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Eco-Friendly Hydration: Recyclability of Contigo Bottles

When it comes time to recycle your trusty Contigo water bottle, you may find yourself wondering: Can these convenient containers be recycled? In this blog post, I’ll provide a helpful guide on determining if your specific Contigo bottle is eligible for recycling.

From materials to lids and straws, continue reading this article for my in-depth insight on recycling Contigo bottles. I’ll also provide tips on determining when it’s time to let go of your trusty bottle in favor of a new one. There’s valuable information ahead on properly preparing your Contigo for recycling, so keep reading!

Key Takeaways:

  • Contigo bottles are primarily made from recyclable plastic #7 but check yours for the recycling symbol to confirm
  • Contigo stainless steel insulated bottles are recyclable, including caps and lid parts
  • The bottle itself, lid, straw, and any removable silicone or plastic pieces can typically be recycled
  • Signs it’s time to recycle include cracking, cloudiness, worn paint, and loose/damaged parts
  • Properly rinse and disassemble before placing your Contigo bottle in the recycling bin

What Materials Are Contigo Water Bottles Made From?

The key component in understanding, if your Contigo is recyclable, is identifying what materials it’s made of. Most Contigo water bottles consist of:

  • Durable plastic polymer resin, typically Eastman Tritan copolyester plastic marked with recycling code #7
  • Recyclable stainless steel
  • Silicone or plastic lids, straws, handles, and removable internal pieces
  • Decorative external coatings like paint or powder coat finishes

The good news is that the Tritan plastic that makes up the body of most Contigo bottles is recyclable in most municipal recycling programs. Be sure to check your bottle for the chasing arrow recycling symbol with a number inside to confirm (usually #7 for Tritan plastic).

As per Contigo’s website:

“Here at Contigo®, we take health and quality very seriously. All of our plastic water bottles are BPA free and many are also made from FDA approved Eastman Tritan™. Eastman Tritan™ is far more durable than a traditional plastic and helps resist against stains and odors.
Our stainless steel water bottles are also BPA free and are made from food-grade stainless steel.”

Now that you know Contigo’s main materials, let’s talk about how to tell if your specific bottle is eligible for recycling. There’s more great info ahead on properly preparing your Contigo items for the recycling bin, so keep reading!

How Can You Tell If Your Contigo Bottle Is Recyclable?

The best way to determine if your Contigo can be recycled is to check the bottom or sides of the bottle for an engraved recycling symbol. This is typically the number 7 chasing arrow for the Tritan plastic material. Silicone and plastic lids, straws, and removable internal pieces will also be marked with recycling codes.

If your Contigo bottle and components lack visible recycling symbols, check Contigo’s website for specifications for your specific model. You can also contact your local recycling program to ask if Tritan plastic containers are accepted.

I’ll provide even more tips below on making sure the various components of your Contigo go into the appropriate recycling stream. First up – what parts of a Contigo bottle tend to be the most recyclable? Keep reading to find out!

What Parts of a Contigo Bottle Are Most Recyclable?

The most recyclable components of Contigo’s bottles are:

  • The plastic body or outer shell, often made from Tritan plastic, is marked with recycling #7
  • Removable inner pieces like straws and silicone seals: Check for recycling symbols
  • Plastic lids: Recycle these separately from metal lids

The silicone mouthpieces and seals can go into normal plastic recycling if marked. Painted external coatings on Contigo bottles may need to be removed prior to recycling; check with your local program.

I’ll give tips below on detaching lids and straws so the Contigo components end up in the right recycling streams. First, let’s talk about whether Contigo’s plastic contains BPA and if it’s still recyclable.

Are the Plastic Components of Contigo Bottles BPA-Free and Recyclable?

The good news is that Contigo utilizes BPA-free and recyclable Tritan plastic copolyester for the bodies and components of their water bottles. This durable Eastman plastic is certified to meet FDA standards for food contact use.

So you can rest assured that the plastic itself is BPA-free and eligible for recycling in most municipal programs that take plastics marked #7. Just be sure to thoroughly wash out any food residue before placing your Contigo bottle or pieces in the recycling bin.

Next up – what about those screw-on lids, handy straws, and mouthpieces? Read on for tips on detaching and recycling these Contigo components.

Can Contigo Lids and Straws Be Recycled Along with the Bottle?

Contigo’s plastic screw lids, attached straws, and removable mouthpieces can typically be recycled, but they often need to go in a separate plastic recycling stream from the bottle itself. Here are some best practices:

  • Unscrew plastic lids and detach removable silicone mouthpieces
  • Place loose plastic lids and mouthpieces in your plastics recycling bin
  • Keep any straws, handles, etc attached to the bottle
  • Recycle metal lids or rings in scrap metal recycling bins if possible

By separating lids and mouthpieces from the bottles, you give the Contigo components the best chance of actually being recycled. Loose, small pieces tend to fall through sorting machinery if left attached to bottles.

I’ve covered a lot so far on determining if your Contigo bottle is recyclable and properly preparing it for recycling. Next up: how to actually dispose of your Contigo for recycling.

How to Properly Dispose of Your Contigo Bottle for Recycling?

Once you’ve determined your Contigo bottle and components are recyclable, make sure you take these steps before placing them in the recycling bin:

  • Thoroughly wash all components with soap and hot water
  • Detach any plastic lids, silicone mouthpieces, handles, etc
  • Keep attached straws, handles, etc on the bottle
  • Shake out excess water and allow to air dry
  • Check if printed coatings must be removed
  • Place loose plastic pieces in plastic recycling
  • Put the bottle in the plastic recycling bin

By cleaning and separating the pieces, you ensure no food, liquid, or dirt contaminates the recycling streams. This gives your Contigo bottle the best chance at a second life!

As your Contigo bottle wears out from frequent use, when do you know it’s time to retire it to the recycling bin? I’ll cover warning signs to watch for next.

What Are the Signs of Wear That Indicate It’s Time to Recycle Your Contigo Bottle?

It’s amazing how long these durable bottles can last, but watch for these signs of wear indicating your Contigo should be recycled:

  • Cracking, crazing, or clouding of the plastic
  • Peeling or worn paint on printed external surfaces
  • Difficulty sealing lids, loose internal pieces
  • Damaged threads, broken handles, or attachments
  • Persistent odors or stains inside the bottle

By recycling your Contigo once these issues arise, you keep additional years of use left for a brand new Contigo bottle. This eliminates waste and honors the lifecycle of these handy containers.


I hope this guide gave you clear insight into determining if your Contigo bottle is recyclable. By checking for plastic resin codes and preparing your bottle and components properly, you can feel confident placing worn Contigos into your local plastic recycling bins.

Remember to detach lids and mouthpieces, rinse all parts thoroughly, and shake out excess liquid before recycling. Together, through awareness and action, we can keep these convenient containers out of the trash and in circulation longer.

Have additional questions about recycling Contigo or other reusable bottles? Check out the FAQ section below.


Q: Do I need to remove print or powder coatings from my Contigo prior to recycling?

A: In most cases, these decorative coatings will burn off during the recycling process so removal is unnecessary. But do check with your local program in case they need to be stripped.

Q: Can I recycle Contigo bottles if they have odors, stains, or residue inside that won’t wash out completely?

A: Strong odors, stains, and residue could contaminate recycling streams. It’s best to discard overly-soiled bottles in the regular trash. Lightly stained or smelled bottles are often still accepted for recycling.

Q: What about recycling the internal rubber seals, gaskets, O-rings, and valve pieces?

A: These small rubber components can typically be recycled with other plastic Contigo parts as long as you confirm your local program accepts these materials. Silicone mouthpieces are often marked with recycling symbols to verify.

About Me

I’m Paul Burkhardt, an expert in water and water treatment since 2006 with in-depth experience not only in treating water but also in helping to provide people with healthier, high-quality drinking water.

I’ve helped thousands of people with their drinking water questions, including what kind of water bottle might be best for them and their lifestyle.

If you’d like more information about me, please check out the links below or read more here:

Paul Burkhardt

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