Unplugging the fridge?

WWGD
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Summary:

Do I unplug or turn off fridge during spat of consecutive severely- cold days?

Main Question or Discussion Point

Hi All,
There have been a few below-30 days recently in many places in the upper hemisphere. Essentially, those days,we are putting food in the refrigerator to warm it up. If/when , say, 3+ days of below- 30 days are predicted, does it make sense to keep freezers on?
 

Answers and Replies

russ_watters
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There have been a few below-30 days recently in many places in the upper hemisphere. Essentially, those days,we are putting food in the refrigerator to warm it up. If/when , say, 3+ days of below- 30 days are predicted, does it make sense to keep freezers on?
I wouldn't expect it to matter -- the thermostat in the fridge will just keep the compressor off.
 
sophiecentaur
Science Advisor
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Many cheap (frost-free) freezers will clog up with ice if they are operated in an ambient temperature below even moderately cold conditions. (The same can happen with cheap de-humidifiers. )
When buying a freezer for use outside a 'living area' it is important to check its ambient operating temperature range.
See this link for some background information.
The external heat exchanger of some freezers can clog up with ice, rather than allowing condensed water to drain away, even in mild conditions if the electric defrost heater control is not adequate.
@WWGD Whilst @russ_watters is probably right about operating at very low temperatures, the temperature of operation could pass through 'risky' temperature on the way down and the damage could be done already and a heat exchanger could be left full of ice which would need to defrost in its own time when you finally want to use the freezer. Defrosting is a real pain because all that ice is in an insulated space. Hand dryers and hot water may need to be applied in the innards and you may need to remove panels and grills. (I have been there and I 'know'.)
 

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