Daylight saving check-up

By Jennie Bragg, producer


NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Daylight savings rolls around again this weekend.

Instead of just setting your clocks back an hour, consider the change of time a good reminder of the little things you should do twice a year.

Check your batteries

Replace the batteries in all of your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors.

These are probably the most important battery-powered devices in your home.

Many detectors will beep a warning or flash a light when a battery is low, but don't depend on this. Change out the batteries once or twice a year at daylight savings time.

But don't throw out the old batteries!

Batteries aren't cheap, and the ones you just took out of your smoke detector still have some juice left. Use them for remote controls, flashlights or other household devices.

And while you are changing the batteries in your smoke detector or carbon monoxide detector, check to see if the device has an expiration date. Many of these devices only last 5 to 10 years and your detector may be expired.

Check the medicine cabinet

Now is as good a time as any to take a look into the depths of your medicine cabinet.

Is anything in there expired?

Many believe expiry dates for toothpaste, shampoo or lip gloss are meaningless, but prescription drugs are a whole different ball game.

Check for dates, and get rid of anything that has expired.

According to federal guidelines, most expired prescription drugs should not be flushed down the toilet, as it is assumed that the drugs will eventually get back into our water supply.

Instead, the FDA recommends that prescriptions be mixed with something unappealing, like kitty litter or coffee grounds, placed in a sealed container and put in the household trash.

Drug take-back programs are another good way to remove expired medicine from your home and many communities offer this free service.

Contact your local government's trash and recycling service or your pharmacist to see if there is a take-back program in your home town.

Check the refrigerator

Just like the medicine cabinet, things in the refrigerator tend to get pushed to the back and expire.

When did you buy that jar of mayo?

Check everything in the fridge for expiration dates, and trash anything that is past the limit.

Now is also a good time to stock up on essentials that might have expired.

Talkback: Does the switch to daylight saving time disrupt your every day routine? To top of page

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