Stanley cup lead: Is there a risk, and what should you do?

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Consumer Reports lead testing partner investigates.

DENVER — In recent months the Stanley Quencher has become a must-have for millions of fans — enjoying a wave of endorsements from TikTok creators to being spoofed on “Saturday Night Live.” But the laughing ended for some people when reports of the tumblers containing lead made the rounds on social media.

So Consumer Reports looked to its partner, Tamara Rubin from Lead Safe Mama, longtime lead poisoning prevention activist, to help guide consumers through the hype. Using XRF technology, Lead Safe Mama discovered that the exposed sealing dot on the bottom of the Stanley Tumblers was positive for a very high level of lead.

On the bottom of the Stanley Tumblers there is a little button, and underneath that is a primarily leaded material, and Stanley melts that bit of lead into the hole on the bottom of the tumbler to create the vacuum insulation.

According to Rubin, countless consumers have contacted Lead Safe Mama and let them know that their little button of stainless steel with the logo has fallen off and that they were not aware that there was basically a hunk of bioavailable lead. Lead exposure can cause developmental problems, affect brain development and lead to lower IQ.

Stanley’s website discloses that its sealing material does include some lead, and Stanley isn’t alone. Many similarly designed flasks and tumblers are manufactured the same way, using lead solder.

On its website, Stanley tells its customers, “Rest assured that no lead is present on the surface of any Stanley product that comes into contact with the consumer nor the contents of the product.”

If you own a Stanley Quencher and the button on the bottom falls off, stop using it immediately and contact the company for a replacement. The company does offer a lifetime warranty. 

If you’re worried that your child might have been exposed to the lead, talk to your doctor about a blood lead test.

If you own one of those Stanley Quenchers, make sure you’re keeping it clean. If they’re dishwasher-safe, that might be the best and easiest option. Otherwise, separate all parts of the tumbler and hand-wash with warm water and a mild detergent.

Read more about the test results here: Lead Safe Mama Stanley Quencher test results.

Have a consumer problem for Steve On Your Side? Fill out this form to contact Consumer Investigator Steve Staeger.

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Stanley cup lead: Is there a risk, and what should you do?

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