How Long Should A Refrigerator Sit After Moving?

Refrigerators are heavy appliances that can be very tricky and hard while moving. They could also be stressful and it is important to take all caution while moving the refrigerator inside the home and while shifting the appliance from store to the home.  There are also few precautions to take before moving the appliance, it is important to call for assistance and to help the heavy refrigerator.

Moving Refrigerator

It is also a good idea to have professional movers for help if it has to be carried up and down the stairs. The door of the appliance should be shut with the help of tape or a rope and secure the appliance in a blanket or wrap to absorb the shock.

The best way to transport the appliance is to keep it in a standing position, and when that is not possible, it can also be moved on its sides. And most importantly, before plugging in the appliance, it has to be made to sit for a few hours and we will tell you how long and why here.

How Long to Wait for Operations After Relocating and Installing the Refrigerator

It is tricky to move the refrigerator and it has to be done with the utmost caution, as the internal components of the refrigerators are very sensitive and could create serious trouble when the appliance is not settled before starting its operations. But depending on how the appliance has been moved, either vertical or lateral, the resumption of its operations will differ.

Refrigerator after transportation

Generally, after transporting the appliance, we have to plug in the appliance after waiting for about 4 hours before resuming its operations. It is also important to make sure that the thermostat control is also set on. But food should not be loaded right away, we should wait for some time to allow the fridge to cool so that the temperature that is maintained in the appliance is appropriate for the storage of food.

This could take about 8 to 12 hours. Some people, plug in the appliance immediately it has been transported in the upright position, but this is not the right practice. At times the appliance can be kept sideways during transit and we will have no idea about that. If the appliance is kept sideways, then it is better to wait for at least 24 hours before plugging in the refrigerator.

Also check this guide: How to Clean a Refrigerator Both Inside and Out?

How Long Should We Wait if the Refrigerator Has Been Moved on its Sides?

It is not at all a good practice to move the refrigerator on its sides, as we are ruining the internal mechanisms of the refrigerator and are also potentially breaking it. When the appliance is kept or transported sideways, the oil in the compressor will flow from the tube of the compressor into the coolant lines.

Thus the refrigerator that has been a move on its side must sit for the same amount of time at the same upright position so that the oil that has flowed into the coolant lines gets enough time to return to the compressor and also clears off completely from the coolant lines.

Generally, the refrigerator should not be moved on its sides, but if there is no other choice, then we have to make sure that the appliance is laid on its sides, opposite to where the compressor lines run out from the compressor.

That is, if the compressor lint that exists from the compressor is on the right side of the appliance, then the refrigerator should be laid on its left side. The best practice is to not lay the refrigerator at its sides at all. If at all it is moved, it is important to wait before plugging in the appliance

If you lack patience and plug in the refrigerator too soon, after it has been shifted, there are chances that the appliance suffers too much stress on the compressor. There are all chances for the compressor to get damaged and it can result in costly repair and maintenance costs.

You will get the feeling that you can go for a new appliance instead of spending on its repair. When you have the appliance built in the cabinet or connected with the waterline, then it is mandatory to seek professional help to move the appliance. 

Is it a Good Idea to Transport the Refrigerator on its Back?

While it is not a good idea to transport the refrigerator on its sides, it is not an optimal way to lie on its back while transporting as well. If you understand the basic working mechanism of the fridge, you will understand pretty well, why it is not a good idea to lay the fridge down on its back while transporting or moving it.

Presuming that all the food items and the drinks inside the refrigerator have been removing, there is still an issue with the shelves and the drawers from falling back and getting broken when the appliance is shifted on its back.

The shelves of the refrigerator that are made of glass can break easily during shifting and there are also chances of them to shift and break. The shelves of the refrigerator can also bounce back and shatter or crack on the downswing. Also moving the appliance on its back can cause significant trouble to its doors.

Though they are built with a tight vacuum seal, this will not protect them from swinging while shifting. The compressor lines can also go bonkers and leak oil in the gas tubes and thus it is not recommended to transport them on the sides. 

What Happens When this Wait Time is Not Given?

At times when we are in a hurry, we won’t offer this luxury for the appliance to allow it to settle down before turning it on. But when we miss this and plug in the refrigerator too soon, we can expect a lot of harmful things to follow. 

  • We will put too much stress on the compressor of the refrigerator and cause it to undergo sustainable damage
  • You may think that this will not put too much stress on the compressor, but though this failure doesn’t happen immediately, we can notice that with time, the refrigerator is not running appropriately as before.
  • There are all chances for the compressor of the refrigerator to break. If the break happens, we have to replace the part or even have to opt for an all-new refrigerator appliance. Thus, waiting for a few hours is far better than going for costly replacements and repairs.

Thus it is important to read and refer to the user manual of the refrigerator, before attempting to move the refrigerator to the new area. When the refrigerator is switched on too soon, without giving the appliance its required time, we can hear some funny noises. This is the noise from the compressor, as it has been designed to compress only gas and not oil.

When the oil has passed through the system, and when the compressor is trying to compress it, it can result in considerable damage to the refrigerator. If you hear such funny noises, then it is optimal to unplug the refrigerator and allow any remaining oil to drain out.

In case you want to replace your old refrigerator: Best Single Door Refrigerators

Bottom Line

Moving the refrigerator is a tricky process that has to be performed with utmost care. It is important not to rush the process, as this is causes damage to the fridge, to the people and also the walls and the furniture around it. It is very important to take help while moving the appliance and keep it in the straight position as much as possible.

Wait for a minimum of four hours when it is transported straight or if it is transported on its sides, we can wait for 24 hours before plugging in the appliance. It is important to check the user manual and the installation guide, before attempting to switch on the appliance after shifting it.

Related:

Hi, I'm Douglas Cassius, I have worked with many brands that manufacture freezers and refrigerators, so here I will be sharing that knowledge and helping IceMakerCage readers.

Leave a Comment