Tuesday, January 13, 2015

January Week 2: Detergents and Cleansers

This week's food storage items are:

January Week 2: Detergents, bleach, cleansers, laundry detergent, dish detergent, bathroom and window cleaners

Some detergents and cleansers have expiration dates on them and some don't. Either way, I would rotate through them just to keep them fresh.

First, you will need to determine which cleansers you want to keep on your shelves. You can't believe how handy it is to have a good supply to fall back on. Decide what you use, and what you will need in the coming year. You can just keep some of the very basics, like bleach, Comet, and Lysol, or you can really take stock and get a year's supply of all of the cleansers you use in a year. I started by just storing two or three different items, but now I get most of what I'll use in a year. It's nice to pick it up in bulk at Costco, or get the items at a case lot sale (which, by the way, they have going on right now at Harmon's).

After you've determined how much you want in your storage, make a shopping list and in the next day or two, go out and pick up the items. Bring them home, get them on your shelves, and update your inventory sheets. Done. It's as easy as that. It literally only takes minutes to do this every week, and in a year's time, you will have a great stock of items that your family actually uses. This is what I love about this system. It's a rotating one, so you have very little (or no) waste along the way.

As a guideline, I've included a list below from Real Simple that includes some expiration dates for regular household items, including cleansers. I think some of the dates are on the conservative side, as I've used some of the items well after the time shown below, and they've still been fine.

Air freshener, aerosol
2 years

Antifreeze, premixed
1 to 5 years

Antifreeze, concentrate

Batteries, alkaline
7 years

Batteries, lithium
10 years

3 to 6 months

Dish detergent, liquid or powdered
1 year

Fire extinguisher, rechargeable
Service or replace every 6 years

Fire extinguisher, nonrechargeable
12 years

Laundry detergent, liquid or powdered
Unopened: 9 months to 1 year
Opened: 6 months

Metal polish (silver, copper, brass)
At least 3 years

Miracle Gro, liquid
Opened: 3 to 8 years

Miracle Gro, liquid, water-soluble

Motor oil
Unopened: 2 to 5 years
Opened: 3 months

Mr. Clean
2 years

Unopened: Up to 10 years
Opened: 2 to 5 years

Spray paint
2 to 3 years

2 years

Wood polish (Pledge)
2 years

If you would like the full info on the Week-By-Week Food Storage Plan, just click on the tab at the top of the page. You can then click on any single week and it will take you to the blogpost that featured that week's items. It also has the information as to how you can get a copy of the weekly schedule as well as the complete inventory sheets.

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