If you have ever lost your power for a long period of time or had your refrigerator or freezer fail and food has spoiled, you know how hard it is to remove the odor. Here are some steps to help you get your refrigerator or freezer odor free.
- Dispose of any food that has spoiled.
- Wash all of the shelves and drawers in hot water and detergent. Then rinse using a sanitizing solution of 1 tablespoon unscented, liquid chlorine bleach per gallon of water.
- Wash the interior of the refrigerator and freezer with hot water and baking soda. Make sure that you also clean the door and gasket. Rinse with the sanitizing solution.
- Leave the door open for about 15 minutes to allow for air to circulate. Remember if you have small children make sure that they don’t get trapped inside.
If the odor still remains try one or more of the following:
- Use equal parts of vinegar and water and wipe the inside of the unit.
- Leave the door open and allow the refrigerator or freezer to air out for several days. Again take precautions if you have small children.
- Try stuffing both the refrigerator and freezer with crumpled up newspapers sprinkled with water. Close the door and leave the papers in for several days with the appliance is running. Next, remove the newspapers and clean with vinegar and water.
- Sprinkle coffee grounds or baking soda on cookie sheets or in shallow containers and put in several shelves of the refrigerator or freezer.
- Place a cotton ball soaked with vanilla in both the refrigerator and freezer. Check in 24 hours for improvement.
- Look for a commercial cleaner. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
With persistence, most odors can be removed. If you are unable to clean it and need to dispose of the refrigerator contact your local waste collector to find out what rules apply to disposing it.