinch the bite valve open so that the cleaning solution goes into the tube. Remove the bite valve and soak it in a bowl filled with soapy warm water.

Step 2. Scrub and Rinse

Use a bottle brush to scrub out the bladder after it has soaked. Be sure to get in the corners and around the opening so that no build-up occurs. There are bladder cleaning kits available that come with a tube cleaner to run through the bladder’s tube.

Alternatively, you can use a string with a knot tied in it. Just be sure the string is longer than the tube and the knot fits snugly so that it will scrape any residue off the inside of the tube.

Dump out the soapy water and rinse with clean hot water from the tap. Rinse out the bite valve as well.

Step 3. Air Dry

Remove the tube from the bladder to let that dry separately. All parts of the Platypus bladder should be allowed to air dry. For ease of drying, make sure the bladder is upside down to let all the water drip out. You can prop it up on a dish drying rack with a spatula or empty wine bottle.

Allow the tubing to dry by draping it over a clothes hanger or towel bar so that any excess water drips out. The bite valve can be set in the dish drying rack as well to dry. Some hydration bladder cleaning kits come with specialized drying equipment, which also works well but isn’t strictly necessary.

What Should You Avoid Doing When Cleaning a Platypus Bladder?

Do not put your Platypus bladder in the dishwasher. Some bladders that can be turned inside out can be effectively cleaned in the dishwasher, but the Platypus bladder is not one of them. The dishwasher will not be able to clean the hard to reach places such as the corners and around the opening valve so you would have to scrub it by hand anyway.

Never use boiling water when cleaning your Platypus bladder. Not only could it damage the bladder, but you could also burn yourself. If you are having issues with mold or mildew, use a little bit of bleach when you soak the bladder, but don’t use boiling water.

Use caution if you combine baking soda and vinegar or lemon juice as a cleaner. The resulting reaction will be very fizzy. While not harmful, it won’t feel very good to get a face full of cleaner. Point the bladder’s opening away from you and hold it over the sink to avoid making a mess.

Never store your Platypus bladder without allowing it to completely air dry first. Sealing up your bladder while there’s still moisture inside can encourage bacteria and mold growth.

How Can You Prevent Mold and Mildew in a Platypus Bladder?

Since Platypus bladders are made to store water, they can retain moisture quite well. A bladder that is not being used can be a breeding ground for mold and mildew. Here are a couple of tips for avoiding bacteria and mold growth in your Platypus bladder.

Ensure the bladder is completely dry before you put it away. Any retained moisture is a welcome invitation for mold and mildew to grow.

Stick your bladder in the freezer. Make sure that it is completely empty, otherwise, any water stored in it could expand the bladder beyond its stretching capabilities. By freezing your empty Platypus bladder, you’re storing it at a temperature too cold for any mildew, mold, or bacteria to thrive.

Follow these steps for keeping your Platypus bladder clean, and healthy hydration is all yours!

How Often Should You Wash The Platypus Bladder

At a minimum, you should clean a Platypus Bladder one to two times a month. This means it should be taken apart and deep cleaned for each individual section.

After each use of the bladder, it should at least be rinsed out and dried completely before being put away.