We all have a cleaning cabinet full of products, some that we use all the time and others that have been there way longer than we can remember. Do you know that some cleaning products actually have an expiration date? Cleaners that are past their expiration date can lose efficacy and also begin to break down the plastic containers they are in which can alter the cleaning formula.
Here is a list of common household cleaners and their recommended shelf life.
Laundry soap is good for 6 months to one year after opening. Some laundry soaps have their manufacture date on the package to help you keep track of the age. Older detergent is less effective than detergent within the 6-month shelf life.
Oxi Clean Powder:
This product claims to have unlimited shelf life, but it needs to be kept in a cool dry place.
All forms of fabric softener are good for up to a year.
Antibacterial versions of these do-it-all cleaners last up to a year. Other versions of these multi-tasking products can last up to two years.
Lysol Wipes and Spray:
Lysol products will last up to two years, after this you will notice the effectiveness wearing off as the fragrance becomes weaker.
Hand Dishwashing Soap:
Mild dish soap like Dawn is a powerhouse for more than just cleaning dishes. It is great for spot treating carpets and also laundry. Hand dish soap will retain its cleaning power for 12 to 18 months.
Automatic Dishwasher Detergent:
Stick to purchasing smaller quantities as most of these soaps only last about three months.
A great way to help you keep track of the age of your cleaning supplies to ensure they are effectively cleaning is to write the date you purchased it on the label when you put it away. Some sure-fire ways to tell if your cleaners are past their prime is if they have become separated, clumped, lumpy, or have a funny smell. Before throwing any cleaning product away it is best to look up the proper way to discard them.