7 Surprising Things That Go Bad Over Time

Stocking up on items at a great price can be a smart move. But be careful — some items expire before you think they do.

7 Surprising Things That Go Bad Over Time Photo (cc) by France1978

All good things must come to an end. That applies to you, and probably to a lot of the stuff filling your home.

While stocking up can seem like a smart move, not everything can be stored indefinitely. Read on to learn which items might be about to go bad in your stockpile.

1. Cleaning products


How many of you have ancient cleaning supplies buried under your sink? It’s OK. You can admit it. We won’t judge.

However, it turns out you probably should ditch those old-looking bottles. According to Good Housekeeping, cleaning supplies can degrade over time and lose their effectiveness. The plastic containers they’re stored in may also affect cleaning formulas over time.

The magazine says you can use these rules of thumb when it comes to deciding whether cleaning supplies have expired:

  • Laundry detergent — six to 12 months
  • Fabric softener — one year
  • Multisurface cleaners — two years
  • Cleaners with antibacterial ingredients — one year
  • Disinfectants — two years
  • Dishwasher detergent — three months
  • Dish soap — 12 to 18 months

If you use bleach in homemade cleaners, be aware it can lose its effectiveness quickly once diluted. The Scripps Research Institute says a 10 percent bleach solution is potent for only a day. Even in its original bottle and undiluted, bleach can start to degrade after six months.

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