A refrigerator has to be washed from the inside out, every so often. The shelves must be wiped out from milk spills, and if it has exceeded its shelf life, the food must be thrown out. Even though this isn’t the most fun job, learning how to do it quickly and effectively can save you time and effort.
And here’s what you can do to get your fridge clean.
Empty the Fridge
In the interest of time-saving you’ll be tempted to leave some stuff behind. Stop the temptation! It would be much less time-consuming to clear everything from the icebox at once than attempting to clean up everything else.
Plus, with something out of the fridge, it’s easier to figure out what’s going to stay and what’s going to be tossed out so you can turn a more objective eye on, say, your extensive range of jams and jellies when they’re out of their native environment. Although most food would be fine if left out for a short period of time, make sure no more than an hour or so is left out of these food. Food will enter the “danger zone” within a relatively short time period.
This order also allows for the removal of any removable shelves, drawers or door inserts.
The best time to do this might be when the food levels are low in your refrigerator, right before your weekly shopping trip. It makes move around far fewer things.
Clean the Product
When your refrigerator is less than clean, your milk carton and olive jar may not be squeaky, either. Wipe the bottoms of products with a wet rag and clean any drips at the sides as well. When lid areas require a small amount of TLC, handle these too. You want everything you get back to the refrigerator to be clean so you don’t scatter messes around. You can now clean the remaining containers, or wait until the fridge is finished.
Clean the Removable Part
Start with the inserts you removed from those shelves, drawers and doors. Just like washing dishes, you’ll want to wash them with a sponge soap and a dish cleaner. Since they’re oddly shaped and bulky objects, it may be easier for you to wash them in a bath or large utility tub, or even with a hose outdoors. It’s a good idea to wear utility clothes for this activity, because you are likely to end up a little waterlogged, with pieces of old food on you, or maybe even a little sweaty.
When washed off the removable parts, dry them and set aside. Now fill the sink with water and a small amount of dish soap about halfway up and put any now-empty storage containers in there for a soak while turning your attention to the refrigerator inside. The soaking process will speed up the washing down of the containers.
Clean inside the fridge
Spray the interior of the fridge with a solution of distilled vinegar and water, focusing on any areas of dried on gunk, with the shelves and drawers out. Let it soak for about 5-10 minutes. Then, check the fridge and thoroughly wipe it out with a soft, damp cloth (rinse and periodically squeeze out). The vinegar and water will act like magic to eliminate not only sticky mess and germs, but also refrigerator odors.
Often thoroughly dry the fridge before putting the food back in and shutting the lid.
Should not using a chemical cleaner in the refrigerator? Using a product that may add toxic substances or odors to your food is never a good idea.
Clean the outside
Don’t forget areas outside the fridge, such as the surrounding handle and door, where germs can build up through regular hand contact. When you have a fridge freezer at the bottom of the freezer, use your vacuum cleaner’s crevice nozzle to extract food crumbs deposited in the door seal folds of the freezer. Instead, using a strong brush wash-to dislodge them.
Then take a soft cloth, wrap it around a blunt knife, dip it in the solution of vinegar / water and run it gently along the crevices in the seals to gather the gunk. Repeat the procedure using a new, dry cloth or kitchen towel–this will ensure that the crevices are hygienically clear until you close the fridge door again.
Put everything back
Begin by returning the shelves and drawers to their positions, and install them. Do you need to change the shelf location to make room for the huge plucked bird that will soon be calling home to your refrigerator? Now is a perfect time to do so.
If you have a thermometer in the fridge, wait until the temperature inside the fridge drops to or below 5 ° C before returning the food. If you have a quick-cool feature in your fridge, use it to speed up the cooling process.
How to deodorise the fridge
Even a regularly cleaned one can be a little whiffy, depending on what kind of food you store in your fridge. In the refrigerator, cheese, garlic, and other strong-smelling foods are sometimes responsible for an unpleasant scent, even though the food is in good shape. Storing smelly foods in airtight containers is a safe way to make sure your refrigerator doesn’t smell, but another alternative is to put a cup filled with baking soda inside your refrigerator (you may need you for bigger refrigerators on each shelf). Baking soda removes heavy smells inside the appliance and prevents them from lingering in.
Advice for food storage
- Raw meat and fish wrapped: Put on a plate or in a jar to avoid dripping. To prevent drips from contaminating items below, stack them on the lowest shelf.
- Milk and other dairy products: Position milk and other dairy-based foods deep within the shelves to prevent temperature variations with door shelves. They can also store wrapped cheeses in drawers.
- Jarred items such as jellies, olives, dressings: These highly stable products may be placed in door shelves, where changes in temperature do not have the same effect.
- Lettuce and fresh herbs: place in drawers in the refrigerator.
- Tomatoes: Store on a countertop, away from the fruits and vegetables that contain ethylene, unless it is really ripe.
- Berries: Put in fridge drawers unwashed. Wash off right before eating.
- Fruits and vegetables containing ethylene: store them away from ethylene-sensitive fruits and vegetables such as avocados, mangos and tomatoes.
- Eggs: An egg is always a good egg! Place your eggs in a position they won’t be disturbed.
(source: nytimes.com, realhomes.com, goodhousekeeping.com, apartmenttherapy.com, and wikihow.life)