Nothing is worse than preparing a new bottle of custom soda, only to find that it appears rotten leaving a bad taste in your mouth. But before you start lamenting the loss of your machine, consider where you think the bad flavor is coming from.
In any of these cases, fixing them requires an individual solution that targets the source of the bad taste. In most cases, you won’t have to throw out your SodaStream machine entirely, thankfully.
Most times it’s just a matter of cleanliness and making sure that you’re using equipment or ingredients that haven’t expired or been overused.
The key to getting a great-tasting soda is regular cleaning and maintenance.
The SodaStream is a marvelous machine, but it only goes so far in delivering good flavor.
You have to keep it working in good order and keep supplying it with good ingredients to get the best results.
Dirty SodaStream Machine
Right off the bat, plenty of SodaStream users don’t actually maintain their machines to the degree necessary for good taste. The carbonation nozzle, in particular, is a place where bacteria and other particulates can collect. Once you stick your water into the nozzle, you might find that these particulates have contaminated your soda.
This is especially true if you try to re-carbonate flat soda or if you try to carbonate something other than regular water. Anything that has a flavored element can leave residue on the carbonation nozzle or splatter elsewhere on the custom soda machine. If you fail to wash your machine between uses, you might find remnants of your last beverage infecting your current one.
Fixing this issue is pretty easy, thankfully. All you have to do is remember to wash your SodaStream each time you use it. Even if you only ever use plain, cold water, you should wipe down the carbonation nozzle and the rest of the machine with a warm washcloth.
It’s also worthwhile to take your machine apart every now and again and get rid of any gunk you see. You never know how that stuff can work its way into your drinks. Your instruction manual should have some maintenance suggestions or instructions so you can maintain a good level of cleanliness for as long as you use it.
Water impurities are another common taste modifier among custom soda beverages. This is easy enough to understand. After all, if you use water from your tap, anything in that tap water will be mixed with your new soda.
Properly-filtered water is always the way to go. However, this is more complicated than it might seem depending on your tap water status. Some cities or counties have really well-filtered tap water that doesn’t taste off or odd in any way. In these cases, you should feel free to use that water without any additional filtering methods.
However, if your tap water consistently tastes odd or dirty, you might be smart to add a water pitcher filter to your kitchen repertoire. These filters are installed right on the inside of your water pitcher and filter tap water as it collects at the bottom. The water you pour out will be purer and taste better than before.
Naturally, this will make your soda taste better, as well. Overall, just be prepared to take steps to filter your water better or eliminate contaminants that might be affecting its taste. Check the faucet of your kitchen sink if your tap water is supposed to be filtered well already.
There might be gunk or food debris collected on the rim of the faucet, and this stuff might be affecting the taste of the water that comes out.
You may also need to call a plumber if your water still tastes bad, even after filtration. It might be more of a problem with your home’s pipes than anything else.
Expired/Damaged SodaStream Plastic Bottles
The SodaStream plastic bottles are made of a tough, durable plastic material that isn’t supposed to leave any taste or residue in your soda beverages. But this is only true so long as the plastic is in good condition.
Plastic that has been exposed to heat, such as after being put into a dishwasher, will start to lose its structural integrity. The plastic will start to blend in with the soda you make inside the bottle. Not only does this taste bad, but it has a chance of leading to negative health effects, as well.
Plastic bottles that have passed their expiration date also have a high chance of bleeding plastic chemical particulates into soda. This is why changing your expired bottles for new ones is so important.
You’ll know if the plastic bottle is the source of your taste issues if your soda starts to taste like plastic. There isn’t really anything else that is likely to cause such a foul taste. Thankfully, the solution is just as simple.
All you need to do is replace your current plastic bottles with new ones. These can be purchased on the SodaStream website or you can get them from many common retailers.
Glass bottles don’t suffer from this issue, of course. They can still deliver a bad taste if they haven’t been washed thoroughly, but they won’t be heated to such a degree that they’ll inject a new taste into your soda beverage. You should still be careful about damaging or overheating them, of course, but this is more to keep the bottle functioning than out of worry about it changing any flavor.
When I first had this issue it turned out to be one of my bottles actually and I just used a bottle brush to give it a right good scrub.
I think the brush really helped eradicate that taste compared to the way I had been washing and rinsing previously. It’s such a quick win and then they don’t cost much at all – You can pick a new brush up on amazon for not a lot at all.
Expired/Bad Flavor SodaStream Syrup Bottles
SodaStream and other common retailers also sell the flavor bottles that you are supposed to use in conjunction with carbonated, cold water. However, these flavor bottles have expiration dates of their own.
The expiration dates aren’t just suggestions for you. They are calculated time periods that the manufacturer recommends due to product degradation or ingredient failure. Over time, any food or drink ingredient will degrade in quality and overall healthiness. Expired flavor bottles will likely have some of their products go bad.This can lead to a bad taste in your next soda. Replacing the flavor bottles with a fresh batch should solve this problem, provided that they are within date.
However, you might also just get unlucky and have a bad batch. Sometimes manufacturing errors happen and a batch of flavorings might be made incorrectly. Once again, the solution is to get a new batch of flavorings.
You should be able to tell if this is the problem just from tasting the soda. The normal flavor should be well-known to you, and if the sugary part of the soda tastes off or if the flavoring doesn’t fully dissolve in the water, it’s a good sign that the flavor packet is the real problem with the taste of your soda.
You may also be able to tell ahead of mixing just from smelling the flavor packet with your nose. Examine the box you’ve stored the bottles in and make sure that they weren’t opened by rodents or insects. Sugar exposed to the air can ferment and go bad very quickly. You should only ever use sealed flavor bottles for your SodaStream beverages.
CO2 Impurities In Your SodaStream
Finally, this rare happening might also be impacting your soda’s flavor.
The CO2 you use for your soda machine could have any number of impurities that can affect its taste. While this is unlikely if you rely on the disposable SodaStream bottles, this can still happen. It’s more likely to occur if you hook your machine into a larger tank.
In this case, you should examine the inside if your CO2 tank and check for any residue or impurities on the surface. Look for oil, dirt, or debris which might be mixing with the CO2 as it turns into a gas and channels down to your SodaStream.
If you think the problem is with your disposable SodaStream CO2 bottle, cleaning the tank is likely more trouble than it is to simply buy a new bottle and try that. You can also examine the machine’s CO2 tube for dirt and debris, as well.In any case, CO2 can become contaminated and laced with byproducts from exposure to the air or a bad cleaning job the last time.