How To Clean Refrigerator (Step By Step Guide)

A fridge is an essential kitchen appliance that keeps your food cool and fresh. However, it might wear and tear if you do not maintain the refrigerator properly. So, to avoid such issues, we have compiled a list of the best tips on how to clean the refrigerator. Have a look at it in the coming sections.

Things you need to clean your refrigerator

Here are a few everyday household things that you need to have handy before you clean the refrigerator:

  • Water
  • Kitchen cleaner
  • Baking soda
  • Lemon essential oil
  • Cotton cloth or paper towel
  • Sponge
  • Vinegar
  • Dishwasher gel
  • Disinfectant spray

Steps to clean your refrigerator

1. Turn off and empty the refrigerator

If you are planning to remove the shelves and clean the entire refrigerator, then it is not advised to keep it on for longer hours, as it can waste electricity. Hence, turning off the fridge before dusting the coils and cleaning the drip pan is recommended.

If the plug is not in your reach, try to turn off the circuit breaker that supplies power to the refrigerator, and this makes the cleaning task easier for you.

Also, before you start the cleaning process, it is recommended to empty the refrigerator. Only leave the perishable goods like an open carton of milk in the cooler. If there are any expired food or spillovers, clean them immediately and throw them away.

Clean removable parts of the refrigerator 

To make the cleaning process easier, removing the shelves and drawers is recommended. Cleaning them outside the fridge is easier than cleaning them while they are inside the refrigerator.

Use a bar of dish soap to clean the removable parts. Soak them underwater for a while, and clean them with a sponge. Rinse them to make sure that there are no stains on the glass. Before putting the shelves back in the refrigerator, ensure they are completely dry.

Clean refrigerator interiors

Use white vinegar or baking soda to clean the interiors of the refrigerator, as they are edible and are not harmful.

Mix two tablespoons of baking soda and a quart of hot water in a spray bottle to prepare the cleaning solution. Now, spray it across the fridge’s walls and shelves and clean the interiors with a microfibre cloth.

If there are any hard stains, we recommend you apply the paste of baking soda and water to the stains and wait for at least ten minutes before you clean.

Just like the baking soda solution, you can mix one part of vinegar with three parts of water and prepare the vinegar solution, to clean the interiors of the refrigerator.

Clean refrigerator mould

Due to the damp and cold environment inside the fridge, the chances of mould forming inside the refrigerator are high. To eliminate this mould from the fridge, we recommend mixing one part of baking soda with three parts of warm water and spraying it on the area where the mould is present. Now, wipe off that area with a microfibre cloth and ensure it is dry and no moisture is present.

Clean refrigerator gasket

Maintaining a tight seal of your refrigerator is essential to keep the gasket clean. If you find the usual grime around the gasket, it is recommended to use dish soap and warm water to clean. 

If you find mould around the gasket, it is suggested to use a bleach-based cleaner. Once the cleaning is done, use petroleum jelly on the gasket to avoid drying out.

Clean refrigerator exteriors

To clean the exteriors of the fridge, you can use any cleaning solution or even a damp cloth. In case you have a stainless steel fridge, we recommend using a stainless steel cleaner to avoid any scratches on it.

Remove refrigerator odor

When mould accumulates in the fridge, or if any food spoils inside the refrigerator, you can get a bad smell. To remove these bad odors, you need not use any harsh chemicals.

Rinse the surface of the refrigerator with baking soda solution and dry it with a microfibre cloth. Also, if possible, try to use a dry baking soda powder on the bottom shelf to avoid any odors in future.

Clean refrigerator coils

Of all the parts, cleaning the refrigerator’s coils can be a bit more complex. First, you need to unplug the fridge before you start cleaning the coils.

Pull the refrigerator from the wall to have enough space to clean the coils. Now, use a soft coil brush to clean the coils, and in case of any debris, use a vacuum cleaner.

Now, move the refrigerator back to the wall and plug in the fridge.

If your refrigerator comes with a coil at the bottom, remove the grill piece and clean the coils.

Tips for cleaning and maintaining a refrigerator

Store Food Items Separately

It is recommended to store raw meat and fish in separate containers to eliminate food contamination. Similarly, it is recommended to keep the uncooked and cooked food separately.

Check for Mould

To clean the mould, it is recommended to use vinegar or baking soda. Once you see bubbles on the mould, wipe it off with a microfibre cloth or a damp sponge. Let that area dry for a while after cleaning.

Remove Stains and Spills Immediately

If you find any spills or stains inside the fridge, it is recommended to clean them immediately instead of waiting for a longer duration. Not being cleaned on time can produce a bad odor and contaminate the food.

Throw away the Expired Food

Before you start shopping for the next week’s groceries, it is recommended to throw away the expired food. Having an expired food item inside the fridge can contaminate other fresh food items.


The amazing hacks above can help keep the refrigerator clean and hygenic. For most basic cleaning purposes, it is recommended to use either baking soda or vinegar.

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