I have heard (as I'm sure many others have) that one can use a utensil one time before Tevilah. At the same time, I've heard that this is a common misconception.

Is there anyone who holds that this is true?

If not, where did this misconception come from?

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    The misconception comes from using cans like soda and tuna and bottles like the glass coke and glass seltzer bottles and not needing tevila – Chalutzhanal Sep 14 '11 at 2:26
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    It's not really a misconception that it doesn't need tevilah. The misconception is that you are allowed to not throw it away :) – avi Sep 14 '11 at 9:11

According to this article summing up the laws of Tevilat Kelim:

There is no halachic basis for the common misconception that non-disposable utensils may be used once without immersion.

The footnote says this comes from Tevilat Keilim by Rabbi Tzvi Cohen, pg 101. I don't have access to the sefer, so I don't know if he brings a reason for the common misconception.

My understanding for how the misconception started is the same as Chalutzhanal's in the comment to the question.

The question could be asked, if glass and metal require immersion, how are we able to drink out metal soda cans or glass soda bottles (etc)? Shouldn't they require immersion? The halacha is that they do not. The common misconception is that they are permissible because you are allowed to use the vessel once without having to immerse it.

This is not the case, however. The reason why they are permitted to use without immersion is because any vessel that you throw away after using it once is not considered enough of a vessel to require immersion (R' Moshe maintains this applies even if the disposable vessel is reused, assuming the vessel is flimsy) - see footnotes 29 and 30 from this document from YU (footnote 30 is mis-attributed to 4:192, it should be Teshuvot V'Hanhagot 3:259. see here as well).


There is one other "use once before immersing" case, which can also be confusing. Say I buy a glass bowl filled with candies to give as a gift (such things exist). Must the recipient empty out the candies and immerse the bowl immediately, or can they wait to immerse the bowl until all of the candies have been eaten and only then immerse the bowl? The answer is they may do the latter. So even if one is not using the utensil in a disposable fashion, removing items from a utensil is not "use" for this purpose. This may be a cause of misconception.

  • Source? I would expect that they would need to immerse right away. – Double AA Dec 15 '11 at 6:49
  • @doubleAA, first, I'll reconstruct from logic. Say I buy a jar of jam. If, as you say, removing contents constitutes use, then I must empty my jar of jam, immerse it, and may then return the jam to the jar. This is pure ridiculousness. No sane person does this. Ergo, removing contents does not constitute use of an item. This was discussed in the 4th year halacha l'maaseh classes of 2010 at RIETS, given by R' Yaakov Neuberger. Here is the first one, but it is from that series: yutorah.org/lectures/lecture.cfm/742141/… – Ze'ev wants SE to do teshuva Dec 30 '11 at 15:44
  • Although I may agree with you about the final psak, what is really pure ridiculousness is calling that Logic. – Double AA Feb 1 '12 at 6:36
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    @Ze'evFelsen You throw away the jam jar, the candy bowl is kept. So they are not the same situation. – Ariel Nov 7 '12 at 22:01
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    @Ze'evFelsen Sure. But you can not use logic to compare the two cases, they are not the same. – Ariel Nov 9 '12 at 6:52

Another thing that may have happened -- and this is pure speculation -- is if you have to run out and buy a new pot ten minutes before shabbos and don't have time to dunk it in the mikva, you can temporarily gift it to a non-Jew who will loan it to you; then it's not owned by a Jew and it doesn't need dunking. Again that's a short-term fix if you're in a tight spot. But I wonder if someone heard about this and forgot about the non-Jew part, they just remembered "I used it once before dunking it ..."

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