eThreads ecoTip #1: Keep that refrigerator closed!

I just introduced eThreads ecoTips as a way to provide easy and cheap ways to live more eco-friendly.  I like this first tip because it’s a simple thing to do that won’t require a complete rewiring of your habits.

How many of you get hangry (a hybrid of hungry and angry) and rip open the fridge, gazing over the array of food options while the cool frost whips over your shoulders?  I used to do this a lot, until I heard that it’s a big waste of energy leaving the refrigerator door open.

Your fridge’s compressor works to keep your food nice and cool.  This means that when you leave the door open while contemplating your next snack, cold air is rushing out and suddenly your fridge is working harder to keep the temperature cool.  This means a lot of wasted energy.  How much?  According to the good people at Ideal Bite, the average household wastes 50-120 kilowatt hours a year by opening the refrigerator door – that’s like leaving one to three 100-watt light bulbs on all year!  You could also be adding up to $20 on your utility bill.

So next time you’re hangry (which, if you’re like me, happens 5 times a day,) think about what you want to eat before opening the fridge.  Also, keep your foods in the same place so you know where to reach every time.  Additionally, let your foods cool before you put them in the refrigerator.  By adding hot objects to your fridge, you’re asking the compressor to work harder to cool the item, thus using more energy.  Finally, keep liquids and foods covered up — otherwise they can release moisture that makes the compressor work even harder.  Want more tips on keeping your fridge and other appliances efficient?  Click here for more info.

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