How to set an old carrier thermostat


A young man is standing in front of a full refrigerator.

A refrigerator is a device or piece of furniture that is mostly found in a kitchen. In Austria one also says ice box. Food can be stored in the refrigerator. There they are kept cold so that they don't spoil so quickly. There are also refrigerators in hospitals, for example, where certain medicines or blood products are kept cool.

The first refrigerators were built around 1930. It took another forty years before most people in rich countries had a refrigerator in the kitchen. Today there is a refrigerator in almost every household.

How did you cool before there were refrigerators?

An old refrigerator from Israel

For a long time you could only keep something cool in a cool place. That was about a basement. Ice boxes were cool because they were filled with ice: the groceries were then in a different part of the freezer.

The ice was fetched from lakes in winter and stored in cellars so that it was still available in summer. Later on you could make ice cream in factories and sell it to people.

How does a refrigerator work?

It's best to think of a pump first. When you inflate a football or a bicycle tire, the pump gets warm. This is because air is compressed. But if you spray paint or hair lacquer from a spray can, for example, the can becomes cold. This is because the gas in the spray can loses pressure.

In a refrigerator there is a coolant. A motor drives a pump. The pump compresses the coolant. This will make it warm. This heat is released into the air behind the refrigerator. The refrigerator thus warms the kitchen.

Then the pressure is released again. This makes the coolant cold. This cold is passed into the refrigerator. That's why it's getting cold in there.

The pump in a refrigerator is also called a “compressor”. Its engine needs electricity. A refrigerator is therefore not only expensive when you buy it, but also because it needs electricity in the home. The warmer it is in the kitchen, the more electricity you need, which is why it doesn't cost as much to run in winter as it does in summer.

The European Union has introduced rules on how to easily see the power consumption of refrigerators and other electrical appliances. The letters A for low to G for high power consumption are assigned. The customers in the store then know that the best thing to do is to buy a refrigerator with an "A" if they want to save electricity.

How do you use a refrigerator?

A refrigerator is best placed in a place that is not too warm. It should therefore not be placed directly next to a stove. There should also be enough clearance to the walls. This allows the heat to escape easily. You only open the refrigerator to put something in or take out quickly.

In the refrigerator itself there is a switch that you can use to set how cold it should be. Two to eight degrees Celsius are normal. A thermostat ensures that it is as cold as you set it to be. If it gets too warm in the refrigerator, the thermostat recognizes this and lets it get colder again. When it is cold enough, the compressor is switched off again.

There are both small and large refrigerators. Usually there are compartments and grids in them to store food and drinks. It's particularly cold in a freezer. Some fridges from the USA are very large and also have extras such as a machine that makes ice cubes.

  • In a shop in Singapore: a refrigerator with drinks made from milk.

  • In North America in 1970: Ice was brought from a frozen lake.

  • Lots of people like to stick magnets or pictures on the fridge door.

There are also other search results for “Fridge” from Blind Cow and Ask Finn.

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