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We Tried Using A Pool Noodle As A Drink Float But It Didn't Make A Splash

Jan 10, 2024Jan 10, 2024

It's the most wonderful time of the year: summer! The sun is shining, the music is bumping, and hopefully, your only worry in the world is deciding how to paddle over to your drink on the other side of the pool. As minuscule an issue as that may be, having to leave your drink on the edge of the pool is a bit of a nuisance. When left unattended, your beverage could get hot in the sun or even acquire a few bugs, but with a drink float, you can keep your drinks cool, bug-free, and always within arm's reach.

Pool noodles can be a surprisingly versatile item to use in home hacks and DIY projects, but this time we're bringing it back to basics with a pool noodle hack that's meant for the water. We decided to test out a poodle noodle hack posted by TikTok user @boogiebojangles to see if it could help us stay happy and hydrated in the pool this year, but we were a little surprised by how tricky this hack could be (via TikTok). While it seemed like a pretty straightforward summertime DIY, it wasn't exactly smooth sailing. Let's dive into the details behind creating and testing this pool noodle drink float.

In the TikTok video's comments, TikToker Anthony M. mentions they purchased the extra large pool noodle from Dollar Tree. We visited a few local dollar stores but couldn't find the exact same pool noodle. The original TikTok was posted back in 2021, so it's possible that the giant pool noodle seen is no longer produced. Instead, we improvised with a "Jumbo Pool Noodle" from Dollar General, which was priced at $4. Other materials were gathered from around the house, including a large serrated bread knife, a small serrated knife, rubber bands and hair ties, drinks, and a small cooler to hold these supplies and use as leverage while cutting. Optional: some fun sunglasses to set the mood while you work.

Aside from gathering all the right supplies, trying to find the perfect location to test and photograph this hack could be tricky too. Luckily, some family members were generous enough to let us test this hack in their beautiful pool, but you could try it on your own in a bathtub, kitchen sink, hot tub, or kiddie pool if you'd like.

We started by holding the drink cans against the pool noodle to measure roughly the length of the can. Next, we set the noodle on top of a cooler to create an elevated sawing surface. With a serrated bread knife, we sawed off a section of the noodle roughly the length of a drink can, or slightly shorter. In the original TikTok video that inspired us, the user simply pushed a standard canned soda through the opening of their pool noodle segment, but we found that with an ordinary pool noodle, the hack required a little more innovation.

Our pool noodle wasn't wide enough to accommodate a drink — not even a slim can — so we improvised by using a smaller serrated knife to slice down one side of the noodle segment to create a wrap-around design. Next, we carefully carved some foam from the middle of the noodle segments to create a wider hole. Then we wrapped the noodle around the drink cans, adding more foam if needed to close in the gap. Finally, we secured everything with rubber bands and hair ties that we had on hand. With our drinks fastened into their tiny life jackets, we were ready to test!

So does it work? Technically, yes! The foam noodle drink holders successfully kept drinks afloat — at least for a while. Although it did what it was supposed to, the hack certainly had some downsides. Firstly, it takes quite a bit of trial and error to ensure the foam noodle fits perfectly around the cans. Additionally, we also learned that cutting the noodle segment too long would cause the drinks to tip over in the water. Instead, you have to trim and adjust the float so that it covers only the top portion of the can. Perhaps the biggest issue was that the float was difficult to drink from. It will work while the beverage is full, but after several sips, you may have issues with the float tipping over. Trying to use this float while kids are splashing in your swimming pool will almost certainly lead to a pool water cocktail. Yuck.

Overall, this hack was a fun, affordable, and creative science experiment, and floating your beverage in the water will keep it cooler and prevent bugs from getting inside. However, this DIY float is no life-changing hack, and many people would find pre-made drink floaties to be more practical for everyday use. If you're tempted to try this hack for yourself, we'd recommend using drinks with a plastic or aluminum screwtop to prevent water from getting inside.