Although most people will routinely clean their fridge, they make the mistake of thinking this is enough to keep it running properly. However, there are many habits that could be causing refrigerator damage.

Fridges are complex appliances that need more than a quick clean to keep them running properly. In fact, there are likely certain things that you’re doing that you don’t realise can actually cause damage to your appliance. These habits are easy to rectify if you know what you’re looking out for.

Here’s a look at 5 habits that could be damaging your fridge:

1.      Overstocking/Understocking Causing Refrigerator Damage

If you’ve not long been to the shops, you’ve likely got a fridge stuffed full of various fruits, vegetables and other food and drink products. It’s a common thing that most people do on a regular basis, but this could actually cause refrigerator damage.

Overloading your refrigerator can damage it by making it more difficult for air to circulate. This can hinder its ability to regulate the internal temperature and keep your produce cool. Its inability to regulate its temperature and lead to extra strain being put on the compressor and condenser coils which can subsequently lead to overheating.

On a similar note, underfilling your refrigerator can also lead to damage. Having cold items in your refrigerator help to keep the internal temperature low. Having fewer items in there means that there is less food helping to keep your fridge cold and cause your refrigerator to work harder to maintain the right temperature.

2.      Forgetting to Clean the Coils

Many repairs can be avoided if the condenser coils are regularly cleaned at least once a year.  If you don’t do this, they can become covered in dust and debris that ends up around your fridge. When this happens, the coils are no longer efficient at dissipating heat. This can cause the compressor to work harder to cool down the unit. Not only does this put more pressure on the components of your refrigerator, it can actually result in your energy bill increasing.

3.      Storing Leftovers Improperly

We’ve all done it. There’s been leftover food and instead of throwing it away we put it into a Tupperware box and stick it in the fridge. However, not doing this correctly can lead to refrigerator damage. It may be a surprise that storing leftovers can potentially damage your fridge, even if it is unintentional.

The way to avoid it happening is by paying attention to the temperature of the food you’re storing. You should always allow leftovers to reach at least room temperature before putting them in the fridge. This is because putting them in whilst still warm will increase the internal temperature. Subsequently, this will cause your refrigerator to work harder to bring the temperature back down. Increasing the internal temperature can also have an effect on the freshness of other produce that is in there.

4.      Placing Your Fridge Too Close to the Wall

Proper airflow around your fridge is essential to avoiding refrigerator damage. Poor airflow reduces your refrigerator’s ability to remove heat, which consequently means that it will struggle to cool down properly. This can lead to more pressure on the system and components degrading quicker.

Ideally, you should leave at least several inches of space above and down the sides of your fridge to avoid damage being caused. It’s also important to note that housing your refrigerator inside a tight-fitting cabinet can lead to poor airflow unless it is specifically designed for in-cabinet installation.

5.      Leaving the Door Open Too Long

You may already be aware of this, but one of the most common bad habits that leads to refrigerator damage is leaving the door open. We’ve all done it. Maybe you’ve got a new bottle of milk out of the fridge and have had to take the tab off the top. You then have to go and put the tab in the bin, use your milk and then return the bottle to the fridge. All the while, your fridge door is left open and all of the cool air inside is escaping.

It may seem like a small thing to do but allowing this cool air to escape can increase the internal temperature of your appliance and cause the system to work harder to cool it back down. In turn, this can result in the compressor overheating as a result of being under more pressure.

It’s an easy habit to fix. Simply try to remember to close the door every time you step away from it. Even if you intend on returning to the refrigerator and closing the door within a few seconds, a lot of things can easily distract us and that door can end up being left open longer than we intended.

6.    Not Checking the Drainage Hole

You would be correct in thinking that fridges are built to deal with a small amount of condensation. They do this through a drainage hole at the back of the fridge. However, people often overestimate just how much they can deal with. This can result in the drainage hole being forgotten about and will lead to refrigerator damage.

You should look out for things such as water pooling at the bottom of the back wall and ice build-up. Issues can be avoided if you regularly check the drainage hole for blockages. This is a common problem, particular with tenants, but it can be simple to prevent through frequent maintenance checks and cleaning.

I hope that this short guide to habits that can cause refrigerator damage has helped you. At Power Point, we understand refrigerators, in and out. That means that if you have any issues at all with your appliance, we’re confident we’ll know how to fix it. If any problems do occur, you can easily get in touch and we can talk about how we can assist you. Not only do we offer domestic services, if you’re a landlord with a tenant who is having appliance issues we can help you too!