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Last updated: October 24, 2020

How To Open a Bottle with A Can Opener

By Herbert Dorman

Also known as a tin opener, can openers can be a live saver in the kitchen. They are quick and easy to use, but take a little bit of time to use one effectively. You simply press a cutting wheel into the edge while digging the cap. A spikey support wheel presses up around the edge to separate the top. If you want to know how to open a bottle with a can opener then keep reading for better understanding.

For simple can openers like Swiss Army knives, just open the blade and create a hole through the top. Either of the can opener can do the job perfectly. However, if you haven’t used one before, it can be a little confusing. The guide below gives a step by step process on how to use a can opener:


Method 1: Using a manual can opener


  • Open the arms of the can opener

First, unfold the arm of the manual opener. They should be open to allow the cutting edge to fit into the bottle. Take one arm on each hand and gently separate them. Once they are in the open position, the arms will smoothly lock in place. 

The arms are only opened when trying to fit the opener to the bottle and not when the opener is in use. Either hold the bottle in the air while you use the opener or keep it on a flat surface. 


  • Align the arms to the cutting edge

Let the cutting edge of the can opener rest on the bottle lid. Ensure you maintain the arms in an open position as you bring the cutting edge to line. Also, the cutting edge should be placed on top of the rim of the bottle in a way that the rough wheel is parallel to the channel that loops the bottles edge. In the same way, ensure the rotating handle is place on the outside of the bottle for easy turn.  

The cutting edge on a manual can opener is positioned together with the axle, handle and the rough support wheel. The saw-toothed wheel functions to hold onto the bottle lid, giving the opener stability as the cutting edge punctures through the top.


  • Start turning the handle when it fits securely

To cut through the lid, gently fold the arms of the can opener. Fold both the handles together. This way, the cutting edge is pushed into the cap. Pay attention to the hissing sounds as the serrated wheel cuts through the cap and releases the pressure inside. In case the can opener arms are hard, just use both hands to close them.


  • Work your way around the rim

Twist the handle to turn around the cutting edge on the cap. Use one hand to hold the arms and rotate the handle from left to right with the help of the other hand. The jagged wheel will roll around the end of bottle top making the cutting edge move and cut through it. Repeat the same around the cap until a bigger part of it is detached from the can. Only about 1.3cm of the cap should remain attached. 

Alternatively, you may completely cut off the cap. Ensure you apply enough pressure for the can opener to consistently cut the surface. If it stops cutting, disconnect the can opener from the bottle, reattach to the same surface where the lid was cut and repeat the process.


  • Lift the cap from the bottle to detach it

Unfold the arms and gently pull it away once the cap is almost completely detached. You can use a knife or your fingernails to cautiously pry the cap of the bottle upward to expose the contents. 

Empty the contents out of the bottle into a glass or mug. Do this carefully to avoid cutting yourself on the sharp edge of the bottle caps. You can pinch the flat top but avoid touching the edges. In case the cap completely detaches from the bottle and falls into the content, just slightly bend the bottle and pry it out with a flat object. 


Method 2: Using a Swiss Army Knife Can Opener 

This tool comes with a combination of a flathead screwdriver and a can opener blade. It has a sharp point that easily punctures through the cap with its blade. However, using this opener leaves extremely sharp dangerous edges so use it cautiously. Below is a step by step guide on using a Swiss army knife to open a bottle 


  • Unfold the small blade

To unfold the can opener blade, place your fingernail in the grove and fold-out by pivoting it out. The triangular pointed blade is designed with an extended straight edge, a circular tip and a second edge. The other edge is made up of a long bow-shaped hook that projects into the middle of the blade. The can opener blade and the handle should align together. 


  • Make sure that you have opened the blade

Cut through the lip of the bottle cap with the tip. Hold the bottle firmly on a flat surface with your non-dominant hand and the knife in your right hand. Reverse this if you are left-handed. 

Hold the sharp end of the blade on the cap and press down steadily. Do this in such a way that the triangular pointed tip in on the inside of the bottle cap while the blunt u-shaped hook on the outside. 


  • Puncture the lip

Hinge the knife in a position that the screwdriver is parallel from you and is resting against the inside if the edge. This should puncture through the bottle cap. Now softly move the handle back and forth to puncture along the can. Ensure you firmly hold the bottle as you cut to avoid spilling out the contents. 

Alternatively, hold the can opener at a right angle to the bottle and cut through the cap by pressing down the cutting edge and moving it forward. 


  • Work your way clockwise around the bottle cap

Work your way from left to right on the bottle to puncture can the edge. Repeat the motion of piercing the blade through the cap and then swaying the handle back and forth. Firmly grip the handle with the right hand all through and apply enough pressure to cut. Either way, leave a small party of the cap still attached or continue opening the bottle until the cap is completely detached.


  • Repeat the process over any missed point

In case you try removing the cap from bottle but still finds it attached, just rest on blade on where the top is still stuck and cut through again. 


Final verdict 

That’s how simple it is! Just pour your contents out of the bottle and enjoy. Once it’s completely detached, you can now cautiously take it out. Be cautious not to touch the razor-sharp edges of the bottle cap since it may cause injuries to your skin. Accordingly, there is need for you to understand how to open a bottle with a can opener for an excellent performance.