Can You Cool a Room By Opening the Refrigerator?

Running a refrigerator releases heat, so opening it to cool a room isn't a great plan.
Running a refrigerator releases heat, so opening it to cool a room isn't a great plan. Peter Cade / Getty Images

Can you cool a room by opening the refrigerator? It might be tempting to open the refrigerator door to cool off when it's hot, but will it really help? The answer depends on a few different factors relating to your refrigerator.

Answer: Can you cool a room or your house by leaving the refrigerator door open? You can fan yourself with the door to cool yourself down, but you can't actually lower the temperature of the room.

This is because refrigeration is not a perfectly efficient process. More heat enters the room through the exhaust vent than is extracted from the inside of the refrigerator. Now, if you're desperate to cool a room with the refrigerator, you can... but only if the refrigerator is off and you're using the chilled contents already inside the box, sort of like a giant ice cube. Alternatively, you can use a refrigerator to cool a room if the heat vents for the fridge are in a different room.

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