How Long Does Distilled Water Last (Explained)

Whether you’re drinking distilled water daily, or only buying it every once in a while for your steam iron, at some point you may begin to wonder does this water go bad? How long does distilled water last?

Well, if you’re distilling water at home using a steam distiller, on more than one occasion, you may consider storing some water in case of an emergency and you are not sure how to go about that.

Read on as we answer any questions or doubts about proper storage, shelf life, and “going bad” of distilled water, this article is for you.

What Is Distilled Water?

Distilled water is simply said to be the purified water. This water is prepared by boiling the original water such that vapors are formed and then these vapors are condensed.

Two types of impurities may be present in a substance. These are volatile and non-volatile. Volatile impurities are those type of impurities which evaporates when the substance (here water) is boiled.

While Non-volatile are those who don’t get evaporated on boiling. The process of condensation is done in a new container because non-volatile impurities are left in the first container. This is the reason why water is condensed in an impurity-free container.

Can You Drink Distilled Water?

can you drink distilled water

Yes! You can drink distilled water. There are many benefits of drinking distilled water such as.

  1. Distilled water is commonly used in steam irons, aquariums, watering plants, in the cooling systems of cars, laboratory experiments, and medical devices.
  2. Also, it has been said that distilled water improves your health.
  3. According to LiveStrong, it is said that people take distilled water as sports drinks because it doesn’t contain sodium and helps in preventing fluid retention.
  4. It is also used as a sports drink because it reduces weight also.
  5. Distilled water is also used in many home appliances. For example, in a coffee maker.

It is best advised to use distilled water because distilled water does not leave any residue in the appliance.  Hence increases the efficiency and life of an appliance.

How to Store Distilled Water?

The usual storage guidelines for distilled water are very similar to “plain” water. Always, ensure you keep the unopened bottle or container in a cool place away from sunlight. Once you open the bottle, remember to always keep the container sealed tightly when it’s not in use.

How To Store Distilled Water: For Home Appliances

Now let’s discuss storing water for purposes other than drinking. If this is the case, keep the product away from solvents and chemicals such as gasoline, paint thinners, household cleaners, and dry cleaning chemicals. Just to be on a safer side.

If you’re storing the distilled water for the long term, a high-density polyethylene container (HDPE) is highly recommended. Although, there’s no point in purchasing one if you’re only storing a few ounces at a time for ironing.

How To Store Distilled Water: For Drinking

If you’re storing distilling water at home for drinking purposes, a glass container for water is highly recommended, as many home water distillers come with a glass tank. However, a plastic BPA-free food-grade bottle will be just fine too.

If you’d like to store some water for emergency purposes, one big or a couple of smaller containers will do the job. Again, always ensure they’re made for contact with food.

The theory is the distilled water will stay safe indefinitely, provided that it’s sealed tightly, but to be on a safer side you can always change the water every few months especially if it’s in a plastic container.

How Long Does Distilled Water Last?

distilled water

This depends on how you plan to use it and as long as the container or jug is tightly sealed, it should easily last 3-5 years. But if it comes with an expiration date on the label, that’s a decent place to start.

If you need the water for drinking purposes, I’d go about it as if it was bottled water. This means you should finish the bottle within a couple of days, a week tops.

But if you’re using the distilled water for any home or garage appliances, it should easily last years from the production date after opening in good shape. Of course, a couple of months past the production date the water should be still perfectly fine.

Shelf Life Of Distilled Water

As air hits the distilled water, naturally the conductivity of the distilled water increases over time and some contamination will occur.

However, due to the purity of distilled water, the contamination that will occur will be less compared to normal mineral water.

On the contrary, the container or bottle you store your distilled water in will inevitably prolong or deteriorate the shelf life of your water.

For example, plastic containers can seep unwanted substances or chemicals into distilled water and reduce its quality at a rapid rate.

Read Also: When Can Babies Drink Distilled Water

How To Tell If Your Distilled Water Has Gone Bad?

According to MedicalNewsToday, there are some things to check on before drinking distilled water. These are listed below:

  • Always check the quality of the tap from which we are taking the distilled water.
  • Check the taste of the water.
  • Always check the minerals and vitamins.
  • Always check the cost of the distilled water.
  • Always check the expiration date.

Also, these are some of the causes because of which the distilled water becomes bad:

  • The distilled water leaches the minerals from the metal of the container in which it is stored.
  • If it is kept open, then it will absorb carbon dioxide and becomes contaminated.
  • It has very few or no minerals in it.
  • It has a bad taste because the air, which is present in the water, leaves it during the boiling process.
  • The water has exceeded the expiration date.

Here are some signs which signify that distilled water is bad:

  • Distilled water contains chlorine which is very bad for health.
  • Distilled water is acidic as it absorbs carbon dioxide.
  • There are no dissolved minerals in the distilled water. That is why it absorbs toxic substances.

Read Also: How Much Water Should I Drink While Breastfeeding?


Now you’ve known the answer to your question “how long does distilled water last?”. Always remember distilled water remains safe if you close the container immediately after opening it. Usually, sealed distilled waters last between 3 to 5 years. Therefore, always check the label for details.

However, if you plan on drinking the water, finish it within 5 to 7 days. If it’s going to be used in various appliances, it should last at least a year if stored properly.

Keep the container sealed, away from light, and at a relatively cool temperature, and ensure you store distilled water in a glass or HDPE containers for best results as plastic tends to leach a tiny amount of chemicals into the water.

I hope this article was helpful? If you have any questions or would like to share your tips and experiences so far, kindly drop your comment or suggestion down below. We would love to hear them.