We’ve all had it happen.

You come home from a long day at work, and you’re ready for some dinner. You walk to the kitchen, open the refrigerator, and yikes!

Suddenly, a pungent odor slaps you in the face, and you have no idea where it’s coming from. Nothing is expired, and nothing has spilled.

Everything is dirty.

Now, you have to figure out how to clean your refrigerator and you have to figure out how to do it quickly. To learn, keep reading.

How to Clean Your Refrigerator

When it comes to cleaning a refrigerator the right way, you have to take things step-by-step. If you try to rush the process, you’re not going to get everything cleaned properly.

Then, your refrigerator is just going to keep on smelling up your entire house.

Follow our guide through each step so you’ll have the cleanest refrigerator on the block.

1. Prepare a Staging Area for Your Refrigerator Deep Clean

In order to start the refrigerator cleaning process, you have to have a staging area. This is the place where you’re going to put food while you’re wiping down shelves and drawers.

Any flat, sturdy surface will work. You can use the counter, the dining table, or a similar surface.

All of your food and drink should be fine during the cleaning process. After all, we’re learning how to clean your refrigerator quickly. So, nothing should go bad while you’re doing this.

While you’re setting up, we also recommend pulling a trash can near you. You may find some expired cheese at the bottom of your vegetable drawer or an empty package that’s been taking up space.

Lastly, we recommend that you have your sink open for containers that may need washing.

2. Gather Your Supplies for Refrigerator Cleaning

The number one cleaning product that you should have for your refrigerator deep clean is vinegar. You can use vinegar-based cleaning spray or you can opt for good, old-fashioned white distilled vinegar in hot water. All-natural cleaning products like this vinegar solution are great for your home.

The acid in the vinegar can break down any grease and grime that may have accumulated in your refrigerator. Once you mix the vinegar with hot water, the mixture becomes a food-safe cleaner.

So, you don’t have to worry about waiting a certain amount of time before putting food back in your refrigerator. The spray won’t harm anything in there.

In addition to the cleaning substance, you need some sort of cloth to wipe away every mess. You can opt for microfiber cloths, sponges, or scrubbing cloths.

3. Work Shelf by Shelf for Refrigerator Interior Cleaning

It’s unlikely that you’ll have the room to clean out your entire refrigerator at once. So, you should work shelf by shelf.

If you are able to take everything out of your refrigerator, go for it! That’ll make it easier if you’re looking to reorganize your shelves. Just keep in mind that you don’t want to leave everything out for too long.

For those of you who are working shelf by shelf, you should start at the top and work your way down.

Remove everything from the top shelf. Then, remove the shelf and wipe the top, bottom, and sides. Then, dry it with a clean cloth.

Don’t forget to wash the walls of the fridge, including the back wall, as you make your way down.

When you’re not working in the fridge, keep the door closed. For example, you can do this while you’re wiping shelves.

4. Wash the Doors and Drawers of Your Refrigerator

If you’re deep cleaning your refrigerator, you should pull out the drawers and wash them in the sink with soap and water. Wipe them dry before putting them back in the fridge.

While the drawers are out of the way, take this time to clean the floor of the fridge with the same vinegar cleaner from before. Use the same cleaning method for the door(s) of the fridge.

5. Clean Everything Before You Put It Back

There’s no point in cleaning the fridge if you’re going to put nasty food items back in the fridge. That’s why you should take the time to wipe down your condiments and clean off your leftovers containers.

If gunk has built up on the outsides of jars and bottles, run them under warm water in the sink. Then, you can clean them and wipe them dry.

Don’t forget to look for and toss out any expired items. They may be contributing to any smell that’s lingering in your refrigerator.

6. Don’t Forget About Cleaning the Outside of Your Refrigerator

Once you’re done with the inside of your refrigerator, you should give the outside a good cleaning as well. Use the same vinegar spray from earlier and wipe down the outside of the fridge with a clean cloth.

Make sure to get the edges of the refrigerator, including the seals. Most importantly, wash any handles well.

7. Think About Keeping Things Fresh for Longer

Once you’ve cleaned your fridge inside and out, you’ll want to keep it that way for as long as possible. That means you’re probably going to want to invest in some kind of refrigerator freshener.

While using a refrigerator deodorizer isn’t going to prevent you from having to clean the fridge forever, it will help curb any smells that may build up over time.

Plus, now that you have a sparkling clean fridge, it’ll be easier to maintain the look and smell.

Save Time and Hiring a Cleaning Service

Phew! That was a lot.

While understanding how to clean your refrigerator the right way is important, it can be overwhelming. There’s a lot of work that goes into ensuring that the entire fridge is clean. This is not to mention taking care of expired items and crusty jars.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed, it may be time to hire a cleaning service. Our team at Rescue My Time Cleaning Service can help you clean your fridge and more. Feel free to request a quote today so that you can get started with your wildest cleaning dreams.