A mini fridge is a godsend for those who like to keep their drinks cold but don’t want to deal with the hassle of a full-size fridge. Whether you’re looking for a refrigerator for your college dorm room or office, a mini fridge is a great option.
But before adding one into your shopping cart, you’ll need to know how much electricity it will use. After all, you don’t want your electric bill to skyrocket just because you want to keep your drinks cold! So, how many amps does a mini fridge use?
Well, I’ll answer that question in this blog post, and I’ll even narrow down to the specific electricity consumption of different mini fridges. And that’s not all yet – there’s just so much lined up for you. So, keep reading until the end! And as usual, let’s begin at the very beginning.
What are Refrigerator Amps?
Refrigerator amps are a measure of how much current the fridge draws from your home’s electrical system. This is important to know because it can help you determine if your home’s electrical system can handle the load of a new fridge.
For example, if your home has an electrical system that can only handle 10 amps, and you try to plug in a fridge that uses 12 amps, the circuit will trip and your fridge won’t work. So, it’s always important to know how much power your appliance uses before you plug it in!
How Many Amps Does a Mini Fridge Use?
Different mini fridge models use different amounts of power, but most compact fridges require less than 2 amps when connected to a 120-volt outlet. The wattage rating usually runs from 50 to 100 watts, although some models may need up to 240 watts.
We’ve all known refrigerators to be power guzzlers, but it’s important to remember that mini fridges are much smaller than full-size models. Usually, the size of a mini fridge runs from 1.6 to 4.5 cubic feet. In comparison, a full-size fridge is about 20 cubic feet.
Because of their small size, mini fridges use much less amount of electricity than their full-size counterparts. In fact, a mini-fridge uses about one-tenth of the power that a full-size fridge uses. This makes them a much more energy-efficient option, which is great news for your electric bill!
Of course, the exact amount of electrical power your fridge uses will depend on several factors, among which; the size of the fridge and the individual features.
Let’s look at the amperage draw of different mini fridge models to get a better idea.
How Many Amps Does A 1.6 / 1.7 Cubic Feet Mini Fridge Use?
The amperage requirement for a 1.6 or 1.7 cubic feet mini fridge depends on the model you choose, but it will usually fall under an amp when connected to a 120-volt outlet. The wattage rating is generally less than 70 watts, although some models may require up to 100 watts.
A 1.6/1.7 cubic feet mini-fridge is the smallest size available, so it uses some of the lowest amount of power. And while the wattage here isn’t cast in stone, models in this size range tend to use less than an amp when connected to a 120-volt outlet.
The Midea WHS-65LB1, for instance, takes 50 watts per hour to run. So, if drawing power from a 120-volt outlet, the exact amperage will be 0.43 amps, which is less power than what most appliances use.
Here’s how to calculate the amps:
Amps = Watts / Volts
= 50 watts / 120 volts
= 0.43 amps
But then again, don’t expect every other 1.6/1.7 cubic feet freezer to use the same amount of power as the Midea WHS-65LB1. Energy consumption depends on the specific model and its features. The BLACK+DECKER BCRK17W, for example, draws about 70 watts of power. That translates to 0.583 amps, which is slightly higher but still lower than 1 amp.
How Many Amps Does a 3.2 Cubic Foot Refrigerator Use?
Usually, a 3.2 cubic foot fridge needs less than 2 amps when connected to a 120-volt outlet. The exact power requirement will depend on your chosen model and its features. The wattage rating can be slightly higher than that of a 1.6/1.7 cubic feet mini fridge, but it can also fall in the same range.
A 3.2 cubic foot fridge is still pretty small, but it’s slightly larger than a 1.6/1.7 cubic feet mini fridge. Actually, the size tells us that it’s twice as big as the 1.6/1.7 cubic feet mini fridge. But that’s not to say it needs twice the power.
In fact, it uses about the same amount of power as the 1.6/1.7 cubic feet mini fridge, give or take. Let’s consider the Midea WHD-113FSS1, for instance. This fridge uses 80 watts, drawing 0.667 amps at 120 volts.
Even so, the wattage spectrum here is slightly broader than that of the 1.6/1.7 cubic feet mini fridge. The BLACK+DECKER BCRK32B, for example, has the energy usage of 219 watts of power. That means it needs 1.825 amps at 120 volts – still less than 2 amps.
How Many Amps Does a 4.4 Cu Ft Refrigerator Use?
You can expect a 4.4 cubic-foot fridge to use between an amp and two amps at 120 volts. Again, it all depends on the specific model you buy, so ensure that you check the wattage rating before making a purchase.
A 4.4 cubic-foot fridge is one of the most popular compact fridge sizes on the market. It’s big enough to hold a few days’ worth of groceries, but it’s still small enough to be considered a mini refrigerator.
And on the power requirement, it usually only operates within 1-2 amps at 120 volts. Even so, some models fall outside either side of this spectrum, albeit with a small margin. A case in point of such models is the Danby Designer DAR044A4BDD-6. The energy star unit uses 115 watts, which translates to 0.958 amps at 120 volts.
How Many Amps Does a Refrigerator Use?
According to the US department of energy, a refrigerator typically draws about 6.04 amps at 120 volts, although the actual amperage range is 3.33 amps to 10.83 amps at the same voltage. That’s to say, an average refrigerator needs 725 watts an hour, with the range usually running between 400 and 1300 watts.
Refrigerators are among the power-thirsty appliances you have at home. Precisely, your appliance should claim at least 10% of your home’s total power if you’re anything like the average American family.
While the average rating of 725 watts is lower than that of some home appliances, it doesn’t mean that refrigerators use less energy. A fridge runs longer than most other appliances, which is why it may use more power in the long run.
How Many Volts Does a Mini Fridge Use?
A mini fridge is usually 120 volts if selling in American markets. However, the voltage may differ in other countries. In most European countries, for example, the standard voltage is 220 volts. Always check the specifications before making a purchase.
Voltage is one of the most important specs you should check when buying an appliance. If you’re not careful, you might end up with a fridge that can’t even run on your home’s power supply. But most electronic appliances now come with dual voltage support, which means they can run on 120 to 240 volts.
Do Mini Fridges Use a Lot of Electricity?
Mini fridges don’t use a lot of electricity. In fact, most mini fridges use about 70 watts of power, which is just about what most incandescent bulbs use and about a tenth of what a larger models uses.
If you’re wondering about the impact a mini fridge will have on your electricity bill, don’t worry. While mini fridges run longer than most appliances, they don’t use nearly as much power. So, even though your mini fridge will add to your electricity bill, the increase will be negligible.
Let’s assume you have a 70-watt compact fridge that runs about 10 hours daily. That’s 700 watts a day, 21 kWh a month, and 252 kWh a year. At an average price of 13 cents per kWh, that’s $2.73 a month and $32.76 a year to operate your mini fridge.
While the exact cost will vary depending on the model of the fridge, the size, the number of hours it runs, and the price of electricity in your area, you can expect the cost to operate a mini fridge to be about $30 to $40 a year.
Can I Run a Mini Fridge on a 15 Amp Circuit?
Yes, you can run a mini fridge on a 15-amp circuit. Most mini fridges use less than 2 amps of electrical power, which is less than the stipulated 80% threshold of 15 amps, that is, 12 amps. So, don’t expect it to trip your electrical breaker.
However, if you have other devices plugged into the same circuit, it’s important to check the combined power draw to ensure that you don’t exceed the 15-amp limit. If you do, you’ll trip the breaker and interrupt power to all devices on that circuit.
Other factors, such as the type of wire and the distance from the breaker to the outlet, can also affect the amount of power your circuit can handle. So, if you’re unsure, it’s always best to consult an electrician.
What Kind of Solar System Do You Need To Run a Mini Fridge?
The kind of solar system you need to run a mini fridge depends on the type of fridge and the wattage rating of your solar panel. Most small fridges use between 70 and 80 watts, so you would need a solar panel with a wattage rating that’s above that.
Before we proceed, it’s good to understand what wattage means in solar terms. A solar panel is rated in watts, which measures the amount of power it can produce. A 100-watt solar panel, for example, can produce 100 watts of power per hour.
So, if you have a compact fridge with a power consumption of 70 watts and you want to run it for 8 hours, you would need a solar panel that can produce at least 560 watts of power (70 watts x 8 hours). However, it’s always best to overestimate your power needs to ensure that your fridge has enough power.
As for the power inverter, it should handle at least twice the wattage of your fridge. So, if your fridge needs 1kWh of power a day, get one that can handle at least 2kWh. And now on batteries, it depends on your area’s weather, but get a battery with enough capacity to power your fridge for at least 2 days.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQS)
Is It Better To Buy An Older Model or Newer Model of Mini Fridge?
It’s generally better to buy a newer mini-fridge model because newer models are more energy-efficient than older refrigerators. However, it’s essential to compare the features of different models to find the one that best suits your needs.
How Much Energy Does a Mini Fridge Use Per Day?
It depends on the model of the fridge and the number of hours it’s used. However, most mini fridges use between 70 and 80 watts, which is about 700 to 800 watt-hours a day, assuming that they run for 10 hours a day.
Which One is Better: Single or Double Door Models of Mini Fridges?
Whether a single or double-door mini fridge model is better depends on what your “better” entails. A single-door model is better if you’re looking for a more energy-efficient fridge. However, a double-door model is better if you’re looking for a refrigerator with more storage capacity.
A mini fridge isn’t like the larger standard fridge you have in your kitchen at home. It’s a smaller, more compact version of a refrigerator that’s designed for use in smaller spaces. Its electrical power usage is almost negligible, costing just $30 to $40 a year, and that could be even less than what a single incandescent light bulb would cost you in a year.