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How Long Does It Take for a New Fridge to Get Cold?

cold fridge

When you get a new fridge, you’ll likely want to transfer food into it immediately. However, most fridges take time to cool down so you can store your food safely. So, how long does it take for a new fridge to get cold?

If you put your food in too early, you might end up with melted ice cream and sour milk, so it’s important to wait. So keep in mind that you’ll need somewhere to store the food from your old refrigerator until your new fridge has thoroughly cooled. 

Before you start filling up your new fridge, here is everything you need to know about how long it takes to get cold.


How Long Does It Take for a New Fridge to Get Cold?

It takes a refirgerator around 12 hours to reach a safe temperature of 40℉ according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). However, it’s important to note that the specific cooling time can vary depending on the brand and type of refrigerator you have. Therefore, the time required for your new fridge to cool can range anywhere from 2 to 24 hours. So, while 12 hours is a common estimate, it’s always advisable to consult the manufacturer’s guidelines for your particular model to get a more accurate timeframe.

thermometer inside a fridge next to fruit

How to Make Your Fridge Cool Down Quicker?

If you don’t have time to wait an entire day for your new fridge to cool down, there are a few ways to speed up the process.

Move Your Fridge Away From The Wall

Something as simple as the position of your fridge can affect how quickly it cools. Moving the fridge a few inches from the wall cools it down much faster. That’s because it gives air more space to circulate and allows hot air to escape the fridge faster.

Besides moving your fridge, here are a few other ways that you can cool it down faster.

Pack Your Refrigerator With Ice

Until your fridge or freezer cools down, filling it with ice will help cool it down faster. If your fridge is full of cool things such as ice or frozen food, the air that circulates will become colder, and the warm air will get pushed out faster. 

Plus, if you have ice in your fridge, you can put all your food in there faster, as placing your food next to the ice will keep it cool until the fridge reaches the right temperature.

bags of ice cubes in refrigerator tray

Keep the Refrigerator Doors Closed

The cool air is allowed to escape when you open the refrigerator doors. Even though it’s tempting to open the doors every so often to check on the temperature, keep them closed.

How Long Should You Wait To Put Food In a New Refrigerator?

Although a new refrigerator usually takes as long as 24 hours to cool down to its full operating temperature, it’s safe to store food after 3-5 hours without worrying about spoiling.

To ensure that the fridge s at a food-safe temperature, use a portable thermometer to check the internal temperature before putting your food back in.d


In this article, we’ve covered the length of time for your new refrigerator to get cold. On average, a full-size refrigerator takes 24 hours to cool down, although the internal temperature is food-safe after 3-5 hours. 

You can speed up the cooling process by moving the fridge away from the wall, cooling the room, filling it with ice, and keeping the door shut.

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