Many new freezers have a self-defrost feature to keep icy buildup at bay. But if you have an older appliance, you might need to perform this task manually. Removing ice from the walls of your freezer helps it run more efficiently. It also reclaims precious freezer space, so you have more room for frozen dinners and ice cream. If it’s starting to look like the arctic tundra in there, use these hacks for defrosting the freezer quickly and easily.
Before you can remove any ice, you must prepare the freezer. Here’s how:
- Remove all food and other items from the freezer. Store everything in a cooler or second freezer while you work. If you’re short on cooler space, plan ahead by eating a significant portion of frozen food in the weeks leading up to this chore.
- Unplug the appliance and open the door. Pile old towels inside and beneath the freezer to soak up water as the ice melts.
How to Defrost a Freezer
You have a few options for coaxing the ice inside the freezer to melt:
- Let the freezer defrost naturally: As long as your frozen food is in a second freezer and is in no danger of melting, there’s no need to hurry up the process. Simply prop open the freezer door and let the ice melt overnight while your towels soak up the water.
- Place a pot of boiling water in the freezer: The steam helps loosen thick chunks of ice more quickly. Make sure you set the pot on a trivet or the old towels you piled inside so it doesn’t come in direct contact with the cold freezer floor. Reheat the water every 15 minutes to keep the momentum going.
- Aim a hairdryer at the ice: To avoid electric shock, make sure dripping water doesn’t come in contact with this handheld appliance.
NOTE: Don’t pick at the ice with a knife or other sharp object because this could poke a hole through the freezer wall. If you need to scrape away melting ice, use a plastic spatula instead.
Take an Inventory of Your Frozen Food
While you wait for the ice to melt, assess your stockpile of frozen food and decide what to keep. Discard anything mysterious or past its expiration date. Even when frozen, food can still go bad or get freezer burned.
To slow the formation of ice, avoid overstuffing your freezer. The appliance needs space to circulate cold air, which keeps things adequately frozen and reduces ice buildup. Your freezer also operates more efficiently when you implement this tip.
Clean the Fridge and Freezer
Remove chunks of ice as they separate from the freezer walls and place them in the kitchen sink to finish melting. Once the freezer is devoid of ice, give it a quick cleaning with a soapy washcloth. Wipe down the door seals to ensure the freezer closes tightly for more efficient operation. Rinse and dry the interior thoroughly before restocking it and plugging the freezer back in. This is also the perfect time to clean out your fridge, leaving you with a spotless refrigerator/freezer combo.
If you’re tired of defrosting your old freezer and dealing with high operating costs, it may be time to upgrade the old appliance to a new, high-efficiency model. To learn more, please contact Mr. Appliance® today!