Glade air fresheners will typically expire around 2 to 5 years after purchase. Although some products list a definitive expiration date, what you really need to know is that products like these tend to go bad slowly over time.
A Glade aerosol spray can will typically be good to use for at least 2 years after it has been purchased, if it remains unopened. An opened can might go bad sooner if the compressed air inside it leaks out.
A Glade plugin air freshener with a scented gel cartridge will probably be good to use for at least 5 years after purchase, if it remains unopened.
Both products are capable of going bad sooner if they have already been opened, especially the plugin air freshener gel cartridges. When exposed to the air, the scented gel diffuses the fragrance-producing molecules that come inside the gel. There are a limited amount of these molecules, which means that any scented gel container that is left open to the air, even a little bit, will “run out” of fragrance particles.
Why We Can’t Know For Sure
The US government does not typically require air freshener products to list an expiration date the same way that food is required to.
When a company does choose to list an expiration date anyways, this usually means that they want you to know that the chemicals in the product do eventually go bad. They don’t want you to try to use a 5 year old product, have it not work, then leave a scathing review online that says it never worked.
We also don’t know the ingredients that make up every air freshener. Companies are generally not required to list all of the chemical ingredients in an air freshener device. Some of the chemicals may have a “half life” which means that the chemicals naturally break down over time. This would leave the air freshener less effective than intended, or possibly not effective at all.
The best way to keep your air freshener good for a long time is to store it, unopened and fully sealed, in a location away from very high or low temperatures. Fluctuating temperatures can sometimes affect the chemical within an air freshener and cause them to lose their chemical potency. It is especially important to store aerosol cans somewhere away from high temperatures, as they can explode if heated too much.
Some air freshener chemicals, once exposed to the air, could be affected by bacterial growth. This could diminish the effectiveness of the air freshener, as bacteria can introduce unknown chemicals into the scented mixture.
Is An Expired Air Freshener Dangerous?
Not really. Expired air fresheners are no more dangerous than regular air fresheners.
An expired aerosol spray can might not spray at all, if the compressed air inside it has leaked out. If the compressed air is still present but the scented chemicals have expired, then it will just smell differently than it is supposed to. It might have the same scent as before, but weaker.
The same is true of scented plugin cartridges. If exposed to air, they will expire rapidly. If not exposed to air, the chemicals inside them might break down eventually. If you try to use a scented plugin cartridge after years of it sitting on a shelf, it might not smell like anything at all. Or, the scent may be very weak.
Air Fresheners That Never Expire
Every air freshener, whether it adds new scent to the air, or removes bad scents, relies on various chemical compounds to do the job. Some chemicals float around and smell fresh, but then dissipate. Other chemicals attack odor-causing particles and neutralize their scent, removing bad odors.
But unfortunately for us, almost all chemicals can eventually lose their potency either by leaking out of their container, or simply because the chemical naturally degrades over time.
My main tips for wanting air fresheners to never expire is to only buy them when you are going to use them. I know, that sounds obvious. But it’s the only solution that’s guaranteed to work.
I recommend getting an electronic essential oil diffuser, then only purchasing new scented oils when you are going to use them. This guarantees that they will always be fresh and fully potent when used.
I recommend this essential oil starter kit below:
- Electronic essential oil diffuser – Click here to view.
- Essential oil 6-pack starter set – Comes with 6 scents – Click here to view.
If you want to remove bad odors, instead of adding new scents to your home, then one solution is to set out baking soda in an open container such as a bowl. Baking soda is great for absorbing odor-causing particles, effectively “grabbing” them out of the air when they touch the baking soda.
Baking soda is said to last forever if kept in an airtight container. This means it is an odor removal solution that will not go bad.
I recommend the following baking soda brand:
- Arm & Hammer baking soda – Useful for removing bad odors – Click here to view.
And finally, if you need heavy duty odor removal of a large room, your entire house, or your entire car, then I tell people to consider purchasing an ozone generator. Typically, this is only for extremely serious odor removal jobs, such as carpet that has been stained with stinky animal urine, or a house that has been occupied by heavy smokers, or a car that has been used by a smoker.
An ozone generator will produce new odor-destroying ozone as soon as you turn it on. This means that it doesn’t need to store chemicals that can go bad over time. It literally creates new odor-destroying chemicals any time you need them.
I recommend the following ozone generator for serious odor removal jobs:
- Ozone generator – Creates fresh odor-destroying ozone gas when turned on – Click here to view.