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Here's How Much I Saved Making Seltzer at Home

All that La Croix adds up. Shave a few hundred of your yearly beverage bill and start making fizzy water at home.

David Watsky Senior Editor / Home and Kitchen
David lives in Brooklyn where he's spent more than a decade covering all things edible, including meal kit services, food subscriptions, kitchen tools and cooking tips. Before, during and after earning his BA from Northeastern, he toiled in nearly every aspect of the food business, including as a line cook in Rhode Island where he once made a steak sandwich for Lamar Odom. Right now he's likely somewhere stress-testing a blender or tinkering with a toaster. Anything with sesame is his all-time favorite food this week.
Expertise Kitchen tools | Appliances | Food science | Subscriptions | Meal kits
David Watsky
4 min read
three crushed soda water cans

We did the math. You'll save hundreds if you start making soda water at home.

Francesco Carta fotografo/Getty

Tap water may be free but it ain't got much pizazz. I've developed a serious soda water habit over the years, and all that crushing of cans has formed a little seltzer-shaped hole in my budget. Luckily, sparkling water is easy to make at home and countertop carbonators have become pretty cheap to buy. 

If you've ever wondered exactly how much you can save making seltzer with a SodaStream, I've done the math to find out. 

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The savings for making soda water at home vary based on how much you drink, of course, but using a SodaStream, SodaSensei or another carbonator could save up to $600 a year for a household of two seltzer-drinkin' fools.

Here's a full breakdown of how much you'll save if you start making the fizzy stuff at home. 

In other beverage budget news, we already calculated how much you'll save using a Brita instead of buying bottled water (spoiler: it's also a lot).

Canned seltzer vs. making it at home

LaCroixCanada DryMade at home
Price per year (one 12-ounce serving per day) $182.50$153.30$32.85
Price per year (two 12-ounce servings per day) $365$306.60$65.70

How much can you save by switching to a SodaStream?

If you make seltzer water at home with a SodaStream, one-can-per-day LaCroix drinkers can expect to save $150 per year while Canada Dry drinkers will save more like $121. If you're like me and drink two (or more) cans in a day, you can double those savings to $300 and $242 in a year. And if there are multiple seltzer drinkers in your home, you can continue to multiply these savings. A family with two soda water drinkers glugging two cans each per day, for instance, can expect to pocket nearly $600 for the year. 

sodastream e terra on table with glass of soda water

These little machines can put big money back in your pocket.


How I did the math

To get these figures, I started with the rough estimate SodaStream gives: 60 liters, or 2,029 ounces of carbonated water from each cartridge. A single cartridge costs $15 if you use SodaStream's exchange program. I then divided the total ounces by 12 (the total ounces in a single can,) and found that each cartridge will make the equivalent of about 169 cans of seltzer. That breaks down to 9 cents for every 12 ounces of sparkling water made at home. Finally, I multiplied 9 cents by 365 and 730 to get the yearly totals for those who drink one or two cans per day. 

C O 2 cartridges being exchanged

A SodaStream cartridge costs just $15 if you use the exchange program and produces the equivalent of about 169 cans of seltzer.


Another way to look at it, roughly speaking, is you'll need about two CO2 cartridges -- $30 total -- to get through the year for one 12-ounce serving of bubbly water each day. If you're a two-can (24 ounces) drinker, you'll spend more like $60 per year on four CO2 canisters needed to make that amount.

To compare this with canned seltzer, I priced out the cost of both LaCroix and Canada Dry seltzer, which are sold mostly in 8- and 12-packs, respectively. LaCroix was slightly more expensive at about $0.50 per can, versus Canada Dry which averaged out to $0.41 for each 12-ounce can. Both were the cheapest prices I found on the internet from a major, national retailer.

Is a SodaStream worth it?

In case you don't have a SodaStream or other sparkling water maker, there is the upfront cost of a machine to consider. In the chart below, you'll see the total yearly cost for making at home with the price of an entry-level SodaStream Terra ($100) included. That $100 gets you the sparkling water maker plus one CO2 canister so I subtracted $15 from the previous total since the first supply of gas is on the house. 

The savings, even with the machine cost included, are still significant -- as much as $247 for the year if you consume two cans of LaCroix per day. 

Cost with machine included

LaCroixCanada DryMade at home (SodaStream Terra cost included)
Price per year (one 12-ounce serving per day) $181.56$153.30$112.85
Price per year (two 12-ounce servings per day) $363.12$306.60$115.70

There is also the environmental impact to consider

Hands holding a piece of paper with the recycling symbol on it

Good for your budget and the Earth.

Getty Images

It's estimated that for every ton of aluminum produced, about five tons of caustic red mud wastes are also produced, along with a host of other pollutants. And while aluminum cans are mostly recyclable, any stress that we can alleviate on our local recycling systems means they will run more efficiently.

Read moreCan You Recycle Takeout Containers? Here's What to Know

On the flip side, a SodaStream may only last a few years

Aarke water carbonation

Aarke has the most stylish soda water maker but it costs more than twice what a SodaSteam does. 


I've been SodaStreaming for a few years and haven't had issues but a friend who has been making seltzer at home for close to a decade tells me that his machine typically breaks after about two or three years of regular use. The good news is that, in most of those cases, the SodaStream had been under warranty (most come with a limited two-year) -- and the company is "very good" about getting replacements out with little hassle or questions asked, they said. 

Other carbonators makers to consider

SodaStream may be the most well-known at-home carbonator but there are several options available in 2023. Swedish home appliance brand Aarke makes a very stylish, sturdy and completely stainless steel model, for instance. You can read my full review of the Aarke carbonator here or check out CNET's full list of the best at-home sparkling water makers for 2023.  

And for more We Do the Math, check out how much you can save by shopping at Trader Joe's compared to other grocery stores, and if it's cheaper to buy meal kits than groceries