Refresh Your Mildewy Deep Freezer For This Seasons Harvest

How To Clean & Remove Mildew From Your Deep Freezer

Summer is almost here and we're getting ready to process our meat chickens and harvest our freshly grown garden vegetables. In anticipation of the coming harvest, we're making sure our storage solutions are in tip-top shape. When we opened our newest deep freezer to make sure it worked, we discovered that it was covered in mildew and it had a very strong unpleasant odor. We didn't want to contaminate our food, so we got to work removing the mildew, odor, and gave her a good old scrub down.

Here are the results (I didn't dare take a before picture because of the intense smell):

I'm happy to report that there is no longer an unpleasant odor and the freezer is now running wonderfully!

Before you get started, I would recommend checking with the manufacturer of your deep freezer on how to best remove mildew from your freezer without voiding your warranty. The method I used is a bit harsh, but I wanted a very clean freezer and its well beyond its warranty anyway. You will want to unplug the deep freezer for a few hours before you begin and make sure the area is well ventilated.

Supply List:

  • Facemask
  • Rubber Gloves
  • Bucket
  • Distilled White Vinegar
  • Empty Spray Bottle
  • Small Funnel
  • Paper Towel Roll
  • Old Tooth Brush
  • Cleaning Rag
  • Tea Tree Oil
  • Baking Soda
  • Trash Bag

  1. Put the gloves and facemask on and use the funnel to fill the empty spray bottle with vinegar. If you're nervous about it being too strong you can always dilute it with 50% water. I personally went full strength for this project. Generously spray every inch of the freezer with the vinegar and let it sit for at least 30 min. After the 30 minutes is up, wipe up all the vinegar and mildew with paper towels and spray more vinegar on as needed to help remove it all. I used an old toothbrush to make sure I got in-between all the rubber seals and cracks.
  2. Combine 1 gallon of warm water, 5 tablespoons of baking soda, and 10 drops of tea tree oil in your bucket. Use the cleaning rag to apply the solution to the deep freezer, scrubbing where necessary.
  3. Dry the freezer with paper towels and let it air out overnight in a well-ventilated area before plugging it back in.
  4. Immediately discard the bag full of mildewy paper towels. I recommend putting it in your outside trash can.
  5. Enjoy your bountiful harvest all year long!

How are you preparing for the coming harvest? Let me know in the comments and don't forget to subscribe for more great homesteading content.

Thanks for visiting!


  1. Baking soda and teatree oil was to remove the musty odor, and did you let it sit for a few min.?

    1. The only thing that needs to sit for thirty minutes is the vinegar. If you want to leave the baking soda mixture on for a few minutes it won't do any harm but I wiped it right off.
      Thanks for the visit!


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