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46 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One less distraction
This bottle is designed to eliminate the messes created by normal water bottles. Normal bottles have a valve that pulls open and pushes shut. Often it is loose and doesn't stay open, or it leaks around the sides and the residue eventually runs down the sides of the bottle. That's not too big a deal if all you carry is water, but any sports drink will soon make a sticky,...
Published on October 22, 2008 by Michael Polakowski

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40 of 41 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Great bottle but problems with mold in cap
I bought two of these bottles, and loved them from the start. They worked as advertised, and didn't spill or leak at all. I always washed both bottles immediately after use, and for months everything was great.

However after a few months use, I noticed black mold growing in the nipple of the caps of both bottles. I used q-tips to remove some of the mold, but...
Published on August 17, 2010 by Notmy Realname


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46 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One less distraction, October 22, 2008
This review is from: CamelBak Podium Bottle (Apparel)
This bottle is designed to eliminate the messes created by normal water bottles. Normal bottles have a valve that pulls open and pushes shut. Often it is loose and doesn't stay open, or it leaks around the sides and the residue eventually runs down the sides of the bottle. That's not too big a deal if all you carry is water, but any sports drink will soon make a sticky, dirty, insect-attracting mess on the bottle, your hands, and the bike frame.

The Podium bottle replaces the normal valve with a membrane that has a tiny "x" cut in it. It won't let fluids out unless there is pressure applied by either squeezing the bottle, sucking on the mouthpiece, or both. The mouthpiece is not the typical CamelBak bite valve; think of it as a short straw. When you drink, the fluid goes through the mouthpiece and into your mouth -- not onto the bottle. You don't have to pull it open with your teeth. You don't have to shut it with your hand (or by pounding it against your chest). It's simple and it works.

There is one moving part: a cutoff valve that will seal off flow even if you squeeze the bottle. However, under normal circumstances, it can be left in the open position. The membrane is enough to keep the contents in, even if the bottle is inverted. For that reason, it also works well for use when running. The plastic is more rigid than most bottles of this type, but I didn't find that to be a problem. These are 2-3 times the cost of a typical water bottle, but you can eliminate the distraction of messy bottles for under $20 (for two), and that's a good deal.
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40 of 41 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Great bottle but problems with mold in cap, August 17, 2010
By 
Notmy Realname (Los Angeles, CA United States) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: CamelBak Podium Bottle (Apparel)
I bought two of these bottles, and loved them from the start. They worked as advertised, and didn't spill or leak at all. I always washed both bottles immediately after use, and for months everything was great.

However after a few months use, I noticed black mold growing in the nipple of the caps of both bottles. I used q-tips to remove some of the mold, but the rest is inaccessible. Its frustrating that I can see it inside the cap, but there's no way to disassemble the caps to clean (per Camelbak's website, the caps shouldn't be taken apart, since this will cause leaks).

Bottom line: I love the functionality, but not willing to chance my health. I'm looking for replacement bottles now.

Update 9/7/2011:
I went against Camelbak's advice, and took apart the plastic cap. I was then able to completely clean out all the mold. After re-assembling, I haven't noticed any problems (i.e. no leaks). So even though the manufacturer doesn't recommend it, taking apart the cap to clean seems to work.
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24 of 28 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great answer for a question no one asked., August 19, 2008
By 
Chris in St. Pete (St. Petersburg, FL United States) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: CamelBak Podium Bottle (Apparel)
Ive used bike bottles for over twenty-five years now and never really had an issue with the bottles I have purchased over the years. From the cheapest to the most expensive they've all featured the simple spout that you pull open with your mouth and close with your thumb as you replace it in the cage.

Cheap ones may not work as well or make your water taste like plastic but they work well enough and were cheap enough that when they were shot or you didn't like them you could simply toss them away. I have water bottles in my collection that are easily ten years old.

Enough of the back story...I decided to test this bottle solely for the reputation of Camelback and the integration of their bite valve into a water bottle. A perfectly logical extension of their product especially among the roadies.

Despite their condescending advertisements I purchased a bottle to test. I can say that the bite valve doesn't disappoint in this application. We are all pretty familiar with the Camelback bite valve and it's a proven performer. It works very well in this application and I enjoyed using the bottle. However, considering the price, did it work four times better than a typical water bottle? probably not.

I think one unexpected market that Camelback may have overlooked is the under 5 year old demographic. The bottle allowed my 3 year old to use the bottle without spilling any water like he normally would with my "regular" bottles. Like a giant sippy cup he was able to drink all the water he wanted and be as care free as he liked without spilling a drop.

one last thought. These bottles are make in China. While not normally an issue I think that considering the price point they could have found a US company to make these for them.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I have finally found the perfect water bottle, April 30, 2010
By 
Sam Handwich (Fort Lee, NJ United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: CamelBak Podium Bottle (Apparel)
I am not often moved to write reviews for products, but I feel such a deep love and appreciation for the Camelbak Podium (24 oz) water bottle that I just can't keep quiet! First, let me say that I don't use this bottle for biking because I don't bike. Instead, I use this bottle as my general drinking-water-all-day bottle as well as my whitewater kayaking bottle.

There are several features of this bottle that make me love it so. First, the locking valve is a delight -- both when I'm chucking it in a backpack and don't want to worry about it leaking, and when I have it in my kayak and don't want to worry about the river water, pristine though it may be, getting in. Second, when the locking valve is unlocked, the water still doesn't come out on its own; You can tip the bottle upside down with nary a drop escaping. Third, when you drink from it, the flow is AMAZING. You'll note that I capitalized all the letters in "amazing" because it's just that good. This is much better than any bite valve on any hydration system I have yet experienced. As fast and hard as you suck, the Podium will keep up with spurt after spurt of that liquid of life: water.

And it's quite handsome as well. I recommend it.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Mold Issues = Too Much Maintenance, July 21, 2011
This review is from: CamelBak Podium Bottle (Apparel)
Great bottle -- works as advertised. The valve provides by far the best flow of any bottle I've used in over 20 years of cycling. The valve does not leak. The bottle is easy to handle and drink from.

After several weeks of use, however, I noiced a black mold growing inside the soft rubber bite area on the top. I removed the soft rubber top, thoroughly cleaned the inside of the top, and soaked the whole top in bleach and water to kill anything remain mold. I started to be more attentive when cleaning the bottles right after use. The mold issue came right back, however.

Eventually, the flow of one of the bottles began to decrease. This prompted me to remove not only the soft rubber bite area, but also the plastic ring that holds the blue flow control 'flapper'. Once this ring is removed, you can see the inside of the valve itself and what I saw literally scared me -- there was balck mold caked on the entire inside of the valve and it was so thick on the underside of the blue flow control 'flapper', that it was impeding the water flow. It was scary to think how much mold I have been eating over the last few months. I cleaned the inside of the top as best as I could, but there was still mold in all the little difficult to reach areas.

To me, this a simple design flaw and I don't know how it could be fixed -- the inner chamber of the top does not get enough air flow after cleaning to sufficently dry it out. So, you will always have a wet environment inside the valve and this will always be an area where mold will grow.

You can make your own choice if this mold issue is acceptable -- for me, it is not. I am concerned enough about eating all that mold that I will not use these bottles again. I gave this product one star not because I necessarily hate it -- but because it has a serious design flaw that I find unacceptable.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Drink while you run, October 18, 2008
By 
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This review is from: CamelBak Podium Bottle (Apparel)
I found this bottle a little hard to squeeze but the no drip lock worked great. The spout is soft so it I can drink while running and not hurt my teeth or gums. I prefer a bottle without a straw so this works great for me. Maybe it will soften just a little as it gets worn in and will be easier to squeeze
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32 of 44 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not easy enough to use, October 22, 2008
By 
Amazon Customer (CA United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: CamelBak Podium Bottle (Apparel)
I wanted to like the CamelBak Podium water bottle because I'm a big fan of my several CamelBak backpacks. However, I'm retiring this product after a couple attempts to use it while cycling.

Hydration while cycling is best when it's effortless. The largest problem is that the bottle is made of too rigid plastic. This is a problem for me because unlike the Better Bottle by CamelBak, this bottle has no straw and thus needs squeezed. Instead, you tilt it up while squeezing and then you bite the valve to cause the water to flow. Using this bottle will illustrate instantly why most cycling bottles are made of flimsy soft plastic. After several hours on the saddle (heck even on a strenuous part of a short ride), the last thing you want is to strain your hands while biting and trying to squeeze a too rigid bottle.

On top of that, the bite valve that we have come to love of CamelBak's is not part of this product. The biting serves no purpose in a bottle without the straw. In conclusion--I don't recommend this bottle for cycling. It would be better to consider the Performance Bottle which appears to integrate the best elements of this bottle's shape with the best elements of the Better Bottle straw and bite valve.

Too rigid. No straw. Bite valve is not the normal one and besides is not needed on this design. Too hard to use.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars CamelBak Podium Water Bottle, February 28, 2010
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: CamelBak Podium Bottle (Sports)
This product is the closest I could find for use in helping my mom. She's 89 and needs something that won't spill. Works great for bedside use - no spills! Will buy again.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Works great but mold in nipple. Cleanable, however, with effort., August 21, 2011
By 
Ed Johnson (Cerritos, CA USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: CamelBak Podium Bottle (Apparel)
On the plus side, as many other posters have already stated, the functionality of the bottle is great. Holds temps and does not leak. On the negative side, as other posters have also stated, mold grows in the nipple assembly. Before throwing them away, the nipple assembly IS cleanable. The soft clear plastic on the nipple (the part you bite to get fluid flow) can be pried off fairly easily. This enables access to a translucent white plastic collar, about 1/2" in diameter, that holds the blue rubbery diaphragm that, with some effort and strong fingernails, can also be pried off, giving you access to almost all of the nipple / valve assembly to clean. Parts can be soaked in a bleach or vinegar solution to disinfect. So contrary to other posts, it IS possible to disassemble to clean the valve/nipple, but a pain to do. The bottle is poorly designed to be cleanable and/or so to be able to dry between uses.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars new and improved bicycle water bottle, October 6, 2008
These are a great addition to the camelbak product line even my 3 year old can use this on our bike rides. Love that they can go in the dishwasher.
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