Skip to Content


How often to clean or replace household items

How often to clean or replace household items

Here’s the thing. In a bid to be more environmentally friendly, we tend to hold on to items longer than we should. Whether it’s waiting a few more days to wash the bedsheets to save on yet another wash or holding off on replacing the kitchen sponge, we’ve all been guilty at one time or another. But you may want to rethink how often you replace some household items. Hint: That dish sponge should probably go.

We’ve rounded up the most common household items that should be replaced from time to time—and how frequently you should be doing so.

A guide to cleaning and replacing household items


1. Toothbrushes

Excellent for cleaning your teeth, also good at harboring bacteria. It’s recommended to change your toothbrush (or toothbrush head) every three to four months.

Consider recycled plastic or bamboo toothbrushes to lower the environmental impact.

2. Towels

If you’re not washing your towels regularly, you could be making yourself dirtier after a shower! Wash your bath towel after every three to four uses. Let it dry completely after each use. Ideally, you want to replace your towels every few years for optimum hygiene.

3. Toilet brush

It sits in the corner, and we try not to think of the icky soup at the bottom. Most toilet brushes are not cleaned or replaced nearly as often they should be. Plastic brushes should be replaced every six months. So opt instead for a more eco-friendly wooden toilet brush with natural bristles—they need to be replaced less frequently. Rinse the brush after every use. And whenever you clean your bathroom, wash the toilet brush and holder using a disinfectant intended for bathrooms and toilets.  


1. Bedsheets

There’s no better feeling than getting into crisp, clean bedsheets. So wash your bed linens at least every two weeks. More often if you sweat a lot at night.

2. Pillows

If you’ve had the same pillow since college, it’s time you bought a new one. Pillows are the perfect environment for dust mite matter and other nasty things. It’s recommended to replace the pillow you sleep on every two years. You can upcycle old pillows by using them as pet beds, decorative pillows or outdoor cushions. And wash your pillow cases once a week.

3. Mattresses

An old mattress can offer two things: poor sleep posture and bedbugs. A mattress cover extends the life of your mattress, but, ideally, you should be replacing your mattress every five to 10 years. Suffer from back or neck pain when you wake up? Definitely time for a new one. 

A guide to knowing when to replace the most crucial household items – bed sheets
ATC Logo

Sign-up now to take advantage of member exclusives!

As a member of Ask Team Clean, you get access to exclusive offers and the best cleaning tips.


1. Kitchen sponge

Depending on how often you use your sponge, you should replace it every two to four weeks. Running your kitchen sponge through the dishwasher or steaming it in the microwave. It’s also good to mention that sponges used for dishes should not be used for cleaning counters as well, and vice versa!

2. Cleaning cloths

Sure, they clean your home, but are they clean? Toss them into the laundry after every use, rather than being left damp and icky under the sink. Replace your cleaning rags completely every one to two years, or when they’re frayed.

3. Food storage containers

Tupperware is terrific, but why not slowly make the move to glass food storage containers? Glass doesn’t absorb stains and odors like plastic containers do, making them easier to clean.


1. Vacuum cleaner filter

The nature of its job—to suck dirt and dust—means your vacuum cleaner filter is grimy. You should replace the filter every six months (or sooner) to avoid dust particles leaking back into the room.

2. Smoke detectors

They save lives when they work. Replace your smoke detector every 10 years, and change the batteries twice a year. A good reminder for this it to do it when the clocks change for Daylight Savings Time.

3. Mops

As with other common household items, you can make your home dirtier instead of cleaner with a mop that’s not replaced often enough. Replace mop accessories every two to three months.

Looking for more innovative ways to clean your home? Look no further! Team Clean has got you covered. Check out ‘How to Tidy Your Home Properly’ or ‘Cleaning kitchen appliances,’ and you’ll be well on your way to a cleaner, decluttered home!