Kitchen messes are somewhat a daily concern, whether it is sour cream or improperly cleaned countertops. But few things could be grosser than mold in the fridge walls and shelves. Your fridge should keep your perishables frozen and ready for consumption whenever needed. So spotting mold in the refrigerator, no matter the size, can be distressing.
So, what happens when you open the refrigerator after a week and find slimy, gray matter growing there? Your first thought would be how to get rid of the mold. However, the problem might be running deeper than simply removing the fungus. You must determine what caused the mold growth and identify ways of preventing a similar occurrence.
Let’s discuss how to combat mold in the refrigerator, including averting the causes of fridge mold.
What Causes Mold in the Fridge?
- Rotting food
If you leave perishables in the fridge for an extended period, they can spoil regardless of the refrigeration status. Mold might have begun forming on the food, and you will definitely throw it away. But that is not an adequate solution to the problem. If the rotten food comes into contact with any part of the fridge, mold can begin growing on the spots. Airborne mold spores can also settle on the fridge wall or shelves, leading to full-fledged infestation.
- Power or mechanical issues
Mold can grow in your fridge if it remains unplugged for prolonged periods. Sometimes, mold grows even after removing all rotting food or thoroughly cleaning the inside. Such concerns might arise due to a mechanical issue, requiring an appliance expert to check the fridge and determine whether it is working properly or not.
Can Fridge Mold Hurt Your Health?
Regardless of the location, mold in a home can make you sick. If you or any other family member comes into contact with mold, they can develop allergic reactions. Mold exposure can cause symptoms like sinus congestion, skin rashes, teary and itchy eyes, and asthma-like presentation. Some individuals, such as pregnant women, the elderly, and young children, are more prone to developing mold-related illnesses. The reactions are usually more acute and severe if you have a mold allergy.
How Do You Get Rid of Mold in Your Fridge?
Distilled white vinegar kills up to 80 percent of mold species, making it the favorite agent for eradicating fridge mold. First, take out all the removable drawers and shelves and spray them with undiluted white vinegar. Spray all the fridge walls and let the vinegar sit for about 30 minutes. Now thoroughly scrub every aspect of the refrigerator, including the shelves, with a rag, then wipe with a clean, damp cloth. Wash any used rags with hot water and detergent to avoid mold spreading to other home parts.
Scrub the rubber seals around the fridge door with bleach to remove mold patches. Extra deodorizing measures like placing lemon wedges in the fridge can limit mold growth.
Preventing Fridge Mold
Averting mold growth in your fridge is definitely a superior plan as compared to eradicating it using any method. You can prevent fridge mold by consuming meat products soon after purchase instead of leaving them in the refrigerator for an extended duration. If food begins to rot, you should discard it immediately. Be sure to store foods in airtight containers in your fridge since such a move reduces the chances of mold growth. Plus, remember to clean the refrigerator once in a while.