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A refrigerator is an essential item for most households. Having to deal with a broken refrigerator can be tough, especially if money is tight.
With Christmas coming up, it can seem like the worst time of year for your fridge to break down. Especially if you have just done a big shop in preparation for the upcoming festivities.
The good news is, if you take action quickly, all may not be lost.
A broken refrigerator should not warm-up straight away
When your refrigerator breaks, it may take a little while to warm-up inside.
This means that you have some (limited) time to think about what you’re going to do with all that food.
Try not to open the door, as this will speed up the loss of cold air.
How long your fridge takes to warm up will vary but to be on the safe side, we recommend you get your food into a working fridge within an hour or so.
Does that food really need to be in the fridge?
Some food, such as meat and dairy products, should be kept cold in a fridge or they will spoil very quickly and no longer be safe to eat.
Other products do not really need to be in a refrigerator – many of us have just got used to putting them in there!
Vegetables such as squashes, potatoes, onions and garlic don’t really need to be in the fridge. Just find a dark cupboard to store these in, instead.
Tomatoes are also perfectly fine at room temperature – in fact, many say they taste much better this way!
In reality, most vegetables (other than salad leaves) should be fine if left out of the fridge for a couple of days.
If it’s cold outside, you could find a (mouse-proof) box and keep your veggies in a shaded area of your garden to prolong their shelf-life even further. Not such a good idea for the summer months!
Bread is something else that many of us put in the fridge – however, there really is no need.
Tomato ketchup should be fine in your kitchen cupboard for a little while, too.
Eggs should also be OK outside of the fridge, as long as they are kept at a constant temperature below 20℃. Take a look at this for more information.
You can check if your eggs are OK by filling up a sink full of water and placing them in it. If they float, throw them away.
Work out what is going to spoil first…
Cook a lovely dinner out of the things that are going to spoil. Channel your inner Nigella. A broken refrigerator does not, unfortunately, signal that it’s time for a takeaway.
For everything else that just won’t keep outside of the fridge, you could ask your neighbour if you could have a little fridge space in their house for a few days.
You could even invite that neighbour to your broken refrigerator dinner as a little ‘thank you’ for giving you somewhere to store your food.
No cash and a broken refrigerator?
It’s not cheap to replace a broken refrigerator.
If possible, ask a professional to quote to repair it. Then compare this with the cost of buying a new one.
If you are short on cash, you could ask your boss for an advance or maybe borrow the money from a friend or a relative. You could also consider taking out a short-term loan or a payday loan to cover the costs until you are paid.
Payday loans are designed to use in emergencies, as money can be in your bank account in as little as one hour after approval.
Many lenders also enable you to pay back your loan early without a penalty.
As with any type of finance, it is important to ensure that you can comfortably afford to pay back anything that you borrow.
For more information on , take a look at our .
Conclusion: How to overcome a broken refrigerator
A broken refrigerator doesn’t have to mean wasted food.
With a little planning and a willing neighbour, you can salvage as much as possible, while deciding whether to repair or replace your appliance.
For those who are strapped for cash, borrowing money, whether from friends, family or a reputable payday loan provider, can be something to think about.