When does your refrigerator need replacement?

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best fridge in australia
This fridge is so easy to clean and offer great value for money. Photo: Andrey Popov, Bigstock

Your refrigerator is an important household appliance that keeps food fresh, cool and crisp – and lasts you for years – until it starts to give trouble.

Sometimes the problem is minor enough and just needs a small repair, while in another cases; replacement is probably a much better option for you.

This guide explains the signs to help you tell when your refrigerator needs replacement.

Get Excessively Hot At The Rear Of The Fridge

If you feel warm temperatures at the rear of your refrigerator, it’s probably because the motor is running and is not uncommon. But if you feel excess heat, then it could be a sign that something is definitely wrong. Consider the following:

  • Coils present at the rear of the refrigerator have insulation around them, so you should not feel excessive heat.
  • Coils could deteriorate and wear out over time, affecting surrounding insulation and causing heat to emanate from them.
  • Excessively dirty coils that are too old or have not been repaired for a long time will consume more energy and push your electricity bills upwards.

Sometimes damaged coils can be replaced depending on the extent of the wear. But in other instances, it’s cheaper in the long run to replace your refrigerator with a newer and more energy efficient one.

Skyrocketing Energy Bills Due To Inefficient Appliances

It’s no secret that Australia pays a huge amount of money for energy consumption, so you want to find ways to be as energy efficient as possible. If your energy bills are sky rocketing, it is a sign of inefficient appliances in your home, and one of the biggest culprits could be your refrigerator. Perform the following actions to check whether your refrigerator is energy efficient:

  • Check the date of manufacture – older fridges are less energy efficient than their newer counterparts.
  • Look for the energy rating on the fridge – higher energy ratings are associated with lower energy consumption and vice versa.
  • Change your fridge settings to the energy saving mode if you have one.
  • Check your freezer location – fridges with freezers on the top consume less energy than freezers at the bottom.

Skyrocketing energy bills not only cost a fortune, but they are an inefficient way to run your household expenses. Take corrective action and replace old fridges as soon as possible to minimise your long-term running costs.

Fridge Door Seals Are Completely Damaged

If you’ve ever opened your fridge door and found no resistance, then it could be a sign of damaged seals, which is a real problem. What does a seal do for your refrigerator?

  • Keeps the fridge door tight to retain cool air inside.
  • Ensures food stays as fresh as possible by preventing warm air from entering the unit while the fridge is running.
  • Provides a tight barrier to ensure energy efficiency when the fridge runs.

When the door seal is damaged beyond repair, it may be worthwhile considering complete refrigerator replacement – especially if your unit is out of its manufacturer warranty period. Door seals may seem insignificant, but they are important to maintain efficient refrigerator function at all times.

Manual Defrosting Is Required Often

Manual defrosting is relatively unheard of with modern refrigerators because most of them are frost-free. If you have to defrost your refrigerator manually more often than necessary, chances are it’s not running as efficient as it should and must be replaced. Consider the following:

  • How often does ice form on the interior walls of your freezer?
  • Are you noticing excessive build-up of frost compared to previously?
  • Is the freezer keeping items cool enough?
  • Can you hear loud running noises as the fridge cools?
  • Can you spot mould and mildew forming in the back of the fridge or freezer?
  • Is the defrost drain clogged and causing water leakage or excessive ice build up in your refrigerator?

New freezers have frost-free designs, and are usually more energy efficient, which is exactly what you want to save money in the long run. Upgrading to a new fridge will reduce the hard work you need to put into manually defrosting your fridge, and keeps your bills down.

Refrigerators have become commonplace household appliances and must be maintained well to ensure that you’re not eating spoiled or rotten food. No matter how much you love your fridge, there comes a time when you have to let go and upgrade. If you notice any of these signs of deterioration, it is probably time to make the switch to a newer model.