fridge light

Ever wondered why your fridge has a light but your freezer doesn’t?

Life is full of mysteries that come in all shapes and sizes. Some are undoubtedly more important than others – such as wondering where that pen you put down disappeared to, pondering over where your cat goes during the day or why fridges have lights but freezers don’t. At Repair Aid, we’re not best placed to give you answers to those first two questions – but, being fridge and freezer experts, we can try to cover the third one.

With that said, it’s worth pointing out that there is no easy answer. In fact, there are a few possible explanations. One may be true, or all may have some truth behind them. We’ll let you decide which theory you think is the correct explanation.

Theory #1: Cost/benefit

One for believers of Occam’s razor (i.e. the simplest explanation is most likely to be the correct one), it’s said that it all comes down to cost to the manufacturer and benefit to the user.

Now, we know light bulbs are hardly the most expensive things in the world – but you have to consider the costs associated with fitting a light in. You have to seal the fixture (protecting it from moisture), wire it up, add a switch or sensor or mechanism that detects when the door opens.

Just as we decide to choose the tin of chopped tomatoes that are 5p cheaper than the other tin of chopped tomatoes, manufacturers like to cut any costs that they can from the manufacturing process. Even though that cost may be low to fit an extra light on a unit, you need to times that amount by how many units are in a production line. It starts to add up.

Then you’ve got the research side of things. Studies show us that people just don’t have their freezers open very often – and especially not at night. Fridges, however, are more open for far longer and we tend to deliberate what we want from a fridge for longer. Freezers tend to only be opened when we know what we want – such as when we’re preparing dinner. As such, the kitchen light will already be on anyway – so what’s the point in that second light?

Why is There a Light in the Refrigerator

Theory #2: Crystals

Yes, that’s right, it could actually be to do with crystals. And while we’d love to continue to indulge your fantastical thoughts over a conspiratorial tale involving crystals and freezers, let’s stick to the world of fact: we’re actually talking about ice crystals.

While there are now automatic defrosting freezers on the market today, most of us still use non-automatic models. Because of this, we need to manually defrost our freezers. Many of us are probably guilty of not doing this as much as we should and, therefore, ice crystals begin to form as a result of us opening the door and allowing humidity to walk right in. These crystals not only reduce the freezer’s efficiency levels, but may even obscure the light and, therefore, reduce its benefits to us.

Theory #3: Our freezers are too full

While this theory might intersect with the cost/benefit theory, it’s definitely one that makes sense. Freezers tend to be packed full of ice cream and lollies, meats, fish, leftover dinners and all sorts of other stuff that we’re not ready to use yet. As such, freezers tend to be packed to the gunnels with all sorts of things.

So what has that got to do with a light? Well, if our freezers are full, then where does the light go? It’d likely end up concealed by your frozen peas – making it a hassle to move around items just to get to the light. It’s hardly worth it for the manufacturer if it’s hardly worth it for you.

Theory #4: Aliens!

Yes, the one you’ve been waiting for!

Well, not really… we just didn’t have a clever way of ending the article.

In all seriousness, there are a few other theories. It could be because of light bulbs potentially heating up freezers and older light bulbs shattering in more traditional freezers – but for today’s products, we think it’s probably best explained by one or all of the first three theories.

With that said, we do know that Mulder and Scully are always game – so if you can somehow explain to them why aliens are involved (it shouldn’t be too hard), feel free to get in touch with the FBI’s finest basement dwellers. Leave us out of the email chain though, would you?

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