Green Architecture, and Smart Design


Maximize Efficiency: Guide to Cleaning Refrigerator Coils


The refrigerator is a workhorse in our kitchens, tirelessly keeping our food fresh. However, to maintain its efficiency, it’s crucial to pay attention to its often-overlooked component – the refrigerator coils. In this guide, we’ll explore the importance of cleaning refrigerator coils and provide step-by-step instructions for this simple yet impactful maintenance task.

Understanding Refrigerator Coils

Refrigerator coils, located either on the back or beneath the appliance, play a vital role in the cooling process. Over time, these coils can accumulate dust, dirt, and pet hair, reducing the refrigerator’s efficiency and forcing it to work harder to maintain cool temperatures. Cleaning the coils is essential for optimal performance and energy savings.

Gathering Necessary Tools

Cleaning refrigerator coils requires minimal tools. You’ll need a vacuum cleaner with a brush attachment, a coil brush, and a damp cloth. Before starting, unplug the refrigerator to ensure safety. If the coils are located at the back, you may need to pull the refrigerator away from the wall for better access.

Locating and Accessing the Coils

Refrigerators may have coils on the back or underneath, accessible from the front or rear. Consult your refrigerator’s manual to determine the location of the coils. Once located, use a screwdriver if needed to remove the cover panel, exposing the coils. Be cautious not to damage any components during this process.

Removing Surface Debris

Start by using the coil brush to gently loosen and remove surface debris. This step is crucial, as it allows for easier vacuuming in the next stage. Pay close attention to corners and crevices where dust tends to accumulate. A thorough removal of surface debris sets the stage for a more effective cleaning process.

Vacuuming the Coils

With the surface debris cleared, use the vacuum cleaner with a brush attachment to effectively remove dirt and dust from the coils. Move the brush along the coils carefully, ensuring you reach all areas. The vacuum will suck up the dislodged debris, leaving the coils clean and improving the refrigerator’s overall efficiency.

Cleaning Additional Components

While you have the refrigerator pulled away or the coils exposed, take the opportunity to clean other components. Wipe down the fan blades, compressor, and any accessible vents. This comprehensive cleaning not only enhances performance but also contributes to a cleaner and healthier appliance.

Checking and Reassembling

Before considering the job complete, perform a visual check to ensure all components are in place and there are no loose wires or damaged parts. Once satisfied, carefully reassemble any cover panels or housing that you removed earlier. Ensure that the refrigerator is safely plugged back in, and it’s ready to resume its efficient cooling duties.

Benefits of Clean Coils

Regularly cleaning refrigerator coils offers several benefits. It improves energy efficiency, reducing electricity consumption and lowering energy bills. Additionally, a clean and well-maintained refrigerator operates more effectively, extending the appliance’s lifespan and minimizing the risk of malfunctions.

Frequency of Cleaning

The frequency of cleaning refrigerator coils depends on factors such as your home’s dust levels and the presence of pets. As a general rule, aim to clean the coils at least twice a year. If you have shedding pets or live in a dusty environment, more frequent cleaning, perhaps every three to four months, may be advisable.


Cleaning refrigerator coils is a simple yet impactful maintenance task that can significantly enhance the performance and efficiency of your appliance. By following these easy steps, you contribute to energy savings, prolong the life of your refrigerator, and ensure a more hygienic kitchen environment. For more home maintenance tips, visit