Putting a refrigerator in storage may seem like a daunting task, but with the right preparation and proper handling, you can ensure that your appliance remains in good condition throughout its time in storage. Whether you are moving, renovating, or simply need some extra space, following these steps will help you safely store your refrigerator.
1. Clean and defrost the refrigerator
Before you put your refrigerator in storage, it’s important to thoroughly clean and defrost it. Empty out all the contents and remove any removable shelves, drawers, and bins. Clean the interior with a mixture of warm water and mild detergent, making sure to wipe down all surfaces, including the walls, shelves, and the door gasket. Once you’ve cleaned it, allow the refrigerator to air dry completely. Defrosting is essential to prevent the growth of mold and mildew during storage.
2. Disconnect and drain all water lines
If your refrigerator has a built-in water dispenser or ice maker, it’s crucial to disconnect and drain all the water lines. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for properly disconnecting and removing the water lines. Failure to do so may lead to water leaks or damage to the appliance during storage.
3. Secure the doors
To prevent the doors from accidentally opening during transportation and storage, it’s important to secure them properly. You can use strong rope or bungee cords to tie the doors securely, or you can also use appliance straps specifically designed for this purpose. Make sure the doors are tightly secured to avoid any damage to the refrigerator during transit.
4. Wrap and protect the refrigerator
To protect your refrigerator from scratches, dents, and other damages, it’s recommended to wrap it in protective materials. You can use moving blankets, bubble wrap, or thick furniture pads to create a protective layer around the appliance. Secure the wrapping materials with packing tape or stretch wrap to keep them in place.
5. Store the refrigerator upright
When placing your refrigerator in storage, always keep it upright. Storing it on its side or upside down can cause damage to the compressor and other internal components. Make sure to position the refrigerator in a stable and level area of the storage unit to prevent any tipping or shifting during storage.
By following these steps, you can ensure that your refrigerator remains in good condition while in storage, ready for use when you need it again. Properly storing your refrigerator will not only protect your investment but also save you from potential repairs or replacements in the future.
Preparing Your Refrigerator for Storage
When it comes to putting your refrigerator in storage, proper preparation is key. Following these steps will help ensure that your refrigerator remains in good condition while it’s not in use.
1. Clean the refrigerator thoroughly: Start by emptying out all of the food and drinks from the fridge. Remove any shelves, drawers, and removable racks. Use a mild detergent and warm water to clean the interior surfaces of the fridge. Wipe down all of the shelves and racks before returning them to the fridge.
2. Defrost the freezer: If your refrigerator has a freezer, make sure to defrost it before storing. Unplug the fridge and leave the freezer door open to allow the ice to melt. Once the ice has melted, clean the freezer compartment with a cloth soaked in warm, soapy water.
3. Disconnect and drain any water lines: If your refrigerator has a water dispenser or ice maker, you’ll need to disconnect and drain any water lines before storage. Consult the manufacturer’s instructions to determine the best way to do this for your specific model.
4. Leave the door slightly ajar: Before you close the refrigerator, leave the door slightly ajar to allow for air circulation. This will help prevent any unpleasant odours from developing while the fridge is in storage.
5. Protect the refrigerator: To protect your refrigerator from dust and scratches, cover it with a sheet or blanket. Avoid using plastic covers, as they can trap moisture and cause damage.
6. Choose a suitable storage location: When choosing a storage location for your refrigerator, make sure it’s dry, cool, and well-ventilated. Avoid areas that are prone to temperature fluctuations, such as garages or outdoor sheds.
By following these steps, you can ensure that your refrigerator remains in excellent condition while it’s in storage. Taking the time to properly prepare your fridge will also make it easier to get it up and running again when you need it.
Step 1: Cleaning and Defrosting the Refrigerator
Before putting your refrigerator in storage, it is important to properly clean and defrost it. Follow these steps:
- Remove all items from the refrigerator and freezer compartments. Dispose of any expired or perishable items.
- Unplug the refrigerator from the power source.
- Remove any removable shelves, drawers, and compartments from the interior of the refrigerator. Place them in a sink filled with warm soapy water for washing.
- Wipe down the interior of the refrigerator with a mixture of warm water and mild detergent. Pay special attention to any spills or stains and thoroughly clean them.
- Rinse the shelves, drawers, and compartments in the sink and dry them thoroughly before reinserting them into the refrigerator.
- Next, defrost the freezer compartment. Turn off the freezer, empty it of any items, and leave the freezer door open. Place towels or a tray beneath the freezer to catch the melting ice.
- Allow the freezer to defrost naturally. Do not use any sharp objects or heaters to expedite the process, as this can damage the refrigerator.
- Once the freezer is completely defrosted, wipe down the interior with a clean, dry cloth.
- Finally, clean the exterior of the refrigerator using a mixture of warm water and mild detergent. Pay attention to any visible dirt or stains.
Following these steps will ensure that your refrigerator is clean and defrosted before being placed in storage, preventing the growth of mold and mildew and preserving its condition for future use.
Step 2: Properly Disconnecting the Refrigerator
Before moving your refrigerator into storage, it is important to properly disconnect it to avoid any damage or leaks. Here are the steps to follow:
1. Empty the contents
Start by removing all the food and beverages from your refrigerator. Dispose of any perishable items and consider donating any unopened, non-perishable items to a local food bank.
2. Turn off the refrigerator
Locate the power switch or unplug the refrigerator from the electrical outlet. Make sure the refrigerator is completely powered off before proceeding.
3. Unplug or disconnect the water supply
If your refrigerator has a water dispenser or ice maker, you will need to disconnect the water supply. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to safely shut off the water and disconnect any hoses or lines.
4. Clean and defrost the refrigerator
Before storing the refrigerator, it is important to clean and defrost it to prevent mold and odors. Remove all shelves, drawers, and detachable parts. Clean the interior with a mild detergent and warm water. Allow the refrigerator to fully defrost and dry before moving on.
Note: If you are storing your refrigerator upright, it is crucial to let it sit for at least 24 hours after defrosting to allow any residual moisture to evaporate.
5. Secure the doors
Use bungee cords or rope to secure the refrigerator doors, or alternatively, use duct tape to keep them closed during transportation and storage. This will prevent the doors from swinging open and potentially causing damage.
By properly disconnecting your refrigerator, you can ensure its safe storage and prolong its lifespan. Follow these steps carefully to avoid any complications when you need to reconnect it in the future.
Step 3: Safely Moving the Refrigerator to the Storage Area
Once you have prepared your refrigerator for storage, it is important to safely move it to the designated storage area. Follow these steps to ensure a smooth and hassle-free transportation:
Gather the necessary equipment
Before moving the refrigerator, gather the necessary equipment such as a dolly, moving straps, furniture blankets, and a tape measure. These tools will help you to safely handle and transport the refrigerator.
Measure the doorways and hallways
Prior to moving the refrigerator, measure all the doorways and hallways that it needs to pass through. This will help you determine if it will fit or if any adjustments need to be made during the moving process.
Once you have gathered the equipment and measured the doorways, you are ready to move your refrigerator to the storage area. Use caution and take your time to avoid any accidents or damage to the appliance.
Step 4: Storing the Refrigerator in a Suitable Environment
When it comes to storing your refrigerator, it’s important to choose a suitable environment that will keep it in optimal condition. Follow these steps to ensure your refrigerator stays safe and protected:
1. Select a Cool and Dry Area
Choose a storage location that is cool and dry to prevent any potential damage to the refrigerator. Avoid areas that are prone to extreme temperature fluctuations or excessive humidity, as these conditions can impact the performance of the unit.
2. Clean and Dry the Interior
Prior to storing the refrigerator, make sure to thoroughly clean and dry the interior. Remove any food items, shelves, and drawers, and wipe down all surfaces with a mild detergent. Once cleaned, prop the doors open slightly to allow for air circulation and prevent any unpleasant odors.
3. Secure the Doors
To prevent the doors from accidentally opening during storage, use a bungee cord or rope to secure them tightly. This will help maintain the integrity of the gaskets and prevent any moisture from entering the unit.
4. Protect the Exterior
Wrap the exterior of the refrigerator with a thick blanket or use a protective cover to prevent any scratches or damage. This will also help to insulate the unit and keep it safe from any dust or debris.
5. Elevate the Refrigerator
Place the refrigerator on sturdy wooden blocks or pallets to elevate it off the ground. This will help protect it from any potential moisture or water damage that may occur from condensation or flooding.
6. Check Regularly
Periodically check on the refrigerator while it is in storage to ensure there are no issues or problems. Look for any signs of mold, mildew, or pest infestation, and take appropriate action if necessary.
By following these steps, you can safely store your refrigerator and ensure it remains in good working condition until you are ready to use it again.
What is the best way to put a refrigerator in storage?
The best way to put a refrigerator in storage is to clean it thoroughly, defrost it, and remove all perishable and removable items. Then, secure the doors with tape or bungee cords and place a moisture absorber inside the fridge to prevent mold or mildew. Finally, cover the refrigerator with a breathable fabric or plastic wrap to protect it from dust and dirt.
Should I leave the refrigerator plugged in while in storage?
No, it is not necessary to leave the refrigerator plugged in while in storage. In fact, it is recommended to unplug the refrigerator and allow it to defrost completely before storing it. Leaving it plugged in can increase the risk of electrical issues and unnecessary energy consumption.
How should I clean the refrigerator before putting it in storage?
Before putting the refrigerator in storage, it is important to clean it thoroughly. Start by removing all the perishable items and then take out all the removable parts, such as shelves and drawers. Wash these parts with warm soapy water and dry them completely. Next, wipe down the interior surfaces of the fridge with a mixture of baking soda and water. Finally, clean the exterior of the refrigerator with a mild detergent and a soft cloth.
Can I store other items inside the refrigerator while it is in storage?
Yes, you can store other items inside the refrigerator while it is in storage, as long as they are not perishable or temperature-sensitive. However, it is recommended to not fill the refrigerator completely to allow for proper air circulation and to prevent any damage to the shelves and interior surfaces.
How often should I check on the refrigerator in storage?
It is a good idea to check on the refrigerator in storage at least once every few months. This will allow you to ensure that there are no signs of mold or pest infestation, and to address any potential issues before they worsen. Additionally, checking on the refrigerator periodically will give you peace of mind and help you manage the overall condition of the appliance.