Having a freezer can save a ton of money on your grocery budget, but you need to know which is the right one for your family and how to keep it running for years to come.
Of all of the appliances in my house, there’s only one that has paid for itself over and over again, and that’s my freezer. Without it I would not be able to take advantage of the awesome sales that I run across or be able to purchase a side of beef, at a discount, every year. My freezer is the main reason why I’m able to save so much on my grocery budget.
I purchased my very first freezer about 20 years ago. It was a little 7.0 cu. ft. freezer, perfect for my small family, but as my family grew, we out grew that freezer. I now have a 20 cu. ft. freezer along with the first one that I bought. Yes, it’s still working and works as good as the day that I bought it, I’m very diligent in keeping up with the maintenance and it’s paid off.
Freezer Buying Tips
If you’re planning on purchasing a new freezer, here are a few tips to think about first.
- Decide where you will put the freezer.
- Decide what size of a freezer that you need.
- Decide what style of freezer you want, upright or chest.
- Decide on what special features you want. *My view is the more special features that you add, the more that can go wrong with it and the special features cost more.
- Decide on a budget. If you can’t afford a new one check the classifieds or craigslist.
- More efficient, cold doesn’t escape as easily.
- Food keeps longer, because it’s more efficient.
- They are more economically priced.
- More freezer capacity.
- Easy to store bulky items.
- Lower profile.
- Food is more difficult to get to.
- Takes up a lot of floor space.
- Most are manual defrost.
- Takes up less floor space.
- Easy to relocate
- Food is easy to get to.
- Most come with automatic defrost.
- Energy costs are higher.
- Food gets freezer burn more easily from the automatic defrost.
- They are generally priced higher than chest freezers.
Here are some of the things that I’ve done that have made my freezer last for over 20 years.
The ideal temperature for your freezer is 0°F (-18°C) or lower. FDA
Keep a thermometer in the freezer. Check it regularly to make sure that it’s maintaining temperature.
The freezer should be kept on a level surface away from heat. Optimally it should be in a cool, dry, well-ventilated place.
To keep energy costs low, keep your freezer fully stocked. When your stock is running low fill the empty space with milk jugs filled with water. *Use the water jugs in your coolers for those summer outings.
If you are moving, be sure to let the freezer sit unplugged for at least 3 hours before plugging back in. This will lengthen the life of your freezer.
To save your food during a power outage, wrap your freezer in blankets and don’t open it. The food should keep for about 3-4 days.
If your freezer unexpectedly goes out, check the circuit breaker and the plug. Many freezers have been discarded when it was just a simple fix.
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Bonnie H says
These are very nice tips. I can't imagine life without a deep freezer. 🙂
~Bonnie @ Our Secondhand House
These are some great tips. Thanks for sharing!
Melissa French - The More With Less Mom says
When making soups I double the recipe and freeze half for another night. Thanks for sharing. Hello from Busy Monday!
Alison P. says
I thought long and hard about the freezer we were going to buy before we did it. We got an upright without auto defrost. I still have to defrost the freezer but at 5 foot 3 inches, I knew that I wouldn't be reaching the things in the bottom of a chest freezer without jumping in. I don't think that I could live without my freezer. I have so much stuff in there and my heart drops every time we loose power because I am afraid that we are going to loose all the food. I am still super excited to have it there and give me the chance to keep lots of meat and freeze rolls and other homemade treats that we can have whenever we want them.