Keeping New Refrigerator Nice and Clean

cathycdkFebruary 27, 2007

We had a new fridge delivered today. What can I do now to help it stay nice and clean, or what can I do to make cleaning easier?

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Our trash gets picked up on Thursday, so on Wednesday I toss any "science projects" and "good intentions" that may have found their way to the back of the refrigerator. I use a spritz bottle with a solution of 1 quart water and 1 t. bleach, and I move food to one side (or remove entirely) spritz down each shelf, wipe clean and dry with a microfiber towel. Take out the produce and meat/cheese drawers, remove the food items - toss out anything past prime, and wipe out the drawers and the "secret" place at the bottom of the refrigerator where they tend to get dirty. Wipe the gasket around the doors, and I'm done. It doesn't take any longer than 10 minutes of my time. I wipe the outside and handles every day using the bleach/water solution. Wipe down the top on Friday (my regular cleaning day).

I do this at least once a week because any meat juices and foods that drip onto shelves can quickly create a bacteria problem and can cross-contaminate other foods. I try to clean up any spills/drips a.s.a.p.

If you Google - How to keep your refrigerator clean? - you'll find all kinds of helpful hints and tips on the subject. How often you do it tends to be up for debate. I just made once a week a habit.

Three to four times a year I do the whole thing. Remove everything from the freezer and refrigerator and store them in ice chests/coolers. Unplug the refrigerator, move it and vacuum the back and thoroughly clean out the entire unit.


    Bookmark   February 28, 2007 at 10:31AM
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I don't have a regular day. But whenever I open the fridge, if something icky catches my eye I toss the old food or swipe at the spill.

But here's what I think is the secret: I don't let my fridge get packed full of stuff like the rest of my extended family does (and I know a lot of people do this). They seem to pride themselves on the "fine art" of packing a fridge to the limit. I don't know how they find anything! And you know that anything in the back of a packed fridge has probably gone bad. My fridge is only completely full a couple times a year - like at holidays when I have company staying over.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2007 at 11:06AM
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Everything my SIL touches turns into neat and clean. Her fridge always looks beautiful. Open the door and look at all the food, so neatly stored. No drips,no puddles, no leftovers. I asked her once, how do you do it? She said, I never keep leftovers. If it doesn't get eaten the first time around, I give it to the dog or throw it out. I call her method "The Margie C. method'. It's drastic but it works.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2007 at 12:53PM
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I have a large 36 inch all refrigerator and I follow some of the following to keep it neat and nice:

Wipe down shelves (every other week)or everytime I do major grocery shopping
Left over produce (garlic, jalapenos, herbs etc.) get transferred into little ziplocs before getting thrown into the veggie bin
Fruits are kept seperate
I don't like to leave anything open in the refrigerator.
I always cover my food with either a lid or seran wrap before placing it in the refrigerator.
Also little left overs go into ziploc containers and most of them are done in a couple of days.
Egg cartons are tossed out and eggs are arranged in the egg bin for easy access.
We have 4 milk gallons at a time and they are stored on the door which saves a lot of room
The only thing we have tons of is juices but they are all neatly arranged on the top shelf
In order to keep the refrigerator neat you have to put in a bit of work and stop being a pack rat (which I think someone else also recommended). I have also seen refrigerators so much smaller than mine that are packed to the brim. It's impossible to stuff anything more in it. I am anal :-) so that makes me want to clean their refrigerator out.

    Bookmark   March 1, 2007 at 8:28PM
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I do all of above and keep an open box of baking soda in the door to keep a fresh odor, which i change every 2 months.

    Bookmark   March 2, 2007 at 12:03AM
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yakuta - Keep those eggs in the original store carton and in the coldest part of your refrigerator. If you have a place for eggs on your refrigerator door, the temperature can be lower than the advised 40°F for egg storage. You can also transfer bacteria from the shell eggs to the refrigerator egg storage area and chance cross contamination from the door storage to other foods or your hands.


    Bookmark   March 2, 2007 at 5:51PM
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Guess I'm the lazy one here! I put those vinyl placemates on my shelfs and cut them into strips for the door shelfs.
They catch any spills and keeps them from dripping to the lower shelfs. Just take the placemats out for a major clean and wash them in the sink with soapy water. Just swipe them for a fast clean up--Well. it works for me!

    Bookmark   March 5, 2007 at 11:18PM
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Every time I clean my fridge there's this gross brown sludge in the bottom. Today I attacked it with Dawn Dissolver spray, and it wiped easily away. I now plan on cleaning one shelf every day.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2007 at 6:09PM
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