How Long Do Reed Diffusers Last?

 reed diffuser on bedroom nightstand

Source: New Africa/

A reed diffuser offers a safe alternative to candles, offering a wonderful option in households with kids and pets. Unlike candles, which you should never leave alone, reed diffusers can also offer a fragrance all day long, even giving you the scent as soon as you arrive home.

But how long do reed diffusers last? In this article, Homesick explains how reed diffusers work and how long you can expect them to last. Plus, we offer tips on preserving the diffuser oil, lengthening the lifespan of your reeds and more.

How Reed Diffusers Work

How do reed diffusers work and how can you make the scent carry as long as possible? Essentially, the porous reeds soak up the oil, diffusing the aroma throughout a space. The more reeds you slip into the bottle of oil, the stronger the fragrance. And when they begin to lose their scent, simply flip the reeds to reverse the oil flow.  

How Long Do Reed Diffusers Last, Roughly?

 home reed diffuser

Source: Thomas Holt/

A 100 ml reed diffuser should last at least one month. However, with proper care, quality reed diffusers can last up to three to four months at a time. Many variables come into play, from the number of reeds used to the oil’s quality and the bottle’s design. 

To ensure your reed diffuser is well-maintained, always follow the recommendations or instructions that come with the product. Homesick diffusers offer four-ounce bottles (approximately 118 ml) of diffuser oil and are designed to last two to three months. For our reed diffusers, we recommend flipping the reeds every two to three weeks to keep a fresh scent.  

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4 Helpful Tips to Make Your Reed Diffuser Last Longer

As mentioned, there are many variables and factors that contribute to the lifespan of your reed diffuser. If you wish to make yours last as long as possible, here are four tips for doing so. 

1. Never Use Bamboo Reeds

Always use the natural reeds that come with the oil diffuser. Sure, those bamboo reeds might give a Zen-inspired vibe, but try to refrain! Bamboo is built quite differently than reeds, having node-like channels that block oils from dispersing instead of releasing the fragrance.

2. Reduce the Number of Reeds

When you want a stronger fragrance, you add more reeds! However, this will make the oil absorb faster. So, it’s safe to say reducing your reed count will cause the oil to diffuse at a slower rate, too, although it may not be as strong and might require flipping more often. 

3. Flip the Reeds Less

Speaking of which, if you want to make a diffuser last longer, flip the reeds less frequently. Along the same lines as reducing the number of reeds, it may make your oil diffuser less fragrant after time, but it does help! 

Learn How Do Reed Diffusers Work in Our Guide

4. Place Your Reed Diffusers in a Good Location

For maximum scent, place your reed diffuser in a proper location, ideally one with good air circulation and high foot traffic that allows the scent to move about. This could be a space like a hallway, entryway foyer or even a kitchen or bathroom. However, when it comes to choosing a proper location, there are some spots to avoid. 

Another trick to ensure your reed diffuser lasts longer? Keep it away from sunlit areas like along a windowsill or above a heater which can dry out and evaporate the oil and reeds quicker. Instead, find a shaded, cool space.

Another tip to preserving your reed diffuser is to place it away from drafty spaces where the fragrance will ultimately get lost. Whether it’s an exterior door or near an air conditioning unit, the scent can escape without doing its job by creating a welcoming scent in your home. 

One Last Tip: While it seems like a simple solution, never attempt to dilute the oil with water to make it go farther. Oil and water don’t mix and will separate. Plus, your reeds will warp. 

Replacing Reeds

Beach Cottage Reed Diffuser

If you choose to place the cap back on your bottle, saving the precious oil as long as possible, it’s best to replace the reeds when you open it up again. It’s not recommended to reuse reed diffusers because, after time, they become clogged and simply don’t work as well as they once did. For example, if you have a beach oil diffuser you only bring out in summer, remember to replace the reeds once you break it out again.

In the same vein, never, ever use the reeds in another scent, as it can mingle oils and potentially give off unpleasant results. 

Overall, reed diffusers offer a lovely, safe way to keep a signature scent for your home. Whether it’s for the holidays or summer, we carry lots of diffuser oils you’re sure to love!