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How to Defrost a Freezer

Over time a thick layer of ice can build up on the inside of freezers. This reduces the efficiency of the appliance, adds to your electricity bill and also makes it tricky to get things in and out. Here is how to defrost a freezer as quickly and painlessly as possible.

1. Switch off the freezer. Unplug the freezer from the power supply.

2. Empty the freezer. Remove all the food from the freezer. To prevent it from thawing, wrap it in and place it in a cool bag. Store this in the coldest area of your house.

3. Remove any drawers as you go.

4. Take out the ice cube trays.

5. Prevent a puddle. Put old newspapers around the base of the freezer, this will soak up the water as the ice melts. Old newspapers are ideal for this job as they can slide under the freezer and are extremely absorbent.

6. Facilitate the thaw.Fill a bowl with Boil Water and place it by the freezer.

7. Dip a cloth in the hot water and dab it onto the ice covered shelves. This accelerates the melting process.

8. Run the hot cloth along the top seal of the freezer door, this area often traps food which has fallen down from the fridge.

9. Wash the removables.Take the drawers to the sink. Rinse with hot water to melt any remaining ice. Fill the sink with hot water and squirt in a little washing up detergent. Use a household sponge to wash the drawers one at a time.

10. Wash the ice cube trays too. Then rinse everything and leave to dry.

11. Check the progress. After 15 to 20 minutes return to the freezer. Knock out any lumps of ice onto the newspaper. Roll up the now soggy newspaper sheets and discard, then lay out a dry layer.

12. Pour another bowl of just boiled water. Dab the hot water over any areas which are still very icy. Refill the bowl with hot water and place it on a shelf under the areas with most ice. The warm steam will rise and defrost this stubborn layer.

13. Leave the freezer until it has completely defrosted; this could take a couple of hours.

14. Clean the freezer. Fill a bowl with hot water.

15. Squirt in a little detergent. Dip in a cloth and wipe down the inside of the freezer.

16. Don't forget the seal as this is where food will often get trapped. Not only is it unhygienic, but also prevents the door from closing properly.

17. Use a metal scourer to clean it thoroughly all the way around.

18. To rinse, spray the inside of the freezer with water.

19. Dry off with kitchen towel.

20. Replace the items that were removed. Your freezer will now look as good as new. Put the drawers back in. Unwrap the food and place back in the freezer. Close the door and finally switch the appliance back on.

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