Turning your fridge off at night might seem like a good way to conserve energy, but is it really?
We’re brought up thinking if you’re not using something, turn it off or unplug it to save electricity. Now, with stricter rules and regulations on energy in Canada, you’re probably taking that to heart and looking for ways to conserve energy and keep that hydro bill down.
Is it the same idea with your appliances? It isn’t! Keep reading to learn other energy saving strategies for your fridge from our appliance experts in Calgary!
Turning Your Fridge Off – Smart or Not?
You don’t use your fridge at night, so why not turn it off? Well, this actually isn’t as energy-effective as you might think. It is not recommend that you turn off your fridge unless you are defrosting or repairing it.
Turning your fridge off over night can cause food to spoil, even if the door remains closed. When you turn it back on in the morning it will have to work even harder to cool your fridge down again to the appropriate temperature; this will use more energy than if it was left on all night at a consistent temperature.
The fluctuating temperatures are another way your food can spoil; your food should be kept at a consistent temperature to ensure it stays fresh longer. Plus, if your fridge is off, how are you going to enjoy those late night snacks?
When Should You Turn Your Fridge Off?
As we mentioned before, the only times you should turn off your fridge is while it is being repaired or while you are defrosting it. If you are going on vacation for a long period of time, for example over a month, it would be better option to unplug your fridge so you aren’t wasting energy and generating expensive monthly bills with an appliance you’re not there to use.If you’re only going away for a week or so you can leave your fridge on. Make sure that you remove all contents before leaving to make sure nothing rots in your fridge while you are away. Also, when you return give your fridge time to cool itself back down before refilling it.
Energy Efficient Tips for Your Fridge
While turning off your fridge at night isn’t a great way to save energy, there are a couple of things you can do to be make your fridge more energy-efficient. Here are a few easy ways:
- Don’t put hot food in the fridge, instead let it cool first. When you place hot items in your fridge the unit has to work harder to cool them down and regulate the appropriate air flow, which uses more energy.
- Keep your fridge door closed as much as possible. Also, check to make sure that the door is tightly sealed to keep the cold air in.You can test the seals by placing a piece of paper in between them and try to pull it out; if you can easily pull the paper free, then you need to make adjustments which will require either buying a new seal, or tightening the door. If the paper resists, then your seals are fine.
- Be sure to defrost your fridge and freezer regularly. If you let frost build up too much, the fridge will have to work harder to keep your food cold. Try not to let the frost build up more than a quarter of an inch; any thicker and your fridge will decrease energy efficiency.
- Keep your fridge at the minimum temperature to keep food cold. 35 – 38 degrees Fahrenheit is recommended for keeping energy consumption down, but still keeping food cold enough not to go bad.
- Make sure all of your food is sealed up in containers, and cover all liquids. Food that is not covered up can actually release moisture in the fridge and make the compressor work harder.
Remember to keep your refrigerator regularly maintained, and get it repaired as soon as you start to notice problems. A damaged appliance won’t work as well, which means it’s going to take up more energy to run itself. Do your fridge and yourself a favour and don’t wait to get your fridge repaired.