Refrigerator odor is a sign that foods stored within the refrigerator have spoiled. When a homeowner notices that strong odors are wafting from the refrigerator, she should immediately take steps to determine the source of the problem. Odors emanating from the refrigerator are signs that mold, bacteria, and mildew are breeding within the appliance. This can cause an unhealthy environment in which to store food.
To prevent bad odors from taking over the refrigerator, leave an opened box of baking soda inside. Baking soda absorbs odors within the refrigerator and will keep them from interacting with each other. The baking soda container should be replaced at least every three months in order to continue to work effectively.
If a refrigerator is still plagued with odors, begin the process of cleaning out the appliance. Remove everything inside the refrigerator and throw out foods that have been stored there for too long. Use a kitchen cleaner or a mixture of baking soda and water to clean the interior of the refrigerator. Concentrate on eliminating any spills or stains so that the appliance is deodorized and scrubbed clean.
Take note of any items in the refrigerator that have expired. Milk or lunch meat stored in the refrigerator may be the cause of bad odors. Throw away any foods that have passed their expiration dates as they are probably spoiled and can cause people to get sick if they consume them.
Stubborn refrigerator odor may call for drastic measures. If bad odors persist, consider placing a pan of baking soda inside the refrigerator. When possible, keep the fridge open and unplugged in order to air it out and allow the baking soda time to absorb smelly odors. Some people may even opt to place a pan of kitty litter in the refrigerator since this particular product will also help to eliminate bad smells. Another alternative is using a pan filled with coffee grounds or activated charcoal to put an end to refrigerator odor.
Cleaning the refrigerator on a regular basis can prevent odor problems from occurring in most refrigerators. For example, whenever a spill occurs, take time to clean it up as soon as possible. Spills that are allowed to linger inside the refrigerator will eventually cause the appliance to smell. Food should always be stored in containers with tight lids. Uncovered containers can tumble over, causing food to spill onto the shelves of the refrigerator.
Refrain from keeping leftovers in the fridge for long periods of time, and throw food out as soon as it spoils. This will keep bacteria from taking over the refrigerator and causing refrigerator odor. The temperature of the refrigerator should be monitored so that it is cold enough to discourage the growth of bacteria as well.