Food Storage

The energy use of refrigerators and freezers has improved dramatically in the past 35 years, but they are still among the largest energy consumers in the home. A typical new refrigerator uses less than 425 kWh per year — less than one-quarter the energy of a typical 1973 model — even though today’s model is larger and has more features. This increase in efficiency has been achieved through more insulation, tighter door seals, larger coil surface area, better controls, and improved compressors and motors. Much of the increase in efficiency is due to national energy efficiency standards for new refrigerators. The current refrigerator standards took effect in the fall of 2014. For the most common refrigerator types, the new standards represent a 25% energy savings relative to the previous standard.