Last Updated on October 13, 2021 by Boniface Muriuki
So, you’ve recently acquired your mini fridge and you’re happy that you’ll now enjoy cold beer going forward. However, you should be careful to maintain the appliance lest you have the most short-lived joy ever!
How do I maintain the mini fridge for optimum performance?
Well, the first very crucial step is to learn how to defrost a mini fridge. How you undertake this exercise determines the longevity of this crucial appliance.
Worried that you have no idea how to achieve that?
Well, you shouldn’t worry anymore! This article offers the best tips on how to defrost a mini fridge to achieve the best results.
What is a Mini Fridge?
Just like the name suggests, a mini fridge is a low-volume refrigerator ideal for students and individuals who require small spaces for storing beverages and food items.
These mini-fridges are best for use in offices, garages, and rec rooms.
However, the small size comes with several limitations. For example, mini fridges use more power when compared to the standard refrigerators.
Also, these mini fridges rarely maintain a consistent temperature ideal for preserving food items for a long time. Consequently, this appliance is only best if you want it for beverage storage.
What to Consider When Buying a Mini Fridge
- Size. These fridges are largely small. However, you’ll be able to find them with different capacities in the market. As such, you should always ensure that you choose that which will fit all your beverages without a hassle.
- Price. As a thumb rule, the larger the mini fridge (in volume), the higher the price. As such, you will need to spend more money if you intend to purchase a high-volume mini fridge.
- The Size of the Freezer. The functionality of your best mini fridge is one of the most crucial factors to consider. Most of the mini fridges have a freezer that may not be large enough to accommodate all your beverages.
- Energy Consumption. While mini fridges can consume a lot of power, it also depends on the brand you select. Ensure that you check its energy consumption rate and whether it is rated 5-star in energy saving.
How to Defrost a Mini Fridge – A Comprehensive Guide
If you want to defrost a fridge freezer, you should ensure that you understand all the basics of the crucial process. This section will answer all the questions that you could be having about the process:
Why You Need to Defrost Your Mini Fridge
Defrosting your mini fridge freezer is an instrumental maintenance tip that’ll improve the longevity of your device.
Additionally, defrosting improves the functionality of your device, thus ensuring that you get cold beverages all the time (especially during summer).
If you fail to defrost your freezer regularly, it is likely to accumulate inside your mini fridge occupying a lot of space and denying you storage space. This will in turn reduce your device’s efficiency.
How Long Does it Take to Defrost a Mini Fridge
Defrosting your mini fridge is a simple exercise that lasts a few minutes-hours depending on the amount of frost that has accumulated.
If you regularly defrost your mini fridge, you’ll not need hours to defrost it.
You should defrost your mini fridge 24-48 hours before leaving for a trip that will last more than 2 weeks.
If too much frost has accumulated, you may need to defrost your mini fridge overnight.
How Often Should You Defrost a Mini Fridge
You should defrost your mini fridge twice a year. However, you can undertake the process anytime if there is a mini fridge ice build-up affecting your device’s functionality.
This is especially important when the frost covers an area exceeding 1/4 inch of the freezer storage space.
How to Defrost a Mini Fridge – Procedure
- Defrost Using the Defrost Button
If you want to defrost your mini fridge automatically, you should use the defrost button that comes with many of the appliances.
Immediately you notice a build-up of frost, you’ll just be required to push the button and the defrosting will start immediately. Ensure that you have the drip pan in place to collect the water.
However, not all models have these defrost push buttons in the control panel! In such a case, you’ll be required to defrost the fridge manually.
How to Defrost a Mini Fridge Manually
1. Empty Your Mini Fridge
This is an instrumental stage of defrosting your mini fridge. If you fail to remove your items, you can be sure that they will turn bad (if they still require freezing). Such items should be placed in another freezer.
If you have expired food items in the freezer compartment, you should discard them.
2. Unplug Your Mini Fridge
After removing all the food items, you should disconnect it from the source of power. Keeping it on will only waste your energy.
3. Clean the Water Pan
Your mini fridge will start dripping water into your fridge space. As such, you should place a thick towel at the bottom to catch the dripping water and ice.
4. Place a Bowl of Hot Water in the Freezer (Optional)
If you want to speed up the defrosting process, you can place a bowl of hot water inside the freezer. This will quicken the process and save you time.
However, we recommend that you just leave it to defrost naturally.
5. Always Keep the Door Open
When defrosting your mini fridge, you should keep your door open for a whole night (or the entire defrosting period). This will accelerate the process.
6. Clean Your Mini Fridge Properly
Once you’re through with the defrosting process, you should clean and dry your freezer appropriately.
Ensure that you wipe out the moisture from the interior of your mini-fridge. To clean it thoroughly, you will need warm and soapy water. Wipe the racks, shelves, trays, and all the surfaces to remove stains.
You should only use non-abrasive materials (such as a soft piece of cloth or a damp rag). When you’re through with the cleaning, you should rinse it and wait for it to dry completely.
7. Plug-In the Mini Fridge
When you’re sure that the fridge is clean, you should plug into power it on. This will restore full functionality and you can now arrange all your items. Adjust the temperature to suit your needs and desires.
How to Clean a Freezer Without Defrosting
If you want to clean your freezer without turning it off, then you should ensure that you remove all the items from your mini fridge.
Once your fridge is empty, you can follow the following steps to clean it:
- Remove Ice with a Hot Cloth
To remove the ice in your freezer, you should dip a piece of towel in hot water and wipe it manually.
- Use Warm and Soapy Water
Using warm water and your ideal soap will accelerate your cleaning process. You can use a piece of cloth (dipped in the water) to wipe through the walls and other surfaces.
You should never use harsh detergents and bleaching agents when cleaning your mini fridge
- Avoid Abrasive Materials
When cleaning your mini-fridge, you should avoid using rough scorching materials. We recommend that you use a sponge or a microfiber piece of cloth.
Repeat the process of cleaning the interiors and exteriors until you remove all the stains. Also, you should never forget to clean the gasket along with the freezer door.
- Dry Your Freezer
Once you’re through with the cleaning exercise, you should use a dry and clean cloth to remove all the water from the compartment. This prevents ice build-up once you lock the door.
- Clean Your Shelves and Drawers
Before you return the shelves into the freezer, you should ensure that they are clean. Use warm and soapy water to achieve success in this entire exercise.
- Rearrange Your Mini Fridge
After approximately 15 minutes, you can return your items. By this time, the temperature will have dropped significantly, which will guarantee that your food items will not go bad.
Never scrape the ice using a knife or any object since it may destroy your freezer walls. Also, you should avoid using hot water directly on your walls.
How To Defrost a Mini Fridge – Important Tips
- Choose a warm day
- Increase the frequency of defrosting (2-3 times every year) for improved functionality
- Keep your mini fridge in a dust-free area
- Place a small box of baking soda in your mini fridge to absorb odors
How to Defrost a Mini Fridge – What to Avoid
- Never use a knife to remove ice/ for defrosting. It may destroy your fridge’s surfaces which could be costly to repair
- Ensure that the fridge is completely dry before reconnecting it to your power source
- Never use abrasive materials such as steel wool
- Always avoid bleaching agents when cleaning your mini-fridge
How to Defrost a Mini Fridge – the Bottom Line
When you buy your mini fridge, you must learn the tips for maintaining it. This ensures that you get consistent results without incurring huge repair bills.
One crucial maintenance skill is on how to defrost a mini fridge. Defrosting ensures that you free the storage space from frost while ensuring top-notch energy efficiency.
This guide offers a comprehensive guide on how to defrost a mini fridge. You’ll get the dos and the don’ts.
Chef Boniface is a graduate in Culinary Arts from the Institute of Culinary Education, New York. He has worked in several restaurants and is currently the Head Chef at Cavali Restaurant.
He has excelled in developing unique recipes and influencing the menu at the restaurant. He prides himself in sharing his knowledge at thekitchenpot.com where he writes about the best cookware for various recipes.