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03/12 Sunday 09:44AM

cool tips for buying a fridge

The refrigerator is one of the most power-hungry appliance in a home. Newer models are constantly improving on energy-saving features thanks to improvements in insulation and compressors. If you want to save energy and money, here are a few guidelines for picking out an energy-efficient fridge.

Look for Energy Star rated appliances, they are required to use 20% less energy than others not labeled with the Energy Star logo. Using less energy means less usage of electricity and subsequently less of our natural gas, reducing the impact on our environment. Typical older models, say before 1990, would give out approximately 1,200 pounds of carbon dioxide a year.  So if you have a model before 2001, consider replacing it with a newer model with an Energy Star label.

Top-freezer models are the most energy-efficient and low-maintenance of the configurations available in the market.  Next is the bottom-freezer models.  Side-by-side fridge/freezers are often more likely to need repair and can use 7 to 13 per cent more energy than top-freezer models.  Automatic icemakers increase energy use by 14 to 20 per cent.

Consider the capacity when choosing a refrigerator. It's more economical to buy one large enough to store all your food rather than keep 2 refrigerators running concurrently.

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