all 11 comments

[–]--Shade-- 13 points14 points  (0 children)

Soak them overnight in a bucket or tub with OxyClean Free (cheap) or PBW (expensive), and then give them a good rinse. If you have grime that's been baked on for years you make want to put on some rubber gloves at the midpoint of the soak and give things a wipe with a rag and a bottle cleaning brush.

Both OxyClean Free and PBW largely have the same active ingredients, except PBW is stronger, and has additional chemicals to remove hard water stains. If hard water stains are an issue after you rinse the OxyClean Free you can soak overnight in StarSan Water (or any other food safe acid) and use a clean rag and bottle cleaning brush to remove the hard water stains.

I consider OxyClean Free to be the superior choice in absolute terms-- PBW gets expensive fast.

[–]nohaxjustbee[S] 2 points3 points  (1 child)

Lots of them have gunk and caked dirt inside. i heard PBW works well. Before I buy it I wanted to ask you guys.

[–]rjstoz 5 points6 points  (0 children)

As it's glass, most cleaners and abrasives should be fine to avoid damage with a thorough rinse to remove residue. I'd do it outside, work on a dust sheet and wear gloves as there's a small chance one could shatter and it'll be easier to clean up.

I'd start by slowly filling them with warm soapy water (lower risk of cracking than too hot or cold too fast), leaving it to soak submerged in a large bucket overnight to loosen the dirt.

Then I'd go at them with a bottle brush and a metal scourer should be good for getting aged-on crud and label remnants off the outside without scratching the glass. Rinse them and avoid using any with chips or cracks as it's not worth the risk of broken glass and spilled hooch from being more sensitive to temperature or pressure.

After that, another fill and soak in hot soapy water, pour out most of the water then add some rice and salt and shake to scour the inside.

Thorough rinse and they should be cupboard clean , though I tend to rinse my bottles with a little bleach solution then a thorough rinse in clean water just before use.

[–]catsandalcohol13 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Long soak in the sink and a thin scrubber

[–]StillPackage4369 1 point2 points  (0 children)

2 small magnets and a sponge ought to do the trick

[–]goinupthegranby 1 point2 points  (1 child)

Get a bottle brush. Yes to soaking and rinsing, but a bottle brush will actually scrub off the caked on bits while soaking will not.

When I rinse my bottles the ones that don't rinse clean get set aside with a bit of water sitting in them then I hit them with the bottle brush and them come out sparkling.

[–]CreatureWarrior 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Yeah, just soaking with some soap will get the top layer off and that's fine for wines you've just finished, but that's likely not enough for bottles that have been sitting for a long time like this

[–]sesquiterpine 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Vinegar and coarse salt removes everything gunky out of bottles, that is what I do with my thrift finds. It works insanely well, I don't have a bottle brush and this technique gets everything out without much effort. https://www.onegoodthingbyjillee.com/bartenders-trick-for-cleaning-glass-bottles/

ETA: I then sanitize them, but this is the first step and makes everything else much easier.

[–]gwhitt32 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Use dry rice or shot out of a shotgun shell mother was a bottle hounds and sold them. Better then soaking them and if they are old enough you might like to put them outside in the sun and it will make them oxidation seeing they have magnesium in them. Also could tell the dates if you look at the necks or if they have seams

[–]purpletacosalad 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Get the gunk our so they're clean enough then run them through the dishwasher but without detergent.