Unlike your refrigerator, your freezer runs more efficiently when it’s tightly packed. That means if your freezer isn’t completely full, you should place something inside the freezer to fill up the empty space and that is exactly what we’re going to do today.
One way to accomplish this by placing bottles of water in your freezer when it isn’t full. This is referred to as “heat sinking.” When the freezer shuts off, the the frozen bottles will help keep the food frozen. The frozen bottles will also slow down the natural heat transfer between the freezer walls and the food meaning that the freezer doesn’t have to power on again as quickly as if there weren’t there. These frozen water bottles can also help in a number of other ways.
When filling your freezer with water bottles, remember to not fill the bottles completely full when placing them in the freezer. Water expands about 10% and you don’t want the bottles bursting in your freezer.
The other method that can be used is called “freezer blocking.” The concept is the same as filling the freezer with water bottles, but this time you use boxes filled with insulation. As with the water bottles, less electricity will be required to freeze the food since there is less air in the freezer and thus the freezer won’t have to work as hard.
For the boxes, you can use any type of insulation to fill them – regular household fiberglass wall insulation will work just fine which is fairly inexpensive and easily purchased at any home improvement store. Another options would be using shipping and packaging insulating peanuts. Try to get a variety of box sizes as this will make filling the freezer much easier. Once the boxes are filled with insulation, you’ll want to tape them shut since you don’t want the insulating material mixing with your food.
Whichever of the two methods you choose, you’ll want to place the insulated boxes or water bottles in the open spaces on either side of the food and not on top. Placing it on top will make it much more difficult to reach the food that you want when opening the freezer and in shuffling everything around, you’ll likely leave the freezer door open longer which will waste energy. Placing the packing material on either side will allow you to get to your food quickly without moving everything all around.
By taking the time to make sure that your freezer is packed tight, you’ll ensure that it is running as efficiently as possible and you are saving money.