What to trash while spring cleaning

DENVER -- There are some things in your home you should pay extra attention to while spring cleaning this year.

You probably know you should check out your medicine cabinet every now and then to make sure your medication hasn’t expired, but there are some other things in your home you should also throw out.

We put spices in our cabinet and forget about them, but typically after four years you should throw them away.

Cosmetics should be thrown away after just a year.

You should write the date you buy your make up and spices on the bottom for reference.

Opened cans of paint should also be tossed.

“Most people have a few gallons of paint laying around in their house, and it is definitely something they need to get rid of properly,” said Ace Hardware-Alameda Station owner Andy Carlson.

We save those gallons for touch-ups, but after a few years they won’t match anymore.

“Paint is safe to dispose of in your trash if it’s dry. So the most common thing to do is basically mix paint with cat litter,” said Carlson.

Mix an equal amount of paint and cat litter in a bucket lined with a trash bag.

After a day or two it’s dry enough for the trash.

Right now a lot of people are switching light bulbs from compact fluorescent to LEDs.

“CFL bulbs contain mercury, so you don’t want to throw those in the trash. You want to bring those into recycling,” said Carlson.

You can recycle those old bulbs at a local hardware store.

Spring is also a good time to get into your closet and see what you can throw out.

If you’re not sure what you should donate, you should flip all the hangers in your closet backward and then when you wear something replace it the other way.

At the end of the year if you still have a backward hanger you know it’s time to donate it. 

If you'd like to donate your prescription drugs, you can click here to find out when and where.

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