Is your refrigerator running hot?


As temperatures around the U.S. rise, many homeowners can't wait for the hot summer months to be here. One thing you may not be looking forward to is the affect that the hot summer months have on your large appliances – namely your refrigerator.

Refrigerators maintain a constant internal temperature, meaning that they work harder for every degree of external heat. On a cold winter day, your refrigerator might barely have to do any work at all, but on a hot summer day, your refrigerator can be a major energy user. Even worse than the high energy costs associated with running a refrigerator in hot weather is the potential that your appliance could break down. The harder an appliance works, the shorter its lifespan will be. Thankfully, there are a few things that can be done to increase your refrigerator's efficiency, even during the hottest days of the summer season.

Embrace the cool corners
If your refrigerator is positioned near a window or a heat-generating appliance, like the stove, moving it can be one of the best ways to prolong its life. We often don't think about the effects of direct sunlight inside a home, but it can make a difference of several degrees, which in turn can have a real impact on your energy bill. Placing a refrigerator near a stove or dishwasher can have a similar impact. Move your appliance so that it is in the coolest corner of your kitchen to increase its efficiency.

Clean the coils
In the back of your refrigerator is a piece of metal called the "condenser coil," which distributes heat away from the appliance. Over time, this coil attracts an incredible amount of dust, which makes it harder for the coil to disburse heat. Fixing this problem is as easy as pulling the appliance away from the wall and vacuuming out the dust every few months.

Let it cool
When you have finished a dish that you plan to use for leftovers throughout the week, don't rush to throw it in the refrigerator. The extra heat contained in the dish will spread to your other foods and force your appliance to work harder. Instead, let the dish sit until it is about room temperature before you put it away.

When you take care of your freezer, air conditioner and stove, you'll be able to host great get-togethers all throughout the season. What other steps to you take to prepare your home for summer soirees?

The information in this article is intended to provide guidance on the proper maintenance and care of systems and appliances in the home. Not all of the topics mentioned are covered by our home warranty or maintenance plans. Please review your home warranty contract carefully to understand your coverage.