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Rotten Fish Smell in Freezer

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During the recent hurricane in Florida we lost electricity. There was frozen fish in the freezer and it defrosted. I cannot get the rotten fish smell out. I have washed it two times and the smell is still there. Any help would be appreciated.

Happy Day from Boynton Beach, FL


Best Answers

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By Mary (Guest Post)10/03/2008

I turned off my frig and washed it out with soapy water, then I went over it and cleaned it out with lemon and vinegar. I let it sit open for one day. It did not work. As soon as I plugged in the frig it was smelling like shrimp again. Then I put two round cake pans FILLED with ground coffee and crumbled up news paper lightly sprayed with water and let it sit for two whole days. It WORKED. My frig does not smell like shrimp or fish any more. It smelled like coffee but it will go away in a couple of days and your frig will smell good.

By Lesley. (Guest Post)06/09/2008

You are all brilliant, my freezer is smelling like a summers day. I had already tried bicarb to no avail. Your ground coffee and newspaper did the trick.

Thank you!

By Jim Ross (Guest Post)11/10/2005

I have found fresh coffee grounds (in pie plates to increase their surface area) or crumpled up newspapers (Placed in a salad bowl,& very slightly dampened w/a spray bottle) work the best to pull odors out of the materials interiors of appliances and automobiles are made of. Hope this helps..

By Anna from Maine (Guest Post)10/31/2005

I had the same thing happen to me except it was deer meat, I put jar covers with fresh coffee grounds (right from the can) in my freezer and let sit for about a week, the smell has never returned.

Recent Answers

Here are the recent answer to this question.

By Ken (Guest Post)07/24/2008

Try peroxide to clean then the lemon juice then vinegar! Then add the coffee grounds and charcoal.

By kat195909/04/2007

We just got back from vacation and our fridge/freezer had lost power so my son's frozen shrimp bait and meat had thawed and the smell in the freezer and fridge is unbelievable. My question is do I put the papers and coffee in the freezer with the doors shut and do I leave the appliance turned off and for how long?

By wolfgang (Guest Post)08/22/2007

i need to know whether i need to put the coffee beans and newspaper when the freezer is switched off or when it's on to take out the smell?

Editor's Note: First, use ground coffee, not the beans. If you have beans, make sure to grind them first. I think I would wash it out with baking soda, make sure to rinse out the drain tube. Then, make sure it is dry and with the freezer off, put in the coffee grounds (in a container or tupperware with the top off) and newspaper. Plain charcoal also works well for this.

By Jacqui King (Guest Post)07/16/2007

Thanks for the information, we went on holiday and came back to a brand new caravan where the fridge was full up and there had been a power cut, and the stench is revolting, fish and brussels combined is quite nausiating. I will certainly give the advice a try. Can you buy Bass Assassin in England.

By Will Thompson (Guest Post)05/21/2007

Bass Assassin make a odor remover that worked for me . I left a fish in my cooler for days and I used the stuff and it worked

By joe (Guest Post)01/17/2007

did you get rid of the smell? I am having the same problem and I need help

By kathy (Guest Post)06/21/2006

please help with rotten fish smell in my freezer cannot get it out

By (Guest Post)02/15/2006

thank u soo much for the advice it had really helped us and everyone els e who comes to our house

By jon (Guest Post)01/01/2006

we fishermen know that the best way to get fish odor off your hands is to use lemon juice (no idea why...). you might try heavily coating your freezer with lemon juice in addition to the ideas already listed.


By Susan Sanders-Kinzel [9]11/01/2005

Make sure that you clean all drip trays and run soapy water through any drain tubes. The smell may be staying in places that are hard to get to.
Sorry for your problems with the hurricane. It has been a horrible hurricane season.
Susan from Thriftyfun

By Sharyl (Guest Post)10/31/2005

Vanilla essence is a good way of getting rid of nasty smells also there is a product called nilodor (I don't know if you have that over there but it is quite good for stuff like that

By Michele (Guest Post)10/31/2005

You can try Baking can also go to the Pet Store and buy charcoal and put it in there and it should take the smell out. My mom's freezer went out and all the deer meat spoiled, it was a horrid smell. Good luck.

By (Guest Post)10/31/2005

I have heard if you put crumpled newspapers in the freezer for a day or so it will take the smell out.I have never tried it myself.Hope it works for you.


Here are questions related to Rotten Fish Smell in Freezer.

Question: Rotten Fish Odor in Freezer

I can't get the rotten fish odor out of my freezer. I tried charcoal, lemon, vinegar, and baking soda, but nothing seem to work. What can I use?

By Mike

Most Recent Answer

By Delores [2]06/30/2011

On a previous post on this site, the writer said to spray vanilla inside the freezer, shut the door and leave for a few hours. Also said it works on ice chests and once used clear vanilla on carpet in the car and it worked.

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