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Clean Your Refrigerator Coils—You’ll Be Glad You Did!


Hint: Let Microfiber Do the Work!

It’s the middle of winter, and you may be going a little stir-crazy. So let me ask you a question: How long has it been since you gave your fridge a good deep-clean?

I’m not talking about just the inside but the outside too—including the dusty nether-regions behind and underneath your fridge. If you’re like me, you rarely even think about cleaning your refrigerator coils, let alone actually attempt it.

coilsBut after a bit of research, I’ve learned it’s not hard. And the big win is that your refrigerator will run more efficiently once the coils are clean. Plus, you could save yourself the expense of a new compressor, should the old one become so gunked-up with food grease, pet hair and dust that it just gives up.

The good news is you only need to clean your refrigerator’s coils once or twice a year at the most. And the whole process takes a mere 20 minutes with the proper tools. Here’s how:


1. Unplug your refrigerator so you don’t accidentally get zapped. You may need to pull it away from the wall. Be careful not to scrape your floor. (You can slide a big piece of cardboard underneath to prevent this.)


2. If you have an icemaker, shut off the water supply in case the hose comes loose.


3. Use a flexible microfiber dusting tool to get all the loose gunk off the coils. You might also want to have your microfiber mop pads handy; things could get messy.


4. Remove any remaining goo from your coils using a wet microfiber cloth.

Voila! Clean coils!


11 Foods You Should Never Refrigerate

Thanks to Treehugger.com for this interesting info about what not to store in the fridge.

1. Bananas—they’ll turn brown.
2. Tomatoes—they’ll be less flavorful.
3. Potatoes—store them in a bag with your apples.
4. Onions—they’ll turn moldy and soft (unless they’re peeled).
5. Garlic—keep it on the counter, unpeeled, with plenty of ventilation.
6. Avocados—refrigerate only when they’re in danger of spoiling.
7. Bread—refrigeration will dry bread out.
8. Honey—its natural preservatives keep it good indefinitely.
9. Coffee—absorbs odors in your refrigerator so don’t store it there.
10. Basil—the leaves will turn black.
11. Vinaigrette—it will partially solidify; better to keep it in a sealed glass jar.

comment_2Do you know some handy cleaning hacks you’d like to share? We’d love to hear them! Just drop us a line below.


Have you cleaned your refrigerator’s coils within the last 12 months?

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Gail Wice
Gail Wice(@maggie-walker)
5 years ago

My refrigerator does not have exposed coils

Mindy Alonzo
Mindy Alonzo(@mindymouse)
5 years ago
Reply to  Gail Wice

The newer models don’t have the coils on the back of the fridges anymore they are on the front bottom under the doors. Pull off the bottom front grate and you will find coils along with a drip pan to catch water. That too could stand a good cleaning 1 to 2 X a year. I usually use my vacuum attachment with the brush on the end to suck up the dust, then use my wet norwex microfiber cloth to get off any grease or grim. Happy Cleaning!

5 years ago
Reply to  Mindy Alonzo

Thanks Mindy!

Tanya Aoyagi
Tanya Aoyagi(@spokanegreenclean)
5 years ago

ooooh…I don’t remember the last time I did mine! That’s on my to-do list for this week!

Crystal Underhile
Crystal Underhile(@ucrystal1)
5 years ago
Reply to  Tanya Aoyagi

Ne Too! We just remodeled our kitchen and I never thought to do the coils.

Louise Brislane
Louise Brislane
5 years ago

My mother always wrapped her bananas in newspaper first before putting them in the crisper, I assume it kept them longer in hot weather. From memory the skin went black but the banana didn’t over ripen. Not being able to eat the things I have never tried it.

Ann Knick
Ann Knick(@ann)
5 years ago

I do need to do this!

Samantha Rose
Samantha Rose(@srose2014)
5 years ago

I love my Magnetic Enviro Cloth for deep cleaning the inside of my refrigerator. It removes 99% of everything from the surface AND easily attaches right to the refrigerator door while I pull out drawers and shelves for cleaning. Speaking of which, I should probably do another refrigerator deep clean and add cleaning the coils to my list!!!

Alexandria Perone
Alexandria Perone(@allyrose18)
5 years ago

I’m going to have to do this… I never really thought about it before 😮

Karen Malloch
Karen Malloch
5 years ago

They don’t make coils flat anymore underneath the fridge. If your coils are anything like mine, they are A shaped and in several rows and you can’t clean anything but the first row of them. The companies are wanting them to fill up with dirt and dust to make the fridge quit working so that you can throw it away and go get a new one. That’s my gripe!

Chris blank
Chris blank(@chrisblank)
5 years ago

I’ll have to check where my coils are located. I did clean my dryer lint slot with my enviro wand

Jennifer Rottman
Jennifer Rottman(@jenniferrottman)
4 years ago

I never realized you should not store tomatoes in the refrigerator.

Leigh-Ann Ross
Leigh-Ann Ross(@leighannross)
4 years ago

Cleaning these coils never even crossed my mind! Mine are definitely due for a clean!

Gingi Freeman
Gingi Freeman(@domesticgeekgirl)
4 years ago

After burning out a fridge once, I keep this chore in my bi-annual checklist religiously! lol

Carol Derbyshire
Carol Derbyshire
3 years ago

My fridge is integrated will there be access to them some other way? It’s around 2 years old.

3 years ago

Hi Carol, thanks for stopping by. Your best bet is to check with your manufacturer, but I did a quick Google of “how to clean the coils of an integrated refrigerator” and came across some tutorial videos, including this one from Subzero. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sA-xKY3ef7Y
Hope this is helpful!