What Causes Ice in My Milk Carton & My Eggs to Freeze in the Refrigerator?

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When you can't pour a drop from a newly-bought carton of milk, or the eggs feel more like ice cubes, you know there's a problem. Though your refrigerator may seem to have developed an identity crisis overnight, there's likely a more simple cause. Depending on what the problem is, it may be simple or it may require a professional to fix.

The Cost

  • Icy milk and frozen eggs are more than an inconvenience. On top of the effort required to throw out the cereal or batter the ice ruins, there's the cost of buying replacements. If you don't find out the cause of your refrigeration problems, though, you only repeat the cycle, resulting in more money lost. Your utility bill also suffers when the food in your refrigerator freezes since it's a sign that your appliances are working overtime.

Temperature Settings

  • When food freezes in your refrigerator, the first thing you should do is check the temperature setting. Food safety demands that you keep the refrigerator cooled to 40 degrees Fahrenheit. Though your foods may survive at a cooler temperature, even a few degrees too low could cause ice crystals to form. Home improvement expert and author Dan Vandervort of HomeTips.com suggests a temperature no lower than 36 degrees Fahrenheit. Check the temperature of your freezer too. According to Vandervort, you can set it as high as 5 degrees Fahrenheit.

Positioning

  • You may notice that foods are more likely to freeze in different parts of your refrigerator. Although perhaps counter-intuitive, the experts at RepairClinic.com advise you to keep items on the top shelves if you don't want them to freeze. If you don't notice a difference after moving your milk and eggs there, your problem may be more serious.

Bigger Problems

  • An assortment of problems can result in a freezer-temperature refrigerator, many of which require the help of an appliance repair specialist. If the coils under your refrigerator are dusty, this is a simple problem you can solve yourself by cleaning them. On the other hand, the thermostat, the evaporator fan motor, the condenser fan or the refrigerant system may be broken, in which case you should call a professional.

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