Did a gallon of milk get left in the fridge over vacation? Someones leftover burgers no longer food? Not sure what is causing that smell? Don’t sweat it. This time on the BIOClean Team blog we’re going to help you get through this awful smelling bit of Spring Cleaning.
The real difficulty with odors is how they linger – throwing away the waste is a good step one but it isn’t always the complete solution needed. Here’s what you need to know and do to get your fridge back in tip top shape!
First get your gear together – you’ll need:
- Baking soda
- Sponge or microfiber cloth
- Dish soap
Got it? Ok let’s go.
3 Steps to A Smell-Free Fridge
Step 1 – Clear The Fridge
Alright, if you haven’t already done this it’s time. Remove absolutely everything from the fridge. Throw away anything that has expired, spoiled, or is otherwise contaminated or just plain off. Any containers that have food on the outside of them (a messy jam jar for instance) needs to be wiped clean too! Now take out any moveable surfaces in your fridge – the shelves, racks, drawers.
Step 2 – Time To Clean
Alright, with all that stuff removed it’s time to get cleaning! First take the shelves, racks, and drawers and let them soak in hot water and dish soap in the sink. While those are getting some spa time, turn back to the fridge.
While some may recommend using cleaning sprays – and they can certainly help – for this first pass using more natural products like baking soda and vinegar are your best bet for two reasons! As any elementary science project can tell you, when you combine baking soda and vinegar they bubble and fizz. Using that combo on your fridge’s stains will help agitate and lift the particles stuck on. They also act as natural odor absorbers – and isn’t that what we’re after in the first place?
Start by using the sponge or cloth toe wipe down everything. If your fridge has a lot of smaller cracks and spaces you can use a toothbrush or a thin rag to wipe down. Apply a bit of vinegar and baking soda to your materials and then wipe, clean, and scrub. Start at the top of the fridge and work your way down, anything that breaks free and falls from the surfaces you’ll scoop up as you go. Make sure you clean the side walls, the top of the fridge, the doors, etc.
Grab the shelves, drawers, etc. you have soaking in the sink and turn to them. It’s time to give thema good scrubbing. Once those are clean set them aside to dry.
Rinse your sponge or cloth, then wipe away any baking soda and vinegar residue that may be left behind.
Step 3 – Put It Back Together
Take the drawers and shelves and put them back. Chances are while you had the fridge door open the internal temp raised a bit. Before you refill your fridge with food items, close the door and let the fridge chill a bit to get the temperature back down. Once your fridge is at the right temperature (usually around 40 degrees Fahrenheit) you can restock it.
You now have a clean fridge! Now, how about you work to prevent those odors in the first place?
How to Keep The Fridge From Smelling
Here are a few quick tips to keep your fridge smelling fresh and clean!
- Use airtight containers for leftovers and meal prep.
- Keep your fridge at the right temperature to prevent any growth of bacteria.
- Label, date, and toss leftovers as they go bad.
- Check for food spoiling every week. The sooner you catch it the less chance to smell!
- Use natural deodorizers like baking soda to capture odors.
With that taken care of your fridge should be clean and fresh, and as long as you stay on top of it, for a long time to come. Now, if your fridge is actually a biohazard (something has died in it, there’s been blood spilled in it, etc.) well then you should call a professional!