Power outages, damaged internal parts and sometimes calamities often render appliances in the house unable to function. A refrigerator is one such appliance which literally rots the stuff inside when there is no power supply. If you live an area where electricity supply is erratic or if you are expecting bad weather that would invariably lead to malfunctions, here’s what you can do to save your food stash and to prevent the fridge from smelling bad.
Before we begin, let us inform you that if there’s anything at all you can do to keep the fridge powered on. Do it. Once a fridge is turned on and has functioned for a bit, turning it off is a bad idea. If you can arrange a repairman or a generator, try that. If you are left with no such options, here’s what you can do.
Empty The Fridge
Take out all the food and other storables. Finish off whatever you can eat or donate/dispose of the rest. You cannot salvage the food if you live in a tropical place and if the fridge won’t power back on any time soon. Keeping it inside the fridge will only cause fungi and mold to develop and infect the fridge as well. Don’t even leave water bottles inside the fridge. Disconnect the power plug once you are done emptying the refrigerator.
Do A Thorough Cleaning
Once the fridge is emptied and the power plug disconnected, take out the racks and compartments. Anything that can be carried to the sink must be taken there and rinsed with soap and water.
Take a damp cloth and wipe down the insides of the fridge. Make sure you clean every corner and remove any food stain and residue. Wipe everything once again with a dry cloth to absorb leftover moisture.
Place An Odor Absorbing Substance
No matter how thorough your cleaning was, odors still tend to develop in a fridge that isn’t powered on. To prevent that, you can place anything that absorbs bad smells. A small bowl of baking soda, or an open can of baking soda is what works best according to experts. Yet another option is to use a small bowl of activated charcoal, the kind that you get to brighten your teeth works too!
Mask The Unpleasant Smell
If you don’t have an odor absorbing substance, go for something that has a pleasant fragrance to mask any unpleasant smell that might develop. A ball of cotton dipped in vanilla essence is the simplest way to achieve this. Other methods include cinnamon sticks, few drops of essential oils in cotton balls, and whatever other creative options you can think of :).
Leave The Door Ajar
Don’t completely close the door or it could cause the microorganisms to go berserk leading to mold and fungi colonies. We certainly do not want that. To prevent the air from going stale inside the fridge, leave the door slightly ajar. Use a matchbox or a piece of paper rolled up to leave a slight gap that allows the air to circulate.
Defrost The Fridge
If there isn’t an inbuilt feature to defrost automatically, do it manually. Frost would eventually melt and form a pool under the fridge. If left unattended, it could lead to a host of problems from internal circuit damage to people slipping in the puddle. Mop up the water pooled beneath the surface right after the fridge is defrosted. And make sure that the power cable and the wires at the back are dry.
Keep The Fridge Upright
If you are attempting to move the fridge to another location where power is available or if you turned it off to transport the fridge, make sure that you keep the fridge ramrod straight. Tilting the fridge in either direction can cause the compressor fluid/ coolant to leave causing irreparable damage to the fridge’s circuit.
Get an extra set of hands if needed but never tilt or worse make the fridge completely horizontal.
If The Fridge Still Dies, Guarented’s Here For You
Power outages sometimes cause irreparable damage to all household appliances, not just refrigerators. And such damages are often beyond help and will require you to replace the whole appliance. As unfortunate as that is, it will be hard on your budget. This is why we urge you to shop for good quality, refurbished appliances. They are budget friendly and often come with free service warranty, providing you with a certain budget protection. Browse Guarented’s appliance catalog and you’ll see that the products rival the quality of brand new ones.