A Guide to Fully Cleaning Your Refrigerator

When was the last time you cleaned your refrigerator? We don’t mean just wiping down the handles and outer surface. A full deep clean of the exterior and interior of your refrigerator is a good way to stay on top of any stinky smells from leftovers and sticky spills from open drinks. We’ve put together a handy step-by-step guide and a few tips for you to use when you’re ready to take on deep cleaning your refrigerator.

Step 1: Clear It Out



If you’re going to deep clean the interior of your fridge, the obvious place to start is by removing all the food and drinks from each shelf and drawer. We suggest making time for this deep clean right before you go to the grocery store, the less food you have to put aside while you clean the better. Plus, this is a great time to check expiration labels and throw out any old leftovers to make space for your incoming grocery haul. While the contents are out for you to see you can also wipe down any sticky bottles or containers with some warm water so that everything going back in when you’ve finished is clean too.


Step 2: Wipe It Down



Once everything has been removed from your fridge, you can get to work on the inside. Start by removing any shelves and drawers that can be removed and set them aside so you can reach as much interior space as possible. To both deodorize and clean the shelves, drawers, and walls of your fridge use this DIY method:

  • Mix together about 2 tablespoons of baking soda and 1 quart (4 cups) of warm water.
  • Use a cloth to wipe the solution on the walls, shelves, and drawers. You can allow it to sit for just a few minutes on sticky spots or stains.
  • Use a sponge to scrub and then rinse each piece that has been removed and every section within the fridge from top to bottom.
  • Use a toothbrush to reach any corners or drawer treads and rinse these thoroughly.
  • Thoroughly dry everything that has been wiped down and begin replacing any shelves sand drawers you removed.

If your refrigerator has any lingering odors after it has been wiped down, allow it to air out for just a moment. While it airs out, fill a small bowl or open container with baking soda and place it at the back of the bottom shelf. After you’ve done this, you can replace the refrigerated food and drink items you removed.


Step 3: Check The Seal


Before you shut the refrigerator after cleaning the interior, be sure to check the rubber seal on the doors. You can easily wipe these down with some warm soapy water. However, if you discover mold anywhere on the seal we recommend wiping the seal with a bleach cleaner that has been sprayed onto a cloth. Be sure not to spray any bleach or other chemical cleaners into or around your open fridge as the particles could reach the food within. Once the seal has been cleaned, wipe a very thin coat of petroleum jelly on the seal so that the rubber stays intact and does not crack over time. Make sure to regularly check the seal on your fridge so that it stays well-kept and clean.


Step 4: The Nitty Gritty



As you clean your refrigerator, make sure to give a little extra attention to the hidden parts like the coils and the drip pan. We suggest taking a look at the refrigerator’s manual before doing any extra deep cleaning. If you can’t find your manual try looking it up online. Before you start cleaning the coils, make sure you unplug your fridge and check to see if they are located behind or below the machine. Move the fridge away from the wall carefully and use a dusting brush or your vacuum’s dusting attachment to remove the dust. Most manufacturers suggest that the coils be cleaned about twice a year.


To clean the drip pan at the base of the fridge, simply slide the pan out and dump any water from it. You can clean this with warm soapy water and then dry it thoroughly before replacing it. If your drip pan can’t be removed, you can wrap a towel around a long cleaning brush and swipe it around the pan to clean it.


Step 5: Finishing Touches


Finally, you have completed a deep clean of the interior and unseen parts of your refrigerator. The only thing left to do is to wipe down the exterior surface and handles. You can do this with a microfiber cloth and warm soapy water to remove any stains and, if you have a stainless-steel finish, you can wrap things up with a regular stainless-steel cleaner. Be sure to wipe the cleaner with the grain of the surface so you don’t leave any streaks or smudges.



Congratulations, you have a completely spotless and odor-free refrigerator. It may have taken a few extra minutes out of your day, but your fridge will thank you by continuing to run smoothly. If you need a little extra help getting your fridge in good condition or any other area in your home, call us! Cleanzen in Miami offers a variety of services that can help get your home looking its best.


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