How Do You Safely Store Hydrogen Peroxide?

Hydrogen peroxide is a bit of a miracle worker in the home. It is also often used for cleaning in multiple areas around the house. In order for it to work optimally, you must know how to store hydrogen peroxide properly. This includes both proper storage and understanding limits on shelf life.

Due to its multiple uses, it's not uncommon to always have a bottle on hand. There are many household tasks that hydrogen peroxide can help with — it can be a lifesaver in the bathroom by attacking gunky tile grout and sanitizing bathtubs. You can also add it to the toilet to kill bacteria. It can even disarm skunk smell, brighten whites in the laundry, and keep pests off of plants. Many people keep a bottle on hand for its medicinal uses and its ability to act as an antiseptic on cuts and wounds (via WebMD). In the beauty department, it is an old favorite for lightening hair and some even swear by hydrogen peroxide for whitening teeth, as well. 

How to properly store hydrogen peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide should always be stored in a dark and cool place. It should not be near any sun or heat. Heat will cause it to break down faster. Though it's an antiseptic, hydrogen peroxide does not last forever and it is necessary to replace old bottles. Keeping track of the expiration dates is vital. If unopened, you can keep a bottle of hydrogen peroxide for up to three years. Although still closed, the hydrogen peroxide will break down on the inside and decompose into water and oxygen. 

Additionally, the bottle starts to lose its effectiveness as soon as it is opened. Hydrogen peroxide will only work optimally for one to six months. That is why storing bottles in a cabinet for long periods of time isn't ideal. You can tell whether the hydrogen peroxide is still good by its fizz. If it's broken down, there will be no fizz when you pour it.