Looking to make your freezer more energy efficient? Here are some top tips to help you save energy and money when using your freezer.
For the last little while, I’ve been sharing easy energy-saving tips that anyone can do, regardless of whether you own your home or not.
Many energy-saving tips offered by publications focus on the big stuff. Things like insulating your walls, or switching to double or even triple glazing.
These are very valid energy-saving tips. However, as someone who rented for many years, I remember the frustration of having ambivalent landlords who didn’t care that my energy bills were increasing. I also remember the frustration of lacking the autonomy to be able to make these improvements. This is why I want to focus on more accessible energy-saving tips.
I recently blogged about the importance of dusting your fridge to help save energy. So, today, let’s get right back to your fridge freezer with this handy tip to make it more energy efficient.
Why Filling Your Freezer Will Save Energy
Is your freezer looking a little bit on the empty side? Perhaps it’s a few days before you do a food shop and all you’ve got in there is a bag of frozen peas and an unlabelled tub of indiscriminate contents? We’ve all been there. Or maybe you never really have much food in your freezer, to begin with. Whatever the reason, if your freezer is on but it’s not very full then no matter what its energy efficiency rating is, you could be pouring energy down the drain.
You see, freezers work best when they are full. This is because freezers expend most energy when they have to cool down the warm air that gets in when you open the door to take food out.
A packed-to-the-brim freezer means there is less room for warm air to get in. What’s more, the frozen goods in the freezer cool down any warm air that does make its way in, meaning your freezer doesn’t have to work quite so hard. So go wild and start filling your freezer to the brim to make it more energy efficient.
What If I Can’t Afford To Fill My Freezer?
The good news is you don’t have to spend a fortune on food to fill your freezer to make it more energy efficient. Filling your freezer can mean adding non-food items. Empty plastic bottles filled with water will do the trick, as will freezer bags filled with ice cubes.
Styrofoam packing blocks will also do just the job. Plus it’s a good way to recycle this otherwise unrecyclable material.
If you are filling your freezer with non-food items, then my top tip is to keep your frozen food near the front of your freezer, so it’s easy to hand. Having to rummage through your freezer, past styrofoam, and water bottles to find your food, will quickly negate any energy-saving benefits. The key to making things more energy efficient with your freezer is to get in and out as quickly as possible.
A handy bonus is that if your freezer is filled with frozen water bottles, then if you have a power cut it will take much longer for your food to defrost. The frozen bottles will help keep your food cooler for longer.
I’d also recommend defrosting your freezer on a regular basis, for to make it as energy-efficient as possible. I know it’s a rubbish job, that no one ever wants to do, but you might be able to save up to £200 a year. Not an amount to be sniffed at.
A Word On Fridges
Fridges are slightly different beasts. If you pack your fridge too tightly then you’ll over-work your fridge, using much more energy than you need to. Your food will cool too much, and perhaps even freeze. Trust me, nobody wants frozen lettuce.
Other food might not be cool enough, and nobody wants a tummy bug either. Especially not frozen lettuce and a tummy bug at the same time! So make sure you don’t overpack your fridge and that air can circulate easily.
You won’t save hundreds of pounds filling your freezer but it will improve its energy efficiency, and save you a little bit of cash.
However, if you change your habits and implement little energy-saving steps here and there, like the ones that I’ve mentioned throughout this series (tips that don’t take too much effort), then these savings will soon add up.
Things like not charging your smartphone overnight, setting your boiler at the right temperature, and using a lid whilst you are cooking all help. Which is no bad thing in the face of spiralling energy bill increases.