How to Defrost a Freezer?


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Your freezer is one of the kitchen necessities that you don’t realise how much you need until you no longer have it. It keeps your food fresh and lasting for a long time. It can also safely store your food for as long as you need to – so stocking up is easy!

The problem is that frost builds up on the inside of a freezer, and this slows it down and makes it less efficient. Newer freezers often come with automatic defrosting to stop the build up of frost, but not everyone is fortunate enough to have this feature in their freezers. It’s important that you learn how to defrost a chest freezer so that your food stays as fresh as possible for as long as possible.

Let’s take a look at everything you need to know about trying to defrost a freezer fast.

How Often Should You Defrost Your Freezer?

Whether you are looking for the best way to defrost a chest freezer or you have a fridge freezer you need to defrost, you need to defrost it at least once a year. The layers of ice shouldn’t be any more than a quarter-inch thick. Of course, you should always unplug the freezer before the defrosting process begins, as you need to do it as safely as possible. Taking out all the food and lining the floor with an old shower curtain and towels will also be a smart decision as you can protect the floor from melting ice and sliding over.

Different Ways To Defrost Your Freezer


The very first way that you can defrost your freezer is to allow the ice to melt on its own. Unplug it, open the door and this will enable the ice to melt. This is the simplest way to defrost freezer fast, but it’s an effective way to do it. It also takes the longest to defrost. Don’t forget to lay the towels down; it’s going to get a little messy!

Hair Dryer Method

Despite popular belief, this is one of the quickest ways to defrost a freezer, just be safe with it! You need to stay clear of any standing water and keep the hair dryer away from the water. Electricity and water do not mix, and the last thing that you need is to end up hurting yourself. Keep patience while you are defrosting your freezer – using a hair dryer is not something you should rush. The end of the hairdryer has coils that should not be around any water, and it could damage the plastic inside the freezer, too.

Use A Fan

Fans can circulate the warmer air from your home in your freezer, so it will only really work if your house is warm. If you have a deep freezer in your garage, this is a handy method as all you need to do is set up the fan in front of the open freezer door. The airflow through the garage on a sunny day is going to help the ice to melt much faster.

Add Bowls Of Boiling Water

Adding bowls of boiling water to the freezer is going to help to remove ice quickly. The steam from the boiling water and the heat from the pans will help your freezer to quickly defrost, especially when you shut them in the freezer. The steam will loosen the ice so that it naturally melts away from the walls, and you can then use a plastic scraper to remove it the rest of the way. Before you set your pans of hot water on the shelves, lay a towel underneath so that you don’t accidentally damage the shelves. The other thing to keep in mind is that you’ll need to replace the water every ten minutes; otherwise, the water will be cold. Remove the ice as you replace the pans.

Use Heated Metal Spatulas

A quick – but possibly dangerous – defrosting method is using a hot metal spatula. Wearing oven gloves for protection, you can hold the spatula over a flame to heat it and then press the spatula against the ice to melt it and remove it.

It’s not the best method out there are you could damage the freezer or the unit, but as it does melt the ice fast, it’s worth a mention as a method of moving the ice.

Hot Cloths

Similarly to the hot pan method, you could soak some cloths in boiling water and wipe quickly around the iced walls of your chest freezer. The frost should melt quickly, and it works best for thin layers of ice on the freezer. It’s suitable for the smaller ice, as larger chunks wouldn’t melt fast and instead, you’ll end up with cold cloths!


The most popular method of defrosting a freezer is to scrape the ice off. There are traditional ice scrapers you can use, along with plastic or wooden spatulas to get rid of the ice. They’re safer as you won’t accidentally puncture the gas lines or damage the inner walls of the freezer. Many people choose to use this method in conjunction with others like hairdryers and boiling water steam.

Wet/Dry Vacuum

You can use a wet/dry vacuum to do the best job for defrosting a chest freezer quickly. Start at the top with the blow setting and move down. It takes less time and less risk of electrocution.

When you have defrosted the freezer, clean the whole freezer with a tablespoon of baking soda in hot water. Dip and squeeze a sponge and wipe it all down, then follow up with a dry towel. Plug it back in and close the door, then you can put all the food in again. Defrosting your freezer shouldn’t take more than 30-45 minutes, but you should try to do this once or twice a year to ensure that the build-up isn’t too bad.

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