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5 Tips for Cleaning Your Refrigerator Quickly

Work From Top to Bottom

Apply the trickle down theory. Start at the top of the compartment to prevent dirty water or bits of food from dripping or dropping onto surfaces you've already cleaned. Use the all-purpose cleaner of your choice.

The same idea applies to cleaning the exterior. Start with the top of the fridge. This is often the most overlooked, undercleaned space in the kitchen. If this is the case in your home, use hot water and double the strength of your cleanser. Use that toothbrush to clean around the handle (think of how many people put their mitts on it every day). Then, wipe the door and sides with all-purpose cleaner and dry as a finishing touch.

Remember that this theory can also work against you. As the final resting place for spills and other mishaps from above, the lowest regions -- like the space behind crispers and the bottom rack of the door -- are apt to be the dirtiest parts of the refrigerator. It may take some scrubbing to get clean.

On the next page, we close our discussion with the proverbial ounce of prevention.