Average Life of Refrigerators | 5 Tips to Extend The Lifespan

What is the average life of a refrigerator? The average lifespan of a standard refrigerator is 13 years. However, compact refrigerators have a shorter lifespan, which is around nine years. But these numbers can be enhanced by a few maintenance tips.

Your fridge can last up to 20 years with proper maintenance and care because refrigerators’ average life is heavily affected by its usage.

So in this guide, we will let you know the 5 tips that can prolong your refrigerator’s life. Also, we will explain the signs that indicate your appliance is about to die.


5 Tips to Make Your Refrigerator Last Longer

After reaching the life expectancy, your fridge will start causing issues, such as cooling problems, water leaks, loud noises, temperature fluctuations, malfunctioning in icemaker, etc.

However, with proper maintenance and care, you can enhance the lifespan of your appliance.

Make Your Refrigerator Last Longer

The following are the tips to prolong the life of your refrigerator.

1. Clean and Lubricate the Door Seals

Refrigerator seals play a vital role in maintaining the cold temperature inside and holding the inner air from escaping outside. However, the seals’ dirt will prevent them from performing their function.

It will also make it harder for a fridge to maintain the internal temperature and ultimately shorten the life span.

2. Clean the Condenser Coils

Condenser coils attract dirt and dust and accumulate over time. So, you must clean the condenser coils at least every six months because it can negatively impact your fridge’s cooling abilities.

Therefore, to make them in working condition, you need to vacuum them regularly.

3. Clear the Vents

The vents on the sidewalls and the roof of your refrigerator assist in the circulation of cold air.

However, vents can get obstructed with food, and it may cause frost and affect the cooling ability of the fridge.

So, do not place any foodstuff directly in front of vents. Also, visually check it on a weekly basis, and if any blockages occur, wipe them away with warm water using a wet rag.

4. Level the Fridge

In order to see your fridge last longer, make sure the fridge is level. If it is not balanced, it can strain the motor and lessen the lifespan.

Since some floors are uneven, you can use adjustable feet to level the fridge.

5. Spot Issues Early

If you suspect anything wrong with your fridge, do not hesitate to contact a repairer. In most cases, people overlooked minor issues, resulting in costly repairs.

Therefore, always pay attention to the problems, such as malfunctioning ice maker, weird noises, temperature inconsistency, and water leakages.

7 Signs Your Refrigerator is Dying

When to buy a new refrigerator? No matter how strong and reliable your refrigerator brand is, most refrigerators begin to deteriorate after hitting the expected age. So, you’ll have two options: repair or replace with a new one.

If the problems are minor, the repair is the best option. On the other hand, if the issues are severe, like the snoring sound of a motor, it is wiser to buy a new one.

You need to check the following signs to make the final decision.

1. Spoiling Your Food Before Expiration its Date

If food spoils before the expiration date, check the temperature settings first. According to the standard, the internal temperature of your refrigerator should be between 36 and 40 degrees.

If the temperature is normal, check the tightness of the door seals. The seals help in temperature control by maintaining cold air inside.

If nothing seems to be wrong, you have the worst refrigerator brand, or it is on its last legs. So, you should start looking into some reliable replacement options on the market.

2. The Motor Sound is Too Loud

Indeed, all of the home appliances make noises.

But, if you have suddenly started noticing loud noises or snoring sounds out of your refrigerator, it is not a good indication. It signals that the motor is overheating or overworking.

If these noises are occasional, it might not be a severe problem. It can be fixed after hiring a professional repairer.

In case the loud noises are constant, it may be a warning that the machine needs to be replaced.

3. Refrigerator is Too Quiet

If your refrigerator is quiet, the motor might not be working long enough, or the compressor is damaged.

In this scenario, you would also need a professional repairer’s services or start searching for a new model.

4. The Back of the Fridge Feels Hot

Refrigerators generate a lot of heat due to their high power consumption.

However, the motor and coils are located on the back of the fridge, which makes the backside warmer compared to the other sides.

If the coils are continuously overheated, the refrigerator is malfunctioning and will likely worsen if not handled immediately.

5. You are Noticing Condensation or Frost

Excessive frost or condensation means that your refrigerator’s cooling capacity is inadequate. However, these issues may mean that the gasket needs replacing, which is a much less expensive option.

Also, check the door seal; if it is in good condition, then the days of your appliance are over.

6. Calling a Repairer More Often

When a refrigerator reaches the average life cycle, you may have a repair guy on speed dial. Your fridge will break more often from minor to major issues.

Although you can save money in the short run, you may end up shelling big bucks on repairs in the long run. In this scenario, it is wiser to buy a new appliance.

7. Increase in the Electricity Bill

These heavy appliances usually consume more energy compared with other home items. An outdated refrigerator can have a huge impact on your electricity bill because of excessive consumption of power.

Hence, it is just another sign that your appliance’s life is coming to an end.


The average life of a refrigerator can be enhanced with timely maintenance and care. After completing the expected life, you may start witnessing the number of issues in your appliance.

So, it might be an indication to search for a new fridge instead of bearing the extra repair cost on the old model.

Steven Settles Author

Steven Settles is an ISCET-certified master in appliance repair. He has aced the National Appliance Service Technician Certification Exam, showcasing his exceptional diagnostic and repair skills. With an in-depth understanding of the latest repair technologies and a keen eye on evolving industry standards, Steven is a go-to expert for any appliance issue.

1 thought on “Average Life of Refrigerators | 5 Tips to Extend The Lifespan”

  1. Fridges in Australia take a pounding every summer where temps of above 35*C are the Norm. 7 to 10 years is absolute max no matter how much you shell out. If you’ve got a tribe of kids in the unit all day grabbing snacks and drinks all day you can expect a $500 a year power bill also!!


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