24 Feb


Cassidy's Moving and Storage

How to Pack and Move Your Refrigerator

When it comes to moving appliances, your refrigerator is a special case, as there are a lot more steps you need to do to get it ready, and you have to start the process early so you don’t waste food.

Like other appliances, you may need professional help to disconnect it. If your fridge has an ice maker, that means there’s a water supply connected to your plumbing. We recommend calling a professional to have it disconnected and the water supply shut off before you start. Don’t forget to arrange for reconnection at your new home, and make sure you have the right kind of hookup.

If your fridge is coming along to your new home, here is a step by step guide to help make it all go smoothly.

1. Plan To Eat Everything Up

Plan grocery shopping and meals leading up to your big day, and make sure you buy so that you don’t end up throwing out good food. If needed, making arrangements with a neighbour to finish off some items.

It may be helpful to live on take out for the last few days.

2. Avoid a Meltdown

Defrost your refrigerator a few days before you move – if you don’t, you’ll risk making a mess when it defrosts in transit. It may be that the first person to open the freezer door will get a tsunami as a reward.

While you’re defrosting, it’s a good time to unplug the refrigerator entirely. Move your fridge away from the wall carefully (here’s how to do it without scratching your floors) to access the plug. While you’re back there, vacuum up any dust that’s collected on the evaporator coils, as it reduces your furnace’s efficiency. Wipe down the sides of the fridge as well.

As mentioned above, if your fridge has a cold water dispenser or ice maker, have a professional shut off its water supply and disconnect any hoses. Allow the hoses to dry out and pack them separately. Ensure that the water reservoir is empty.

Allow the freezer to defrost. You can help speed up the process by removing chunks of ice once they’ve softened up.

Most modern frost-free fridges have an evaporator pan at the bottom. Empty it, give it a clean and allow it to dry.

3. Fresh and Clean

Make the time to clean the fridge thoroughly before you move. It’s so much better to start fresh with a clean fridge in your new home. Do you really want to see that dried up juice spill when you’re setting up in your new kitchen?

Clean the interior of your fridge entirely, using soapy water or other cleaners recommended in your owner’s manual.

Once you’re done, pack up all the removable bins and racks separately – you don’t want them moving around on you in transit.

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4. Protect the Power Supply

Before you move the fridge back, coil the power cord and tape it safely out of the way to make sure it doesn’t get mangled.

5. Dry It Out

Let your fridge stand with the doors open for at least 48 hours. This will allow it to thoroughly dry out. If you’re going to be storing your refrigerator for any length of time let it dry for a week. It may sound silly, but doing this will help prevent mould and mildew from building up. Another tip for long term storage is to use a spacer to keep the door open just about an inch: this will allow air to circulate.

To keep the door from flopping around, use a bungee cord or strap to keep it closed in transit.

6. Protect the Look

Does your fridge have a special finish that won’t look better with scratches? To keep your fridge looking perfect, especially if it’s stainless steel that will show everything, consider wrapping it with special protective layer. A professional moving pad is your best bet. If your moving the fridge yourself, use blanket and heavy plastic to help it arrive looking as good as it did when you left. Test it out to make sure it won’t come off once people start moving the fridge.

7. Protect the Working Parts

If your fridge has an ice maker or other special electronics that need to be protected during the move, consult the manual to see if there are special procedures or equipment needed for this. In particular, it may have a compressor motor that needs to be bolted down.

8. Should You Leave Your Fridge Behind?

If you’re moving overseas, make the time to research what the power requirements are. If their home electrical voltage is 220 instead of 110, you may want to sell yours and buy a new one when you arrive – plus your other electrical equipment as well. For important items, special adaptors can be purchased if you really want to take it with you.

Need More Help Organizing? Get Our Ultimate Moving Checklist

As always, start your planning for your move well in advance to keep things stress-free.

We’ve collected the best tips from our moving experts and from great sources all over the internet – all in one checklist. You can download your own copy for FREE. It’s completely editable so you can remove things that don’t apply to you.

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