How to Keep Your Office Fridge Clean
The communal office fridge – a modern appliance meant to bring convenience into the workplace. However, this convenience creates a major inconvenience since, as much as everyone loves to use the office refrigerator, not many are willing to clean it.
These 4 tips will help to create a sense of responsibility and organization when it comes to keeping the office refrigerator clean, healthy and safe. Give it to your office cleaning service to implement or Do it Yourself –
Create a Weekly Cleaning Schedule
Everyone who uses the refrigerator needs to be responsible for its cleanliness. A rotating schedule of weekly clean-outs is a fair way to ensure that everyone takes responsibility for keeping the fridge clean.
Assign at least two employees each week to throw out old food and wipe down the fridge. Be sure to alternate the employees each week.
We’ve compiled a list for you to make things easy, you can keep reading below or go straight to the OFFICE FRIDGE CLEANING CHECKLIST
Do a Regular Toss-Out
When you create the cleaning schedule, choose a specific day (preferably Friday) that cleaning will be done. Implement a policy that, at the end of that day, any leftover food will be thrown out.
Send out a reminder to all employees to have their food items and containers removed by that time.
Those cleaning the fridge need to scrutinize its contents and decide whether or not to keep or toss leftover food and containers. Here is a handy guide:
- Check anything still in its original packaging for an expiration date. Discard anything that is expired.
- Toss out all leftovers.
- Throw out rotten or moldy food items.
Provide Adequate Cleaning Supplies and Instructions
If you want employees to clean out the fridge properly, make sure you have the proper cleaning supplies on hand, as well as clear instructions on how to effectively clean the fridge.
Regular dish soap, or other food-safe cleaning products, are recommended for cleaning surfaces that may come into contact with food. Never use harsh cleaning products such as detergent and bleach.
A cloth or sponge is adequate for cleaning the inside of the fridge. Paper towel may be used for a final wipe and a baking soda pasta can help with stubborn spills.
With these few supplies, cleaning the fridge is an easy process:
- Remove everything from the fridge, including shelves and drawers.
- Using warm, soapy water and a cloth or sponge, wipe down the interior of the refrigerator. Dry with paper towel.
- Wash the shelves and drawers and dry.
Replace shelves and drawers as well as any food items being kept. Wipe down any condiments that may be sticky from leaks and spills.
- Use the cloth and warm water to wipe down the exterior of the fridge.
Proactively Organize the Contents
If you establish an organizational system for the fridge, you may be able to avoid issues down the road such as lost leftovers and misplaced condiments.
Designate the door of the fridge for condiments only or any other food product that has a long refrigerator life. If there are any communal condiments (those shared by the whole office), be sure to label them as such.
Depending on how many employees share the fridge, you may want to assign baskets to each individual labeled with their name. This will help avoid confusion over who owns what and also place accountability on those who may not take the responsibility to clean out their own food.
Otherwise, leave a roll of masking tape and pen near the fridge so employees can label their food items.
A Clean Fridge is a Healthy Fridge
Maintaining a clean office refrigerator may seem a bit like workplace politics, but having a dirty fridge may affect the health of your employees – especially since it is a shared area that has a high potential for developing bacteria and mold.
A quick weekly clean out is sufficient in making sure foods aren’t given the opportunity to create potential health hazards in the workplace.
Use the office Fridge cleaning checklist below for detailed instructions on how to clean the office fridge out. Then print out the Office Fridge Rules so your co-workers can help you maintain cleanliness. These rules will also make it easier for your cleaner to do a better job. Be sure to check out our article to find out how much office cleaning costs if you are looking to hire a cleaner for your office.