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Reducing Your Freezer's Energy Consumption

Category Energy
Your freezer is a heavy energy consumer. The good news is that there are several ways to reduce its energy consumption. This is a page about reducing your freezer's energy consumption.


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July 18, 20060 found this helpful
Warning: Please read all the comments below as this tip could cause damage to your freezer motor as well as unsafe food storage. This tip requires that the user collect a few gallon and half gallon milk or juice containers.

If you have a chest freezer, fill a few gallon containers with water and freeze them. Make space in your freezer and pack it to the capacity with the ice/the gallon container. This way you can turn your freezer off for 10-18 hours. If you reinforce the insulation, you can be sure of one advantage: intact groceries at a lower energy bill.

If you can place the frozen gallon containers upright, with caps on, you can rest assured that there will be no water to remove from the freezer! I cut my energy bill by $5 - 8.00 month this way. You might have a freezer, but remember that you do NOT have to:

  1. Use it all the time. If you don't have much in there, just empty it out and turn it off.

  2. Leave it turned on 365 days a year even if you have stuff in there.

June was Dairy month. Chances are that your freezer is packed to the capacity. After a few weeks, your stockpiles might dwindle. This would be the time to use ice: big savings in your energy bill.

Also, did you know that a freezer packed to its capacity can be turned off for one hour without much damage? Of course, all this will be directly proportional to its volume. The larger the freezer, the longer it will take to gain heat. Simple Physics.

Just invest in a good thermometer and see how long your freezer will retain the low temperatures after you have pulled the plug. The same worked for a friend's fridge. I never had the guts to turn off my fridge.

Happy savings.

By Megan from Racine, WI

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By Julia (Guest Post)
July 20, 20060 found this helpful
Top Comment

You are taking risks there with your freezer. After a power cut my freezer's motor burned out.


Apparently every time a freezer is switched off, and then switched on again, there is a strong chance that the motor will burn out.

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By (Guest Post)
December 15, 20080 found this helpful
Top Comment

Warning! This is potentially dangerous advice! Beware for FOOD POISONING. A freezer operates between at -18 degrees C (0 F).
While the ice thaws, the temperature will be at 0 C (32 F) and it will reach 0 C very quickly. Not only will the water thaw, your food will too.

If the food (especially meat, poultry and fish) thaw, that is very dangerous. But even if the temperature stays below 0 C, bacteria are still active at these freezing temperatures.

For example, you can not keep meat at -6 C for long periods of time (i.e. longer than a week). Food safety will not be guaranteed.

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March 5, 20190 found this helpful
Top Comment

Sadly, you will likely find your freezer uses as much energy bringing the temperature back down to the ideal temperature, than simply allowing it to cycle on and off to maintain it.


It's also not good for the food inside to have the temperature fluctuating, and if you forget to switch it back on at any particular time, you'll ruin all your food.

A better tip for energy saving is to ensure it hasn't got massive ice buildup.

I certainly wouldn't be turning my freezer on and off for the sake of $5 a month.

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DOE0 found this helpful
February 17, 2003

Here are some good tips to save on using your freezer from the Department of Energy:

Source: Department of Energy

If you have any tips, feel free to post them online or email them to us.

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Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

By 0 found this helpful
November 1, 2010

Will using blankets in your freezer to take up space save energy?

By doug from Cedar Springs, MI


November 3, 20100 found this helpful

No but filling empty milk jugs and placing them in the empty spaces will. Once they are frozen they will keep the freezer cold even if the power goes out.


You freezer will have less space to cool and if you need more space just take out a jug or two.

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November 3, 20100 found this helpful

When I had a huge upright freezer I used to put pretzel, potato chip bags and anything else I needed to store. It keeps them fresh as well as out of sight and also helps economize your freezer's energy usage.

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