How Long Does It Take A Refrigerator To Get Cold?

Buying a new appliance is always exciting. Especially when it comes to getting a new refrigerator. If you have recently gotten a new place and purchased a refrigerator to be delivered on move-in day. You might be wondering about the grocery situation. How long does it take a refrigerator to get cold?

A lot of groceries need to be refrigerated in order to remain at a safe temperature. If they aren’t stored at a proper temperature. Then they are at risk of growing food-borne bacteria that could make you really sick. The last thing you need is to deal with is an upset stomach. When unpacking your belongings in a new home.

Cold food should always be stored at a temperature below 40 degrees fahrenheit (4 degrees celsius) to stay in the safe zone. If you were wanting to bring home groceries on the same day you get a new refrigerator. You might be asking “how long does it take a refrigerator to get cold?”

There are a few things that determine. Just how long it will take for your refrigerator to reach a safe food handling temperature.

  • Brand
  • Size
  • Weight

Some brands of refrigerators cool down faster than others. There usually isn’t too great of a difference between brands with temperature. Size and weight have a bigger impact. A full size refrigerator that you have in your kitchen. Will take longer to cool down then a bar fridge that has a smaller area to cool.

How Long Does It Take For A Small Refrigerator To Get Cold?

Mini refrigerators are practical for any college student to have in their dorm room. They allow students to store their food without having to worry about it being stolen, which sadly happens a lot in the common fridges. They also save money by not having to eat takeout food as frequently.

If you just bought a new mini refrigerator you might be wondering how long does it take for a small refrigerator to get cold? You definitely don’t want to get groceries to store if the fridge isn’t ready yet. It’s always best to play it safe.

Higher power mini refrigerators can often start to feel cold within 2 hours. Regular models will be colder after 4 hours. However, the rule of thumb when it comes to every refrigerator is to give it 24 hours to reach proper cooling temperature.

How Long After Plugging In A Refrigerator Can It Be Used?

When it comes to moving a refrigerator there are a few things to know before it’s plugged in. To safely transport the refrigerator, it needs to be placed on it’s side. It’s important that you know roughly what time the refrigerator was placed on it’s side. Once you get the refrigerator to its destination it then needs to be placed upwards and left for the same amount of time it was placed sideways before it can be plugged in.

If the refrigerator was on side for 2 hours, then it needs to be upright for 2 hours before being plugged in. If it was sideways overnight, then you need to leave it upright for just as long to be safe. 

Now that we’ve gone over when you can plug your refrigerator in you might also be wondering how long after plugging a refrigerator can it be used? While each fridge is different, regular sized and larger fridges can take 4-8 hours before they are cool enough to use, but may take up to 24 hours to reach the ideal temperature.

The best quality refrigerators will come with a thermostat letting you know when it reaches the right temperature. Newer models will likely cool down faster as well.

How Long Does It Take A Refrigerator To Get Cold After A Power Outage?

Power outages are a huge inconvenience and if they last for long enough all the food in your refrigerator can spoil. If the power does go out try not to open the refrigerator unless it’s absolutely necessary to try to keep as much of the cold in there as possible.

When the power goes out your refrigerator will stay in the safe zone for 4 hours (as long as you didn’t open it) before it starts losing cool air. Your freezer on the other hand will have between 24-48 hours. If your refrigerator is out for more than 4 hours then you may have to replace some of the food in there due to the risk of bacteria growth.

So, how long does it take a refrigerator to get cold after a power outage? It is safe to give your fridge 8 hours to get back to a safe food handling temperature. You won’t have to worry about certain foods such as hard cheese, most condiments, juices, fruits, and vegetables. You should however discard eggs, meats, milk, and leftovers (pre-prepared meals).

How Long Does It Take A Fridge To Get Cold? Final Thoughts

The rule of thumb is to give a fridge 24 to reach proper handling temperatures of below 40 degrees fahrenheit (4 degrees celsius), but technology has come a long way and most fridges can reach proper cold temperatures within a few hours.

Remember to always give a new refrigerator a good cleaning before plugging it in. If your fridge doesn’t come with a thermostat installed and you don’t have anything to check it’s temperature, then play it safe and give it a full 24 hours to cool down. Maybe check out some of the restaurants in your new neighborhood while you wait!

Read my other article on whether you can freeze a cabbage or hummus or not.

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