It is normal to have small amounts of moisture in a freezer. But if you notice a significant increase in moisture buildup, it’s a sign that warm, humid air is getting into your freezer at unusually high levels and causing a condensation problem.
To reduce and prevent moisture from forming in a freezer, minimize the warm, humid air that gets in. To do this, check that the sealing gaskets around the door are in good condition, ensure there’s adequate air circulation, and maintain the right temperature inside the freezer.
Keeping moisture levels low in a freezer boils down to making sure it’s running properly and minimizing the amount of humid air getting in. In the rest of the article, I will explore the changes you can make in your home environment and your freezer to reduce condensation.
1. Don’t Leave the Freezer Door Open
You may have a condensation problem in your freezer because you left the door open for a long time. When you leave your freezer door open, you allow warm, humid air into the freezer. Get into the habit of closing your freezer door immediately after retrieving the food items you need.
You may run into the same problem if you frequently open your freezer. Keep the number of times you open your freezer on any given day to a minimum. When loading a new batch of shopping into the freezer, for instance, it helps to set everything up first and load all the items at once instead of doing it intermittently over a longer period of time.
2. Ensure the Doors Are Properly Sealed
Your freezer has to be sealed to prevent humid air from getting in. Don’t ignore a sealing problem. It could cause the freezer to not be able to maintain the desired freezing temperatures, and you may end up dealing with food spoilage in addition to the condensation problem.
With some DIY skills, you should be able to fix a problem with the sealing gasket without calling a technician.
Reduce the Weight on the Door
Too much weight on the door may prevent the door from closing properly. Consider reducing the weight on the door by removing heavy items such as gallons of milk and things that should be on the shelves instead. Keep prepared foods and leftover food on the shelves.
Clean the Door Seal To Remove Dust and Crumbs
Dust and crumbs present beneath the seal on the door (gasket) may hinder the freezer door from closing well. With a clean cloth, dish detergent, and hot water, scrub the seal and the grooves between the door and the seal.
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You will need to revitalize the seal to counteract the drying effects of washing it with a cleaning solution. To do this, use a soft cloth to wipe a thin coating of petroleum jelly or mineral oil on it.
Replace the Seal if the Door Still Won’t Close Tightly
After cleaning the seal and removing all crumbs and dust, you should do the dollar bill test to check if the seal is faulty. Grab a dollar bill (or any note), open the freezer door, and put the dollar bill against the freezer where the door is supposed to go. Check if there is resistance when pulling the bill after the door is closed.
If there is no resistance, the gasket is faulty. In this case, buy a replacement from your local store or order one online. You can replace it without calling a technician by doing the following:
- Order the correct seal by checking the model number of your freezer.
- Remove the old door seal by pulling it away from the door.
- Tuck the new seal to fit. Start by fitting the corners and work your way to the middle.
Below is a quick video explanation of the above process, including the dollar bill test and how to find the model number.
After fitting the new seal, you can do the dollar bill test again to check if there is any noticeable difference in how tight the door closes.
3. Confirm That the Air Vents Are Not Blocked
Good airflow between the refrigerator and freezer chambers helps maintain the required temperatures. There are air vents in both compartments to facilitate this airflow. Blocked vents hamper airflow and may occasion excessive frost and moisture buildup.
The location of the air vents will vary depending on your freezer model. It should be easy to locate them, though. Once you know where the vents are, move any objects that may be blocking the vents. This may require you to relocate some food items.
The items most likely to block vents are large bagged items. Also, stacking food items too high up or too tightly on a shelf may lead to inadequate airflow. Take note of where the vents are located and arrange your food items accordingly.
4. Maintain Proper Temperature Settings
Does your freezer have anti-sweat settings that are supposed to reduce frosting and moisture buildup? If that’s the case, running the freezer on energy-saver settings may have automatically turned off the anti-sweat capabilities. You might want to check the user manual to see if your freezer has this feature.
If you can’t find the information in the manual, you should turn off the energy-saver settings to test the hypothesis.
Some refrigerators/freezers have dedicated moisture or humidity control features that operate independently of other settings. If this is the case, you will have to manually turn off the feature.
5. Reduce the Humidity of the Room Using a Dehumidifier
It could be the case that you are in an environment so humid that you can’t reduce the moisture inside your freezer until you reduce the moisture outside. You can tell your home has high humidity when:
- You have mildew and mold growing inside the house.
- You feel hot and sweaty when inside the house.
- You get a stuffy nose frequently.
- You often spot condensation on surfaces.
- You feel the air inside the house is moist.
The quickest way to reduce the humidity is to use a dehumidifier. It will help you solve the condensation problem in your freezer and make your home more comfortable.
The standard dehumidifier for residential settings draws as much energy as a computer. You can comfortably run one in your home without worrying about energy consumption. In the absence of a dehumidifier, you can decrease indoor humidity by:
- Fixing leaking taps and pipes around the house
- Venting your clothes dryer to the outside
- Opening doors between rooms in the house to improve air circulation
- Ensuring that your carpet is not absorbing moisture off a damp concrete floor
- Ventilating bathrooms properly
6. Let Food Cool Before You Put It in the Freezer
You should not put hot food in the freezer. Let the food cool for a while because the significant temperature difference will result in condensation. To reduce condensation, you should use sealed moisture-proof containers to store food in the freezer. You want to space out the containers to allow good air circulation.
You can expect some condensation in a freezer, especially in humid weather. However, if you notice unusually high condensation levels, you can resolve it by preventing warm, moist air from getting into the freezer. Other remedies include:
- Turning off energy-saver settings
- Improving air circulation inside the freezer
- Not putting food items in the freezer while still hot