How to defrost a freezer


As the winter months draw on, we may feel like there is enough cold and ice outside to want anything to do with it in our household chores. However, defrosting your freezer is a vital task and one that should be undertaken regularly whatever the weather is like outside. Sometimes we put off big jobs like this because we are not one hundred percent sure how to do it, so if that is your reason we are here to put you straight. In this article, we go through how to defrost a freezer step by step, giving you all the important tips and tricks to get this housekeeping chore done quickly and easily.

Step 1: Knowing when to defrost your freezer

As with all cleaning tasks, it is important to know how often you should be doing it. In essence defrosting your freezer is not something that you need to do like clockwork every month or three. Instead regularly check for signs of ice building up – when that happens, it is time to defrost.

Step 2: Having all the equipment to hand

Now that you have decided to do the job, it is important to have all the equipment to hand before you start. You will need lots of old towels and some newspaper. You will also need some ways to store the food you have taken out. That could either be in insulated cooler bags (like those you take on a picnic) or a friendly neighbour’s freezer. Alternatively, plan a week in advance and just eat up all your freezer food before starting the task.

Step 3: Turning off the freezer and preparing for the melt

Once you’ve got some way of dealing with all your existing food, take everything out. Now you are ready to turn the freezer off. When you do, lay the towels inside the freezer and the newspaper on the surrounding floor to soak up the melting ice. Remember to check the fridge regularly during the defrosting process to wring out the towels and replace them with new ones as needed.

Step 4: Cleaning the insides

Once the ice has completed melting, take this opportunity to have a thorough clean of your freezer. Get into every nook and cranny removing stains and dirt that are usually covered with ice.

Step 5: Turning the freezer back on and reloading with food 

Now that the freezer is no longer full of ice and is sparkling clean, reload it with food and switch it back on. If you have eaten all the food prior to the defrosting, take the opportunity to re-stock with useful household basics like frozen vegetables and fish for when you need a quick weeknight meal. Try to keep your freezer relatively full as this helps prevent ice building up again.

There you have it! A lovely, fresh freezer without all that pesky ice. That’s our guide on how to defrost a freezer. Don’t put it off. It may be a bit of an undertaking, but it’s a pretty satisfying job when you’re done.