Standard Soda Can Dimensions and Guidelines

Initially, can producers were looking into the prospect of using cans to package carbonated drinks as far back as the 1930s. In addition, the beer and soft drink industries were keen to find a way to supply customers with more products in a shorter period of time.

There are disadvantages of using cans rather than glass bottles when it comes to transportation and storage.

However, in order to withstand the increased pressure within the can caused by carbonation—especially in the hot summer months—the can has to be strengthened beforehand. Unless the thickness of the metal utilized is increased, the final deformation could strain the seal, resulting in leaks and making the cans ineffective for stacking.

The world saw the use of the first aluminum can in 1935 for beer, and over two decades later, the first aluminum can was made for soda. Within the can is a thin layer of spray coating that protects the aluminum from corrosion due to the acidity of the can’s contents, which could impart a metallic taste to the drink.

Today, soda cans follow a standard size and capacity. In this brief guide, I’ll cover the height, length, and width of standard soda cans, as well as discuss many of its variants.

If you don’t have time to sit through the entire guide, allow me to summarize it for you down below:

While soda cans can come in a variety of shapes and sizes, the average 12-fluid-ounce soda can measures 4.83 inches in height, 2.6 inches in diameter at the widest point, and the can’s brim measures 2.13 inches in diameter.

Standard Soda Can Height, Width, and Capacity

Standard Soda Can Height, Width, and Capacity

The standard can in the United States measure 4.83 inches in height. These cans can hold up to 12 fluid ounces (about 355 milliliters) of a drink at max. You can typically find this kind of can in vending machines and retailers.

There is another type of soda can that also holds up to 12 fluid ounces. These are known to be “tall and slim” and measure 6.125 inches in height and 2.25 inches at their widest points. The main reason why retailers opt for the tall and slim variety is that they can don’t take as much chiller and shelf space.

However, soda cans can come in a variety of sizes and capacities, depending on which country you are in. For instance, Australia sells soft drinks and alcohol in 12.68-fluid ounce (375-milliliter) cans, which measure 5.07 inches in height and 2.59 inches in diameter.

Countries such as Pakistan and South Africa offer a smaller drink can size of 8.45 fluid ounces (200 milliliters). These tiny cans are 5.19 inches tall and 2.08 inches wide.

The tallest Coca-Cola can holds up to 16.91-fluid-ounce (500-milliliter) cans. These half-liter cans are sold in countries like China and Iceland, though it’s not uncommon to find similarly sized beer cans in Australia. These cans stand 6.61 inches in height and measure 2.60 inches in diameter.

By now, you’re probably wondering why soda cans vary in size from country to country.

The simple answer is that each country has a different can sizing standard that manufacturers have to follow.

FAQ About Soda Cans

FAQ About Soda Cans

1. What are soda cans made of?

Soda cans primarily consist of aluminum, though they contain trace amounts of other metals, such as iron and manganese.

2. Should you recycle soda cans?

All metal cans, from aerosol cans to cans that hold food or drinks, are unquestionably recyclable. In the United States, there are four ways you can recycle used soda cans: curbside pickup, drop-off recycling, buy-back centers, and refund deposits.

What you need to do prior to recycling used soda cans is rinse them out thoroughly, then hang them upside down to allow moisture inside of the can to drip out. When you have a full bag of aluminum cans, consider one of the options provided above.

3. What can I do with used soda cans?

Since it can take a ton of energy to remake soda cans or anything made of aluminum, for that matter, it’s a good idea to take your old soda cans to a recycling plant.

However, you can also be creative with used soda cans. For instance, if you cut them just right, you can turn them into a tiny pot for indoor gardens. You can also cut them into tiny strips to use as markers for your potted plants.

Another creative way to give life to old soda cans is to cut them into two-inch-wide strips and shape them into cookie cutters. It’s a lot cheaper than purchasing premade cookie cutters at a restaurant supplies store, and you can make them into whatever shape you want!

4. What are soda cans lined with?

The inner lining of the can—the thin barrier that contains the liquid within—is an epoxy lacquer or polymer. Its purpose is to prevent the aluminum can from infusing the drink with a metallic taste while also preventing carbonated drinks from corroding the can. Epoxy liners can contain BPA.

5. Are soda cans safe?

It can be hard to get away from BPA, which could possibly be a carcinogen, since it’s found in all sorts of packaging, including canned products. One study even suggests that the tiniest amount of BPA can cause a dramatic increase in blood pressure, which isn’t good news. This is just another reason why you should consider avoiding fizzy drinks.

6. Should you wash soda cans before drinking?

Yes, you should. There’s no telling what sort of mold or bacteria is growing on the soda can. At the very least, you should wipe the can off with a clean towel before bringing the can to your lips.


In this short article, I’ve shown you the dimensions of a standard 12-fluid-ounce can of Coca-Cola and Pepsi. For those that have already forgotten, it stands 4.83 inches tall and has a maximum diameter of 2.6 inches. The “tall and slim” 12-fluid-ounce can is 6.125 inches in height and has a diameter of 2.25 inches.

If you found this article useful, please share it with your friends on social media. Also, drop a comment and let me know how large your country’s standard soda can is.


Baron Cooke has been writing and editing for 7 years. He grew up with an aptitude for geometry, statistics, and dimensions. He has a BA in construction management and also has studied civil infrastructure, engineering, and measurements. He is the head writer of

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