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How to remove the smell from the refrigerator in 6 steps


You can get rid of some odors in the refrigerator quickly, while others require repeated attacks. For example, if the cause of the stench was a sudden power outage, for example, while you were on vacation, and the “fragrance” managed to soak up even the sealing gum. Fortunately, even the most persistent odors can be eliminated at home by the means in your kitchen cupboard or first-aid kit. And those who do not trust popular methods, we will give hints on the choice of a chemical odor absorber.


  • For those in a hurry, we advise you to immediately start reading Step # 3.
  • If the smell in the fridge is weak, and you have already eliminated the cause of its occurrence, a home-made odor absorber will quickly help to solve the problem (see Step No. 6).

Step 1. Empty the fridge / freezer

Even if you identify the source of the smell and get rid of it, you need to empty the entire fridge / freezer. Where to put perishable or frozen food at the time of cleaning? You can take them to the balcony (in winter), put the food in the pan, and then place it in a basin filled with cold water and ice, or put the supplies in a thermopacket with ice packs.

  • If the smell in the refrigerator appeared due to an unexpected power outage, do not risk keeping food that could deteriorate during idle times. The refrigerator and freezer maintain a safe climate for about 4 hours after shutdown (when closed).
  • If your refrigerator has a no frost system, then you do not need to defrost it. Otherwise, the refrigerator should be defrosted.

Step 2: Wash all the shelves and drawers

Remove shelves, containers, bottle and other removable items, then wash them in a sink / bathtub in hot soapy water or a solution of water and half a glass of soda (on the sink). If the shelves and drawers smell strongly, wash them with a disinfectant solution of 1 tablespoon of chlorine bleach and 4 liters of water. You can also use recipes from Step 3. Finally, rinse the removable items with clean water and leave to dry.

Step 3. My camera

How to remove the smell from the refrigerator / freezer compartment? Choose one of these tools.

Method 1. Vinegar 9% table or wine (for strong and persistent odors)

Mix 9% vinegar with water in a 1: 1 ratio and wipe with the resulting solution.


Acetic solution can not wipe the sealing gum - from this it can dry out and lose its elasticity.

Method 2. Soda (to remove light odors)

This method is good to use if you want to remove dirt and at the same time get rid of the faint odor. Make a solution of 1 cup of baking soda and 4 liters of water. Wipe the camera with a sponge moistened with a solution. To remove dirt, dip a damp sponge directly into the soda and wipe the stains with it.

Method 3. Lemon and citric acid (for strong smells)

Dissolve a bag of citric acid in 4-5 liters of water, or add the juice of one lemon to a bowl. To remove strong odors, the camera can be completely wiped with half a lemon.


  • The easiest way to spray cleaning agent from the spray;
  • Do not use hard abrasives, so as not to damage the enamel on the walls of the chamber;
  • To wash the sealing rubber, use an old toothbrush. To wash the area under the seal, lift it up with a table knife wrapped in cloth. Be careful not to damage the rubber.

Method 4. Special tool for removing stubborn odors

For example, it can be SmellOFF (Smeloff) for the kitchen or for solving delicate problems (price starting at 650 rubles). There are others, but in our opinion, less effective odor eliminators of the brands OXY, Flat, Sumo, etc. It is important that the product be non-toxic and as neutral as possible.

  • Cleaning with special odor eliminators should be strictly following the manufacturer's instructions.

Step 4. Flush the drain hole

This step is optional, but desirable if you want to not only get rid of the smell, but also wash the refrigerator thoroughly.

  • If you can not determine the source of the unpleasant smell, then you must rinse the drain hole. It can stagnate with musty water or form a mold.

Most often, the drain hole is located in the center of the back wall of the refrigerator. If you can not find it, take a look at your refrigerator manual. To clean the hole, clean it first with a wooden skewer, and then pour the cleaning solution of your choice into it through an enema or with a funnel.

Step 5. Ventilate and dry the chamber.

This stage will require your patience. For best results, turn off the refrigerator and leave the door open for at least one day. If the odor still remains, wipe the walls of the chamber again with soda solution or other means from the list above and turn on the refrigerator the next day.

Step 6. We put on the shelf a natural odor absorber for prevention

As soon as the inside of your fridge is clean, fold all the food back. Then, to remove the smell of the cleaning agent itself (for example, vinegar) and prevent the problem from repeating, put one or two of the following odor absorbers on one or two shelves:

  1. Activated carbon. Tablets or granules of coal can be poured into a small saucer or wrapped in a gauze bag.
  • Activated carbon can be purchased not only at the pharmacy, but also at the pet store. There it is sold in granular form in packages of 400-1000 grams (price from 120 rubles).
  • Used activated carbon can be updated by heating it in an oven at 180 ° C for 20 minutes.
  1. Soda. For everyday deodorization of the refrigerator, soda can be poured into a small cup or glass. But if you want to remove the smell that has already appeared, it is best to sprinkle the soda evenly on a baking sheet, small tray or dish.

  1. A slice of black (rye) bread. Our grandmother's favorite way that really works even with strong smells. For greater efficiency, a bread slice can be cut into pieces and spread out in all corners of the chamber.
  2. A cup of oatmeal.

  1. A cup of ground coffee. The smell of coffee will evaporate quickly, and the ground beans will begin to absorb other smells.

  1. A cup of rice.
  2. Raw Potatoes
  3. Gauze bag with sugar.
  4. Quarter lemon or orange.

In addition to natural odor absorbers, you can use special ones. Here is a brief overview of the main types.

Type of odor absorberPrinciple of operationPrice
GelThe gel in the form of granules quickly absorbs odors due to the active ingredients - citric acid, algae or coal. 1 package is designed for 1-2 months of use.From 200 rubles per pack.
Balls with silikogenovy granulesOne ball is designed for more than six months of use. Effective enough.From 380 rub.
Egg with coalCompact and cute egg eliminates the smell of coal. The term of use is 1-3 months.50 rub.
Suspended dispenserIn the cartridge of such a dispenser there is coal (there are a total of 2 cartridges per package). One cartridge is designed for 1-3 months.50-300 rubles
IonizerIt not only cleans the air in the refrigerator, but also kills harmful bacteria, prolonging the shelf life of products and preventing the appearance of mold.From 2000 rub.


If the smell in your fridge is not too strong, one scavenger may be enough to get rid of it, without defrosting or washing the chamber. Sometimes to remove the smell, it is enough to hold the absorber for one day, but most often it takes several days.

And a bit about prevention

  • Store food in containers. Many products smell strong enough to soak into the surface of the refrigerator compartment. Therefore, each product, starting from sliced ​​onions and ending with the remnants of dinner, should be covered with a lid, foil or film or stored in a container.
  • Inspect the refrigerator at least once every three days. So you can eliminate spoiled food on time.
  • If you are leaving for a long time (more than a week or two), empty the refrigerator and freezer, turn off the device and unplug it from the power supply, wash the chambers, then slightly open the door. If you leave the door closed, mold and unpleasant odor form in the chamber due to high humidity and insulation.

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