Energy Usage of a Refrigerator

Energy Usage of a Refrigerator. It's hard to miss those bright yellow Energy Star labels affixed to appliances on the showroom floor. They show you how much electricity you can expect the appliance to use in a year's time. Refrigerators earning an Energy Star label exceed minimum federal efficiency standards by at least 20 percent. The amount of energy a refrigerator uses depends in part on its size and style.

The Energy Star label tells you how much electricity a refrigerator uses.

Top-Freezer Refrigerators

One of the most energy-efficient top-freezer models is the Sun Frost RF-12. This 10.12-cubic foot model exceeds federal energy requirements by 51 percent, using 171 kilowatt hours of electricity per year. The Frigidaire LGUI1849L* and Kenmore 9704388* both beat federal standards by 31 percent. They hold 18.34 cubic feet of food and use 335 kilowatt hours annually. The Whirpool W9RXXMFW*0* surpasses federal minimums by 30 percent. It uses 343 kilowatt hours to cool its 18.92 cubic feet. The GE GTT18BBT**** needs 335 kilowatt hours annually for 18.11 cubic feet. It also surpasses federal standards by 30 percent.

Bottom-Freezer Designs

Models leading the energy-efficiency specifications in bottom-freezer refrigerators include the LG LFC21776**, which holds 20.7 cubic feet of food and requires 400 kilowatt hours a year. This model surpasses federal minimums by 33 percent. The Miele KF 1811 ** equals that percentage, requiring 422 kilowatt hours annually for 14.86 cubic feet. Models that are 30 percent better than the federal minimum include the Maytag MBF2258WE*, Kenmore 6928*01* and Whirlpool GB2FHDXW**. Each offers 21.86 cubic feet of space and consumes 403 kilowatt hours a year. The Daewoo RFS26-*#*I also sits in the 30 percent category, with 26.04 feet of space and 484 kilowatt hours.

Side-By-Side Styles

The Whirlpool GSS26C4XX*0* is a side-by-side refrigerator that beats federal standards for energy use by 32 percent. It holds 26.46 cubic feet of food and uses 499 kilowatt hours per year. The Samsung RS265TD** needs 502 kilowatt hours for its 25.5 cubic feet, beating government minimums by 31 percent. You'll find 25.76 cubic feet in the Maytag MSD2559XE*, which uses 509 kilowatt hours per year and exceeds standards by 30 percent. Other models in the 30 percent group include the Frigidaire FGUS2642L* and KitchenAid KSRT25FW**0*. The Frigidaire has 26.1 cubic feet and needs 509 kilowatt hours annually. The KitchenAid provides 25.5 cubic feet and uses 509 kilowatt hours every 12 months.

Refrigerator-Only Models

Appliances earning the Energy Star label include those with no freezer section. The Fisher & Paykel RB36S exceeds federal standards by 63 percent. It holds 3.1 cubic feet and needs 145 kilowatt hours of electricity each year. With 16.14 cubic feet of space, the Sun Frost R-19 beats minimums by 53 percent. It uses 204 kilowatt hours annually. The Uline 2175R holds 5.5 cubic feet of food and uses 246 kilowatt hours. This represents 42 percent less energy use than federal standards dictate.


  • Energy Star: Refrigerators