People urged to check ‘hidden code’ on hot water bottles to see if they’re dangerous

Emily Sergeant Emily Sergeant - 24th November 2022

As the temperatures drop and and we all look for ways to keep ourselves warm this winter, experts are now warning us to check the ‘hidden code’ on hot water bottles to make sure they’re safe enough to use.

With the days getting colder as time goes on, but the rising cost of living crisis sadly continuing to make its impact felt nationwide, reaching to turn the heating on is something a lot of us will unfortunately be thinking twice about this year, which means that hot water bottles are likely to become a go-to accessory for many.

But now, experts are warning of the importance of knowing the ‘hidden code’ each hot water bottle has that indicates when it was made and how safe it will be to use.

Old hot water bottles are more likely to be damaged and rip open when they come into contact with boiling water, which means there is a higher risk of them splitting and subsequently scolding people, resulting in serious injury.

After being contacted by a parent whose child suffered third-degree burns from a burst hot water bottle, and after hospitals warning this type of injury is a regular occurrence, consumer expert Alice Beer appeared on ITV This Morning this week to explain the hot water bottle ‘hidden code’ system and why it’s so important.


It’s all to do with the year the hot water bottle was made and the month within that year in which it was manufactured.

Explaining in more depth with an example hot water bottle on set, Beer said: “You don’t know about it because this is a brand new hot water bottle in a fluffy cover. Why would you ever take it off unless it got dirty? I’m sorry, but I think this is the worst system for printing a date because it’s so confusing.


“Inside you have got a daisy wheel date. It’s got 12 segments and in the middle of this one you have got a 22. This one was made in 2022. Then you have 12 segments around the outside and those are the months.

“You can tell the month it was manufactured from when the dots end. It’s got dots in eight segments so it was made in August.”

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Beer added that the number of dots on a hot water bottle indicates the week it was made.


On top of this, Beer also recommended that hot water bottles be replaced every two years, or whenever they stop smelling like rubber, and that people shouldn’t pour boiling water into their bottle and wait for it to cool down slightly first.

Featured Image – Amazon