This section is from the book "A Treatise On Beverages or The Complete Practical Bottler", by Charles Herman Sulz. Also available from Amazon: A Treatise On Beverages.
Too much cannot be said in respect to securing perfectly clean bottles. The train of evils following in the wake of spoiled beverages is directly traceable to this cause in many cases. Fatal illness was reported to have been superinduced by drinking soda water from bottles that had previously contained some poisonous material, and it emphasizes the necessity of extra caution in this particular.
Hot water is of vast assistance as a thorough cleanser, and whether bottles are subjected to machine or hand manipulation, it should be provided in generous quantities.
Although the pouring of boiling water over the bottles destroys the germs which frequently lead to fermentation, we cannot call it good practice, as the difference in temperature between the bottles and the water would be too striking, and a variation of 10 to 15° 0. already has injurious effects on the bottles. The consequence of a great temperature difference is a cracking of bottles. It is much better to heat the bottles in the water gradually up to boiling point, a perforated steampipe being provided; this would be indeed a practical plan.
The most infinitesimal part of organic matter which is allowed to remain and cling to the sides of the bottle is sure to work harm, for the action of the acids in the various beverages will augment its capacity, and the liquid will soon become turbid, or specky or full of sediment, and its salable and palatable qualities thereby diminished.