How to Prepare Refrigerator for Storage? (Quick Checklist!)

The storage process of any refrigerator is not at all a tough task to accomplish. But it requires some specific storage methods to follow. These procedures would help you to keep your unused refrigerator safe even after a long period of no use. Such steps include cleaning the refrigerator, removing doors, moving, etc. that will be elaborated in the further section. 

In this article, we will talk about simple yet effective methods to store a refrigerator for any certain time period keeping it undamaged. 

Steps to Prepare your Refrigerator for Storage

  • Make sure to switch off your refrigerator the night before shifting it
  • Let your refrigerator comes to room temperature 
  • Defrost the refrigerator to save the storage center from water damage 
  • Defrosting refrigerator will settle the fridge coil’s oils and liquid and makes the freezer safer
  • Clean the refrigerator’s interior and exterior with disinfectant and scrub to remove the stain
  • Make sure that there are no food particles left inside the refrigerator that might cause growing molds.
  • Eliminate all the interior and exterior doors of the fridge including inside trays, shelves, and drawers
  • Dry clean the fridge with a soft dry cloth both inside and outside
  • Measure the refrigerator from all sides before moving
  • You need to measure the storage area also
  • Cover the refrigerator with soft blanket type covering along with bubble wrap from top to bottom
  • Tie tightly the refrigerator to the dolly with some elastic straps to protect it from sliding and slipping
  • Keep the refrigerator straight upright while shifting and take the help of multiple hands
  • After mounting the fridge on the truck or trailer, tie it from each possible sides and corners
  • Find out good storage that is protected from theft, fire, and pests
  • Keep checking on the refrigerator from time to time and take action accordingly to the aroused issues

Where to store the Refrigerator?

As a refrigerator is the largest kitchen appliance, it requires adequate space to fit in. Your refrigerator location should have proper compatible power sources, water supply lines, clearances, etc. We are listing up some suitable places for storing refrigerators:

  1. Refrigerators can be stored in an artificially designed stealthy cupboard in case of small kitchen space
  1. You can slide in your refrigerator in the wall recess by building a cavity there
  1. Refrigerators can also be placed under the kitchen stand 
  1. If your is thin, it can be stored in between two storage spaces
  1. Refrigerators can be placed beside the doors also. It would save your kitchen spaces and keeps the wires away from children’s access
  1. Dining room is the perfect place for storing the fridge and also makes it easily accessible for all house members

Can a refrigerator be stored in the garage?

Yes, it is possible to store a refrigerator in a garage. For that, you need to consider a few factors. Usually, electrical experts suggest buying a garage optimized refrigerator for placing in the garage. Here are some steps are given below to store a refrigerator in the garage:

  • Garages are usually not insulated. So it is recommended to store a refrigerator in the garage only if your area temperature remains moderate always
  • The suitable ambient temperature of any garage should be within 72 to 75 degree F and should not exceed 119 degrees F
  • Try to buy a refrigerator that has the ability to operate from 0° to 100° F
  • Make sure the maximum temperature level won’t cross or the fridge will stop working
  • Keep your refrigerator full always. It will help the cooling system not to release much cold air as an empty fridge does
  • Let your refrigerator connected to a specific electric supply point to ensure enough energy supply 
  • Garage optimized refrigerators require a 115-volt power plug-in outlet with a 60Hz AC power adapter
  • Make your garage electrically well-equipped for storing a refrigerator in it
  • Garage ready refrigerators must have inbuilt heaters to control freezers’ activities 
  • Do not store perishable items in your garage refrigerator; store non-perishable items like bottled beverages, canned foods, etc
  • Try to keep the ambient temperature of your garage more than outside temperature; keep it at least 50° F
  • The suitable temperature for storing fridges in the garage on winter days should be between 68 to 71 degree F
  • It is recommended to make the refrigerator accustomed to the garage temperature before turning it on
  • Keep your refrigerator’s temperature below the garage’s room temperature
  • You can attach an external heater coil to your refrigerator to make it work properly on extremely cold days
  • Install supplemented air conditioning, fans, or vents to keep the refrigerators cool in the scorching hot weather

How to keep an unplugged refrigerator from smelling?

Refrigerators that are kept unplugged for a long time often smell really filthy. It can happen due to molds, mildews, or bacteria that grow on the leftover food particles. By following some steps you can keep your fridge smelling fresh even after keeping it unplugged for a long period.

Follow these measures to remove the unwanted smell from your refrigerator –

  • Scrub and clean the fridge properly with strong-smelling disinfectant
  • Do not let any soapy residuals inside the refrigerator after cleaning and air dry the interior if possible
  • Keep vinegar and clove solution inside the fridge and keep the door closed overnight before shifting
  • Wipe out the interior portion with baking soda solution and let it dry finely
  • You can place charcoal and baking soda solution inside the fridge to remove bad doors
  • Remove each interior part of the fridge like drawers, side racks, etc.
  • Remove the main door of the refrigerator from the hinges

Do Refrigerators go bad in storage? 

Yes, there are possibilities of damage if your fridge remains unused for a long time. It might happen due to imperfect water drainage before unplugging it. Throw out all the items from the fridge and clean it thoroughly. It should be wiped out and dried accordingly. 

Keep the refrigerator away from the storage room’s wall. Put an extra cupboard cover over the refrigerator box and keep the other parts preserved in the same way. 

Make your storage area properly pest controlled. So that rats can’t harm the wire of the fridge. Along with that, the storage area must be well air-circulated to resist the place from getting humid.

How long can a refrigerator be stored without being used?

Usually, you can keep your refrigerator unused for a very long period of time by the above-stated guidance. You just need to start it eventually to check if it’s working. For better storage measures you should go through the manufacturer’s guidelines and follow the provided procedures.

Conclusion

By following the discussed instructions you will be able to prepare and store your refrigerator uninterruptedly as long as you want. But it is suggested to check it after a few months from storing. Make sure to come back to it in pristine condition and unwrap it to use again.


FAQ

Top frequently asked questions on “Preparing a Refrigerator for storage”. Check them out!

How to prevent mold in an unused refrigerator?

Before packing refrigerator for storage, clean it thoroughly and remove any food leftover and debris because that’s the main reason of molds growing inside your fridge. Also, give the refrigerator time to deforest, keep its door open if possible for some hours before packing.

How to clean mold in refrigerator after storage?

The best way to clean mold is to use vinegar. Take out all the drawers as well as shelves from the fridge, vinegar, let it sit for 3-5 mins and then wipe it. After that, wipe clean with water. This will remove all molds and mildew from your fridge.

Can we switch off refrigerator for 3 months?

Yes, you can switch off refrigerator for 3 months or more if you follow proper instructions to store your refrigerator. That includes turning it off, clean it thoroughly, disinfect, dry it down and then properly store it using insulation. Read this article full to know how to turn off refrigerator properly.

Should you turn off en empty refrigerator?

You can surely turn off your empty refrigerator for maintenance or moving. However, once you start using it, once it’s empty and you want to turn it off & leave for few weeks, make sure to properly follow cleaning instructions to avoid bacteria growth or smell buildup.

How do you keep an unused refrigerator fresh?

You can keep your unused refrigerator fresh if you won’t start it for prolonged time. If you did that and put food for testing purpose then make sure you clean & dry the refrigerator interior too stop food smell to contaminate the area.

Saurabh Saha
Pursuing MCA from the University of Delhi, Saurabh Saha is an experienced blogger and internet marketer. Through his popular technology blogs: TechGYD.COM & sguru.net, he is helping several brands to gain exposure in front of high-quality web visitors.