How Many Watts Does A Refrigerator Use?

how may watts dose a refrigerator use

Many of us wonder how much power a refrigerator actually uses. After all, it is plugged in and required to keep our food cold, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for 365 days a year. 

That is a lot of usage and quite frankly, the most used appliance in your entire household. 

In this article we aim to break down a refrigerators power usage and how you can potentially lower it by following some actionable steps.

How many watts does a refrigerator use? 

This really all depends on which refrigerator you own, different brands/models have varying degrees of power usage.

For example, a brand new 27 cu. ft. French Door Refrigerator that uses 637 kWh a year, will consume more than a portable refrigerator you use in your RV. 

Also, it depends on when you bought your fridge. 

For example, an older refrigerator from say 1990's could have a power rating of 747 watts. Whereas a newer more modern fridge with an Energy Start Certification might have a 380 watts power rating.

What affects a refrigerator power use?

refrigerator-energy-consumption

There are two main components in a refrigerator that affect energy consumption: 

  1. Compressor
  2. Fan

Compressor 

The compressor inside a fridge is the most power hungry component a fridge has and can consume between 200 - 500+ watts whilst running. That's right, you read correctly, "whilst" it's running. Compressors do not run 24 hours a day. If they did, consumption would be incredibly high. Instead, they cycle on and off to keep the food inside cool while consuming as little energy as possible. 

Fan

Most refrigerators have two fans, one is located under the refrigerator to cool the compressor and force air through the exterior coils. The second fan is found inside and directs air around the coils inside the refrigerator. 

How much does it cost to power a refrigerator?

This is another great question and once again all comes down to how much electricity your refrigerator consumes. Alongside this, electricity prices vary state to state.

So, in other words, identical refrigerators found in two different states with varying electricity prices, could actually cost more to own than the other.

Let's take a look at the cost of electricity state by state: 

State March 2022 March 2021 Change (%)
Alabama 13.71 ¢/kWh
13.35 ¢/kWh
2.7%
Alaska 22.82 ¢/kWh 22.04 ¢/kWh 3.5%
Arizona 12.68 ¢/kWh 12.18 ¢/kWh 4.1%
Arkansas 10.90 ¢/kWh 10.27 ¢/kWh 6.1%
California 26.71 ¢/kWh 22.71 ¢/kWh 17.6%
Colorado 13.61 ¢/kWh 12.33¢/kWh 10.4%
Connecticut 25.61 ¢/kWh 22.74 ¢/kWh 10.4%
Delaware 13.16 ¢/kWh 12.11 ¢/kWh 8.7%
Florida 13.50 ¢/kWh 11.65 ¢/kWh 15.9%
Georgia 12.89 ¢/kWh 11.83 ¢/kWh 9%
Hawaii 39.97 ¢/kWh 32.96 ¢/kWh 21.3%
Idaho 10.07 ¢/kWh 9.99 ¢/kWh 0.8%
Illinois 14.73 ¢/kWh 13.88 ¢/kWh 6.1%
Indiana 14.29 ¢/kWh 13.17 ¢/kWh 8.5%
Iowa 11.73 ¢/kWh 11.30 ¢/kWh 3.8%
Kansas 13.32 ¢/kWh 12.85 ¢/kWh 3.7%
Kentucky 11.98 ¢/kWh 11.03 ¢/kWh 8.6%
Louisiana 11.05 ¢/kWh 10.15 ¢/kWh 8.9%
Maine 23.03 ¢/kWh 16.42 ¢/kWh 40.3%
Maryland 14.16 ¢/kWh 12.84 ¢/kWh 10.3%
Massachusetts 25.33 ¢/kWh 23.39 ¢/kWh 8.8%
Michigan 17.43 ¢/kWh 17.17 ¢/kWh 1.5%
Minnesota 13.40 ¢/kWh 12.89 ¢/kWh 4%
Mississippi 12.66 ¢/kWh 11.52 ¢/kWh 9.9%
Missouri 11.04 ¢/kWh 10.37 ¢/kWh 6.5%
Montana 10.76 ¢/kWh 10.93 ¢/kWh -1.6%
Nebraska 10.36 ¢/kWh 10.13 ¢/kWh 2.3%
Nevada 13.39 ¢/kWh 11.96 ¢/kWh 12%
New Hampshire 22.97 ¢/kWh 19.23 ¢/kWh 19.4%
New Jersey 16.93 ¢/kWh 15.64 ¢/kWh 8.2%
New Mexico 13.44 ¢/kWh 12.74 ¢/kWh 5.5%
New York 19.74 ¢/kWh 18.04 ¢/kWh 9.4%
North Carolina 12.24 ¢/kWh 11.45 ¢/kWh 6.9%
North Dakota 10.03 ¢/kWh 10.18 ¢/kWh -1.5%
Ohio 12.87 ¢/kWh 12.44 ¢/kWh 3.5%
Oklahoma 11.21 ¢/kWh 8.9 ¢/kWh 26%
Oregon 11.01 ¢/kWh 11.10 ¢/kWh -0.8%
Pennsylvania 14.70 ¢/kWh 13.25 ¢/kWh 10.9%
Rhode Island 23.46 ¢/kWh 23.35¢/kWh 0.5%
South Carolina 13.91 ¢/kWh 13.28 ¢/kWh 4.7%
South Dakota 11.35¢/kWh 11.30 ¢/kWh 0.4%
Tennessee 11.49¢/kWh 10.73 ¢/kWh 7.1%
Texas 12.80 ¢/kWh 11.50 ¢/kWh 11.3%
Utah 10.55 ¢/kWh 10.06 ¢/kWh 4.9%
Vermont 19.80 ¢/kWh 18.75 ¢/kWh 5.6%
Virginia 12.54 ¢/kWh 11.71 ¢/kWh 7.1%
Washington 10.14 ¢/kWh 9.96 ¢/kWh 1.8%
West Virginia 13.34 ¢/kWh 12.49 ¢/kWh 6.8%
Wisconsin 15.20 ¢/kWh 14.35 ¢/kWh 5.9%
Wyoming 10.69 ¢/kWh 10.79 ¢/kWh -0.9%
U.S. 14.47 ¢/kWh 13.30 ¢/kWh 8.8%

 

As you can see the cost of electricity varies greatly state by state, with the average coming to 14.47 ¢/kWh and 8.8% increase over last year. 

Let's take a look at how much a refrigerator would cost to own state by state: 

State March 2022 600 kWh/Year
Alabama 13.71 ¢/kWh
$82
Alaska 22.82 ¢/kWh $136
Arizona 12.68 ¢/kWh $76
Arkansas
10.90 ¢/kWh
$65
California 26.71 ¢/kWh $160
Colorado 13.61 ¢/kWh $81
Connecticut 25.61 ¢/kWh $153
Delaware 13.16 ¢/kWh $78
Florida 13.50 ¢/kWh $81
Georgia 12.89 ¢/kWh $77
Hawaii 39.97 ¢/kWh $239
Idaho 10.07 ¢/kWh $60
Illinois 14.73 ¢/kWh $88
Indiana 14.29 ¢/kWh $85
Kansas 13.32 ¢/kWh $79
Kentucky 11.98 ¢/kWh $71
Louisiana 11.05 ¢/kWh $66
Maine 23.03 ¢/kWh $138
Maryland 14.16 ¢/kWh $84
Massachusetts 25.33 ¢/kWh $151
Michigan 17.43 ¢/kWh $104
Minnesota 13.40 ¢/kWh $80
Mississippi 12.66 ¢/kWh $75
Missouri 11.04 ¢/kWh $66
Montana 10.76 ¢/kWh $64
Nebraska 10.36 ¢/kWh $62
Nevada 13.39 ¢/kWh $80
New Hampshire 22.97 ¢/kWh $137
New Jersey 16.93 ¢/kWh $101
New Mexico 13.44 ¢/kWh $80
New York 19.74 ¢/kWh $118
North Carolina 12.24 ¢/kWh $73
North Dakota 10.03 ¢/kWh $60
Ohio 12.87 ¢/kWh $77
Oklahoma 11.21 ¢/kWh $67
Oregon 11.01 ¢/kWh $66
Pennsylvania 14.70 ¢/kWh $88
Rhode Island 23.46 ¢/kWh $140
South Carolina 13.91 ¢/kWh $83
South Dakota 11.35¢/kWh $68
Tennessee 11.49¢/kWh $68
Texas 12.80 ¢/kWh $76
Utah 10.55 ¢/kWh $63
Vermont 19.80 ¢/kWh $118
Virginia 12.54 ¢/kWh $75
Washington 10.14 ¢/kWh $60
West Virginia 13.34 ¢/kWh $80
Wisconsin 15.20 ¢/kWh $91
Wyoming 10.69 ¢/kWh $64
U.S. 14.47 ¢/kWh $86

 

The above table assumes your refrigerator consumes 600 kWh per year. This is inline with some of the latest fridge models released by LG. 

If you want to work out your own consumption costs simply multiple your states electricity cost by your refrigerators kWh consumption. 

Example: 

You live in Texas (12.80 ¢/kWh) and your refrigerator consumes 800 kWh per year. 

0,1280 * 800 = $102 a year. 

How to reduce refrigerator power consumption?

how to reduce refrigerator power consumption

1. Invest in a double door refrigerator. Every-time you open a fridge it loses it warms up as the cool air escapes. When this happens the compressor needs to pump refrigerant through the coils once again to get it to your desired temperature. A double door fridge ensures that no freezer cooled air escapes every time you open the main fridge door. 

2. Check your fridges gasket (it is the rubber lining on the door frame). If this is broken, cold air will continuously escape, meaning your fridge needs to work overtime in order to keep the temperature cool. 

3. Keep your refrigerator in a well ventilated area, at least 11 inches away from the wall. The warmer the fridge gets, the harder it needs to work. 

4. Clean your compressor/coils once a month. I am sure you have checked behind your fridge before and seen how much dust accumulates? Vacuum this all off, a clean coil will cool easily.

Final thoughts

We hope this article shed some light on how much power a fridge consumes. It should be mentioned that if you own a portable fridge you could actually power it with one of our solar generators. 

Your best bet would be with our AC200P and AC300

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