5 Simple Ways To Make Homemade Sparkling Water

How-To Guides

Sliced cucumbers in a glass of sparkling waterDo you love drinking carbonated beverages, but you’re on your way to a healthier lifestyle? Sparkling water can be an excellent option for you. Unlike sodas, beers, and other fizzy drinks, it doesn’t contain any artificial sweeteners or harmful acids that can wreak havoc on your diet.

To make sparkling water at home, you only need water and carbon dioxide gas. You may use a soda maker, seltzer bottle, or any DIY carbonation system to carbonate your regular water and make it bubbly and more fun to drink.

In this post, we’ll share some simple ways on how to make sparkling water at home. No need to rush to the store every time you need to refresh with your favorite drink. Making homemade carbonated water will also help you to save money and reduce your plastic bottle waste.

Different Ways to Make Sparkling Water at Home

You can use any clean and potable water for your sparkling water. Take note that cold water carbonates better than room temperature water. As a general rule of thumb, the colder it is, the better. Also, we recommend using filtered water as water with high chlorine content doesn’t make good sparkling water.

1. Using a soda siphon or seltzer bottleVintage Soda Siphons

Using a soda siphon or seltzer bottle is one of the most popular and easiest ways to make sparkling water at home. Instead of CO2 tanks, it uses CO2 cartridges to carbonate water. It is ideal for people who drink carbonated water occasionally and would not want to use CO2 tanks. Portable and simple to use, it is also perfect for on-the-go and outdoor applications.

What You’ll Need

  • Soda siphon or seltzer bottle - Specifically made for making, storing, and dispensing carbonated drinks, the soda siphon can maintain internal pressure and prevent its contents from going flat. It features a container, which holds the water that needs carbonating, a head where you insert the CO2 chargers, and a plunger or button that releases the gas into the water.
Soda siphon systems come in various sizes and can hold water ranging from one up to two quarts. Feel free to buy the one that suits your needs depending on how much sparkling water you want to make each time. 
It is also important to remember that most soda siphon systems only accept water. However, you can add flavorings to your water once carbonation is complete.
  • CO2 chargers - A CO2 charger is the one responsible for carbonating your drinks. They come in different sizes, so make sure to buy the one that fits your seltzer bottle. Generally, one cartridge carbonates one bottle of water. You may want to buy extras to make them last for a while.

Directions

  1. Take off the top of the soda siphon bottle and fill it up with chilled water.
  2. Once full, screw the top back on tightly, making sure it is not leaking.
  3. Following the manufacturer’s instructions, insert a loaded CO2 charger into the bottle’s cartridge holder and screw it into place. Be cautious not to press the CO2 release when attaching the cartridge, or you may accidentally waste some carbon dioxide gas.
  4. Give the plunger or button a press to release the gas into the water.
  5. Once you empty the CO2 canister, shake the bottle well to distribute the carbonation evenly.
  6. Unscrew the CO2 cartridge holder and replace it with the cap.
  7. You can serve the newly-carbonated water right away or refrigerate the bottle for three to five hours for the best carbonation. You may also transfer it to another bottle and store it in the fridge for later use. Homemade sparkling water can last for approximately two to three days in the refrigerator before starting to go flat.
  8. If you want some flavors in your carbonated water, you can add flavoring syrup or juice.

2. Using a soda maker or sparkling water makerSoda maker on the table

Currently, using a soda maker is the most common way to make sparkling water at home. Soda makers or sparkling water makers are easily accessible nowadays with the many companies offering them. They are safe to use, easy to set up, and efficient, giving you the freedom to have sparkling water any time you need.

If you are a frequent drinker of carbonated water, investing in one of these machines is a good idea.

What You’ll Need

  • Soda maker or sparkling water maker - A soda maker or sparkling water maker is a machine specifically designed for making carbonated water. Typically, it comes with a CO2 tank or canister and a carbonating bottle. Some systems may also include adapters to allow using other types or sizes of CO2 canisters.
The CO2 tank or canister can last for months (or maybe years), depending on how often you use the machine. Once emptied, you only need to replace it with a full one.

Directions

  1. Attach the loaded CO2 canister to the soda maker according to the product manual’s instructions.
  2. Fill the carbonating bottle with cold water up to the marked line.
  3. Snap or screw the carbonating bottle into the machine (depends on the manufacturer’s instructions).
  4. After ensuring that the bottle is securely attached, press the carbonating button to carbonate the water. These machines allow you to control the fizziness of your sparkling water.
  5. Press the carbonating button at least three times.
  6. Taste the carbonated product to check the carbonation. If you prefer more carbonation, reattach the bottle to the machine and press the button a few more times to induce more bubbling.
  7. Detach the bottle from the soda maker and serve it instantly or store it in the fridge for later use. You may also take the bottle on the go.
  8. Sparkling water made with soda makers will last for about two to three days in the fridge before going flat.
  9. You can flavor the carbonated water as you like.

 3. Using DIY Carbonation SystemCarbon dioxide tank

This method requires you to make your very own carbonation machine. If you have the time and tools and love doing DIY projects, then this method is the best way to make sparkling water at home. Although some parts can be a bit pricey, a DIY carbonation system will prove to be cost-effective in the long run.

Compared with soda maker machines that are commercially available, DIY carbonation systems can be more versatile. You can install adjustable CO2 regulators that will allow you to fine-tune the carbonation level in your water instead of being stuck with factory-set ones that have a predefined pressure limit.

What You’ll Need

  • CO2 tank - Any CO2 tank of any size will do for this project. You can even use a CO2 paintball tank. You may find an empty CO2 tank and refill it at any local welding supply shops, sporting stores, paintball facilities, or homebrew hobby shops.
  • Gas regulator - The gas regulator controls the pressure and amount of gas inside the CO2 tank and ensures that the gas will flow evenly into the carbonating bottle. If you’d like to visualize how much gas remains inside the tank, we recommend using a dual gauge regulator.
  • Gas line with ball-lock connector - This part connects the CO2 regulator to your carbonating bottle to allow gas flow into the water that needs carbonating. The ball-lock connector holds back the gas flow and releases it once the tip of the carbonator bottle cap depressed the inner valve button.
  • Carbonator bottle cap - This cap screws onto the carbonating bottle and ensures a leak-free connection to the gas supply.
  • Standard soda bottle - This one plays the carbonating bottle where you put the water to be carbonated. Make sure to use bottles that can withstand high pressure to avoid any accident.
  • Tools - You also need tools to help make things easier, including scissors, screwdriver, pipe wrench (or slot and groove pliers), and thread seal tape.

Note: Work on this project in a well-ventilated space as a high concentration of CO2 may cause severe breathing problems. Don’t use any enclosed room or area.

Assembling the DIY Carbonation System

  1. Attach the CO2 regulator to the gas tank. Using the pipe wrench and the thread seal tape, secure the regulator’s threaded nut tightly to prevent any gas leak.
  2. Attach the gas line to the barb on the bottom of the regulator. Make sure to put a hose clamp over the gas line’s open-end before sliding the hose over the barb. Then, use the screwdriver to tighten the hose clamp over the connection, ensuring a snug fit.

Directions

  1. Turn the tank’s main valve to open the system. Use the pressure adjustment knob (or screw) on the regulator to control the pressure level.
  2. Fill your soda bottle with cold water or liquid, leaving enough room for carbon dioxide. Then, squeeze the bottle until the water reaches the brim and screw on the carbonator bottle cap. This way, no other gas remains inside the bottle.
  3. While the gas supply is off, connect the bottle to the ball-lock connector of the gas line.
  4. Turn on the gas using the regulator’s cutoff switch to let some CO2 flow into the carbonation bottle. While the bottle inflates, keep the gas turned on and shake it for 20 to 30 seconds, dissolving the CO2 into the water.
  5. Turn off the gas and unscrew the carbonator bottle cap.
  6. Enjoy a bottle of homemade sparkling water.

4.Using Vinegar and Baking SodaBaking soda (sodium bicarbonate) and vinegar on a wooden table

One of the cheapest ways to make sparkling water at home is that this method doesn’t require any carbonation machine. You will only need common household materials and some basic science.

This method comes from the idea that mixing vinegar and baking soda produces carbon dioxide. The CO2 is then transferred to the bottle filled with water, carbonating its contents. You can carbonate any liquid using this technique. However, sediments from the baking soda and vinegar mixture can be transferred to the carbonated product, resulting in a not-so-pure drink.

What You’ll Need

  • Plastic soda bottles (2) - Only use plastic bottles that can handle high pressure. Using glass bottles can be dangerous as they may shatter under pressure.
  • Food-grade tubing - You will need approximately three feet of tubing to transfer the CO2 from one bottle to another. You may use the same ones found in aquariums.
  • Baking soda and vinegar - The two main ingredients that will allow you to create carbon dioxide. Keep in mind that using too much vinegar and baking soda may result in a foamy explosion and can make a massive mess in your kitchen, so be careful to use the right amount.
  • Toilet paper - You will need toilet paper to wrap some baking soda.
  • Tools - To complete this project, you will have to use scissors, a drill with a drill bit smaller than the tubing diameter, and a funnel.

Note: Work on this project in a well-ventilated space as a high concentration of CO2 may cause severe breathing problems. Don’t use any enclosed room or area.

You may also consider using glasses for additional safety measures.

Directions

  1. Take the caps off of the soda bottles. Then, using a drill, make a hole in the middle of each bottle cap.
  2. Cut both ends of the tube at an angle for easy insertion into the caps.
  3. Insert each end of the tube into the drilled bottle caps. One end should reach the bottom of the bottle, and the other should be at least one inch inside the bottle. You may screw the bottle caps on to check.
  4. Using a funnel, pour the liquid to be carbonated into the bottle with the tube down its bottom. Make sure to leave some space (about 1 ½ inch) at the top, then screw the cap back on.
  5. Fill about 1/3 of the other bottle with vinegar using a funnel.
  6. Put one tablespoon of baking soda on a double sheet of toilet paper and roll it.
  7. Drop the baking soda rolled in toilet paper into the vinegar and screw the cap as quickly as you can. Then, shake the bottle.
  8. Grab the other bottle (the one with your drink) and shake it vigorously. Bubbles will start coming out of the tube to carbonate your water.
  9. Keep shaking until bubbles stop coming out of the tube.
  10. Let the carbonated liquid sit for one to two minutes.
  11. Pinch the tube above your carbonated drink bottle to prevent the release of CO2 from the other pressurized bottle. Then, while pinching the tube, open the carbonated liquid bottle slowly.
  12. With the tube still pinched, bring the vinegar and baking soda mixture bottle to the sink and release the tube.
  13. Enjoy your homemade sparkling water.

5. Using Dry Ice

Smoke fog and dry ice glacial

Dry ice is frozen carbon dioxide gas. When added to water, it dissolves and induces carbonation. Although it is one of the simplest ways to make sparkling water at home, we do not recommend using dry ice for your daily sparkling water needs as storing it can be problematic. On the other hand, using dry ice is an excellent option for carbonating large amounts of beverages.

What You’ll Need

  • Dry ice - You will need to take some extra precautions when using dry ice. For one, it can cause severe freezer burns, and you should not consume it in its solid-state. Be careful not to touch it with bare hands, so always remember to use tongs or a spoon.

Directions

  1. If you want your water with extra zest, add the flavorings before tossing the dry ice into the mixture.
  2. Add one pound of dry ice to every one gallon of water. Don’t cover the container after adding dry ice to your water, as it can cause the pressure to build up and may lead to an explosion of foamy mess.
  3. Wait for all the dry ice to dissolve. You can tell that the vaporization is complete when no more fog or smoke comes out of the mixture.
  4. Stir the carbonated water to be sure that no more fog or smoke will come out from it.

Note: Work on this project in a well-ventilated space as a high concentration of CO2 may cause severe breathing problems. Don’t use any enclosed room or area.

Make Your Own Sparkling Water Today

If you love drinking carbonated water, why not try making your very own? With the many carbonation systems available in the market nowadays, it is more convenient and practical to learn how to make sparkling water at home. There are also fun and exciting methods for those who enjoy doing DIY projects.

Which one of these five sparkling water-making methods would you like to try? Let us know in the comment section. And if you find this article helpful, don’t forget to share it with your friends who love carbonated water.


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  • Thomas Clarence on

    It was really informative when you mentioned that dry ice is carbon dioxide gas that is frozen. Since the gas is frozen, it seems like it would be important to use gloves when you are handling the ice. You wouldn’t want to damage your fingertips and cause them to go numb because of the freezing temperature. https://www.unitedcityicecube.com/dry-ice


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