Saturday, December 9, 2023


Tips for getting a stinky RV fridge smelling new again

By Nanci Dixon
To avoid a stinky RV fridge, when unplugging your RV from power and turning off the propane to your fridge it is important to remove all food, wash and dry out the refrigerator and freezer, and leave the door ajar. This is important for winterizing your RV or preparing it for storage, but it’s also important to do if you plan on selling your RV.

What can you do if you didn’t properly prepare the fridge before storage or something really stinky has penetrated its walls? What can help get rid of those terrible scents?

Here are some things you probably have on hand that will help get rid of fridge smells:

  • Coffee beans or ground coffee is widely used to soak up the smell. You can sprinkle the beans or grounds in and later vacuum them out, or you can lay them on newspaper for a few days for easy cleanup.
  • Cut lemon or peeled onion has worked for some folks.
  • Bleach or vinegar can kill the smell. Mix lemon with vinegar in a spray bottle and spray it down. Let it sit awhile before washing it away.
  • Kitty litter absorbs odors. Try leaving it in for a week and then wash out the fridge.
  • Baking soda and charcoal briquettes are also popular choices. Change them out every day and in a week odors should be gone. These charcoal packs are a very popular fridge deodorizer on Amazon, check them out. Lots of people used wadded newspaper and charcoal to absorb odor.
  • I did read about putting a bowl of RV toilet deodorizer inside fridges, but I’m not recommending this technique nor am I sure I would be desperate enough to try it. But perhaps in lieu of a new refrigerator, it would be worth a try if nothing else works.

It is also important to clean the seal on the door well. Smells and other nasty stuff can linger there. That vinegar and lemon spray mentioned above will come in handy here.


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Neal Davis (@guest_261440)
23 days ago

Thank you, Nanci! Never have had this problem. Hope to never have this problem. Glad I have a list of weapons to bring to bear if I do ever have the problem; thank you! Safe travels! 🙂

Jim Johnson (@guest_261383)
24 days ago

Read the manual. Those weirdly cut plastic rectangles included with the paper are easy to use door props – once you follow the instructions. While you can’t drive with the door props in place, take the time to use them when you park your RV and are not using the refrigerator/freezer.

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