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What Temperature Should My Fridge Be?

May 05, 2022

A woman reaches into a refrigerator to check and see what the temperature should be to store her food.

Your refrigerator is one of the most critical appliances in your home. It preserves your food by keeping it cold or frozen, and that's why it's essential that you have the right temperature setting for your fridge. In this article, we’ll explore the ideal temperature range for your refrigerator, and we’ll offer some tips on how to keep your fridge running at the optimal temperature. Here at Acima Leasing we want to make sure you know how to take care of your sacred kitchen and where to go if you do happen to need or want a new appliance.

Ideal Fridge Temperature

The ideal fridge temperature is 37 degrees Fahrenheit [1]. This temperature ensures food stays fresh for as long as possible, without freezing any of the items in the fridge or causing bacteria to breed. However, many fridges don't give you the option to set an exact temperature. Instead, you’ll find a series of numbers, often from 1 – 5, with one being the coldest and five being the warmest. If your fridge doesn't have an exact temperature setting, aim for a setting of 2 or 3 to maintain the ideal 37 degrees Fahrenheit temperature. This way, you can be sure that your food will stay fresh and free from bacteria. You can also place a refrigerator thermometer in your fridge to get an idea of its actual temperature.

Why is Fridge Temperature Important?

Maintaining a proper refrigerator temperature is essential because it helps keep food fresh. The ideal refrigerator temperature is between 34 and 40 degrees Fahrenheit. Anything colder than 34 degrees can cause food to freeze, and anything warmer than 40 degrees can cause bacteria to grow. Keeping food fresh will save you money by avoiding food waste, but it will also help keep you healthy by preventing foodborne illnesses.

How to Tell if Your Fridge Is Too Cold

If your fridge is too cold, you may notice that your food is freezing or damaged. If you see ice crystals on your food, it’s likely that your fridge is too cold and needs to be adjusted. Another sign that the fridge is too cold is if it’s difficult to open. If the door feels like it’s sticking, it may be because the cold air is causing the pressure to contract.

How to Tell if Your Fridge Is Too Warm

If you think your fridge might be too warm, there are a few signs to look out for. The first is whether the food inside is spoiling more quickly than normal. If you find that you’re constantly throwing out rotten food, your fridge may be too warm. Another sign is condensation on the inside of the fridge door. If you see water droplets forming, it means the air inside the fridge is too humid. This can cause mold to grow on food. Finally, if you notice that your fridge smells bad, it could be because your fridge is too warm, leading to bacteria growth.

Common Causes of Incorrect Temperatures

There are a few common causes of incorrect refrigerator temperatures. One is that the fridge may not be level. If the fridge isn’t level, the door will not seal properly and cold air can escape. Another common cause is a dirty condenser coil. The condenser coil is responsible for removing heat from the fridge. If it’s dirty, it will not be able to do its job properly. Finally, a fridge that is too full can also cause problems. If the fridge is too packed, air cannot circulate properly and the temperature will become uneven.

How to Fix Temperature Problems in Your Fridge

1. Check the thermostat to ensure it’s set to the correct temperature. If not, adjust it accordingly.

2. Inspect the gasket around the door to make sure it’s sealing correctly. If not, replace it.

3. Make sure nothing is blocking the air vents inside the fridge.

4. Clean the condenser coils. Dust and dirt can build up on them over time and impede airflow, causing the fridge to run less efficiently and potentially lead to temperature problems.

5. Check for leaks in the door seals. Heat can escape through even the smallest of cracks, so it's essential to make sure the seals are intact.

6. If the fridge is still not cooling properly, call a qualified technician for further diagnosis and repair. It may also be time to shop for a new fridge.

How to Keep Your Fridge Running Efficiently

Regularly checking your fridge and monitoring its performance can help keep it running efficiently for years to come. The most important thing you can do is to keep the coils clean, as they’re essential for heat transfer and cooling. You should also ensure that the door seals are tight and that there is adequate ventilation around the fridge. In addition, making sure the fridge isn’t too full or too empty will help it run more efficiently.

How Can Acima Leasing Help?

If your fridge needs to be replaced, or if you simply need to upgrade to a newer model, Acima Leasing can help. With instant shopping power and our alternative to financing, we make it easy to get the fridge you need. Plus, our flexible lease renewal payment options* make it easy to budget for your new appliance. We also offer an early purchase option that allows you to purchase your new appliance early at a discount. If you find out that you don’t need it anymore, you can easily return it in good condition at any time without further obligation. If you still have questions, check out some additional information here or our FAQ page.

Common Questions About Fridges:

Which part of the fridge is coldest?

The bottom part of the fridge is typically the coldest. This is because cold air sinks, collecting at the bottom of the fridge. The top part of the fridge is usually warmer because heat rises.

Does a fridge work better when it's full or empty?

A fridge works best when it’s about half full. If the fridge is too full, air cannot circulate properly, and the temperature will be uneven. If the fridge is too empty, it will have to work harder to maintain the correct temperature.

How do I make my fridge colder?

There are a few ways to make your fridge colder. One obvious method is to adjust the thermostat. Another is to clean the condenser coils. Dust and dirt can build up on them over time and impede airflow, causing the fridge to run less efficiently. This can potentially lead to temperature problems. Finally, make sure the fridge isn’t too full or too empty. A fridge works best when it’s about half full.

Will unplugging a fridge reset it?

Yes, usually a fridge will reset once it's unplugged for a couple of minutes.

Can I unplug my fridge for five minutes?

It’s usually safe to unplug a fridge for a short period of time; however, you’ll want to make sure that the food inside does not spoil. If you’re unplugging the fridge for a longer period of time, you’ll want to transfer the food to another location.

Wanting more Fridge Advice?

Are you enjoying our appliance related content? There’s more advice where that came from! Check out these similar articles as you upkeep the appliances in your home.