Cleaning a Freezer

Category Appliances
Your freezer is an amazing appliance, allowing you to store food for long periods of time. To maintain its efficiency and sometime to find the lost steaks, etc. you should clean the freezer periodically. This is a page about cleaning your freezer.


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Step 1: Take out all your items in the freezer and put them into a large black bag (heavy duty bag). Wrap a duvet around it to keep the cold in.

Step 2: Fill large bowls of steaming hot water and place on the shelves inside the freezer. Place a thick towel on the floor to catch drips.

Step 3: Wait.

Step 4: Once the ice is loosened use a plastic scraper to remove the built up ice. Never use a metal implement as this can puncture the walls releasing the CFC's.

Step 5: Once cleaned, with a cotton cloth liberally smear Glycerin all over your freezer walls. This makes a clean-up the next time a lot quicker. Ice won't stick to the walls so easily.


Step 6: Pop back all your foodstuffs back in the freezer. Close the door. Done!

While I was defrosting I counted all of my portions of meats and main meal type items and made a list to keep on my freezer. Now I just tick them off once I use a portion and that way I can see, at a glance what I have and haven't got when I next go shopping!

By Monique from Somerset, U.K.

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September 7, 2011

Put the hose on the exhaust end of a vacuum or shop vac and hang it midway down in the freezer and gently close the lid on the hose. The vacuum exhausts warm room temperature air into the freezer with no danger of warping the plastic. Leave the gap so the cold air has an escape route.


If the freezer doesn't have a water outlet, simply switch the hose to the intake side of the shop vac and remove the water.

By joan from Vermilion Bay, ON

Comment Was this helpful? 5

Whoever the angel was who posted the tip about using the broom to scrub the bathtub, well she is just the BEST! I just used the same idea to scrub out my upright freezer with baking soda and water. Worked like a charm!

By Margie from Mount Vernon, Ohio

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Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

January 29, 2008

I have Ziploc bags full of veggie puree frozen to my freezers door shelf. I tried a flexible spatula, no go. Help! This particular shelf cannot be removed and is solid plastic. The bags must have been wet when I packed them in there so snugly.


Shelly from Portland, OR


January 29, 20080 found this helpful

Gently heat with a hair dryer? Or maybe try warm water.

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January 29, 20080 found this helpful

I would try hot tap water. A bit messy but you could pour it behind the bags of puree and that should melt the ice on the bottom.

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January 29, 20080 found this helpful

Try mixing salt and hot water in a spray bottle, shake, and spray where the bag is frozen. Be sure to clean the saline solution off the fridge and baggie afterwards.

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January 31, 20080 found this helpful

I'd try a hair dryer. It works on car doors frozen shut.

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By Cyndy (Guest Post)
September 14, 20080 found this helpful

Why don't you put a rag in boiling/hot water and place it on bag near where it's stuck? Or pour hot water to separate and dry the area after.

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Answer this Question...

I have a storage freezer, not a freezer in a fridge. Does anyone have a suggestion on what to do when the frozen food has an odor?

By Patsy


October 29, 20130 found this helpful

I dont know how to remove the odor once it is there. However, I use the foodsaver and the foodsaver bags and rolls. The bags and rolls do not allow air or moisture to pass through.


Plastic and paper wrapping does. I have much less odor and freezer burn this way. It triples (or more) the time food can be stored. It does cost more but you throw a lot less food away.

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November 2, 20130 found this helpful

In order to remove the odors, you may need to defrost your freezer. You definitely need to remove the food and wipe down all the interior surfaces with a white vinegar/water mixture. If there is still an odor, you will want to place activated charcoal in your freezer and leave the door closed for at least 24 hours.

If after 24 hours there is still an odor, replace the activated charcoal and repeat until odors have completely dissappeared. Then, always keep a box of baking soda in the freezer - if you buy the kind that is specially made for fridge & freezer usage, it won't "leak" out of the box onto your food. Good luck!

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October 23, 2016

For 8 years my refrigerator/freezer has been in my garage with the doors open. I want to use it now, but found about an inch of old blood in the freezer.


It is super gooey and impossible to scrub out. Any suggestions? I really need help. Thank you.


October 24, 20160 found this helpful

Hi, I found out that it was not blood after all. A can of concentrated juice broke open. I used boiling water and a lot of elbow grease. My freezer is beautiful now. Thank you.

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September 9, 2015

How do I clean a freezer box to store frozen food, after it being empty for two years?


September 12, 20150 found this helpful

Baking soda and water, made into a paste. Rinse thoroughly by wringing a wet rag, wiping, and swishing in clean water, wringing again, wiping, etc...

When baking soda is gone I would go over it with a weak solution of pine cleaner or bleach and let it air for a couple of hours.

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August 17, 2019

Peroxide is a good alternative to baking soda for cleaning your fridge and freezer. This page contains the details for using this cleaning method.

A clean freezer.

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