I have an empty aluminum Ether bottle (Shipping name diethyl Ether) that I'd like to use as a large drinking bottle as this is thick aluminum. Is it dangerous? Here is some of the info on the bottle.

Chemical Composition: (C-2 H-5)2-O f.w.74.12.

Name: Ether Purified (For Fat Extraction)

Other: Mallinckrodt (Brand?) 5.51 lb


Diethyl Ether 60-29-7

Ethyl Alcohol 64-17-5

  • $\begingroup$ SAFETY FIRST - I'm sure it is "cool" to turn some such odd container into a drinking vessel, but the rule of thumb for chemical safety is never to use some container that had chemicals for food storage and visa-versa. $\endgroup$
    – MaxW
    Jan 6, 2017 at 6:59
  • $\begingroup$ If it ever had something in it that's unsafe, don't use it for food purposes. Is ether safe, for the purpose at hand? Yes, but you have to be sure nobody ever used the botttle e.g. to store used ether for recycling or as a general waste bottle. $\endgroup$
    – Karl
    Dec 16, 2017 at 18:14

2 Answers 2


Mallinckrodt is the chemical manufacturer. The ethanol is added to the ether to prevent peroxides from forming in the ether (like an antioxidant). If you wash and rinse the container thoroughly a few times, then it should be fine.

  • $\begingroup$ Okay, thanks. Few? Like three? Would I die if it isn't washed properly? $\endgroup$
    – Keaton
    May 27, 2014 at 1:22
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Likely, all the ether (and ethanol) has evaporated so the amount in the container should not pose a problem. Washing it will decrease the amounts even more. Twice would be adequate and three times is even better. $\endgroup$
    – LDC3
    May 27, 2014 at 1:24
  • $\begingroup$ I'd do 10. I figure if that is good enough for analytical chemistry, it is good enough to drink out of. Three is only good enough for synthetic chem. $\endgroup$
    – Canageek
    May 27, 2014 at 7:27

I'm sure the bottle itself will be safe to use, but I would strongly recommend that you remove or destroy the label. Mislabeled items sometimes lead to unanticipated consequences. Admittedly, that also takes some of the fun out of it.


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