Using expired herbicides is a rather disconcerting thing, so the question of whether or not roundup would go bad is a worthy one to ask.
Can roundup go bad or weaken in time? Technically speaking, roundup has a lifespan of seven years, so you won’t have to worry about it becoming useless before that time. As long as the herbicide is kept in the right place during that period, you should still be able to use it without an issue. The problem comes in when external elements like extreme cold get involved.
Roundup might keep for many years, but this is only if it is stored under the right conditions, so make sure you know what to avoid.
How to Keep Roundup for Longer?
Although roundup is not exactly the most expensive item in the world, it’s not exactly dirt cheap either. As such, it would be great if it can stick around long enough to actually be useful to you. Fortunately, it can with its lifespan that lasts seven years, but that can quickly be cut short depending on the circumstances and the conditions.
For example, among the threats to the usefulness of roundup included:
In order to make sure that you will actually be able to make use of this product to the fullest, you have two options. One is to use it up as fast as possible so that you will only really have a jar for a few weeks, which is impossible unless you are killing weeds on a golf course. The other is to just extend its shelf life for as long as you can by using the following methods:
|Store properly||Find a cool, dry place to store your roundup in and make sure that the humidity doesn’t get so bad that it affects the mixture|
|Keep away from extreme temperatures||Heats sources like generators, stoves, and fire, or cold sources like what you would find in freezers should be avoided at all costs. Obviously, you should also keep it away from blizzards.|
|Prevent constant exposure to changing weather||Rain, snow, heat waves, and the like are enemies of anything you are trying to preserve, so make sure to keep your roundup away from those too|
|Seal properly after every use||People sometimes forget to seal their roundup containers after every use for one reason or another, which can cause the mixture to degrade|
Even if roundup does have a long lifespan, this does not free you up from the responsibility of making sure that it actually makes it to that point. A lifespan is only a measure of how long something is supposed to last, not a guarantee that something will actually last that long. So always assume the worst when storing your roundup.
You don’t want to confidently waste your time using the herbicide on grass that you were thinking would be easily killed, only to find that they are thriving. It’s not really that big of a deal since you would only need to buy a new jar, but you would have wasted both time and money, at that point. Why not save both?
How to Know if Roundup Has Expired
Speaking of roundup expiring, how do you know that your container of the stuff is no longer viable? Well, there is the expiration date, for one. It is more than likely that if the date that was specified on the label has come and gone, you can probably expect that it won’t work anymore. This is not exactly an unreasonable expectation to have.
You can also count the mark of seven years where you can expect that from the moment you purchase it, you only have about that amount of time to use it before it goes bad. At the end of the day, this is a pretty hit or miss approach since you can’t exactly be expected to remember the specific year when you purchased the roundup. It’s not exactly something that sticks in your mind.
Of course, you can always turn to a test to see if the roundup is still working. You take the mixture and then spray it on weeds that you would not mind being dead. It’s doesn’t have to be a lot and it can be just a brief excursion. You don’t want to spend too much time and energy on this if it ends up being a dud, in the first place.
After confirming, either way, you can then begin using the formula in earnest or you can throw it away to be replaced with a newer batch that actually works.
Does Roundup Weaken Overtime?
Everything degrades as time goes on and the same goes for Roundup. As it approaches the mark of seven years that signifies how long it will be useful for, you can pretty much safely assume that it is no longer as potent as it once was. As such, you might need to use more of it to get the job done or combine it with a newer batch just to make sure it doesn’t go to waste.
However, this should ideally only really apply to when the herbicide has gotten old. If your roundup becomes less potent not even a year after you purchased it, then something has gone wrong. It most likely has something to do with how you treated the mixture or how you stored it. You can’t just expect the item to last forever when exposed to unfavorable conditions, can you?
More than anything else, it is in keeping your product safe and sound that you can rely on it when the time comes. If you have just been stuffing the herbicide in any random cabinet or just leaving it outside to freeze or overheat, you can’t be surprised if it ends up becoming weaker that much faster. So be sure to take care of your batch of roundup if you want to use it for a long time.
Is Roundup Harmful to Dogs?
The active ingredients in Roundup are harmful to dogs, so it is highly advised that you keep your dogs inside the house while you are spraying your lawn or garden. You must not allow them to come out for at least two hours after you are done spraying to allow the mist to dissipate entirely.
Will I Get Cancer from Roundup?
Using any kind of pesticide requires you to wear the right protective gear, which not everyone appears to have gotten the memo on. A protective breathing mask is necessary here and not the medical kind. You need the industry-grade respirator, which can prevent your lungs from getting cancer.
What Are Alternatives to Roundup?
There are plenty of other herbicides that can be found in the market and which you can use to kill pesky weeds. However, this does not mean that you really only have the store-bought, chemical versions to choose from. There are actually a ton of other options that can help you get rid of all of that weed if you wanted to.
In fact, did you know that one of the biggest advantages of mulching is preventing the spread of weed? That’s right, instead of feeding the annoying grass, this age-old solution to keeping your plants healthy will make the more invasive species less of an issue.
There are also some herbicides that are actually using vinegar instead of the chemical solutions that are often found in products like roundup. In many cases, these kinds of herbicides are considered organic and are also thought to be safer to use. At the very least, you won’t have to wear a respirator out of necessity just so you don’t get cancer in the process.
On that note, the very best thing that you can do if you really want to prevent pesky weeds from becoming a problem, to begin with, is to simply make sure that they never get the chance to grow, in the first place. You can do that by getting your topsoil from stores where they guarantee that the chances of such weeds from growing will be quite low.
You might also want to habitually check your lawn from time to time so that you can notice if these types of grass are beginning to grow. You can then just pull them out way before they become a nuisance. This might be a bit cumbersome and it will get in your way more, but this is just something that you need to do.
How Often to Use Roundup
It can be difficult to tell when exactly you should be using roundup or any herbicide, for that matter, because weeds don’t exactly have a fixed schedule. The only thing you can really do is take a look at your lawn or garden and judge for yourself if your weeds are growing enough to merit the trouble of killing them.
It’s just a fact of life that you will never be able to get rid of weeds and all you can really do is manage how often they pop up. More often than not, this comes down to just how neurotic you can be about such things. If you prefer to keep your garden or lawn as free of invasive grass as possible, you might end up taking out the herbicide more often.
Then again, if you can only really be bothered to act if things have already gotten out of hand, it would be no wonder that it would take seven years to use up your roundup. At the end of the day, it’s really all up to you, but it would be for the best if you can make up your mind as to how you will use the product and for how often.
Just make sure not to use the herbicide every other day because this can only result in issues related to the risks that it poses to your health. Just because you are noticing that there are some weeds beginning to grow on your lawn, you don’t have to freak out and spray it right away. A much better solution would be to take that young weed and pull it out by the roots.