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Baking Soda in Fridge

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I have some baking soda in my fridge to help eliminate odors in there. I know you are supposed to stir it around every once in while but exactly how long will 1 small box of baking soda deodorize? After it will no longer deodorize, is it still good to use for other things, or should it just be thrown out all together?
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Three months or so. That is what I've read. But then again, if they say three months, and they (Arm and Hammer) are selling the stuff, it may actually last for six!

After it has completed its tour of duty in your fridge, you can use it with a vinegar chaser for your kitchen drain.
Oh great, thanks for the top BlackPaladin!
Does it need to be a certain type of vinegar?
Most people use white distilled. It would be a waste to use apple cider, and definitely a waste to use balsamic. Chemically the same things would go on, so use the cheapest stuff.
Yep, just grab a bottle of the cheapest stuff. It is going down your drain not into your food, afterall!
The nice thing about using vinegar for cleaning is it won't hurt your septic system. White vinegar does a great job of cleaning windows too!
I love Windex Vinegar Formula for Multi Purpose use.
There was a food show on not long ago. They did tests and baking soda is more of a marketing gimmick was their finding. The thing that works for fridge odors is charcoal, the kind for aquariums. It isn't cheap, but it works. I have heard that charcoal briquets work, too, but I don't know for sure. If so, I would not use the ones that have lighter fluid already soaked into them for food storage.
If you use the windex vinegar formula, next time you run out, make your own...just do a half and half white vinegar and water in the spray bottle and you'll never have to buy expensive cleaners again.
The upside= cost savings and versatility.
The downside= for about an hour, your house will smell like a salad. You also have to wipe a bit harder to get rid of streaks.
It's worth it to me.
I make my homemade Windex with ammonia, water, alcohol, and a drop of dish soap. It seems far better than the store bought kind. I get alcohol on sale cheap, paid 29 cents a pint for it. I have not tried the one with vinegar, but it should work well since it cuts grease.
Contrary to the TV shows comments I know for a fact that baking soda does work. I have used it in my refrigerator to control odors for years.
I have talked to people who have had thier refrigerator smoked damaged in a fire. Washing it inside and outside with vinegar then baking soda helps to rid the refrigerator of the smoke smell.
I have also talked with other people whose refrigerator was taken out of service from weather related incidents or power outages. Some were not able to remove the food from their refrigerator and the food spoiled.
It was cleaned with vinegar and baking soda enough to reuse. Some times the unit had to set for 3-4 days with two or three boxes of baking soda to absorb the odors. Some people changed the boxes every other day.
Activated charcoal will work too. it is proceesed to have a porous area to absorb odors and chemicals.
BBQ charcoal will not work as it has a different charcoal formula. It also has different types of wood to provide a smoke flavor along with some petroleum distialtes to help with ignition and paraffin for the same reason and also as binder.
Char is the charred wood and coal is just that coal.
It is the invention by Thomas Edison with help from Henry Ford.
They were car camping enthuisiasts. they wanted a reliable source of fuel for thier campfires so they came up with charcoal. Soon they found a market for it and the comapny is now kn0own as Kingsford Charcoal.
the life of baking soda is dependent upon who much odor it has been expoased to. A little odor it will oast 3 - 4 months. A lot of odor it will last about 3 - 4 weeks.
Take the box out and stir it about once a week. If it smells it is time to repalce it regardless of any timeline
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Another weird thing that works. Toothpaste ! My daughter got a used freezer that smelled like fish. Her FIL told her to try using toothpaste to scrub it with . It worked when the baking soda didn't. I had forgotten about that.
It was Ted Allen on Food Detectives that did the charcoal vs. baking soda test.
Here are a couple links.
TV : Food Detectives with Ted Allen : Food Network « Odor absorbers & air fresheners
Chef Suman Roy - Health Desk

I do agree about the charcoal briquets not being the same. My uncle who was a used car salesman said they used an apple under the seats of the cars to get rid of smells. I never tried an apple. I think he cut it in half first. I wouldn't think it would work that well.
As a profeesional cook I have obsereved a number of errors on the Food Detective show. Therfore I do not trust anything they say. I do not watch it anymore.
On shows like this the results are often what the shows producer or sponsor want the results to be. The resiults are often tyied in with ratings too.
As I have stated I have undergone many training sessions in several areas in conjunction with disaster related food handling as a volunteer with the Red Cross.
I was also a professional cook for a number of years in different restaraunts. I was a cook for the Anaheim Marriott for 61/2 years. I was also the food handling and sanitation supervisor there for about 5 years.
I wasn't aware of the toothpaste routine. I did know of the apple,it works better if it is quartered though.
Apple Cider Vinegar works on pourous surfaces like clothes auto rugs and upholstry as well as house furniture. It works well to get rid of urine odor as well.
iIhave it stored for disaster prep. too. something to keep in mind for dogs or cats that have accidents if they can't get out. Might be a more a common event during a disaster incident.
My kids are 34 and 36, when the were babies we used cloth diapers. After the diaperss were put in the washing machine the diaper pail was wahsed with soap and water then cleaned with straight cider vinegar to help get rid of the odors.
Parents today don't know what they are missing. No smell more memorable than opening a dirty diaper pail before dumping them into the washing machine. Guarunteed to slam your nostrils shut and brings tears to your eyes
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I am a trained Food Safety Advisor and Master Food Preserver. I teach through my local University extension office here. I give training classes to new people who want to be trained to do what I do, plus we will start offering some 101 classes and 102 classes to the community on certain food preservation topics. The 101 are infomational lectures. The 102 will be hands on lessons in the kitchen. They cannot take the 102 unless they have taken the lecture part so they understand the science and safety behind it all.
You have children the age of my daughter. Yes, we did the cloth diaper thing, too. At least she never had bad diaper rash, though.
I just got my canner load of potatoes out. All sealed and the liquid did not siphon out. Boy, am I glad ! The potatoes were free, so decided to can them since we could not eat them all before they sprouted. I could have given some away, but want to stock as much food as possible.
Now I have a big bowl of onions to dice and freeze. All this prep stuff wears me out, but I am so thankful to have it. So many folks are going without, so I don't want to complain about having this work to do. Like having money in the bank, only I think the food is worth more nowdays.
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Vinegar is also great for removing scale from your iron or your tea kettle. Just make a mix of vinegar and water and boil it in the kettle and watch the scale disappear.
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