4 Tips to Keep Your Refrigerator Free from Foul Odors

The last thing you want to encounter when you open your fridge is a foul-smelling odor. It totally kills your appetite, it’s unhygienic, and it means that something is probably rotting away in there. A bad smell also means that you need to act quickly, as food spoilage has a way of spreading to otherwise perfectly good ingredients. If you fail to find the root of the problem, you put the rest of your stock at risk, which is a huge waste of money!

That said, the best way to address a foul-smelling fridge is to prevent it from happening in the first place. Here are a few tips that can help you out, as well as what you can do in case you run into a similar problem:

1. Throw away old food

While throwing away old food seems like a no-brainer, many people often forget to do it. If you are the forgetful type, try to note down the best-by dates of fast-spoiling products like dairy and deli meats. When their dates have passed, toss them out immediately.

Other food products, like condiments and some sauces, can last months or even years but will still eventually spoil. Look around for items you rarely or never use, check them for their quality, and toss them if they have gone bad.

2. Use “odor absorbers”

You can leave certain foods and household items, such as oats, dry coffee grounds, and activated charcoal, in your fridge to absorb any buildup of odor. These “odor absorbers” work by sucking up and trapping odor particles from the air. You can also leave a small bowl of vinegar inside the fridge, as it has a way of neutralizing smells—and no, it will not affect the taste or smell of your other food items.

3. Keep the containers sealed

While a sealed container will not stop food from spoiling and emitting terrible odors, it traps the smell inside and separates it away from the rest of your food. That way, when you do check on the container and find an item that has started rotting, you can quickly get rid of it without tainting the rest of the fridge.

To secure your food, place them in air-tight containers, bottles, and jars. However, remember to label them accordingly to help keep everything organized. You might want to mark them with the best-by dates so that you ensure nothing gets spoiled.

4. Use fragrances

Foul smells can be masked with pleasant fragrances. For instance, using vanilla extract or peppermint oil, both of which are very aromatic, is quite effective at reducing bad smells. In fact, you can use them to wipe down your fridge if you want to.

Just note that these fragrances will not address the source of the rotting smell. They work best when you use them after you have cleaned your fridge and gotten rid of any spoiled items.


No one likes a stinky fridge! Remember the tips above so that you can avoid the problem altogether. In case you face this type of problem, you need to find the source quickly so that things do not get any worse.

Pixel Fridge is your best source for fridge reviews, advice, and more. Whether you are wondering how much a small fridge is or how often a fridge should cycle, we have got the answers you need. Check out our other blog posts to stay informed.

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