You owe your refrigerator major props for keeping your food from spoiling and always having a cold one (beer, water, lemonade – whatever your preference) waiting for you at the end of a long day. To show your appreciation, take these steps to help your refrigerator keep its cool during the dog days of summer. Your energy bill will thank you.
1. Check the Seal
Make sure your refrigerator seal (gasket) is airtight. An easy way to do this is with the dollar bill test. Close a dollar bill (or just a sheet of paper if you don’t carry cash) in the fridge door. If the door holds the dollar securely in place, then the seal is tight. If the dollars falls out or can be removed easily, the seal is too loose.
Before replacing the gasket, look for any obstructions that may be causing the faulty seal. If that doesn’t do the trick, repair your refrigerator seal with Vaseline by applying a thin layer on the part of the seal that connects to your fridge or freezer.
2. Clean the Coils
Dust and dirt accumulates on your fridge coils over time, and rather quickly if you live with shedding pets. New refrigerators have self-cleaning condensers, but for older fridges, you need to remove the dirt yourself. You might have a vacuum attachment that will work on the coils, but if not, purchase a coil brush. Then clean your coils; your fridge will breathe a sigh of relief!
3. Stock the Fridge
I know it sounds counterintuitive; more food seems like more work. But that’s not true! It actually takes more energy to cool an empty fridge. Of course you don’t want to stock more than you can eat or load it up with groceries before taking a summer vacation.
Quick tip: Fill those empty spaces with pitchers of water. Then you’ll always have a cold, refreshing drink when you need it!
4. Set the Temperature
Make sure your fridge and freezer are set to the correct temperature – cool enough to keep your food safe, but not working harder than needed. The recommended temperature for a refrigerator ranges from 35 to 38 degrees. The ideal freezer temperature is between 0 and 5 degrees.
5. Change the Filter
Your filtered water won’t be very clean if it’s pulled through a dirty “filter.” Your fridge might have an indicator that tells you when to change the filter. Either way, your refrigerator water filter should be changed about twice a year (follow manufacturer guidelines for frequency). Change the filter if it’s time. Not only will you benefit from cleaner water, your ice maker will run more efficiently.
Featured image via Beko
What tips do you have to help your refrigerator keep its cool? Share them in the comments!