How Often Should You Clean Your Refrigerator Coils

clean fridge full with vegetables

Did you know that refrigerator coils cool and condense the refrigerant? If they become dirty and dusty, they can’t release heat effectively. And that makes the compressor work harder. They aren’t enclosed in a casing so can quickly get a build-up of debris. Making your energy costs higher and causing your fridge to age more quickly.

So how often should you clean your refrigerator coils? Find out more…

Fridge Facts

Your fridge works by cycling refrigerant through two sets of coils. Cooling is done by the evaporator coils. And accumulated heat is released by the condenser coils.

Frost-free fridges use a heater to melt any ice on the evaporator coils. A timer automatically turns the heater on and off. The evaporator fan will distribute cold air through the freezer.

Keeping the coils clear of ice in other types of fridges means you have to defrost them manually. You can choose the defrost mode setting in cycle defrost fridges. Or you can turn your fridge off to let all the ice melt.

Where Are the Condenser Coils Found?

Refrigerator condenser coil location depends on your fridge type. You may find them on the back of the fridge, or at the base of the fridge.

They’re metal tubes wound in a u-shaped grid pattern. Wearing a dust mask and gloves, and using a torch will make the cleaning job easier.

The cleaning operation should be carried out at least once a year. And if you have pets more frequently. Look at how to clean refrigerator coils in the different settings here:



  • Move the fridge away from the wall after unplugging it from the power source
  • Don’t be concerned that food will spoil as the cleaning process takes less than 15 minutes
  • Use a specially designed coil brush tapered to remove remnants and vacuum with a nozzle attachment to get rid of any dirt and dust
  • Carefully push fridge back into place avoiding any wiring
  • Plug back into power socket


  • Switch off power at the mains
  • Open the toe-grill panel
  • Locate the condenser at the back of the fridge behind the compressor
  • Carefully reach through the sharp edges with a soft brush to loosen any dirt on the fins
  • Use the hose accessory of your vacuum, and coil brush to remove any dirt remnants working it back and forwards and gently twisting
  • Reconnect the power when you’re done

Maintenance Tips

You can prevent many fridge breakdown issues by spending a little time to care for your appliance. As well as cleaning the coils you should regularly:

  • Check the temperature control setting – this’ll ensure your fridge runs more efficiently
  • Clear the freezer vents – keep the air returns free of packaging, ties, and crumbs
  • Wipe down door seals – use a sponge and warm water without detergent to keep a tight- fitting closure that prevents cool air from escaping
  • Clean the condenser fan – found next to the compressor on fridges with coils underneath the appliance – dust and dirt can get sucked in and stop the fan cooling the coils
  • Keep drip openings clear – these let melted water flow down a channel from where it can evaporate – if these get blocked your fridge may leak

Refrigerator Coil Concerns

Get a same day appointment when you need a fridge repair quickly. You’ll be able to request a quote upfront. And you won’t be charged a call-out fee. Your fridge coil repair will be carried out by an experienced technician. With all the skills and the tools needed to get the job done. And you’ll be provided with a quality repair guarantee that lasts for six months.

How Often Should You Clean Your Refrigerator Coils was last modified: January 12th, 2024 by Mix Repairs