Which would save electricity: higher or lower setting, in summer. My husband set it low and I tend to set it higher. I do not want my stuff to be ruined by a too low setting.

  • 1
    Respect for your readers indicates that you make the effort to be readable, instead of transferring the burden to them for your own convenience.
    – SAJ14SAJ
    Commented Jan 16, 2014 at 9:51
  • How are you using "high" and "low" in this context? Referring to your stuff being ruined by too low a setting would indicate that you are using "low setting" to mean "high temperature"?
    – SourDoh
    Commented Jan 16, 2014 at 10:37
  • @sourd'oh This is why my answer talks about warmer and colder, instead of higher and lower....
    – SAJ14SAJ
    Commented Jan 16, 2014 at 15:13

1 Answer 1


Refrigerators are heat engines, and the energy cost is somewhat proportional to the difference in temperature desired. Assuming your room temperature is typical, higher internal refrigerator temperatures are going to therefore take less energy to maintain.

Modern refrigerators are well insulated and remarkably energy efficient.

You should choose the the temperature setting of your refrigerator based on the quality and safety of the foods stored within, which indicates a temperature of about 32-40°F (0-4°C).

Too cold may freeze food, which can lead to quality issues, but is safe. Too warm can allow food to spoil, which is a far greater risk.

See also:

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