While your refrigerator door gasket plays a vital role in keeping your refrigerator cool, it requires regular cleanings to perform this important function. How do you clean your refrigerator door gasket? Gently scrubbing with a bleach or vinegar-based solution can prevent damage and optimize function. Use this step-by-step cleaning guide to prolong the life of your refrigerator gasket and this essential appliance.
Refrigerator Maintenance 101: How to Clean Your Refrigerator Door Gasket
Though you may regularly wipe down your refrigerator’s shelving and exterior, cleaning the door gasket is often forgotten. Before we detail the simple steps to clean your refrigerator door gasket, here’s why regular cleanings are so important.
Why You Need to Clean Your Refrigerator Door Gasket
A refrigerator door gasket creates a tight seal when the doors are closed, keeping warm air out and cool air contained. Over time, spills, food particles and mold can accumulate on and around the rubber gasket, interfering with or damaging its seal. When this happens your refrigerator door won’t close properly, allowing cool air to escape and warm air to enter.
If the gasket remains compromised, the following problems can arise from the refrigerator not cooling sufficiently:
- Refrigerator works harder: The compressor may run continually in an effort to keep the refrigerator cool.
- Increased utility bills: Constant running increases the refrigerator’s power usage.
- Food spoilage: Warmer internal temperatures may cause food to spoil faster.
- Repairs: A compressor that runs constantly is more likely to malfunction, resulting in potentially extensive repairs.
To maintain its seal and the refrigerator’s temperature, use the following steps to clean your refrigerator door gasket every 3-4 months.
Step 1: Mix Cleaning Solution
While bleach and vinegar are effective cleaning agents, they can be harsh on the gasket’s rubber material. Here’s how to create a simple cleaning solution that won’t harm the gasket’s rubber or adhesive.
- Measure ½ cup vinegar or ¼ cup bleach in a 2 cup measuring glass.
- Slowly add water until it totals 1 ½ cups with the vinegar or 1 ¼ cups with the bleach.
- Lightly stir the solution.
Step 2: Apply Cleaning Solution
Clean refrigerator door seal by dipping a wet sponge or toothbrush in the solution and gently scrubbing. Carefully widen the gasket’s rubber folds to reach all the nooks and crannies and any hidden crumbs or food particles. Apply the extra cleaning solution to areas with mold or mildew.
Step 3: Dry the Gasket
As soon as you’re done cleaning, gently wipe the gasket dry with a paper towel. Immediate drying ensures that the gasket’s seal functions properly reduces the recurrence of mildew and prevents damage from the vinegar or bleach.
Knowing how to clean your refrigerator door gasket is an important part of proper maintenance but it may not always prevent malfunctions. When you need a refrigerator repair, contact DeserTech Appliance Service for the utmost professional care.