Over time, in any refrigerator, a not very pleasant smell usually accumulates. Despite the repulsive "aroma", the products themselves are not in danger. If you still want to get rid of the smell and prevent it from permanently soaking into the inner lining of the refrigerator, you should first throw away any missing food. You can also leave 1–2 types of deodorant products, such as coffee grounds and activated charcoal, on the top shelf. To prevent unpleasant odors, throw away spoiled food in a timely manner and always store food in airtight containers.
Method 1 of 3: How to Get Rid of Spoiled Food and Odor
Step 1. Unplug the refrigerator
Find the outlet where the refrigerator is plugged in to remove the power plug from it. If you leave the refrigerator on while cleaning, then you run the risk of an incredibly large electricity bill in a month!
Some newer models of refrigerators have a shutdown button. In this case, you just need to press the button and do not disconnect the unit from the outlet
Step 2. Remove all food from the refrigerator
Inspect all storage areas like shelves, drawers, and door trays to make sure nothing is left. Look carefully at all foods and throw in the trash any food that has gone missing, started to rot, and oozes an unpleasant odor. So, almost always the unpleasant smell is caused by spoiled food.
Try to get all the work done in four hours. According to the recommendations, if the food has not been in the refrigerator for more than four hours, then it may go bad
Step 3. Place good food in a cooler bag or cabinet
Depending on the amount of food in the refrigerator and the duration of cleaning, good food may remain warm for a while. To prevent spoilage of food, store it in the refrigerator bag or cabinet while cleaning. Close the bag or camera lid to keep the temperature from rising.
You can also add ice to keep the temperature low and preserve food
Step 4. Treat the walls and shelves of the refrigerator with a solution of water and baking soda
Dissolve 1 cup (130 grams) of baking soda in 4 liters of warm water. Soak an ordinary dish sponge in the solution, squeeze out the liquid a little and treat the inner surfaces of the refrigerator. Wash all sides, top and bottom. If necessary, soak and remove dried food residues or stains.
If the solution stops working or there is a lot of food debris in the water, prepare a new portion of the solution
Step 5. Remove and wash shelves, trays, drawers and other removable parts
Remove all accessories and compartments, including shelves and vegetable drawers. Wash them with the solution and rinse with clean water, then dry thoroughly and reinstall.
Also, don't forget to look under the vegetable drawer. Sometimes food residues and melt water accumulate there, which give off an unpleasant odor
Step 6. Remove all food leftovers from the pan
The pallet is a thin plastic tray at the bottom of the refrigerator. Carefully remove and remove the pallet to discard all waste. Dip the sponge in the baking soda solution again and wash any stains on the drip tray before placing it back in the refrigerator.
Not all refrigerators are equipped with pallets. If so, you can skip this step. However, be sure to wash the bottom of the refrigerator thoroughly
Method 2 of 3: How to use odor removers
Step 1. Leave the open container of baking soda on the shelf under the wall
Baking soda itself is odorless, but it absorbs and neutralizes other odors very well. Want to get rid of fridge odors? Open a bag of baking soda and leave it on the top shelf at the back. If the unpleasant odor reappears in the refrigerator, replace the old packaging with a new pack of baking soda.
If there is a too strong smell in the refrigerator and you want to get rid of it as soon as possible, then you should pour the entire pack of soda on a baking sheet and leave it in the refrigerator overnight. In the morning, the soda will need to be thrown away
Step 2. Use boiled apple cider vinegar
Mix 1: 3 apple cider vinegar with water. Transfer the mixture to a saucepan and bring to a boil. After boiling, remove from heat and pour mixture into a heat-resistant glass or metal bowl. Put in the refrigerator, close the door and leave for 4-6 hours. The liquid must absorb unpleasant odors.
- After 4-6 hours, the vinegar mixture must be removed and poured into the sink.
- After boiling, apple cider vinegar absorbs the unpleasant odor and replaces it with a pleasant fruity aroma.
Step 3. Place coffee grounds on 2–3 shelves if you have a lot of time
Coffee grounds are good at absorbing unpleasant odors, but it takes longer. This method is suitable for those who are ready to do without a refrigerator for several days. Spread dry, fresh coffee grounds on 2–3 trays. Place each baking sheet on a different shelf. The smell should completely disappear in 3-4 days.
- All this time, the food will need to be stored in another refrigerator or container with ice.
- After 3-4 days, remove the grounds, wash the baking sheets and put the food back in the refrigerator.
Step 4. Place 2-3 trays with odorless cat litter on separate shelves
Coffee grounds can leave a slight coffee smell in the refrigerator. If you want to get rid of all odors, then use cat litter. Place a layer of clean filler on 2-3 low baking trays and place on separate shelves. Leave the fridge turned on for 2-3 days without any fillers to remove odors.
Odorless cat litter can be purchased at any pet store and large supermarket, as well as at some hardware stores
Step 5. Use activated charcoal if other methods fail
Fill 3-4 small cloth bags with one glass (130 grams) of free-flowing activated carbon. Leave these bags on separate shelves. Set the refrigerator to a low temperature and open the door as little as possible. The smell should go away in 3-4 days.
- You can buy activated charcoal at a pet store or drug store.
- Unlike the coffee grounds method, this time the food can be left in the refrigerator.
Method 3 of 3: How to prevent odors
Step 1: Throw away expired foods weekly to avoid odors
To prevent future odors, revise weekly and throw away all expired products. Such a preventive measure will avoid the appearance of third-party odors. It is much easier to prevent odor than to deal with it later.
Check the refrigerator before taking out the trash. This way, you can take spoiled food out of the house right away
Step 2. Store fresh food in a visible place so that it does not spoil unnoticed
Fresh food such as fruits and vegetables can spoil easily and imperceptibly if placed in drawers or hidden under the back wall on a shelf. Instead, store them in a visible place. If they start to look unsightly, then such products should be thrown away immediately.
For example, store meat on the front of the top shelf and fruits and vegetables prominently on the bottom shelf
Step 3. Set the refrigerator temperature to 2-3 ° C
In this range, food will not spoil. Only spoiled food begins to give off an unpleasant smell, so at this temperature, the refrigerator will always have a fresh aroma. At temperatures above 4 ° C, bacteria begin to develop and cause odor.
If you set the temperature to 0 ° C or lower, the food will just freeze
Step 4. Store all leftover food in airtight containers to prevent odor from spreading inside the refrigerator
Food will go bad quickly if left uncovered or wrapped like takeout in a cardboard box. The faster the food deteriorates, the faster it starts to give off an unpleasant odor. Store leftovers in an airtight container to keep them fresh for longer while retaining a good smell.