How to Deal with Odours in Your Refrigerator

It’s happened to everyone. You go to the refrigerator, anxious to enjoy a snack or get started making supper. Then, you open the door and are assaulted by a harsh, pungent odour that makes you want to close the door, walk away and find something to eat in the pantry instead.

At some point, your refrigerator is bound to develop an unpleasant odour. When foods spoil, spill or have strong odours, they can leave behind smells that linger. If you don’t take proper care to eliminate odours, they can build up over time and become very difficult to remove.

To make opening your refrigerator door a pleasant-smelling task every time, follow these tips:

- Give your refrigerator a good cleaning. We recommend removing all of the shelves and the crisper drawers and soaking them in the sink with vinegar or liquid bleach mixed with warm water. While they soak, wipe out the entire interior with a solution made of hot water and baking soda. Then, wet a cloth with the vinegar or bleach solution in your sink and wipe out the refrigerator again. Make sure to clean every surface, including the doors. Let the inside dry with the door open for about 15 minutes. In the meantime, scrub the drawers and shelves and towel them dry.

- Wipe the shelves and regularly. Make it a habit to remove everything from your fridge and then wipe down the shelves and drawers. If you do this every two weeks, you can help keep odours from returning.

- Deal with spills immediately. Don’t let even the smallest spill linger on the interior of your fridge.

- Label foods when you put them inside the refrigerator. Use masking tape to record what the food is and the date. Throw leftovers away or freeze them within a few days to prevent spoiling.

- Place an odour absorber in your fridge, such as baking soda or coffee grounds. Make sure to place your odour absorber in a shallow, open bowl and replace the contents on a monthly basis.

- If an odour develops, throw away any old foods. Place a cotton swab moistened with vanilla extract in the refrigerator and keep the door closed for as long as possible–up to one day if you can manage it.

- Have your refrigerator checked by a professional if you notice that smells develop quickly and often and are difficult to treat. While it’s normal for a refrigerator to develop bad odours, if the techniques listed above are not effective, there may be a problem with the air circulation in your refrigerator. One of our knowledgeable, friendly repairpersons here at Matic Service can give your fridge a check-up to see if your odour problems are related to a malfunction with the appliance.