Keep Your Food Fresh The Green Way

Among all our household appliances, the refrigerator is the one that is on most, if not all, of the time. The next time you go shopping for a new refrigerator, look for one that is rated with an ‘Energy Star’. Check the labels when you shop for appliances. Each label shows the energy use per year.  A typical refrigerator uses 1,500 kilowatts per year, whereas an energy-efficient one would be 250-600 kilowatts per year. Now that’s a big difference!

If you can’t cough up the dough for a new refrigerator, you can still keep energy use low. Here are some tips to keep your refrigerator green:

– Keep your refrigerator full but not stuffed. Both fridge and freezer can retain their coolness better if they’re full.

– Place your fridge in the coolest part of your kitchen.

– The most efficient temperatures for the fridge are between 35 and 38 degrees and for the freezer at 0 degrees.  Colder temperatures use 25% more energy and aren’t necessary to keep food cool.

– Choose your item before you open the door.  With each door-opening you consume the same amount of power as you’d use to light a 60-watt bulb for 10 minutes.

– Let hot items cool before placing them into the fridge.

– Defrost the freezer regularly.

– Clean the filter and coils annually.  A dusty coil can increase energy consumption by about 20%.

– Check the door for a tight seal.  You can do so by closing the door on a dollar bill and seeing how easy it is to remove it.

– Allow air-circulation around your fridge by keeping a few inches of space between the fridge and cabinets.

– Cover food stored in the fridge.  Uncovered food releases moisture making the compressor work harder.

By following these tips, your refrigerator will not only be more energy-efficient, but will also last longer, helping you stretch your ringgit. Remember, a green refrigerator makes for a happier you.