A greener cool
Read this Abode article here or on Cville Weekly's website...
What is the one appliance in your home that is on ALL the time, and yet is absolutely essential even for the carbon tiptoers? Your refrigerator/freezer. This month Betty helps you reduce costs on the biggest loser in your kitchen.
First, if your fridge is older than 10 years, you should really replace it with a newer EnergyStar model, which can be as much as 40 percent more efficient. Remember: a top/bottom style is good and freezer on top is the best. Ditch the auto ice-makers and through-the-door dispensers, which increase energy use by 14–20 percent.
Keeping your existing model? Here are some considerations for placement, maintenance and usage. Place away from stoves or direct sunlight, areas where your fridge has to work harder. Vacuum the coils every six months or less. Set the fridge temperature at 35-38 degrees. And please, remember to close the door! According to Home Energy Magazine, door openings account for 7 percent of your fridge energy use.
Now here’s another “cool” tip: place a dollar bill in the door of the fridge and see if it holds. If it falls out easily, you need to fix the seal.
As for freezers, most new models self-defrost, but older models require regular defrosting. A friend recently confessed that she changed her garage freezer when she finally realized it was heating their garage instead of keeping food frozen. Also, keep your freezer packed, so that it doesn’t have to work as hard. You can do this by even filling plastic milk jugs with water (allow for expansion).
Finally, make sure you dispose of your old refrigerator properly by taking it to Cycle Systems where refrigerants can be drained and the scrap metal re-used.
Hope that helps!
Better World Betty