Expiration dates around the house

It’s not just the contents of the fridge that needs a look at expiration dates. Did you know that a number of household items have recommended times to change them out? We have specialist designer of kitchens in Glasgow, DM Designs, give us virtual tour of a house, seeking out which items need replacing.

Expiration dates around the house

Cleaning up the kitchen

Item: Fridges & washing machines

How long before you should replace them: Between 15 and 30 years, depending on the manufacturer

Reasons why:

Washing machines and fridges have a long lifespan. Depending on the manufacturer that you’ve opted for, these essential items of your kitchen or utility room could remain effective for between 15 and 30 years after you first purchased it new.

But you will want to start shopping for a new washing machine or fridge at around the 15 year mark. This is because fridges and washing machines built today are known to use a lot less energy than models that were manufactured even 12 years ago.

So while you won’t need to switch your fridge regularly, if you have a water filter with your fridge, look to switch that twice a year. This is due to these filters collecting bacteria and building up mould over time.

Item: Chopping boards

How long before you should replace them: Once a year maximum

Reasons why:

Alarmingly, studies show that wooden chopping boards can have up to 200% more faecal bacteria than a toilet seat. This is in spite of the idea that wooden chopping boards are often deemed to be the more hygienic of the different types of chopping boards available!

Make sure you give your chopping board a good clean once you’ve used them to prevent harmful bacteria building. However, colouring stains and deep cuts are clear signs that it might be time to buy a new one.

Brushing up the bathroom

Item: Toothbrushes

How long before you should replace them: Every three months (this also being the case for the brush head if using an electric toothbrush)

Reasons why:

Dentists recommend toothbrushes should be replaced every three months (or, toothbrush heads if you have an electric toothbrush). This is because the items are magnets for bacteria, which can accumulate from toilet spray when a toilet is flushed with the lid up, splashes from a bathroom sink while washing hands and also bacteria present in your mouth — between 100 and 200 species of oral bacteria can exist in your mouth alone! All of the bacteria mentioned can be harmful and may lead to tooth decay or gingivitis.

Rinse your brush thoroughly after use and soak it in antibacterial mouthwash to reduce the bacteria build-up. However, bristles becoming frayed is a sign that it’s time to replace your toothbrush.

Expiration dates around the house

Item: Toilet brushes

How long before you should replace them: Every six months maximum

Reasons why:

With continued use, the bristles of a toilet will collect moisture. This in turn will lead to bacteria thriving and spreading around your toilet and bathroom.

You should look to replace your toilet brush every 6 months. Keep an eye out if the brush looks grungy and grimy though, as these are signs that the item should be replaced as soon as possible. Plus, it’s not like you’re going to be spending a fortune on each toilet brush!

Doing up the house

Item: Smoke detectors

How long before you should replace them: Every ten years for the entire unit, once a year for the batteries

Reasons why:

Three out of five home fire deaths are caused by homes without a working smoke alarm, or no smoke alarm at all, according to The National Fire Protection Association. It’s statistics like these that should act as a wake-up call to ensure your home’s smoke alarms are in good working order.

The entire smoke detector unit should be replaced once every ten years to avoid the risk of malfunction. However, the batteries for a smoke detector should be replaced on an annual basis at the very least.

Check your smoke detector batteries frequently throughout the year too, to make sure the units are functioning.

Item: Carpets

How long before you should replace them: For an apartment-grade carpet — between 1 and 5 years maximum; for a medium-grade carpet — between 5 and 15 years; for a high-grade carpet — between 15 and 25 years maximum.

Reasons why:

A carpet’s lifespan is dictated by multiple factors: how you take care of it, how it is cleaned, and the quality of the material.

There are some tell-tale signs that it’s time to replace your carpet. It’s only natural that your carpet will go through some general wear and tear, for instance, but consider purchasing a new one if large chunks of your current carpet has become matted, is filled with large rips and tears, and has lost its tuft.

Odours can also become trapped in carpet fibres. While this can be sorted out with a thorough, regular clean of your carpet, if a lingering smell remains then it’s a sign that the odour has penetrated deep into the fibres of the carpet, the carpet pad or the subfloor. A new carpet is often the most cost-effective solution here.

Sprucing up the bedroom

Item: Mattresses

How long before you should replace them: Every eight years maximum

Reasons why:

The average person spends around a third of their lives sleeping. That’s a long time spent lying on a mattress. However, both those associated with the mattress industry and the Sleep Council have recommended that you replace your mattress at least once every eight years, as this is found to be the time when the item will have lost most of its original comfort and support.

Get the most out of your mattress by rotating and flipping it once a year. However, telling signs that it’s time to get a new one will be if you wake up in the morning feeling tired, have noticed worn, lumpy or visible sags around your mattress, or if your body is stiff and sore after a night’s sleep.

Item: Pillows

How long before you should replace them: Every two years maximum

Reasons why:

It’s not nice to think that your face is pressed against a collection of dead skin cells, mould, bacteria, and dust mites. But that’s what pillows can end up housing after years of use. Considering you will be resting your face on your pillow at the end of each day, it’s vital that you replace them at least once every two years.

If your pillow becomes smelly or stained, or starts to lose that feeling of support, it’s time to switch it out. You can also extend their period of usefulness a bit by washing pillowcases on a weekly basis.

Thanks for stopping by today.

I hope you have enjoyed this post and here are my other home posts.

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