Unwanted smells and odors from refrigerators is one major problem in many homes. Several methods are tried to remove the odor but most do not work or may remove the odor temporarily only for it to resurface a few days later.

Bad smell in a refrigerator could be caused by smell from spoilt food, drips and spills from liquid contents such as milk and fruit juices. The smell of normal food, when combined with that of another may also result in an unpleasant smell. For instance the smell of mangoes combined with the smell of fresh sea foods may be very unpleasant. Also, the materials used as refrigerants may cause bad smells in the refrigerator if they leak into it. If such smell is kept in the refrigerator for long periods of time, it soaks it and may be difficult to get rid of.

Prevention, they say is better than cure; preventing your refrigerator from getting the smell is better than trying to get rid of the smell. One method of preventing bad smell in your refrigerator is to place food items where they can get the required coolness. Foods that need to be kept frozen must be strictly placed in the freezing compartment. Fruits and vegetables must be at the bottom, as they require warmer conditions. Additionally, remove food that are getting spoilt promptly and clean all spills as soon as they occur.

When trying to get rid of bad smell from a refrigerator, the first thing that comes to mind is cleaning. Clean your refrigerator with warm soapy water. Carefully clean all spilt liquids and food. Remove all foods that are spoilt or have been kept for a long time in the refrigerator. If the smell persists, household disinfectants like chlorine or ammonia to clean, but never use any two or more of them at the same time as they may react to produce toxic gases. After cleaning, leave the refrigerator open for air to pass through for about two hours before switching it on again.

Natural household items may also be used to get rid of bad odor from the refrigerator. Natural vanilla extract, lemon or lime, coffee or even charcoal are effective in removing bad smells from a refrigirator. Cut the lemon or lime into halves, remove the juicy parts from it, place the empty "shells" into a container and place on the shelves. The way round the vanilla extract is to soak it in cotton wool, place in a small container and leave on the shelves of the refrigerator. With the charcoal, wash the pieces with ordinary water and place inside the refrigerator. Ground coffee could be placed in a glass container and then inside the refrigerator.

If all these methods fail, there might be something wrong with the refrigerator itself. Take it to a repairer to check it. If that does not work, contact the manufacturer.

Bad smells in refrigerators can be a nightmare for your home or office. Take steps to prevent them but if they occur, get rid of them as early as possible.

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