Customizing Your Furniture

4 Things You Need To Maintain To Avoid Unnecessary Refrigerator Damage

A refrigerator break-down can be an instant emergency, resulting in a scramble to save the expensive food it was storing. You can avoid some repairs by developing good maintenance habits. Preventing a problem or spotting an issue early helps avoid food loss and it can reduce your fridge's energy usage.

#1: The Condenser Coils

Regularly cleaning the condenser coils is one of the most important maintenance chores to extend the life of your refrigerator and to save energy. These coils require cleaning twice yearly, or every three months if you have furry pets. Cleaning during the spring and fall time change is a good way to remember this chore. Dirty coils cause the refrigerator to work harder, which causes it to use more electricity and to wear out the compressor more quickly.

There are two sets of coils on most refrigerators. The main set is on the back of the appliance. The smaller set is on the front, below the doors. You will likely need to remove a small plastic panel to access the front coils. Sweep the coils off with a broom or vacuum them clean using the upholstery attachment.

#2: The Fan

The condenser fan is located on the back of the fridge, behind a panel near the bottom. Those with coils in the front may have a fan next to those coils. When in doubt, find the compressor motor – the fan is always nearby. The fan circulates the cool air over the coils so they don't overheat.

Cleaning the fan is simple, but it does help it from becoming clogged. A fan that isn't functioning properly can cause the fridge to overheat and break down. Dust and remove any debris from the fan each time you clean the coils.

#3: Internal Vents

A frost-free fridge has small vents inside the freezer. These circulate the air so there is no frost build up. The location inside the freezer may vary, but they are usually near the top. Blocked vents cause your fridge to use more energy, and they can also cause frost buildup and stress to the appliance.

Crumbs and food debris sometimes clog these fans. Check them once monthly and wipe them clean if they begin to accumulate dirt.

#4: Door Gaskets

A dirty or damaged door gasket won't seal properly, resulting in wasted energy and an overworked compressor. Check the rubber gaskets that run around the inside edge of the fridge and freezer door at least once a month; generally, when you are cleaning the fridge's exterior. Wipe the gasket down with hot, soapy water to remove any debris, then rinse and dry them thoroughly. If you notice a damaged gasket, have it replaced immediately.

A few minutes spent maintaining your fridge can help you avoid unnecessary repairs. It will also keep you familiar with your refrigerator's inner workings, which will help you notice problems more quickly so you can get them fixed before the issue escalates. Talk to your appliance experts, such as Authorized Appliance Repair, for more information.