How To Clean a Refrigerator Properly

Appliance Express
August 10, 2022
Refrigerator Repair

Giving your refrigerator a regular clean is important to ensure your appliance doesn’t get a build-up of bacteria and mold. When you don’t, your food and drinks might go bad or cause health problems for you and your family. Thankfully, cleaning your fridge out is simple to do and doesn’t take much time. All you need is a spray cleaner and a damp cloth and you’re good to go.

In this guide, we will give you step-by-step instructions on how to properly clean your refrigerator. Simply start with step one and work your way through each step. Once completed, you’ll have a sparkling clean refrigerator!

Step 1 – Empty your refrigerator 

Start by emptying all the food and drinks out of your refrigerator. To help keep them cool, place all your food and beverages into coolers with ice. This will stop your food and drinks from having to be thrown out–especially if it’s a particularly hot day.

Step 2 – Switch your refrigerator off

Once your refrigerator is empty, switch the power off. You can either switch the fridge off at the power socket or, if you’re unable to reach the socket, turn the circuit breaker off. As soon as you’ve emptied your refrigerator and switched the power off, leave open the fridge and freezer doors so the freezer can defrost. You may need to place a towel on the floor to collect any water that leaks out of the freezer.

Step 3 – Take the shelves out and clean them

You can now remove the shelves and drawers out of your fridge and give them a good clean. The easiest way to clean them is to fill up your sink with hot soapy water and give them a soak, followed by scrubbing them with a brush. Once clean, rinse them off and leave them to drip dry while you’re cleaning the inside of your fridge. Please note that if you have glass shelves, let them heat up to room temperature before placing them in hot water to stop them from cracking.

Step 4 – Clean the inside of your fridge

Now that you have emptied your refrigerator, turned it off, and removed the shelves, the next step is to give the inside of your appliance a thorough clean. All you need is a bottle of commercial disinfectant spray and a damp cloth. If you want to use a natural cleaning solution, simply mix 1 part baking soda with 7 parts warm water and pour it into a spray bottle.

You can clean the inside of your fridge by spraying and wiping all of the interior surfaces. Once clean, leave the fridge door open to let it dry out. Once the fridge compartment is clean, clean the freezer using the same method. Once you’ve finished cleaning the freezer, make sure you flush the drain out with hot soapy water.

Step 5 – Clean the refrigerator gasket

Once you’ve finished cleaning the inside of your refrigerator, the next step is to give the door gasket/seal a good clean. You can do this with hot soapy water (or a natural cleaning solution) and a damp cloth. If required, you can also use a toothbrush or other small brush to get deep into the gasket. Once clean, make sure you dry it off.

Step 6 – Clean the outside of your refrigerator

The next step in this guide for how to clean a refrigerator properly is to clean the outside of your appliance. This can be done by using your spray bottle and cloth to systematically clean each external surface. If you have a stainless-steel refrigerator unit, use some rubbing alcohol on a cloth to give it shine. If you don’t have rubbing alcohol, use a glass cleaner or another stainless-steel cleaner.

Step 7 – Clean the condenser coils

The next step is to clean the condenser coils. These can be found at the back of your fridge and the purpose of them is to help your refrigerator stay at the desired temperature. By giving them a clean, you’ll ensure they operate to their full capacity.

Here’s how to clean the refrigerator coils:

  • Switch the power off to your fridge if you haven’t already.
  • Pull your appliance out from the wall.
  • Locate the coils and remove the cover off them if there is one.
  • Use a damp cloth or a vacuum cleaner to remove all the dust from them.
  • Once clean, put the cover back on.

Step 8 – Empty the drain pan

Before pushing your refrigerator back against the wall, locate the drain pan and wipe it out to remove any water and other debris. If there is mold in the pan, use bleach to give it a more in-depth clean. Once the pan is empty and dry, you can push your fridge back into position and move on to the next step.

Step 9 – Put your fridge back together.

Now that you’ve finished cleaning your fridge, you can get all the shelves and drawers that you removed earlier and put them back into the fridge. Once the shelves are in place, you can put all of your food and drink back into your fridge and turn the power back on. Your refrigerator should now be nice and clean!


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