The Hot Water Bottle – Use It For House Cleaning

updated: 06/10/2023


The Timeless Appeal of the Hot Water Bottle

As the nights get colder in autumn, many of us feel like hitting the bottle – the hot water bottle. When it comes to keeping warm while conserving energy and living more sustainably, the good old hottie has a lot to recommend.

Sustainability and Biodegradability

First of all, a proper hottie is made from rubber – which is, ultimately, a natural material that’s harvested in the form of sap from sustainably managed plantations. OK, it’s got a bit of this and that mixed in with it, but at the end of its life, as a hottie came from organic materials (mostly), it will biodegrade. And its life will be pretty long. I don’t know how old my hot water bottle is, but I think it’s older than my children…

Safety Considerations: Hottie vs. Electric Blanket

The hot water bottle is safer to use than the electric blanket to heat the bed. Hotties won’t electrocute you if they malfunction. This is not to say that hotties aren’t 100% foolproof. If the hottie is too old and you put boiling water into it and if it springs a hole (or the hottie is trodden on or sat on) you can get a nasty burn. Burns aren’t fatal, but they’re painful and scarring and are best avoided. You avoid getting scalded by a leaky hottie by not using boiling water… or by putting a bit of cold water down the bottom of the hottie and then adding in the boiling water.

Energy Efficiency and Bedtime Rituals

And speaking of boiling water, the hottie is pretty energy efficient, which is another advantage it has over the electric blanket. Using the kettle to heat the water is probably more efficient than running hot water out of the tap, and if you try the mixing method (cold water in first, then top up with boiling) you will be safe enough. And you can use some more of the boiling water in the kettle to make yourself a hot drink before bed – a good way to relax and to warm up ready for sleep. Just make sure the drink in question doesn’t contain caffeine. Chamomile tea is traditional, but cocoa, Horlicks, or just a spoonful of honey in a mix of hot water and milk are fine. Brush your teeth afterwards.

Reusing Hottie Water for Household Tasks

One of the other advantages of using a hottie is that you get to re-use the water afterwards. Don’t try to drink it, even if the water that went in was clean – it will have a bitter, rubbery taste from having sat in the hottie overnight (take my word for this – I’ve tried). But the water is fine for watering plants or doing house cleaning.

Beyond Bedtime: Other Uses for the Hottie

Hotties don’t just have to be used for heating at bedtime. A hottie may be your most energy-efficient option if you are working in a room that will warm up with the sunshine before long (so it’s not worth switching on the heater or lighting the fire) but is cold RIGHT NOW. It is more efficient to heat your body rather than the room. Unless there are lots of people in the room.

Step-by-Step Guide: Filling Your Hottie

How to fill a hottie:

1. Boil the kettle.

2. Put a bit of cold water (about a cup) into the hottie.

3. Add boiling water until the hottie starts to look nice and plump. Don’t over-fill it. You need a steady hand here and watch out for the “burp” of air escaping as you fill it.

4. Put in the stopper and tighten it about three-quarters.

5. Carefully squeeze the excess air out of the hottie (leaning the hottie against something vertical works best) and, while you’re still applying pressure, tighten the stopper fully.

6. Dry excess water out of the top of the hottie and from off the sides.

In conclusion, the hot water bottle, often overlooked in today’s modern age, remains a versatile and eco-friendly tool. Not only does it provide warmth on chilly nights, but its sustainable nature and energy efficiency make it a commendable choice for both personal comfort and household tasks. Whether you’re seeking a cosy bed companion or a means to conserve energy, the trusty “hottie” proves that sometimes, the simplest solutions are the most effective. Embracing its multifaceted uses can lead to a more sustainable and comfortable lifestyle.

About the author 

Nick Vassilev

Nick blogs about cleaning. He is a cleaning expert with more than 25 years of experience. He is also an NCCA-certified carpet cleaner. Founder and CEO of Anyclean.