Yes, stainless steel water bottles are recyclable, however, you cannot recycle them curbside.
After leaving your home, your curbside recyclables travel to a Materials Recovery Facility, or MRF, where they are sorted, crushed, baled, and shipped to a manufacturer for reuse. Your stainless steel water bottle doesn’t make the cut because it is uncrushable by design: Great for you — not so great for your local MRF.
Instead of tossing your bottle in the recycling bin, take it down to a scrap-metal yard and recycle it there! Reduce your carbon footprint by keeping your stainless steel bottle until you have other assorted metals to recycle, and make the trip once you’ve got a nice collection to turn over. If you don’t have a scrap-metal yard near you, consider these alternatives for reuse and disposal:
1. Donate steel bottles to a thrift store where families in need can use them.
2. Use your wide lipped water bottles to keep soup hot for lunch.
3. Store dry-food mixes, such as pancake mix, in them to bring with you on camping trips; just add water, shake, and pour onto a hot skillet.
4. Use 3 or more to make a children’s ring toss game (9 or more for 9-pin bowling!)
5. Designate an old steel water bottle for your pet — fill it up and keep it in the car so they always have water on the go.
6. Use it as a vase for holding fresh-cut flowers. When you don’t have fresh flowers in the house, use it to water your household plants.