Uses For Old Refrigerators

An empty and clean fridge.

There are many uses for old refrigerators, especially for extra storage. However, there are safety concerns with empty fridges and children so be sure the door can be easily opened from the inside. Many people remove the door as added protection.


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January 7, 2005

Tips and ideas for using an old refrigerator. Post your ideas.

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January 7, 20051 found this helpful
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Dryer - suspend an old refrigerator rack from the garage ceiling with a rope & hang laundry on it to dry.

Tool chest - remove the door & store tools & other shop equipment inside it.

Root cellar - remove the door from an old refrigerator, in a well-drained part of the backyard, dig a deep hole large enough to hold the refrigerator box horizontally; line the hole with rocks, then lower the appliance into the ground. Alternate layers of sand or hay with root vegetables. Cover the opening with plywood. Use concrete blocks to hold the plywood in place.


By Joesgirl

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August 24, 2020

Can I use my 20 year old fridge for pots and pans? (It is still working; I just could not keep stuff frozen in the freezer.) I will unplug it. Can I keep the doors closed? Would it smell? Would baking soda help the with smell?

Appreciate your advise. Thank you.


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August 24, 20200 found this helpful
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If you clean it thoroughly and let it dry out completely, you should be OK not to get any smells. Any drop of moisture will cause the odor.

Be sure to vacuum out the coils all around the bottom also after it is dry.


If it is in a place where there are kids around, I would be want to put a lock on the kids don't play around or G-d forbid in it.

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August 24, 20200 found this helpful
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I think you'll find there are probably some city/county codes about that tell you how a freezer/refrigerator that is outside/open shed/etc has to be locked up for safety of the younger generation. It does not matter if you see any kids around as it seems 'boxes' like this can be enticing to children.

make sure seal is working properly and sealing tight.
It sounds like yours may be inside so that is good.
It does appear that it would be a handy place to store most anything but pots and pans sound ideal.


Probably take several days with door open to really dry it out.
I believe that I would buy a container of Damp Rid to use with first use so you'll know for sure if there is any moisture inside.

You may want to think about a 'musty' smell and maybe use some charcoal, cat litter or baking soda to see if that will keep down any smells.
Since you will not be storing food that critters may be interested in, you could even leave the door slightly open once in a while - if necessary.

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Bronze Post Medal for All Time! 105 Posts
August 25, 20200 found this helpful
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My sister in law stores a lot of things in her old refrigerator. You should also set a box of baking soda in there to help get rid of all the orders that are trapped in there.


Clean it out really good and leave it open in the sun for a few days. Then make sure that you keep it in a dry place and not allow any moisture to get inside of it.

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