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Understanding Water Bottles for Birds

"Vacuum Valve"

Pet water bottles that feature a metal drinking tube with one or more metal ball bearings inside the tube are able to hold the water contents because a vacuum is formed in the sealed bottle. The metal ball allows a film of water to remain between the ball and the open end of the drinking tube. Since the movement of the exposed ball bearing breaks this seal, and the vacuum within the water bottle is released, the moving ball is in effect an opening and closing valve.

If your bird licks or nudges the ball, he can access water as it flows down through the tube, keeping the ball moving and the valve "open." When the pet leaves the water bottle and the ball settles into place at the end of the drinking tube, the film of water reforms and the valve "closes."

Is That Drip Normal?

This little drip is the first release of water and is created as your water bottle forms a new vacuum seal. In order for a vacuum to form within the sealed water bottle, the air space and water volume need to equalize. This little release of water is the after effect of this equalization as the pressure stabilizes, and it is perfectly normal.

A single droplet at the end of the drinking tube is not a sign of a leaking water bottle. To help establish the vacuum seal when the water bottle is first filled and mounted, tap the ball bearing several times with your fingertip. This releases small amounts of water and speeds up the equalization of the vacuum pressure.

If the water bottle continues to leak, it may be an indication it needs cleaning.

Discover More!

Cleaning Water Bottles, Crocks and Bowls

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