Almost every household has a refrigerator (commonly referred to as a fridge) to help preserve perishable products and cool drinks. Fridges keep food fresh longer by slowing down the bacterial activity that spoils food. The cold temperatures reduce the activity of bacteria, which allows your food to last a week or two in the fridge.
If you’re staying in a small room and have a fridge you may be wondering, “is it safe to sleep next to a fridge?”
It is safe to have a fridge in your bedroom. You can sleep next to your fridge as long as you maintain a distance of 1 to 2 feet away from it. Maintaining some distance ensures you are not exposed to the high radiation levels emitted by the fridge.
Though it is safe to sleep next to the fridge, there are reasons why you shouldn’t have it in your bedroom.
6 Reasons Why You Should Avoid Sleeping Next To A Fridge
Here are some of the most common reasons why you should not keep your Refrigerators in your bedrooms.
- Unwanted noise: Fridges produce a lot of noise which can affect your sleep quality. You may find it very hard to sleep in a noisy environment.
- Interferes with fresh air: The heat generated by the fridge can heat up the air in your bedroom making the room too warm for you to have a deep sleep. The heat may affect the biological functioning of your body.
- Radiation: Refrigerators are a common source of EMF radiation in your home. Maintaining a close distance will expose you to high levels of radiation.
- Water leaks: If you have an old refrigerator, you might experience water leaks from the fridge.
- Fire hazard: Just like other electrical devices, a fridge can be a fire hazard.
- Gas leaks: Though it’s rare, the chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) gas leak cooling and heating system of the refrigerator can be harmful if it comes into contact with an open frame from a water gas heater. The mixture of the two products releases a very harmful chemical product into the environment.
At night, our bodies need more rest than during the day. A deep sleep is very essential for you to remain healthy and focused.
If you have to use a refrigerator in your bedroom, consider having a mini-fridge rather than a full size refrigerator. These are ideal for a smaller bedroom or for use in your basement.
Temperature Control By Refrigerators
Fridges always turn on and off after every few minutes in order to regulate the inside temperature of the fridge and freezer. The turning on and off at night may interrupt your regular sleep pattern. The noise of the fridge as it turns on and off may wake you up.
If you’re sensitive to noise as you’re drifting away to sleep, the fridge turning back on may wake you up. This cycle will keep repeating itself until you’re annoyed with the fridge because it is interfering with your chances of falling asleep. It may interfere with the deep sleep necessary for maintaining a healthy body.
How The Waste Heat Generated By A Fridge Affects Your Sleep
Refrigerator motors generate a lot of heat. Learning a bit about how a fridge works will help you understand how it generates heat. The video below helps you understand how the fridge works.
The fridge controls the heat generated by its operation. Heat is generated by the fridge as it cools down the products inside, and it pushes the heat outside. This is known as “waste heat”.
The waste heat that is generated is pushed away from the fridge by fans. The waste heat makes the area behind the fridge very hot. This is why it is important to have proper clearance behind and around your fridge. The increased temperatures, combined with higher humidity, also explains why you can often have mold grow in the area behind the fridge.
This generated waste heat can affect your sleep quality if you sleep near the fridge. According to a study, your sleep is always affected by the temperature of the room. You may find it easier to sleep when the room is cool rather than when it is warm. The waste heat emitted from the fridge can make your room warm, making it difficult to sleep well. It can also influence your sleep rhythm.
Therefore, sleeping next to the fridge may affect your sleep quality. It is not because the fridge itself is dangerous, but because the lack of sleep can contribute to a lot of health problems.
Some of the health problems associated with lack of sleep include:
- Reduced concentration
- Reduced life-expectancy
- Increased risk of other diseases like Alzheimer’s
- Leaving you in a bad mood
These problems can be avoided by ensuring you have both enough sleep and increased sleep quality.
How To Reduce The Noise From Refrigerators
If your space is small, you may not have many options about where to sleep relative to the position of your fridge. If you have to sleep next to the fridge, there are various techniques you can employ to ensure the noise generated by the fridge doesn’t affect you.
1. Use Earplugs
One of the best techniques you can use is to sleep with earplugs. The earplugs block the noise generated by the fridge as it turns on and off. With the earplugs, you will not be able to hear the noise of the fridge, increasing your chances of having a sound sleep.
Using earplugs is an effective method of assisting you to sleep because they block most, if not all of the noise near you. Your alarm clock is loud enough that you will hear it even with earplugs on, so don’t worry about not hearing the alarm when it goes off.
2. Sound Proof Sponge
Alternatively, you can cover the fridge with a layer of soundproof sponge like the kind they use in home music studios. This will effectively block the noise the fridge generates at night. Make sure that you don’t cover the exhaust outlet for the heat, as it still needs to be free to expel the waste heat generated by the fridge.
3. Changing Temperature Settings
As the fridge turns on and off regularly, it may irritate you especially if you’re in the same room. Another method you can use to reduce noise is changing the temperature settings of the fridge.
If your fridge is on low temperature settings, it produces more noise than a fridge on high temperature settings. This is because for the cooling process to take place, you have to turn on the cooling system until the set temperatures are attained. The system is then turned off until it becomes too warm, and then the cooling system switches back on. The same process continues repeatedly as the fridge works to moderate the temperatures according to the settings.
Reducing the temperature setting, the fridge will turn on and off more often so that the cooling system keeps the fridge temperature stable.
You can increase the temperatures by either one or two degrees and you will note the difference in the noise emitted. The fridge will be quieter for long.
When changing the fridge temperatures also note the required temperature ranges for all your vegetables.
4. White noise machine
If the noise of your fridge bothers you a lot, you can buy the white noise machine to cover the noise at night. The White noise reduction machine has about 10 sound fans and 10 ambient noise variations that helps block any disruption noise in your environment and enable you to sleep well without any disruption.
EMF Radiation From Refrigerator
A refrigerator emits high levels of magnetic field radiation. The magnetic fields contribute to the high source of EMF generated by the refrigerators. This is because the fridge has a generator that actively runs when the fridge is cooling down.
As the generator runs, it produces high levels of electromagnetic field radiation. They also require a lot of power to cool groceries. As a result, more radiation is emitted.
Other electronic components at the back of the fridge do produce some amount of magnetic field radiation. Modern refrigerators do emit low levels of radiation compared to the initially invented refrigerators. The components fitted makes them more energy efficient.
The less energy consumed means less electricity and reduced EMF radiation.
You can use an EMF meter to measure how much radiation your fridge emits. If you take the readings too close to the fridge, you may notice higher radiation level than the recommended 1mG.
If you take the readings some distance from the fridge like 1 foot apart, you may record radiation of 1mG or less which is considered safe. Therefore, maintaining some distance from the fridge will reduce the risk of exposure.
You should also place the fridge some inches from the wall. This ensures the heating and cooling process function properly as well as proper circulation of air. This technique not only reduces the EMF radiation you’re exposed to but also ensures proper functioning of the fridge.
If you have a Wi-Fi enabled refrigerator, it will generate more radiation. The fridge has features displayed on the screen like grocery lists, weather conditions, and others. These features constantly monitor the food products inside and update the information to your phone using either Bluetooth or Wi-Fi network connections.
Both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi features emit dangerous radio frequency radiation to your body. Watch this YouTube video to see how much radio frequency radiation Samsung smart Refrigerator emits:
You can also measure other types of radiation to know how much you’re exposed to.
How To Reduce EMF Radiation From Fridge
Though maintaining a distance of 1 to 2 foot is enough to reduce exposure to magnetic field radiation emitted by refrigerators, you can also use other shielding materials. If you have to use the space next to the fridge, you can have an EMF protective plant that blocks the walls and ensures radiation is absorbed into the ground using underground rods.
Therefore, doubling the distance between you and the EMF source will reduce the electromagnetic field radiation by four times. So you don’t have to worry about the radiation from the refrigerator.
If you sleep next to a wall, you should worry about EMF emitting devices on the other side of the wall. It is essential to take EMF readings in your bedroom to be sure you’re not exposed to any EMF even from your neighbor.
Alternatively, you can buy low EMF refrigerator units from the market or use EMF radiation shield paint.
You can carry your EMF meter with you to measure EMF readings for each fridge before buying though it may look weird. Alternatively, buy a fridge without the smart capabilities like use of Wi-Fi and Bluetooth that increases the radiation.
Best Noise Protection Products
1. LetroFan High-Fidelity White Noise Machine
The White noise sound machine from Adaptive sound technologies has unique non-looping fans. It consists of 10 ambient noise variations and 10 sound fans that block any disruptive white noise, pink, and brown noise in the environment.
The machine generates some unique non-repeating sounds that creates a relaxed environment for you to sleep with ease.
The machine has volume controls that enable you to set the perfect sound levels to match the specific environment you’re in. It prevents any destructive noise in your working area or noise from the outside.
Using the white noise machine in your office or in your study room helps you to concentrate on your work since there is no noise to disrupt you.
It can also create a peaceful environment for your baby to sleep without being woken up by any noise.
2. Mack’s Ultra-Soft EarPlugs
These ultra-soft foam earplugs are designed for ultra-comfort. The earplugs feature a super low-pressure with a slow release foam that allow you to plug in your ears with ease. The super-soft foam offers maximum comfort when using them.
They can reduce noise up to 32 dB helping you avoid any sleep disruption from your neighbors. They also help you stay focused when you’re in a noisy environment. This makes them ideal for studying, in noisy offices, sleeping or when cycling a motorcycle.
If you have a snoring partner, investing in these types of earplugs will save you a lot and enable you to get a good night sleep.
3. Howard Leight Disposable Earplugs
This is an adjusting earplugs that can easily expand in your ear after inserting it in order to create an excellent seal to protect you from all noise from a loud office and your fridge.
It is designed for people with small and large ears as it can expand to provide perfect ear protection. The low-pressure foam in the earplugs can virtually fit any type of ear canal and also makes you feel comfortable.
The t-shape of the earplug allows you to easily insert and remove the earplug from your ears. The yellow and magenta colors make the earplug look more attractive.
They are soil resistant and have a smooth closed cell foam that prevents building up of dirt.
Best EMF Radiation Shielding Paint
1. YSHIELD Low Frequency EMF Shield
This is a 5L EMF protection paint that protects you from low frequency electric field radiation.
The paint is environmentally friendly and doesn’t contain any harmful metallic components or oxidizing compounds. It is also water resistance making it easy to apply and clean.
A single layer of the paint can shield you to about 99% and has an attenuation of about 40dB.
2. Y-Shield RF Paint
The RF shielding paint protects you against high levels of electromagnetic field radiation. The paint can block radio frequency waves or microwaves and electric field radiation from different sources in your house.
You can apply the paint on your walls, ceiling and even on your floor. The paint doesn’t have any toxic substances and it is water resistant with an attenuation of 36dB.
Adding two layers of the paint, you will have 99.9% of shielding effectiveness. The paint is also corrosion resistant and doesn’t have any metallic particles.
It is very easy to apply and clean the paint on your surfaces.
Refrigerators generate a certain level of radiation and sleeping close to one may have negative effects on your health. Though the radiation emitted is harmful for your health, maintaining a distance of between one to two foot is considered safe.
A refrigerator emitting about 1mG of radiation is considered safe for your health. Using smart refrigerators, you can expose yourself to high-levels of EMF radiation. The refrigerator has both Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connection that integrates with your mobile device, tablet or your laptop.
Smart refrigerators are becoming more cost-effective and in the next few years, almost every home will have one. Adding this type of refrigerator to your bedroom or small room will expose you to high- levels of radiation that not only affect your sleep quality but also affect other aspects of your life.
The fridge has a computer connected to the door panel to monitor grocery and other products inside the fridge. If you want a safer environment, always choose a non-smart refrigerator for your home. A mini-fridge will do well for a small room.
Refrigerators emit high amounts of noise and sleeping next to one affects your sleep quality. Lack of enough sleep may cause other health issues like depression or develop sleep disorders.
Using earplugs or changing the fridge settings can help reduce the amount of noise generated by the fridge as it turns on and off during the cooling process. You can also implement the use of white sound machine that blocks any noise disruption from your fridge and noise from your neighbors.
A sound proof clothing can also reduce the noise produced making you sleep peacefully.