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Money saving tip :: How to choose a right fridge and use it efficiently?

By NKKhoo

fridge @ nkkhoo

1. Choose the right size and type of fridge to suit your family size.

If your family members are only three to four, 150 to 200L fridge is good enough for you. My old mum in kampung always complained why she has to pay for electricity bill unlike other neighbors who have never exceeded RM20 limit. She bought a 450L fridge to serve as a storage box for every damn foodstuff she could think of. Admittedly many housewives got same funny habit like my old mum to squeeze everything into fridge.

Bigger size fridge consumes more electricity and money to operate.

Spend a bit more money to purchase fridge with inverter which can save up to 1/4 of electricity compared to fridge without inverter.

You should replace more than 10 years old fridge if the door sealing and compressor performance is poor.

2. Keep the fridge away from direct sunlight or heat source.

The spacing between fridge back and side surfaces with the wall and other objects should be wide enough (> 30 cm) for good ventilation.

3. Do not open the fridge door too often and too long.

The compressor runs for at least 10 minutes to restore the temperature to normal after each door opening for 60 seconds. It’s estimated that the electricity bill will shot up by at least 1/3 times if the door is opened 40 times in a day.

The trick is to organize your food stuff orderly in the plastic bag or container and keep those items needed for daily cooking in the separate container. Label it on containers if you have too many foodstuff. I usually take less than 10 seconds to find food stuff in my fridge as below.

my fridge

4. Do not use the fridge as a storage box.

The rule of thumb is no more than 80% space should be occupied with the foodstuff and make sure there are gaps between storage items to allow smooth air circulation. Bacteria easy to grow in the fully packed higher temperature environment at above 10 degree Celcius and increase the risk of food poisoning.

5. Adjust the temperature according to the type of food and quantity in the fridge.

Lower the cooling temperature if you store more perishable foodstuff like meat and set to to higher temperature when there are lesser perishable foods. Higher number on the adjusting knob means lower temperature.

6. Clean the ice formed in the compartment from time to time.

7. Move the frozen meat/fish from the chiller compartment and keep them at the storage compartment for a few hours during the deicing process.

Besides to trap and reuse cool air for saving some energy, this step will minimize the destruction of cell membrane in the meat/fish by ice crystals and thus it maintains a better quality (juicy with its nutrient intact) meat/fish compared to quick deicing in ambient or water temperature.

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