Not too many people know that they should clean and keep clear the dust on the refrigerator coils. Your refrigerator is the 2nd most energy using appliance in the household at 13.7% (right behind the air conditioner at 16%). This is mainly because it is constantly on a running keeping your food and drinks chilled.
Keeping the coils on the refrigerator dust free and clean can save up to 6% on it’s power consumption. Why does cleaning the coils and keeping them dust free matter? Well, just like anything else that needs air and a filter to operate, the more dirt/dust in the way of the refrigerator trying to get air, the harder it has to work to get air. Hence the more energy it will use to work harder. For a DIY on how to clean your refrigerator coils, follow this link here: http://www.wikihow.com/Clean-Refrigerator-Coils
The Break Down: The average refrigerator uses about 1 kWh of electricity per day(nowadays with a new refrigerator it is less), which can work out to 365 kWh per year. We will say that the average cost of a kWh of electricity is 15¢ (could be more or less depending on where you live, your electric bill should have the cost of a kWh). This works out to a average cost of 15¢ a day or $54.75 a year to operate a refrigerator. Keep in mind that this is a refrigerator that is running properly and cleaned regularly (twice a year is strongly recommended). As I said before, a fridge that is not maintained properly will use about 6% more energy. So, keeping your refrigerator cleaned and properly maintained can help you save around 27¢ a month or ~$3.28 a year.
Now, I know what you’re thinking, $3.28 isn’t even worth the effort. To some, it may not be worth it. But keeping your refrigerator coils clean can save you time and money (possibly hundreds) down the road in repair costs.