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13 super rad things to do with plastic bottles

13 super rad things to do with plastic bottles

Like me, you probably consider yourself le expert recycleur. You rinse ’em, sort ’em, remove the caps and send them merrily back to the plant for re-processing. But what if you could find a more permanent home for some of your plastic bottles, by repurposing them into something more useful? You’d be surprised what those little bottles can do.

Here are 13 new and exciting things you can do with plastic bottles. Check ’em out.

1. Water bottle chandelier

It’s easy and pretty too. Tie bottles and lights together in any sort of configuration, and hang your creation from the ceiling.

Always use CFL or LED lights to avoid melting the plastic. For lovely colors, try using LED Christmas lights!

2. Dripless ice blocks

Fill bottles with water and freeze ’em, then use them instead of cooler ice, or take them on hikes and picnics, or give them to your pet rabbit on a hot day. EDIT: Do not give them to your rabbit! The rabbit will eat the bottle and die, and that’s horrible. Just ask Autumn, who found out the hard way.

3. Window farm planters

You can grow food year round in plastic bottles with a hydroponic Window Farm. Sweet!

4. Water bottle citrus juicer

Cut the bottom off a Poland Spring water bottle and VOILA! Juicer.

5. Roof tiles

Building a cob hut? Tool shed? Backyard fort? Do like the folks at Deen City Farm and put a trash roof on it.

6. DIY funnel

Zieak made this funnel out of a bottle and an old pen. Much better than trying to pour oil into a small hole, trust me on this.

7. Toilet tank filler

Fill a bottle with a little sand (or very small rocks) and a bunch of water, and put it in your toilet tank. It can save up to 10 gallons a day of clean water, according to The Daily Green.

8. Homemade fireworks

Not the most eco-friendly, but you can’t recycle the caps anyway right? So fill ’em with firework powder, tape ’em together and make ’em go boom.

Just be sure you moop the area afterward, kthx!

9. Juggling clubs (or free weights)

You’ll probably want to fill these with dirt or somethin’ to weight them better. Mark reports that they are too light to use when they’re empty. Clever though, eh? Yes, that is a toilet paper roll attached to a Perrier bottle, with bottle caps for the ends and assembled with masking tape. Fancy.

10. Energy-saving heat sink wall

The F10 House in Chicago was designed with one exterior wall covered in filled plastic bottles. In the winter, light hits the bottles and heats them, and heat is transfered to the house. In summer, the wall is shaded by another part of the house.

The architect recommends using dark bottles for better heat transfer. Noted!

11. Automatic plant waterers

Aqua Spikes are designed to fit onto old soda bottles. This way, you can save water (by applying it only where it’s needed), and obviously save time. Bonus: your plants might not die while you’re out of town.

Now I wonder if you could use Zieak’s funnel design, and make your own Aqua Spikes? Hmm. [EDIT: you totally can!]

12. DIY wind turbine

Low tech much? Yes, this is a bike wheel with cut-open bottles screwed to the rim. I couldn’t find much information on how well it works (or even who made it). Somebody go try it and report back!

13. Don’t buy plastic!

The End!

PS – got more upcycle ideas? I want to hear them.

Thanks to The Daily Green for sharing a bunch of these ideas.


  • freezing them might make them leak.

    I like the lights idea.

    But I don’t buy/use them so I don’t have any…

    • Nice Cat, right on.

      I grew up using frozen plastic bottles for all sorts of things, I can verify they rarely crack :)

  • i love all the ideas and that chandelier is soooo rad!
    but would be worried about anything with plastic water bottles and heat (heat sink wall) because of the BPAs.

    • But you would not drink the water from the heat sink wall!

  • Giant maracas! Cut holes and stick in some dog treats that are just smaller than the holes. Or cat treats. Stick one of those thin crackly ones in a sock and see what your cat/ferret/toddler thinks. I once amused a baby on a five hour flight with a pretzel bag in a sock. But that’s beside the point… sort of.


      I’d be worried about the cat treat idea for the same reason as the bunny cooler is a no-go… but I’ve seen dogs eat tons of plastic and be just fine, so I could endorse that for dogs.

      The sock thing is a great idea. You’ve seen this right?

    • How can I have not seen that???? I had not seen it. Someday someone is going to introduce that child to the phrase “let one rip” and it will be hilarious for the same reasons. I predict.

      And yeah, cats probably shouldn’t eat plastic. I guess. If you like them to live. WHICH I DO.

  • […] one for smaller containers like an indoor herb garden.As The Hun noted yesterday, you can also use 2-liter soda bottles with Aqua Spikes. You can probably apply the pen-shaft doohickey instead of an Aqua Spike, to keep […]

  • […] or even practical applications that replace the need for newly manufactured materials, like the 13 uses for plastic bottles as recently posted by our own ever lovin’ […]

  • We only drink tap water – fresh from our well in the woods….

    Processed drinks are not natural and not healthy –

  • Also have a look at this on YouTube: Solar bottle lights in the Philippines

    As well as in Chile:

    These are not tradhy YouTube links but 2 of many about water bottles, a bit of chlorine = a solar light!

  • Now you got me going on YouTube I see they also make Solar Water Heater in Brazil from plastic bottles.

    I think all videos are from ecoideasnet’s channel on YouTube!

    Fascinating stuff thanks!

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