Mini fridge maintenance includes cleaning up spills, wiping away crumbs, throwing outdated food away, and wicking away odors with a thorough cleaning and a box of baking soda (or two) — and knowing how to defrost a mini fridge is just part of the process! Whether you’re getting ready to leave for a long trip and won’t be using your fridge for a while, or are moving your mini fridge to a different location, defrosting is important to extend the life of your fridge, as well as save energy.
What You’ll Need
Before you can begin defrosting your mini fridge, you’ll need to empty and clean it!
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Trash bags
- Rags used for cleaning or cleaning sponge
- Large towels
- Nontoxic multipurpose cleaner
Our favorite multipurpose cleaner is the Better Life Natural All-Purpose Cleaner. It’s non-toxic and safe to use anywhere (even on children’s toys!), uses 100% plant-derived cleaning ingredients, and contains no harmful chemicals.
How to Defrost a Mini Fridge Step by Step
Now that you have your cleaning supplies, it’s time to get to work and defrost the mini fridge!
1. First Things First, Empty the Fridge
Before you defrost your mini fridge, be sure to remove any frozen or refrigerated food or drink products and put them in another fridge or freezer. If the food or beverages are out of date, throw them away.
2. Unplug the Fridge and Clean Up Any Spills or Crumbs
Once the mini fridge is emptied, unplug the mini fridge, then use your multipurpose cleaner and cleaning rag or sponge to clean any sticky messes, spills, or wipe away crumbs. You could also wait to do this step after the mini fridge is completely defrosted.
3. Move the Mini Fridge to a Garage or Hard Floor and Use Towels for Moisture
Defrosting a mini fridge means that there will be dripping water as it warms. If possible, move the unplugged mini fridge to a garage or somewhere with a floor that won’t be damaged by water. To prevent water from soaking the floor, use your towels to line the inside of the mini fridge and place a towel underneath the mini fridge to absorb as much water as possible.
4. Defrost the Mini Fridge Over Night
Open the door or doors of the mini fridge and allow it to defrost over night. The following day, wipe away any moisture from inside and outside of the mini fridge. If you’ve waited until the mini fridge was defrosted to thoroughly clean the inside, take the time to wipe the shelves and clean up spills and crumbs. Before closing the mini fridge, allow it to air dry.
Tips for Defrosting Your Mini Fridge
Before you jump into defrosting your mini fridge, consider these defrosting Dos and Don’ts!
- DON’T use a knife, pick, or other sharp objects to break the ice. You may damage the internal components of the mini fridge or risk hurting yourself.
- DON’T wait to defrost. If you notice that the ice buildup in your mini fridge is becoming unruly or has built up to thicker than half an inch, it’s time to defrost. Don’t let it build up to a point where you can’t put anything inside or close the doors.
- DO place a bowl of hot water inside of the mini fridge to defrost faster. If you don’t have time to wait for over night defrosting, place a hot bowl of water inside of the mini fridge. Reheat the bowl of water after it cools to melt the ice faster and warm the internal temperature quicker.
- DO keep the fridge doors open until the defrosting is complete. Keep the doors open until the interior is completely dry, as well.
When it comes to how to defrost a mini fridge, it’s really simpler than many might think! Before you unplug the mini fridge and begin the defrosting process, be sure to remove everything that needs to be thrown away or moved to another freezer or fridge. Allow the fridge to defrost over night or speed the process up with a bowl of hot water. Be sure that you clean any messes from inside the fridge and allow it to dry completely after defrosting and cleaning.