Good Question: When should you throw out expired COVID tests?

ROCHESTER, N.Y. — When do at-home COVID tests expire? Here’s one I had sitting at home. This one says it expires on May 12 but that’s not actually accurate.

A few of you have asked when to throw out your old tests. Over the past few months, the Food and Drug Administration has been extending the shelf life of certain COVID tests.

For example, some Binax Now tests are extended from 12 months to 15 months. Other Binax Now tests are extended from 15 to 22 months. Some Care Start brand tests added 6 months to the shelf-life, meaning the date printed on your test box might not be the true expiration date.

To find out when your test expires, you can check the FDA’s website. Find your test kit brand in the list, then on the right side of the screen, there’s a column for expiration dates. Click on the link in that column to search for your lot number, and to see your test’s new expiration date.

Keep in mind that the list on the FDA’s website is long and some brands have expiration dates that have not changed. If you haven’t checked the dates on your home tests in a couple of months, it’s worth checking again to see if any of them have been extended before you toss them.

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