Maintenance Monday – your refrigerator

Keep Your Apartment Refrigerator at the Right Temperature

Most people expect refrigerators to just do what they’re supposed to and keep foods at the right temperature. But the thing is, refrigerators aren’t always set up to do this correctly or efficiently. It’s likely that your apartment refrigerator could be set to keep food too cold, thus resulting in wasted energy and partially-frozen foods, or not cold enough, which could cause your food to spoil quickly, or, worse, make you sick.

So the priority, of course, is keeping food at a safe temperature. The FDA says that 41°F or less is the temperature at which refrigerators should stay. Keeping food at or below this temperature slows the growth of most bacteria — while it won’t kill bacteria, it will keep them from multiplying. As for the freezer, the FDA says to freeze at 0°F or less. They also recommend checking the temperature once per week.

Green Refrigerator Tips

Setting your fridge (and freezer) to the right temperature is one way to go green and not waste energy. The Green Guide suggests more ways you can save energy and save on your electric bill:

  • Keep the top of your refrigerator clutter-free, as it can hamper the compressor’s proper air circulation
  • Avoid evaporation by covering food and drink in the fridge
  • Avoid frost build-ups of more than a quarter-inch, and defrost the freezer regularly

A Message Center

If you have a roommate, consider turning the fridge into a message center. If your refrigerator has a magnetic front or side, keep a few magnets and some paper on there, and it can be  your designated place to leave each other important notes and reminders.

Move-Out Reminder

When you eventually move out of your apartment, don’t forget to clean out the fridge! While you may have spent your last day there vacuuming, dusting and disinfecting every inch of space in order to try to get your deposit back, renters often forget about the refrigerator. Don’t leave anything in there and be sure to wipe it clean and leave it tidy.

a happy fridge

*Today’s ‘Maintenance Monday’ tip is from ApartmentSearch by Cort. For more information, click