Cleaning the fridge is one of the most important cleaning tasks when it comes to tidying up a kitchen. A fridge is home to a wide range of raw and cooked foods as well as drinks and condiments, making it the go-to appliance for a lot of people in the house. But when left dirty and unmaintained, your fridge can also be the perfect breeding ground for a host of bacteria and diseases.
Tidying up your fridge doesn’t have to be a complicated process. With the right set of cleaning tools, steps and proper organization skills, you too can make it happen in no time. Here are the following steps to follow when cleaning and sanitizing your fridge.
1. Empty the fridge
Before you begin cleaning, you must take out all the food — both raw and cooked — and the drinks and condiments out of the fridge. You will need to empty the fridge so that you can easily clean every corner without obstruction. Place all items on your kitchen counter and keep fresh items from spoiling by placing them inside a mini cooler.
2. Throw out any expired food or ingredients from the fridge
After taking out all of the items from the refrigerator, inspect everything and check for expired food, drinks or condiments. You can check the expiration dates of these items to help you better decide if they should get the boot or not. You can also start discarding items inside the fridge that aren’t yet expired but you’re unlikely to use again. You will need to properly dispose these items by segmenting them by waste type before throwing them into the trash bin.
3. Take out the drawers and other removable parts inside the fridge
Before you can start cleaning the fridge itself, you’ll have to take out and clean its trays and drawers first. Most of these parts are easily removable so you should not have a hard time taking them out. Place these fridge parts near the kitchen sink where they will be much easier to wipe and clean.
4. Wash these refrigerator parts thoroughly
With a pair of rubber hand gloves, sponge, and a dishwashing liquid, begin lathering up a soapy mixture for these fridge parts. Apply the soap to the trays and drawers like you would with dishes and other washable kitchen items. You also need to go at these fridge parts with cold water as the sudden temperature change with warm to hot washing can result in glass cracks instead. To treat stains on your fridge trays, shelves and drawers, dilute a small portion of ammonia with clean water. Apply it to the stained area and let it soak before scrubbing it thoroughly. Afterwards, leave the items to dry on a clean surface in the kitchen.
5. Wipe the insides of the fridge clean
When it comes to the insides of your fridge, begin cleaning by wiping each surface with a cleaning solution of baking soda and hot water. Remove any stain or hardened food particles on the surfaces by gently rubbing them with a clean cloth. Additionally, you want to avoid using any strongly scented soap or cleaner because your food might absorb the scent, resulting in a weird taste or smell or even contamination.
6. Clean the insides of the fridge doors
Clean the shelving space of the fridge door by also wiping it clean using the natural cleaning solution of baking soda and hot water. You can also use an apple cider vinegar in replacement of the baking soda. Be sure to wipe each part thoroughly to fully eliminate the scent of the natural cleaner.
7. Dry off the removable fridge parts
Before putting them inside the fridge again, make sure that the removable parts have fully dried to prevent added moisture from entering the unit. Using a clean cloth, you can give these parts another go by wiping them until fully dry.
8. Clean the fridge gasket
Using water and bleach or vinegar, clean the gasket of the fridge by wiping it with the solution. Afterwards, pat the fridge gasket dry and apply lemon oil, mineral oil or a small amount of body lotion to help keep the rubber smooth and supple.
9. Return your food items into the fridge
After you’re done cleaning and returning the removable fridge parts inside the unit, you can start stuffing in your food items once again. For a more organized way of doing it, you can use ziplock bags and airtight containers that will also help prevent different scents and stains from messing up your fridge.
Keeping your home’s fridge clean and organized shouldn’t be a problem with the right set of cleaning tools and steps. With a regular cleaning and sanitation schedule, you can get the best out of your fridge for a long period of time.
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