It’s easy to remember to replace things around your home like lightbulbs that go out or an empty toilet paper roll. But there are plenty of other things around your home that need regular replacing but don’t show such obvious signs. And replacing these things can be important for avoiding germs and keeping your home clean and safe. To find out what they are, check out these 10 household items you’re forgetting to replace (and how often you need to replace them).
Household Items You NEED to Replace Now!
This is something I often forget to replace. I don’t wear makeup every day so mine tends to last a long time. Much longer than I should keep it without replacing it.
Eye makeup like mascara and eyeliners should be replaced about every 3 months. Regularly replacing these items will help prevent eye infections.
Both powdered makeup and liquid, including foundations, blush, and eyeshadow needs to be replaced after about a year.
Makeup brushes don’t need to be replaced, but they do need to be cleaned regularly.
2. Kitchen Sponges
Kitchen sponges need to be replaced every 2 to 4 weeks. More often if you wash all your dishes by hand. Wet sponges are bacteria traps.
Even with regular sanitizing in the dishwasher or microwave, you still need to replace them at least once a month.
3. Smoke Detector Batteries
Check your smoke detector batteries every 4 to 6 weeks to make sure they are still good. A smoke alarm isn’t going to help you in the event of a fire if the batteries are dead.
Smoke alarms themselves have expirations dates too, often lasting about a decade. And you should check yours to see if the entire unit needs replacing.
4. Air Filters
Air filters in your home should be replaced every 1 to 3 months depending on how much dust you get.
If you have a reusable air filter, then cleaning it on approximately a 1 to 3-month basis is necessary to keep it functioning.
Some air filters have recommendations for how often to place them on the packaging from the manufacturer, so that is another great way to know when you need to set a reminder to replace them.
If you’ve been sleeping on the same pillow every night for more than 2 years, it’s time to get a replacement!
Pillows take in allergens over time and become unsafe to sleep on. You may even find you sleep better once you get a new pillow. So it’s a good idea to set a reminder to replace your pillow every 2 years.
6. Fire Extinguisher
Because a fire extinguisher is something you rarely (or hopefully never) need, it’s easy to forget they need replacing. But it does you absolutely no good that one time you need a fire extinguisher if it is no longer functional.
A fire extinguisher needs to be replaced after 10 to 15 years or anytime the needle of the pressure gauge drops out of the green area.
You need to replace the ground spices in your spice rack every 2 years. Whole spices can last up to 4 years. Dried leaf type spices have a 1 to 2 year shelf life.
And if your spices have an expiration date on the bottle, that should be your guideline for replacing them.
8. Toilet Brush
Your toilet brush regularly cleans one of the ickiest areas of your home. It needs to be replaced often. Think about having those germs just hanging out around your house forever. Not a great idea.
Replace your toilet brushes every 3 months to be on the safe side.
My family calls these bath puffballs, I’ve also seen them called bath poufs. Whatever you call the spongy thing you use to wash your body, it should be replaced every month.
Also, try to rinse them thoroughly and let them air dry completely between uses.
To make sure you’re getting your teeth properly cleaned and not introducing bacteria to your mouth, replace your toothbrush or electric toothbrush head every 3 months.
Toothbrushes can hold on to bacteria over time. And they start to wear out and become less effective with use. Regularly replacing your toothbrush is the best way to keep your teeth and mouth clean.
Set Reminders to Replace Household Items!
When something needs to be replaced only every few months or years it gets difficult to keep track of how long you’ve had it.
The best way I’ve found to regularly replace household items is to set reminders. You can do this on your cell phone. Or on a paper calendar if you use one.
Or just make a plan to date everything and regularly check the dates. Find a system that works for you and keep your home cleaner and safer for your family.