Periodic defrosting of the freezer is an important operation to maintain the efficiency of the appliance and save on the electricity bill. The layer of ice that forms inside it can have various consequences on the efficiency, duration and above all on the consumption of the appliance. Find out why defrosting your freezer saves energy and how to do it quickly without having to unplug it.
Why is it necessary to defrost the freezer regularly?
Periodic defrosting of the freezer is an important operation to maintain the efficiency of the appliance and avoid consuming a lot of energy. This operation, if carried out correctly, would save 30% of your consumption for every half centimeter of frost removed. Here are the reasons.
Reduce energy consumption
The layer of ice that forms inside the freezer is several inches thick and can reduce the efficiency of the motor, making it work harder and therefore consume more energy. This happens because the layer of ice acts as a barrier to the flow of heat from the outside environment to the motor, causing it to increase its speed to maintain the desired temperature inside the freezer. In addition, the thermal resistance of the freezer walls increases, making it difficult for heat to transfer from the outside environment to the inside of the appliance. Therefore, removing excess ice allows the engine to run more efficiently and consume less electricity.
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By preventing proper heat exchange with the outside environment, the layer of ice inside the freezer can cause the motor to overheat. When the motor overheats, its efficiency decreases and power consumption increases. Also, overheating can damage the motor and shorten the life of the device. Therefore, by defrosting your freezer, you prevent the motor from overheating and protect the appliance from damage that excessive heat can cause.
Improve conservation efficiency
The layer of ice inside your freezer can prevent the circulation of cold air, reducing its ability to store food. When cold air is not circulated properly, some areas of the freezer can get hotter than others, creating the ideal conditions for bacteria to grow and food to spoil. By removing the accumulated ice, a better circulation of cold air is guaranteed and therefore a better conservation of food, thus avoiding its waste.
How often should the freezer be defrosted?
The ideal time to defrost the freezer depends on the layer of ice that has formed inside the appliance. Generally, it is advisable to carry out this operation when the ice layer has reached a thickness of about 3-4 millimeters, since at this stage its energy consumption can increase by up to 30%. If the appliance is used frequently and the ice layer forms quickly, it will need to be defrosted more frequently. Conversely, if it is used less frequently, the ice layer will form more slowly and the frequency of thawing may be reduced.
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Obviously unplugging it is the easiest way to defrost a freezer, but how do you do it even when it’s plugged in? Unplugging the appliance runs the risk of compromising the preservation of both food in the freezer and food stored in the refrigerator. These are the steps to follow to defrost it even when plugged in:
- Remove all food from the freezer and place it in a cool place.
- Place a saucepan with boiling water inside to raise the temperature and collect the water that will form when defrosting
- Close the freezer and wait for the ice to melt. This way, the heat from the boiling water will help melt the ice faster.
- Open the freezer from time to time to let in warm air, which will also help melt the ice faster.
- Use a damp cloth, towel, or blunt object to remove any remaining ice. Avoid using pointed or sharp objects, as they could damage the finish of the freezer and also injure you.
- Completely dry the freezer.
- Close the freezer and wait for the temperature inside the appliance to return to its normal values before putting the food back in its place.
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