Margaret Minnicks has been a writer for many years. She writes about entertainment, celebrities, books, movies, foods, drinks, and health.
Products That Expire Will Shock You
Most people know milk, eggs, and certain other foods expire. However, you will be very surprised that products other than foods also expire. In fact, almost everything you own expires sooner or later.
This article contains some real shockers. Did you know a child's car seat expires? How about your fire extinguishers? What about those power surges you have around your house and office?
Now is the time to throw out those expired products!
Child's Car Seat
Most parents have no idea that their child's car seat has an expiration date. Usually, a child's car seat does not expire when the first child is using it, but it does expire when a second child uses it.
It is not good to purchase a used car seat from a garage sale or on sites like eBay and Craigslist. The material causes car seats to expire between six to 10 years.
Around the House
There are some surprising things around everybody's house that expire.
- Fire extinguishers expire even though people don't realize that. Depending on the type, an extinguisher will last from five to 15 years. Homeowners should check extinguishers periodically even though they have not been used. There is a gauge on them that shows if there are still safe to use.
- Power surge protectors and power strips expire with age. Buy a new one when the one you are using begins to change color or become hot.
- Smoke and carbon monoxide detectors expire. Don't be caught off guard with a faulty smoke and carbon monoxide detector in your house. Protect your family by replacing the detector within 10 years.
- Batteries begin to expire as soon as they are made by the manufacturer even if they are not inserted into a battery-operated item. When stored properly, alkaline batteries can last only up to seven years while lithium batteries can last as long as 10 years. Most households use them long before their expiration dates.
Sports and Outdoor Products
- Running shoes expire after 250 miles. Then they will begin to lose some of their cushioning. It takes the average runner from six months to one year to reach the 250-mile mark. After then, purchase a new pair.
- Bike helmets should be replaced after three to five years. This should happen sooner if the helmet was worn in an accident.
- Sunscreen expires after three years. Some large families have to buy a new supply after only one season.
- Insect repellent usually expires after two years from its manufacturer's date. Check the date before bringing it out of the store.
- Neosporin: If there are small children in the household, there is sure to be some Neosporin in the medicine cabinet. Check the expiration date on the package before using it.
Most beauty products expire after a while. That includes lotions, perfume, and makeup.
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- Lotions and moisturizers: If they are in tubes, they can be used for a couple of years. Lotions and moisturizers in bottles lose their power much sooner.
- Perfume: Some perfumes expire in only six months while others could last up to 10 years, depending on how often you open the bottle and if it has a heavier base and a high alcohol content. It will last longer if it is stored properly out of direct sunlight and heat.
- Mascara: To avoid getting an eye infection, toss your mascara after three months. It would have accumulated bacteria and dried out by that time.
- Lipstick: These have an expiration date of only about two years. By then, you will notice a change in its texture and smell. You will know it is time to buy a new tube.
- Sponges and loofahs: These can start to house bacteria in just a couple of weeks. Plastic mesh loofahs are safe to use for up to eight weeks.
- Disposable razors: should be tossed after three or four shaves. Let them dry completely after each use.
Foods, Drinks, Spices, and Condiments
Here are some foods and drinks that people might not know they expire.
- White potatoes: Don't you just hate it when you buy white potatoes, and they begin to sprout before you use them? White potatoes can last about two to three months when stored in a cool, dark place.
- Bottled water: One wouldn't think bottled water has an expiration date. While the water doesn't expire, the container that it is in does. If the bottle is left in the sun, the plastic will melt and leak chemicals that will cause the water to taste stale or different.
- Alcoholic beverages: Many people don't know that alcoholic beverages expire. Wine doesn't expire but continues to age. Opened bottles of alcohol can last about 12 months. Some folks consume their liquor long before it expires.
- Spices: It might be time to clean out your cabinet if you have spices longer than two to three years. Check the expiration dates and toss those older than two or three years.
- Salt: You might think salt doesn't expire. However, some salt does expire in about five years if it contains iodine.
- Vinegar: Yes, even vinegar expires. However, all types of vinegar do not have the same expiration date. Braggs apple cider vinegar has a much shorter shelf life than white vinegar. Braggs vinegar can last up to five years, and white vinegar can last longer.
- Baking soda and baking powder: These both expire, just like other household products. Check the box to see how long you can use it before replacing it with a fresh one.
- Bleach and other disinfectants have only a three-month lifespan. Anything older will not be effective to do the job you first bought it for.
- Hydrogen peroxide can last a few months without losing its fizz. When it does, toss it because it will no longer be effective.
Two More Items
- Condoms: The expiration date of condoms depends on the kind that is purchased. Usually, they expire after about five years if stored under the right conditions. Condoms with spermicidal don't last that long. They expire in only two years.
- Bullet-proof vests: Hopefully, you will never have to find out the hard way that one of these has expired. They were not made to last forever. No bullet-proof vest is guaranteed to be effective after five years.
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
© 2018 Margaret Minnicks
Margaret Minnicks (author) from Richmond, VA on April 03, 2018:
Louise, loofahs were not the ones that surprised me. I was surprised at a lot of them such as children car seats, and bulletproof vests. Since doing the research and writing the article, I must toss several bottles of spices that I haven't used in years now that I know they have expired.
Louise Powles from Norfolk, England on April 03, 2018:
Yes, it's surprising what does expire. I wouldn't of thought loofahs expire, but I see your point.