10 April 2024

Refrigerators are essential appliances in any household, keeping our food fresh and drinks cold. But what happens when you need to move or transport one? Many people wonder whether it’s safe to lay a refrigerator on its side during transportation or relocation. In this article, we’ll delve into the dos and don’ts of laying a refrigerator on its side and explore the potential consequences of doing so.

Understanding the Mechanics

To understand whether it’s safe to lay a refrigerator on its side, it’s crucial to comprehend how refrigerators work. Most refrigerators contain a compressor, which is responsible for circulating refrigerant throughout the system. When a refrigerator is upright, the compressor operates optimally, and the refrigerant flows smoothly. However, laying a refrigerator on its side can disrupt this process and lead to potential issues.

Dos and Don’ts

Do Transport Upright Whenever Possible

Ideally, refrigerators should always be transported in an upright position. This ensures that the compressor remains undisturbed, and the refrigerant stays in its designated channels. Transporting a refrigerator upright minimizes the risk of damage to internal components and helps maintain optimal functionality.

Don’t Lay It Flat for Extended Periods

While it’s technically possible to lay a refrigerator on its side for a short period, it’s not recommended for an extended duration. If you must lay the refrigerator down temporarily, try to limit the time to no more than a couple of hours. Any longer, and you risk causing damage to the compressor and other vital parts.

Do Allow Time for Settling

If you’ve had to lay the refrigerator on its side temporarily, it’s essential to allow it to settle before plugging it in. This means leaving the refrigerator in an upright position for at least 24 hours before turning it on. Allowing sufficient time for settling helps prevent potential damage to the compressor and ensures proper functioning.

Don’t Power On Immediately

After transporting a refrigerator, resist the temptation to power it on immediately, especially if it has been laid on its side. Rushing to turn on the refrigerator without allowing time for settling can result in compressor damage or failure. Be patient and prioritize the appliance’s long-term health over immediate use.

 Laying a refrigerator on its side can have several consequences.

Compressor Damage

Disrupting the compressor by laying the refrigerator on its side can cause oil to flow into the refrigerant lines, potentially damaging the compressor.

Cooling Issues

If the refrigerant lines become compromised, it can lead to cooling problems within the refrigerator, affecting its ability to maintain proper temperatures.

Long-Term Impact

Even if the refrigerator appears to function normally after being laid on its side, there may be long-term consequences that manifest later, such as decreased efficiency or premature failure.


While it’s technically possible to lay a refrigerator on its side for short periods, it’s not without risks. Whenever possible, it’s best to transport refrigerators in an upright position to minimize the potential for damage to internal components, particularly the compressor. If you must lay a refrigerator down temporarily, take precautions to mitigate risks and allow sufficient time for settling before powering it on. Prioritizing the appliance’s long-term health can help avoid costly repairs or replacements down the line.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *