For most people, the refrigerator is one of the most indispensable appliances of all. Yet that's no reason to let your fridge drive up your electricity bill unnecessarily. If you would like to learn more about home appliance maintenance, read on. This article will teach you about three ways your fridge may costing you more than it should.
Refrigerator is too empty.
Believe it or not, empty fridges end up working harder than full fridges. Think about it: each time you open the door, a volume of cold air escapes, replaced by the same volume of warm air. The emptier the fridge, the greater the amount of air transferred in this fashion. That means your fridge has to work harder to keep itself cool. Therefore, taking up some of that extra space will have a beneficial effect. If nothing else, fill your fridge--and your freezer--with plastic bottles filled with water.
Condenser coils are dusty.
Here's how a refrigerator works, in a nutshell: liquid refrigerant absorbs heat from the air inside the fridge, thus lowering them temperature. A condenser--essentially a small electrical motor--then kicks on to cool the refrigerant back down so that the cycle can be repeated. In the process, the condenser itself generates a significant amount of heat.
The condenser is attached to a series of coils whose job it is to displace this excess heat. Over time, however, these coils develop a layer of dust. Not only is this gross, but it makes it harder for your fridge to shake off the unwanted heat it generates. As a result, your fridge ends up having to work much harder than it should.
Thus, ensuring that your coils are cleaned periodically is a great way to increase the efficiency of your fridge. Most coils are located either on the underside or the back of the fridge. They can be easily maintained using a special coil cleaning brush and/or a vacuum cleaner.
Door gaskets are worn out.
Refrigerator inefficiency is often caused by worn out--and thus poorly sealing--door gaskets. Here's an easy way to test whether your gaskets are still performing up to snuff: close the door on a dollar bill. Now try to pull it loose. If the bill slips out easily, this is a strong sign that your gasket needs to be either adjusted or replaced entirely. Be sure to perform this test at different points on each side of the door. Contact a contractor, like http://www.hallidayrefrigeration.com, with further questions.