How to Defrost a Freezer Before Moving


When the time for moving comes, at one point, you’ll have to pack the kitchen and move the appliances. One place to start can be the fridge freezer. Moving can be a tough and heavy job. Not only because you’ll need help to move it, but fridges are actually very delicate and dealing with them incorrectly can cause a lot of damage. Before all of that, you will have to prepare the fridge freezer for moving. You can start by defrosting the freezer. It's generally not difficult, but it can take some time as you will have to wait for the ice to melt. So how to defrost a freezer?

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How to Defrost a Freezer

The most efficient and effective way to defrost a freezer is to leave the door open, letting the temperature inside your freezer rise and letting the ice melt naturally. 

Start by turning the freezer off. Unplug it before you start defrosting it as a safety precaution for you and your appliance. The freezer is always better to be frost-free, no matter how short your relocation is, as the ice will melt and make а mess in the moving van.

Remove any frozen food from the freezer. If the move is a short distance away, you can put it in a cooler bag to keep it from melting. Remember that when frozen food has already melted, it is better not to be refrozen as there is a higher chance of food poisoning.

Place old newspapers around the freezer to soak up the water from the melting ice. Use dry towels and place them on the lower levels to absorb more moisture. Wet towels should be squeezed and replaced with new ones as you change them from time to time.

Any shelves and drawers should be removed and cleaned. Don't force them out if they are stuck because of the ice. As the ice melts for some time, you’ll be able to take them out without a problem.

If your freezer has a drainage hose, use it to dispose of the melted water. You can help the drainage by lifting the front slightly to direct the water to drain more easily.

How Long Does it Take to Defrost a Freezer?

Some factors can influence the time required to defrost a freezer. It can take between two hours and a full day. Naturally, in the summertime, the ice will melt a lot quicker than it would in winter. Mostly it depends on the amount of frost that has built up in the freezer. A thick layer of ice buildup can be formed if it hasn't been defrosted in some time. In this case, be prepared for a long wait.

Choose a day that you’ll be able to start defrosting the freezer. It’s recommended not to do it the day before the move, as you can’t be sure how long it will take for the freezer to defrost. 

How to Defrost a Freezer Quickly

If you don’t have much time, there are some methods to defrost the freezer quicker:

  • Use clothes that have been soaked in hot water and press them against the ice. 
  • You can also try to fill pots and pans with boiling water. Place them inside the freezer on top of some towels.
  • Another way you can try is to open the freezer door and place a fan near it, directing the airflow into the freezer.

Some methods floating around the internet, like using the warm air from the hairdryer or hacking the ice with a knife, are best left ignored. Those can not only lead to damaging your freezer but are also potential health hazards.


After you have defrosted the freezer, you can use the opportunity to clean it. Ensure it has been fully dried and aired, so there is no musty smell after that.

Moving any of the appliances in the kitchen can be a tedious task. Doing it yourself is risky and can lead to a lot of hassle. We recommend calling domestic removals services. This way, the process will go fast and stress-free, and you will avoid any potential injuries.

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