Odours can be difficult to remove and can present a real challenge. With any appliance, always check your owner’s manual first to see if there are any specific instructions and to ensure what you want to try is safe for the appliance. If you no longer have your manual, look for it on the manufacturer’s website or phone them to request one. Here are some common appliance odours and some possible ways to get rid of them.
Fridge or Freezer Odour: If a fridge or freezer is not in use and is being left unplugged, the door should be kept propped open to prevent odours from forming.
If your fridge or freezer has an odour, first clean the inside surfaces by wiping with warm water and a small amount of liquid dish soap. Or, use 1 tbsp baking soda dissolved in 4 cups of warm water. Rinse the surfaces thoroughly with clear water and wipe them dry.
If you need to disinfect the surfaces, wipe them with a solution of 1 tbsp of chlorine bleach and 4 cups of water. With the door open, allow the surfaces to air-dry for 10 minutes as this helps with the disinfecting. To remove any bleach odour, rinse the surfaces with clear water and wipe them dry.
If the odour remains after the appliance has been cleaned or disinfected, one possible solution for removing the odour would be to crumple newspaper pages and fill the empty appliance with them. With the lid closed, leave the appliance running for several days. Remove and recycle the newspaper pages. If needed, repeat this procedure by refilling the empty appliance with new crumpled newspaper pages. This procedure may need to be repeated several times to eliminate the odour.
There are also many different types of odour eliminating products available today, which typically can be found at hardware stores. Some of these products may be suitable to use in an empty fridge or freezer; use these products as directed.
Microwave Odour: For a microwave odour, place a mixture of half lemon juice and half water in a microwave-safe dish. Boil the mixture in the microwave for a few minutes to create steam. Do not open the microwave door or remove the dish from the microwave as the mixture may explode. With the door closed, allow the mixture to cool for several hours. Once cooled, remove the dish and wipe out the microwave.
If the odour remains, unplug the microwave and leave it to air out with the door open for several days. The odour may gradually go away.
If the odour persists, you could consider taking it to an appliance repair shop to see if there is anything they can do.