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Common household products: Expiration dates when none appear on the products

Every household purchases products for cleaning, polishing, painting, their automobiles as well as batteries and safety equipment such as a fire extinguisher for their homes from time to time. Many of these items don’t have as expiration date printed on their bottles, jars, cans or containers they are held in. Many of these items have an extended shelf life while others do not. Most cleaning products you probably don’t have to worry about since they are used often and those bottles empty out before you have to worry about them being kept too long. Other items are used in moderation or seasonally and should be checked periodically to ensure they are still good to use or unsafe to keep in the house or garage.

Learn the truth about expiration dates!

When to toss products that don’t have expiration dates on them:

Cleaning products:

  • Aerosol air fresheners – 2 years
  • Bleach – 3 to 6 months
  • Brass cleaner – 3 years
  • Copper polish – 3 years
  • Laundry detergent that has been opened – 6 months
  • Liquid dish detergent – 1 year
  • Liquid laundry detergent – 1 year
  • Mr. Clean – 2 years
  • Powdered dish detergent – 1 year
  • Powdered laundry detergent – 1 year
  • Silver polish – 3 years
  • Windex – 2 years
  • Wood polish – 2 years

Automobile products:

  • Concentrated antifreeze – indefinitely
  • Motor oil – 2-5 years
  • Opened motor oil – 3 months
  • Premixed antifreeze – 1 to 5 years

Miscellaneous household items:

  • Alkaline batteries – 7 years
  • Liquid Miracle Gro – 3 to 8 years
  • Liquid water-soluble Miracle Gro – indefinitely
  • Lithium batteries – 10 years
  • Non-rechargeable fire extinguisher – 12 years
  • Paint – 2 to 5 years if opened
  • Paint – up to 10 years if unopened
  • Rechargeable fire extinguishers – replace every 6 months or have recharged
  • Spray paint – 2 to 3 years


Play it safe and place a piece of masking tape on products that don’t have dates imprinted on them when you purchase them. Then use a permanent marker to mark the date of purchase. This will give you an idea how long the product has been in your home so when you go on a spring or winter cleaning spree you can dispose of old products that could be hazardous if kept too long.

Keep track of household item and look for expiration dates and keep the family safe!

© 2014 Beverly Mucha / All Rights Reserved

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