I was lying in bed one night unable to sleep, worrying about our fridge being on the blink. Turns out it’s hanging on in there for the time being (thank f*ck – keep your fingers crossed for me) but it got me thinking just how much I rely on this unsung hero of a household appliance. Your fridge is a bit like your fingers, or your tongue really – you totally take it for granted but you’d be up poo creek without a paddle if it was to you know, suddenly vamoosh or something.
In fact, when my partner and I moved into our first house together and we finally had enough space (and moolah) to buy a fancy pants fridge-freezer with a water dispenser, she told me she loved it more than me – and the worst part is, I don’t blame her. So, long and boring story short, here are some little tips and tricks on how you can help your refrigerator live to its full potential…
Remember to give your fridge a little TLC on a regular basis
Firstly, if you want to look after your fridge, you’ve got to make sure that you do simple maintenance on a regular basis. Dust gathers in the coils of the back of the fridge and you can give this a simple wipe to benefit your fridge as your fridge has to work harder if it is experiencing blockages. By wiping down the coils you are, in essence, letting your fridge breathe better. It’s also important to make sure that you are maintaining it in other simple ways. While a fridge lasts around a decade, there are other brands that are built to go a lot longer so keep your eye out for one of those.
You need to make sure you have the right implements too. If you have a Maytag fridge, for example, it’s so important to look after it. You can get Maytag fridge repairs from DCC London, as well as many other fridge repair companies but it’s definitely worth seeking out some proper advice. We expect our appliances to work hard for us but if you really want it to last longer than its shelf life, you need to to get into the habit of simple maintenance.
Store your food more efficiently – or learn the hard way how much this matters…
Don’t know about you but this is something that we don’t always consider, especially when we get into the habit of ordering items to be delivered to our door – but we’ve got to be savvy in terms of how we store our foods. When you have foods that are close to expiring or open foods, you need to make sure that they are towards the front of the fridge shelves, in front of the new items. This is a very simple visual reminder to use ’em before you lose (and waste) ’em.
…this includes storing raw ingredients in the right place
Raw food like meat and fish should always stay at the bottom of the fridge because temperatures are lowest there and keeping them here will stop them from contaminating the rest of the food. You also need to make sure that any raw food is sealed properly and doesn’t have the potential to leak. I’ve learned this one the hard way, let me tell ya. Ideally, you would want to put raw produce in something like a hermetically sealed Tupperware box.
Conveniently storing the stuff you want to grab ‘n’ go
The bottom shelf is the also best place for storing ready meals, dairy products and cooked items because of the temperature. Storing packaged foods and perishable goods can go on the top or middle shelf, and this is where the temperature is more consistent but always make sure that you store the food in tight containers. Non-perishable foods such as ketchup and mustard respond better to changes in temperature, which why you have to put these in the fridge door. Every time you open or close the fridge door, it won’t change the taste or the texture.
Making sure you’re storing at the right temperature
You have to remember that even a small temperature change can have a big effect on the shelf life of your food. Ensuring that your fridge is below 5 degrees C will make sure that your food is fresh, cool and full of flavour for much longer. Depending on what foods you have in the fridge will have a big bearing on the temperature.
Don’t be greedy and overcrowd your fridge
Nobody likes an under-stocked fridge but overloading your fridge not only means you won’t be able to empty it or use all the items efficiently, but it also disrupts the cold air circulation around the fridge. If your fridge is almost empty, this can cause temperatures to fluctuate and circulate around the fridge without the right balance. You need to make sure that the fridge is full, but not bursting at the seams.