How to Clean and Sanitize a Freezer

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Cleaning out the freezer is not a task most people enjoy, especially when it's time to defrost the icicles forming around the walls of the freezer door. Sanitizing your freezer is a good way to keep your freezer clean, and will remove any contaminants from recalled food inside.

In this article, we present the step-by-step guide to cleaning and sanitizing your freezer - the right way. Cleaning the freezer means more than just spritzing it with a disinfectant solution. You will need time and a bit of effort to get the freezer clean.

What You'll Need

  • Hot, soapy water
  • Baking soda
  • Rubbing alcohol or Disinfectant
  • Cooler or Second Freezer
  • Old towels
  • Clean cloth
  • Spray bottle
  • Scouring pad - optional, for deep stains

How to Clean a Freezer: A Step-by-Step Guide

Step 1: Remove All the Food

Before doing any sort of cleaning, it is important to prepare a cooler or second freezer to store all the frozen foods while you're cleaning out your freezer. If you have a deep freezer in the house or a large, heavy cooler, store your food there while you get your freezer cleaned. Some items may be stored in the fridge in the meantime, but not for more than two hours.

However, toss away any spoiled food, or food past their expiration date. Throw away any food debris that has leaked out of their packaging as well. Your freezer should be completely empty before you start cleaning.

Step 2: Let the Freezer Defrost

Turn the freezer off, which can be done without shutting off the refrigerator in most modern freezers. Leave the door open, and allow all the ice buildup to thaw out of your freezer. You may want to place catch basins and old towels around to soak up the melting ice.

Step 3: Wipe Away Excess Moisture

Take a dry cloth, and start wiping away the excess moisture from inside your freezer. These droplets may contain thawed out bacteria and viruses, so make sure to wash your hands thoroughly after cleaning your freezer, especially if there are spillages from meat, seafood, and raw frozen foods.

Step 4: Clean with Hot Soapy Water and Baking Soda

Clean the freezer with hot water and dish soap. First, remove the freezer trays and ice trays to clean these separately. Create a soapy solution using 2-4 tablespoons of dish soap into a bucket of warm or hot water. Dip a clean cloth into the cleaning solution, and squeeze out the excess. Use this damp cloth to clean your freezer. Wash the removable parts separately.

A paste made from baking soda and water will help remove any stains left behind by food items. Let the paste sit for 10-15 minutes on stained spots, then use a scouring pad to gently scrub away the stains. Wipe clean with the cleaning solution.

Step 5: Disinfect with Rubbing Alcohol

Place rubbing alcohol or a food-safe disinfectant into a spray bottle, and liberally spray all over the freezer interior. Use a microfiber cloth to wipe the disinfectant around, and let the sanitizing solution dry before closing the freezer door. This will ensure the disinfectant has killed as much bacteria as possible.

Step 6: Open the Freezer, and Place the Frozen Food Back Inside

Turn the freezer back on, and return the freezer contents back inside. It is a good idea to remove any icicles from the packaged, frozen food by manually defrosting them under running water just enough to remove excess ice. Wipe dry with a towel before placing into the freezer in an organized manner.

Once you've placed the items back into the freezer, avoid opening the door for a few hours to allow the temperature to get back to its original setting. In the meantime, clean and disinfect the exterior of your fridge using the same method to complete the deep clean routine.

Time for Spring Cleaning

Your freezer is not one of those areas you often think about when it comes to cleaning, but those frozen icicles can reveal dangerous secrets when they thaw. Bacteria and viruses are hardy - they can withstand being frozen, and become active again once thawed.

Make general cleaning easy for your household with our professional deep cleaning services at Luce Home. We'll make sure every part of your home is completely cleaned and sanitized, so you don't have to worry about catching anything from your space!

Contact us today, and let's get to cleaning your home!

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