Handy cleaning hacks freshen up your fridge; the essential tool to modern kitchens. Years ago, there were iceboxes wherein cooks would place a large block of ice to keep their food cool for a mere couple of days. There was no way to keep food fresh before, but now we have refrigerators, capable of maintaining food quality for weeks on end.
As prices of food skyrocket, we must adapt. One of the best ways for us to preserve our food is by keeping our fridges fresh and clean. This piece details expert solutions so that you can keep your food in prime condition for longer.
Hacks for Freshness
Clean and Crisp
It comes as no surprise that a clean fridge smells better than a dirty one. When you decide to freshen your fridge, the first step must always be to do a thorough cleaning. Since food products touch the area, avoid using chemical cleaners. While it may seem like they facilitate improved odor, the ingredients clash with natural smells of food which you will place in the fridge.
First, empty out all the shelves. It is best to do this step before a big shopping excursion (when it is mostly empty already). We should remove any and all shelving that is removable. Thoroughly clean all components of the fridge. Dry them completely. Ensure that, when you return items to the fridge, they are perfectly dry. This prevents mildew.
Now that your fridge is perfectly clean, you can take preventative measures against future odors. Baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) is a handy tool for this purpose. Some stores sell this product in a package designed for refrigerators. A cost-effective hack is to take a plain box of baking soda and open it on the top. Place the open container at the back of the top fridge shelf. It will naturally deodorize the surroundings, without adding smell at all.
The lack of odor is the best value of baking soda as a deodorizer. Some features to fight smell replace it with one of their own. When it comes to food, we prefer it unencumbered by other, unnatural scents. Baking soda absorbs scent, instead of adding to it. Keep this in mind and note that we must change the soda itself routinely. A safe bet (unless odor starts to take over) is to change the container monthly.
This handy trick is little known. For best results, grind your own coffee fresh. If you do not have access to a coffee grinder, try using grinds from the package as soon as you open it. Unlike baking soda, the coffee grinds are a potentiator. The smell is amicable to most and does not absorb in the same manner. Instead, it adds to the air of the fridge, fortifying the freshness.
Place the coffee grounds on an uncovered plate or bowl, on the bottom shelf of the fridge. Leave them in place for a full day (twenty-four hours). This will allow time for the coffee oils to mingle in the air. After too long, however, the value shifts and the coffee smell adds acidity to the air. Make sure to pull the coffee grounds before this turn.
Fruits and Flavors
Another handy hack is to add essential oils and scents to the fridge. This depends on the contents of the appliance. Assuming they are primarily vegetable and fruit, it is safe to add a drop of orange oil to a cotton swab and place it in the fridge. Much like the coffee grinds, this works for a short period of time before necessary removal. When it comes to smell, timing is everything. Remember, baking soda stays in, coffee and other scent agents do not.
Naturally, if your fridge is set either too hot or too cold, the smell will be wrong. While it may seem like a good idea to keep the fridge colder, this is not always true. The trick is to find the optimal temperature and keep the settings exact.
The ideal temperature setting varies from model to model. Keep this in mind when you are setting things up. If there is frost on your vegetables, the fridge is too cold. If your dairy or meat sweats, the fridge is too warm. Any of these common pitfalls cause odor. Prevent the unpleasantry by keeping your fridge set properly.
Chances are, in your fridge, there are drawers and compartments with suggestion labels. For the least odor, it is best to stick to these notations. Store vegetables and fruits in the crispers at the bottom of the fridge. Dairy is meant for the side. Butter and cheese should be properly wrapped and sealed in their sliding drawer.
Make sure that there is nothing expired in the fridge. Additionally, ensure that when you place items into the fridge, they are clean and fresh. It makes sense that foul food leads to foul smells; so, for the best, odor-free results, keep your fridge void of these products.
Bear in mind that there are some foods which you should not store in fridges, things such as tomatoes and bananas. Regardless of the measures you take, these items will cause unpleasant smells.
The great news of vacations is that they give us the opportunity to clear our minds and take a moment to breathe. That said, when we return from these blissful excursions, the last thing we want is a foul-smelling fridge. Often, once a smell has set into the fridge, it is next to impossible to remove. These simple steps prevent this pitfall:
- Empty the fridge
- Wipe down the surfaces
- Unplug the refrigerator
- Leave the doors propped open
By using this simple method, you ensure air flow within the fridge. Since it is empty, there is no risk of spoilage. Given that we have left this open, there will be no chance for mildew or mold to take hold. When you return, wipe down surfaces and plug the fridge back in. Replace the baking soda with a new container. Within a few hours, your fridge will be back to odorless perfection.
A refrigerator that smells great is necessary for more than a pleasantry, it is important to food safety and preservation. Smells result from particles in the air- the same particles we want to avoid contaminating our food. By keeping to these simple tricks and handy hacks, you will maintain both the quality of your fridge itself, as well as the food products it homes.