Dirt commercial fridge in need of cleaning

Break Room Fridge Cleaning for Less Mess.

Break Room Fridge Cleaning for Less Mess

We’d like to extend a hand and help out with a common office conundrum: cleaning the breakroom fridge. You’ve seen it before- the busy break room with the fridge that’s packed with mysterious lunch bags both old and new.  Everything is haphazardly shoved inside.  Many items have no names or dates.  Some items are bloated.  Some are growing soft and fuzzy.   It’s clearly time to address this problem, but is there an easy way?  After all, this herculean cleaning task is not for the faint of heart.  Here now are our break room fridge cleaning tips for less mess.  

Fridge Cleaning begins with Communication.

Don’t open that fridge door just yet.  The first step it is to pick a date and then send out a memo announcing the upcoming deep clean.   Just a simple heads up can inspire people to toss it out or take it home.  This is a giant step in the right direction.  

Determine Who Will Clean the Fridge.

Fridge cleaning can be a time-consuming and harrowing experience.   Talk with your janitorial vendor as they likely do this kind of thing all the time.  For an extra charge, they’ll perform the cleaning off-hours, when the kitchen is quiet.

Decide How often the Fridge will be Cleaned

A fridge is much easier to clean if the task is done on a routine basis.  Deep cleaning on a regular schedule such as monthly or quarterly will eventually familiarize your staff with the process. They’ll come to expect it, and  eventually more people will get on board and follow up on taking things home.  You can even create a cute schedule, laminate it, and post it on the fridge door.  But don’t forget to include a sarcastic, humorous meme for good measure!

Office space did you get the memo?
A classic. Why not?!

Be Clear with the Fridge Cleaning Plan

There are a few ways in which fridge cleaning can be done, but we generally recommend picking a day for staff to take things home. We recommend Friday as its the end of the day and work week; they’re more likely to grab that brown bag before hitting the exit door.  

Rule #1: the cleaners cannot be judge and jury on what is/isn’t still ‘good’.  

 If employees don’t take food items home ahead of the deep clean, they run the risk having them tossed out.  Perishable and loose food items that have clearly been forgotten about and abandoned are thrown out.  

Rule #2:  Food containers and bags will not be opened and examined.  

In commercial cleaning, the janitors will not open every thermos, pail, bag, etc to peer inside. Instead, these things are temporarily removed and placed aside.  The fridge is emptied in it’s entirety prior to the cleaning.

Woman cleaning out a break room fridge.

Rule #3: If it doesn’t pass the obvious eye or nose test, then it will likely be thrown out.  

Malodors that make the eyes wince are a red flag and are investigated.  Items that have visible mold are tossed.  The dates on certain items such as coffee creamer and yogurt are briefly checked.  Long expired items are thrown out.  Condiments get their expiration dates checked.

Once completely empty, the cleaning process begins.  The entire fridge is wiped down.  Drawers and shelves are pulled out, scrubbed and rinsed.  The fridge walls, door trim, etc. is all detail cleaned. 

Once the fridge is bright, shiny and white again, all items are returned.  Yay!   A periodic deep cleaning of the fridge will go a long way in showing your employees that you care about workplace health and cleanliness.  Questions? Contact a member of our team today!