Your home is filled with products that lose effectiveness over time, and you may be forgetting to check a few important ones. Here are four household items with important expiration dates you should check to keep your family safe and your house clean.
Many cleaning products don’t have expiration dates on the bottle, but they do lose effectiveness over time. If you have a few rarely used cleaning supplies hiding underneath your sink, they may be out of gas. Expert sources say to follow these shelf-life guidelines:
It’s a huge step in the right direction to have multiple fire extinguishers in your house, but that doesn’t matter very much if they don’t work! Take a look at your extinguisher’s label — most are built to last for five to 15 years, but it’s important to check the pressure, too. If the pressure gauge is green and you haven’t reached your label’s expiration date, you’re good to go. If not, it’s time to replace the extinguisher.
The expiration date on your box will probably say that it’s good for three years from the date of purchase, but baking soda will start losing its effectiveness the moment it’s opened. If you keep it in your fridge to fight funky smells, it’s a good idea to replace it every few months. But, if your baking soda has been sealed and minding its own business in the back of the cabinet, it’s going to last a lot longer. If you’re unsure, test your baking soda’s effectiveness by mixing a teaspoon of it with a few tablespoons of vinegar. If there’s bubbling, your baking soda still has cleaning power.
Smoke detectors last for about 10 years — do you know how old yours is? Underneath the front plate of every smoke detector is a printed manufactured date. Add 10 years to that date, and that’s the absolute longest you should keep that detector. If it’s 10 years or older, it won’t be as sensitive to smoke. In fact, about 30% of detectors that are 10 years old don’t work at all. Even if your detectors are brand new, be sure to test your smoke detectors’ batteries every three months or so.
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