Skip to Content

Can Soda Go Flat If Unopened? ( Revealed.. )

Last updated on August 8th, 2021

will unopened soda bottles lose fizz

Summer is the time of year when the temperatures run high and so does my thirst for a soda. Yet little comes close to that swift let-down, when you return to take a sip of your soda and find that it has become undrinkable.

So can soda go flat if unopened? Well if left unopened long enough, both cans and bottles of, soda will go flat.

Can-soda-go-flat-if-unopenedEver grab a can of soda and wonder how old it was? How many days had passed since it was first bottled?

Maybe you’ve pondered why some sodas seem to just taste better than most? Just know that when you reach for that sip of your favorite soda pop your expectations may just fall flat. 

What Causes The Soda To Go Flat?

According to an article on “When you pop the top (on a soda can), the pressure inside the can decreases, causing the CO2 to convert to gas and escape in bubbles.”  

This change of pressure in the bottle and the instant release of carbon dioxide that ensues causes major changes to your glass of drink.

Carbonation adds a weak acid to your drink that adds a tang to your drink while also acting as a preservation tool. This mass exodus of carbon dioxide will result in a glass that not only lacks that bubbly fizz but it will also miss that touch of carbonic flavor.

Does Shaking Soda Make It Go Flat?

What causes soda to go flatShaken… Dropped… Thrown… Rolled… You name the circumstances. Avoid any and all circumstances that result in a shaken drink. Tiny bubbles caused by shaking a soda help the carbon dioxide to escape more rapidly.

Once the can is opened all of the gas will escape from the liquid as bubbles and the soda will go “flat”.

I am sure we all have experienced opening a soft drink and the subsequent soda overflow.

An unopened soda that is shaken traps gases causing an increase and rising in pressure within the can or bottle. When you then open this can the trapped gases and pressure now have an escape route and make for as fast an exit possible.

This escape causes an immediate overflow in bubbles (carbon dioxide) and aside from the mess to clean up you will also be left with a drink that is flat.

Where does all the carbonation go?

Where does all the carbonation goWhen carbon dioxide is dissolved and forced to stay in a liquid state it becomes what is known as carbonic acid. (Carbonic Acid is the reason why sodas are so damaging to your teeth). When this Carbon Dioxide is turned into its gas form it rises to the surface of the liquid. These bubbles rise to the top and are released into the atmosphere.

Carbon Dioxide is found naturally among us in the atmosphere and when these gases reach the top of the liquid they escape to their most desired and natural state.

Is Drinking Flat Soda Bad For You?

Some people believe that soft drinks, more specifically flat soda, can be used for a few medicinal purposes. From curing the worst cases of upset stomachs, to easing headaches. Since the first-ever soda was released it has long and often been believed that a cola will be a near-instant feel better medicine.

Now while this may serve as an effective comfort measure it isn’t true and in fact, science would suggest that flat soda actually has the reverse effect.

A research study was recently reported on by the New York Times.

The research and study results proved soda “not only contained very low amounts of potassium, sodium, and other electrolytes but also in some cases as much as seven times the glucose recommended by the World Health Organization for rehydration. Carbonated drinks, flat or otherwise, including cola, provide inadequate fluid and electrolyte replacement and cannot be recommended,” So while a soda occasionally is a treat one should steer clear of making soda part of their normal diet.
Is drinking flat soda bad for you

Choosing to go with a soda regularly is undoubtedly raising your health risks and over an extended period of time going to clearly affect your life physically at the least. Weight gain, diabetes, change in lab results, troubled skin, and decaying teeth are just a handful of examples of how adversely sodas impact our bodies and lives.

Do All Sodas Expire And Go Flat At The Same Rate?

It’s fairly obvious to state but we know all sodas tend to have a date on the packaging (if it doesn’t then I’d tread carefully unless you’re sure of its origin and authenticity – especially when dealing with anything homemade or bought from maybe a farmers market).

These dates are essentially a best if enjoyed before date. And while all sodas feature one of these dates all sodas do not go flat at the same speed. The brand of sodas differs in degassing speeds for a number of reasons.

No two reasons may be as important and critical to the preservation of carbonation level in a drink than these two things.

Temperature. Temperature. And Temperature. If stored in a refrigerator the shelf life is extended long past the date of a carbonated drink that’s been stored elsewhere. Plastic versus aluminum would be the other most important variable (other than mismanagement) in safely keeping a stored soft drink. In this argument of plastic versus aluminum… Aluminum wins by a nose. The reason being is that the plastic packaging allows the carbon dioxide to escape more easily than that of drink stored in an aluminum can.

Second Chances At A Great Fizzy Soda?

Soda goes flat due to decarbonization… But can it be revived with re-carbonation?

Wait, what is re-carbonation? Apparently adding new life to a dead soda is possible after all. In order to achieve this miracle moment, you will simply need to re-add carbonation to the soda that has lost its carbon dioxide.

Of course, the other solution and the most simple in my book is a full replacement. Properly, safely, and wisely dispose of the flat soda… and get you a new, frosty cold soda.

Definitely, set your limits on soda consumption but happily enjoy a refreshing carbonation-filled drink on occasion because let’s be honest… They can be just so good!

So hit the store and grab your favorite soda. Whether it is can or bottle follow these few tips for the best experience.

  • Buy enough
  • Get them cold
  • Carefully handle drinks so as not to shake them
  • Pop the top
  • Drink it in a timely enough manner to not suffer carbonation loss.

vintage soda packs on amazon

If you follow these few suggestions you will never find yourself the owner of a flat drink again.