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Close the Refrigerator Door!

In the bustle of the holidays, cooks often make a mistake that can spoil the food and raise the energy bill: They leave the refrigerator door open.

Sure, it’s convenient to let it sit open if you’re going to get back to it in a minute. But it’s one of the most energy-inefficient things you can do in the kitchen.

Here are some energy-saving tips that will keep your food fresh, your family healthier and your energy use under control as you overuse your kitchen this holiday season:

  • Before you place leftovers in the fridge, wrap them up. Raw meat and poultry leak, and those juices can contaminate other food on a lower self.
  • Cool food on the counter before sticking it in the fridge. Hot food will raise the temperature inside the refrigerator.
  • Fill your fridge so cold items can help keep other items cool. But don’t stuff it. An overflowing refrigerator doesn’t allow air to circulate between items, which tricks the unit into working harder and using more energy.

Don’t rely on your refrigerator to automatically set the temperature. Check it often so it stays at around 37 degrees. The freezer should have a temperature of zero, according to Consumer Reports.