Your freezer is one of the most convenient household appliances, so it’s crucial to keep it in tip top shape to protect the interior and keep your food fresh and safe. There are two styles of freezers, frost free and defrost freezers. Frost free automatically keeps the unit defrosted. Defrost freezers require manual defrost usually once a year or when ice buildup is excessive.
While frost in a defrost freezer is normal the build-up will get to a point when it needs attention. Thick layers of ice can reduce the efficiency of the appliance, which can add to your electricity bill and cause unnecessary wear and tear on the appliance.
Fortunately, there are several ways to remove the frost built-up. Here’s how often you should defrost your freezer, as well as the proper defrosting methods.
How Often Should You Defrost Your Freezer?
Regardless of the make and model of your freezer, we recommend defrosting it each time it develops a quarter-inch of ice buildup on the interior walls. Depending on your usage habits, this may be once a year.
How to Defrost Your Freezer
Step 1: No matter the method of defrosting you use, always begin by unplugging your freezer as a safety precaution.
Step 2: Next, remove all food items from the freezer and place them in a cooler or bag to keep them insulated.
Step 3: Place newspapers or shop towels around the bottom of the freezer to soak up the melted ice.
Step 4: Choose a method. There are a few ways to properly defrost a freezer. Perhaps the simplest and most obvious method is to unplug the appliance, open the door, and wait for the ice to melt. If you’d like to speed the process along, use a hair dryer to defrost the freezer, just be careful not to overheat the plastic liner. Always keep the cord and dryer away from any standing water or ice. Plus, avoid getting too close to the coils, as the heat may lead to further issues.
The next method involves placing a pot of boiling water on the shelves and and closing the door. The steam should breakup the ice, making it easier to remove all of the ice by hand. Since this method can damage the shelves if done improperly, place a towel under the pot. In a defrost freezer the shelves are what generally cool the unit. Breaking a shelf may result in expensive repairs or replacement of the unit.
In addition to the above methods, you can also use a hot metal spatula, or a rag dipped in hot water to loosen the ice. Use a thick towel to mop up the standing water.
Step 5: Once the ice has melted, consider cleaning your freezer with warm water and dish soap. Once you plug in the freezer, let it reach to the proper temperature before restocking your food.
How to Prevent Frost Buildup in a Freezer
Frost occurs when moisture in the air touches the frozen evaporator coils. Although frost-free freezers come with thermostatically controlled heating elements that melt the frost, it may not eliminate it completely. To prevent frost buildup in your freezer, check for a break in the door gasket. Plus, leave some space between your freezer and wall so that the coils have room to cool your freezer well. Consult your owner’s manual for recommended clearances.
Call the Pros at iFiX for Your Refrigerator Repair
If these problems persist after troubleshooting, it’s time to call our Ogden appliance repair team Contact us today at 801-731-4349 to schedule an appointment.