Why Your KitchenAid Refrigerator Smells Bad & How to Clean It

why does my kitchenaid refrigerator smell

Opening your refrigerator to a questionable odor is nose pollution at its worst. That can leave you wondering, “Why does my KitchenAid refrigerator smell?” From spoiled food to improper temperature settings, a number of factors can lead to a rank refrigerator. While you might hope that giving our unit a good scrub will resolve the matter, it sometimes isn’t that simple. Do yourself and your food a favor by reviewing our troubleshooting guide when your KitchenAid refrigerator smells bad.

What to Do When Your
KitchenAid Refrigerator Smells Bad

Because you’re working with a small space, sniffing out the odor might seem like a challenge. With our DIY tips, you can look for common contributions toward a smelly refrigerator and prevent any or further damage. Get ready to sniff for the cause, solve the problem, and save your groceries.

Why Does My Refrigerator Smell?

When your KitchenAid refrigerator smells bad, the first step is to acknowledge the source. Determine first if the smell originates from inside your unit or if it’s closely around it.

If the smell stems from the inside, it could be a food issue. Spoiled food is a probable culprit that usually doesn’t require a ton of sleuthing to identify. Some causes of food odor are improperly sealed food, prolonged power outages, worn door seals that allow cool air to vacate, and high refrigerator temperature settings. If this is the case, follow this checklist to verify your food is safe to taste and smell.

  • Dispose of food that’s beyond the expiration date.
  • Confirm all food is fully sealed.
  • Make sure nothing is obstructing your KitchenAid refrigerator air vents as this can affect your unit’s cooling process and lead to food spoilage.
  • If faced with a power outage, remove all dairy, meats, and leftover products and store them in a temporary cooler to harness as much freshness as possible. Once power is restored, give your refrigerator some time to calibrate to its intended temperature before returning food.
  • Whether after a power outage or a routine check, consult your owner’s manual for optimal cooling temperature.
KitchenAid refrigerator smells bad

If your refrigerator smells bad outside, it could be a product of dirty condenser coils, standing water in the drain pan, or a pest/rodent problem behind or under your unit. Unplug and pull your refrigerator from the wall far enough to check the condenser coils along with any signs of pest problems or water in the drain pan.

If you’re faced with water in the drain pan, pour the water down the sink then wipe the pan with a solution of bleach and water before replacing it.

How to Clean a KitchenAid Refrigerator

If you’ve ever thawed meat in your refrigerator, you’re aware that some meat juices don’t have issues with commitment. Even sticking a plate underneath the meat won’t prevent some once-frozen meat liquid from spilling onto the shelf. Deep cleaning is a worthwhile solution that can discourage future unpleasantness.

How to Clean a KitchenAid Refrigerator:

  1. Unplug your unit and scoot it away from the wall.
  2. Remove items from the refrigerator.
  3. Handwash all removable pieces with a solution of hot water, soap, and Borax. Detail every inch of the cleaning gaskets where food and spillage can possibly settle.
  4. Deodorize the interior by mixing a gallon of hot water with a cup of baking soda or Borax then wipe, wash, and rinse.
  5. Replace the air filter if your refrigerator is equipped with one.
  6. Air out your refrigerator for 24 hours IF you have access to an additional refrigerator for temporary storage.
how to clean a KitchenAid refrigerator

While your unit is pulled from the wall, take this opportunity to give your condenser coils a thorough cleaning. It’s recommended to clean the coils annually to ensure your unit maintains accurate internal temperature. First, locate the condenser coils underneath the refrigerator or on the back. Next, vacuum dust and debris and use a long-handled brush to rid the reluctant dirt. Once the coils are ready for proper ventilation, plug in the refrigerator and continue your smell-absolving maintenance.

Tips to Prevent Refrigerator Odor

How exciting was the refrigerator deep cleaning? Not very? Thought so. Try these tips to prevent future odors from disrupting your valuable time.

  • Thaw meats inside a tray with raised sides to collect any potential seepage.
  • Perform daily visual scans to confirm no missed messes or spills. If any are spotted, tend to them immediately. The longer you wait, the more comfortable those stains will become.
  • Keep baking soda in a shaker bottle to absorb ordors.
  • Check for expiration dates weekly.
  • Deodorize your unit with your choice of fridge odor absorbers.

Some smells simply can’t be defeated by the most diligent DIY effort. If that winds up fitting your situation, give yourself credit for trying and for learning some preventative measures. For problems like your KitchenAid refrigerator smells bad, your refrigerator ice maker not working, or your unit not cooling food, contact Apex Appliance for top refrigerator repair service.

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