Save Cool Cash this Summer with an Energy-Efficient Second Fridge

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July 11, 2014

  • Old refrigerators in basements or garages typically cost more in annual electrical bills than most consumers realize
  • An ENERGY STAR®-rated refrigerator can save hundreds on energy bills annually, paying for itself in as little as three years
  • GE’s new refrigerators, including the 15-, 16- and 18-cubic-foot refrigerators made in Decatur, Ala., meet new 2014 energy efficiency standards

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – July 11, 2014 – (NYSE:GE) – Summer is here, and that means playing outside, get-togethers with families and friends for holiday barbecues, weddings and backyard or pool parties. All of that entertaining often requires extra fridge space for beverages, snacks and leftovers. More than 40 percent of appliance owners solve that problem by keeping their old refrigerators when they buy a new one, often moving the old one to the basement, garage or man cave.1

Having a second fridge is handy, but it can be costly.

If the refrigerator humming away in your garage or basement is Avocado Green, Coppertone or Harvest Gold, it was probably built in the 1960s or 1970s and is sucking hundreds of dollars in electrical costs from your bank account each year. Average yearly electrical consumption of a 1972 refrigerator2 is 2,000 kilowatt-hours, which adds up to about $270 every year.3 Even a fridge built in the 1990s costs far more to operate than today’s models. Replacing a 1999 fridge with one of today’s ENERGY STAR® models will save about $55 each year.4

There are several good reasons to replace your old fridge with a smaller energy-efficient model:

  • Second fridges are seldom full, meaning that a smaller refrigerator will do just as well and take up less floor space.
  • A new fridge uses less electricity than an older refrigerator, saving you money and improving the environment by helping to reduce greenhouse gases.
  • A non-dispensing fridge uses less electricity than a model with an ice-maker or water dispenser.3
  • A top-freezer model uses 10 to 25 percent less electricity than a side-by-side model.3

Newer models offer significant energy saving
This year, GE's Decatur, Ala., plant is manufacturing new 15-, 16- and 18-cubic-foot top-freezer refrigerators that meet new energy efficiency standards. "The new GE top-freezer refrigerator models are attractive, energy efficient and well suited for smaller homes or as second refrigerators in garages or basements," said Dan Goldstein, refrigeration marketing manager for GE Appliances. And depending on the age of your old fridge, the payback on a new model can be only a few years.

The manufacturer’s suggested retail price for a new GE 16-cubic-foot top-freezer refrigerator (model GTE16DTHWW) is $599; the estimated cost of electricity to run it for a full year is only $41, almost 85 percent less than a 1972 model. Choose a smaller fridge—GE’s 15-cubic-foot model (HPE15BTHWW)—and pay only $549 with estimated annual energy costs of $40. When compared to the cost of operating that 1972 model, these new refrigerators can pay for themselves in less than three years. Consumers can use the ENERGY STAR website’s Refrigerator Retirement Savings Calculator to estimate their savings.

When you buy that newer, more energy-efficient model, be sure to responsibly dispose of your old refrigerator. Some states and municipalities offer rebates for recycling. See tips and information on recycling here as well as learn more about GE’s newest recycling initiative in the Northeast.

About GE Appliances
GE Appliances is at the forefront of building innovative, energy-efficient appliances that improve people’s lives. GE Appliances’ products include refrigerators, freezers, cooking products, dishwashers, washers, dryers, air conditioners, water filtration systems and water heaters. General Electric (NYSE: GE) works on things that matter to build a world that works better. For more information on GE Appliances, visit

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