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What is the ideal temperature in the fridge and freezer?


Have you ever found yourself in a situation where the food in your fridge is partially frozen or lukewarm? It’s quite frustrating, isn’t it? To avoid such issues, it’s important to know the ideal temperature for your refrigerator. In this article, Jacob Dillard, an expert in appliance repair, provides some recommendations for the appropriate fridge temperature. If your refrigerator is turning milk into cheese, or freezing fruits and vegetables, it may be time to adjust the temperature or check if there is any issue with the appliance.

fridge and freezer working temperature

All refrigerators can slow down the growth of bacteria. Freezers, on the other hand, ensure the safety of your food by keeping it at very low temperatures, which prevents bacteria from growing. If your refrigeration appliances are unable to maintain the right temperature, it’s time to fix them.

Perfect temperature in the fridge

To prevent food from spoiling, it is important to store it properly. Bacteria are always present and can feed on our food, but storing food in the fridge can significantly slow their growth. We recommend keeping the temperature in the fridge at 8°C. If you open and close the fridge frequently, it is important to adjust the temperature between 1 and 5°C to keep your food fresh and safe to eat.

different temperature areas in refrigerator

What the numbers on the temperature controller mean?

Most refrigerators do not display the current temperature on the control knob. Instead, they have symbolic numbers from 1 to 5. All these numbers mean is the cooling capacity. 

fridge temperature controller
The higher the setting you choose on your cooling device, the cooler your food will remain. For example, if you set the dial at number 5, your fridge compartment will make your food the coldest. If you want to keep track of the exact temperature condition in your fridge compartment, you can place a thermometer on its middle shelf. Additionally, you can find out about other ways to keep the temperature of your cooling device in constant check.

Perfect temperature in the freezer

Like the fridge compartment, the freezer compartment has an ideal temperature range for properly freezing food. Most freezer manufacturers recommend temperatures between -18°C (0°F) and -17°C (1.4°F) for safe long-term storage of frozen food.

At such low temperatures, bacteria go into a dormant state and cannot multiply and spoil the food. Freezing prevents fresh food from drying out and retains more nutrients than other preservation methods.

types of freezers

Do not set the freezer temperature too low unnecessarily. An ultra-low freezer temperature below -23°C (-10°F) can cause foods to dry out and get freezer burn over time. Frozen foods kept at proper freezer temperatures can maintain quality for 3-12 months.

By finding the sweet spot in the -18°C to -17°C range, your frozen foods will keep at peak quality and safety until you’re ready to thaw and enjoy them.

Finally, the temperature of your refrigerator or freezer can change over time, and you can no longer control it at the level you need without proper repair. In this case, Appliance Repair Expert is ready to come to your aid and fix possible problems in the early stages. You can also consult with us at no charge about whether it is worth repairing or performing preventive maintenance on your refrigeration appliance.

Some of the tricks for maintaining cooling appliances you can find in our video:

Author: Jacob Dillard
My name is Jacob Dillard, and I am the author of articles at Appliance Repair Expert. Since childhood, I have been fascinated by technology and spent much time reading different books and trying to repair my first CD player. Then, I graduated from the University of Toronto with a degree in Applied Science and Engineering. In a year, I got my first job as a technician at an appliance repair company. After years of practice and working with professionals, I decided it was time to share my knowledge and experience here at Appliance Repair Expert. I want to help you understand everything related to appliance repair, maintenance and installation in the simplest way possible. It will be fun, believe me!

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