Paint Smell in a Refrigerator

Paint has an unmistakable smell that is hazardous if inhaled. Paint fumes cause breathing problems and also damage the lungs in large doses. As a result, paint fumes should be eliminated when discovered. They linger more in confined spaces, so fridges and similar items are particularly vulnerable if they've been exposed to paint recently. Removing the paint smell from a refrigerator requires some diligence.

Ventilation

Air flow is very important in eliminating paint fumes since it replaces the stale, paint-filled air in the fridge with clean air from the outside. The paint smell then dissipates as the cycle continues. Empty the fridge, turn it off and leave it open for at least several hours. The resulting ventilation may not eliminate the paint fumes entirely but it will greatly reduce them.

Fans

Fans accelerate the ventilation process by increasing the speed of the airflow. Leave the fridge door open and place one or two fans in front of it. Crank them to full power and the force of the resulting air circulation removes the paint smell more efficiently than leaving the refrigerator to air by itself. This is not likely to completely get rid of the paint fumes, depending on how strong the smell was the begin with, but it serves as a starting point.

White Vinegar

White vinegar is a natural deodorizer and is therefore useful in removing multiple odors, including paint. While it is normally diluted with water when used as a cleaning agent, spray it undiluted into the fridge for best results. Allow the vinegar to sit for several minutes before wiping down the fridge doors and walls with a damp rag. Another option is to boil vinegar in a pot and then place the pot onto a rack in the fridge. The evaporating vinegar assimilates with the air in the fridge more rapidly and helps reduce the amount of paint fumes present.

Baking Soda

Baking soda is commonly left in fridges and freezers because of its odor-absorbing properties. When used with the other methods described, it is very useful in reducing or eliminating paint smells as well. Sprinkle some baking soda into the fridge onto areas that are particularly affected by the odor and then leave an open box in each major compartment of the fridge once it is operational again. This helps both remover any remaining paint odor and prevent new odors from forming.