Save money and energy by replacing your old fridge

I had two old fridges more than 15 years old in my house.  The downstairs one had been repaired a few years ago for a broken heater while my upstairs one had a recent problem with a stuck defrost timer which I replaced with a part bought on Amazon.  After the repair, I noticed the fridge seals were in rough shape so I started searching Craigslist for some used fridges.  Modern fridges were supposedly more energy efficient so I was looking for something newer but used to save some money.  I found one for $100 that had a cooling problem in the fridge section,  but the seller indicated the freezer section was fine.  There was probably ice blocking air flow from the freezer to the fridge compartment that a manual defrost fixed easily.  A few weeks, later I found a second one (same model) for $200.

My local utility, BC Hydro,  had recently switched to smart meters and offered a $75 rebate for decreasing energy usage by 10% over a year.  They also had a fridge buy-back program which would start in the spring and would pick up and give you $30 for an old running fridge (max two claims lifetime on your account).

So the energy savings after replacement were about 50%.  My electricity bill went from between $150-$200 every 2 months to around $100.  The electricity savings alone paid back the cost of the fridges not even counting the $135 in rebates.

Not only are modern fridges more efficient, they run less since they use thermostats to cool only when needed.  Old fridges use timers and are on a cycle of either being fully on or off in defrosting mode.

Here is my energy usage graph.  In Aug I had new tenants.  They said the fridge was cranked all the way up so they turned it down.  End of December, both fridges were replaced.


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