How Long Do Home Items Last Before You Should Replace Them?
How long should you go before changing common items in your home? Some household items around your home have expiration dates attached to them that you shouldn’t ignore.
Fitted bedroom specialist, DM Design, has provided me with advice about how long you should keep items for before replacing them and the reasons why:
Pillows should be replaced at least every two years as they are known to house bacteria, mould, sweat, dead skin cells and dust mites that love feasting on all these things. Not very nice considering you rest your face on them for around eight hours every night… Warning signs of a pillow in need of replacing include stains or smells or loss of supportiveness. You can extend the life of your pillows by washing the pillowcases weekly and if your pillows can handle being machine washed, wash them too occasionally.
- In the Bedroom | Mattresses
Mattresses should be replaced every eight years. You spend about a third of your life sleeping in your bed bot those associated with the mattress industry and the Sleep Council recommend that you change your mattress at least every eight years as this is the time that it will have lost most of its original support and comfort.
You can extend the life of your mattress by flipping it and rotating it at least once a year to make sure the wear is even. Warning signs that it’s time to get a new mattress include waking up feeling tired, noticing a change to the shape of the mattress or feeling stiff and sore in your body after a night’s sleep.
- In the Bathroom | Toothbrushes
Dentists recommend that toothbrushes should be changed every three months and the same goes for electric toothbrush heads. The reason for this is that they are bacteria magnets that can accumulate lots of germs from your mouth and other things. If you don’t keep your toothbrush in a cupboard and flush your toilet with the lid up, you can end of with water sprayed from your toilet on your toothbrush… There are lots of bacteria in your mouth and a buildup of these on your toothbrush can be harmful and cause tooth decay or gingivitis.
You can reduce the number of bacteria on your toothbrush by rinsing it thoroughly after use and allowing it to air dry. Another trick is to soak it in antibacterial mouthwash! When you see that the bristles have lost their shape, then it’s time to get a new one.
- In the Bathroom | Toilet Brushes
A toilet brush should be changed at least every six months. It’s an item that is used to scrub toilets and the bristles often stay moist which means it’s a perfect place for bacteria to thrive and spread around your bathroom. If you use a toilet brush, make sure you change it frequently as soon as it looks a bit grungy!
- In the Kitchen | Fridge Freezers & Washing Machines
These kinds of appliances can last a long time – between 15 and 30 years depending on the manufacturer. Generally, after 15 years it’s a good time to consider a new one due to newer models using a lot less energy than older models.
- In the Kitchen | Chopping Boards
Chopping boards should be replaced at least yearly as they can harbor a lot of bacteria. Shockingly, they can have 200% more faecal bacteria than toilet seats! Always ensure you clean your chopping boards thoroughly after each use to get rid of any potentially harmful bacteria. When you see colouring stains and deep cuts, it’s probably time to buy a new one.
- Around the Home | Smoke Detectors
Smoke detectors are important in all homes and the whole units should be replaced every 10 years and the batteries once a year.
The National Fire Protection Association warns that three out of every five home fire deaths are caused from fires that take place in homes which either have no smoke alarms at all or no working smoke alarms. It’s so important to ensure your home’s smoke alarms are in good working order.
Carry out frequent tests of your smoke detector batteries throughout the year, so that you will know first-hand if the units are running low on power.
- Around the Home | Carpets
Apartment-grade carpets last around 1-5 years, medium-grade ones between 5 and 15 years and high-grade ones between 15 and 25 years. It’s difficult to pinpoint exactly when you should replace your home’s carpet as it will depend on the quality of the material, the way you treat it and how you maintain it.
Signs that it’s time to replace it include if large areas have become matted or it’s filled with large rips and tears and has lost its tuft. Other signs can be lingering odours that have penetrated deeply into the fibres or stains that you can’t remove.