How Long Should A Refrigerator Sit After Moving?

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After you safely move your fridge from one location to another, it’s important to let it sit for about 6 hours to let everything settle and avoid damage. If you transported your fridge upright, then the waiting time is much less. If you moved your fridge upright, then you’re able to plug it back in at the 2-3 hour range.

When I worked at an appliance store in college, we would transport the fridges upright and plug them in immediately. Plugging your fridge in immediately after transporting them upright should be fine. Still, I always recommend waiting a few hours to ensure everything is settled and that the fridge has returned to normal.

How Do You Move A Fridge?

Moving a fridge can be very difficult if you don’t have the correct tools.

One of the first tools you’ll need is a fridge or appliance cart.

A fridge cart gives you the ability to secure the fridge to the cart using straps and has sliders for moving safely on stairs. I would not recommend moving a large fridge without the use of a fridge cart, or you can damage your fridge, floor, or walls.

You can purchase a fridge cart online or even rent one from your local hardware store. With a fridge or appliance cart, I’ve been able to move a large side-by-side fridge with ease. Just place someone at the front of the fridge as a spotter to help you direct the fridge to its location.

Another great tool for moving a fridge, especially if the fridge is smaller, using shoulder straps will work great. Two people use straps, and it allows them to lift a fridge and place it safely in its correct location. I do not recommend using straps for large side-by-side fridges, but apartment-sized fridges and other small appliances can be moved using straps easily. You can purchase shoulder moving straps online for a reasonable price. I added links to Amazon with the best prices above. You can check them out.

When moving your fridge from one location to another, there are simple steps that you should follow to ensure that your fridge arrives safely, that your home doesn’t get damaged or you do not get hurt.

  • Make sure that you clean and defrost your fridge
  • Disconnect your fridge and prepare it for moving
  • Measure the fridge and your doorways, hallways, and other corners to ensure that the fridge will fit. If doorways are too narrow, then you may have to remove the doors from the fridge. This is done easily, and you can reference your owner’s manual for step-by-step instruction.
  • Strap the appliance cart to the fridge and tilt it back slowly with one foot on the wheel axle.
  • Carefully and slowly move your fridge forward, taking extra caution moving around corners and going down steps.
  • Make sure that you have a spotter at all times that can help guide you along the process.
  • Ensure your fridge is secure in the moving truck so that it doesn’t shift during the transportation process.
  • Wait before plugging in your fridge so that everything returns to its normal condition.

Can You Lie a Fridge Down to Transport it?

Yes. You can lie a fridge down when transporting it, but there are a few things that you should consider. First, don’t lie it down on its back. It has too many working components on the back of the fridge, and it can easily damage your fridge. It’s best to lie it down on the front of the fridge using a protective blanket and removing the handle or on its side.

Second, you have to wait before plugging the fridge in again. This makes sure that the fridge stabilizes and returns to its normal condition. Too little oil in the compressor can damage it and will lead to a malfunction.

It’s recommended that you transport your fridge upright if it’s possible. This will give you more control transporting and protects the fridge from damage. You can use the instructions above for steps and tips.

Can you Transport a Mini-Fridge on its Side?

Mini-fridges are built differently than regular-sized fridges and should always be transported upright. This is because their drain system will leak water inside the unit.

If you are moving a mini-fridge that’s brand new, out of the box, then moving it on its side will not be an issue. It’s best if you let it sit for several hours to ensure that everything has returned to normal and ensure the fridge functions correctly.

What Happens If You Turn the Refrigerator on Too Soon?

Plugging your fridge in too soon will cause too much stress on the compressor and damage it. This will not happen immediately, but after a while, you’ll notice that something isn’t right with your fridge, and you’ll probably pinpoint the time after your move.

A faulty compressor is expensive and most of the time it’s cheaper to just purchase a brand new fridge.

I always try to be proactive and safe rather than sorry. It’s a good philosophy to live by and will save yourself a lot of grief in the end.

Please don’t ignore the simple advice in this article; make sure you give your fridge some time to settle before plugging it back in.

When Should You Call A Professional to Move Your Fridge?

Sometimes it just isn’t worth it to move your fridge yourself. If your fridge is connected to a water line or built into your cabinets, it may be better to have a professional disconnect and move your fridge for you.

A professional’s price will be far lower than purchasing a new fridge if you happen to damage it, and they can guide you through the moving process.

If you are purchasing a new fridge, make sure that you have it delivered to your new location. Do not have it delivered to your old address and move it to your new home yourself. Appliance stores have the right equipment for moving appliances and will install your fridge at your new location. It’s built into the price, so it’s better to get your appliance store to do it for you.

If your home is smaller and you’re going to need to disconnect and dismantle your fridge, it may be more efficient to have a professional do it for you.

Professionals are taking fridges apart all day and know what can be removed and what shouldn’t be removed. It may be earlier and less expensive to get an appliance repair person to help you during the process.


Moving a fridge can be a safe process when done correctly. It’s imperative not to rush the process because when we’re in a hurry, fridges get damaged, walls get nicked, and people get hurt.

Take your time and prepare before you begin. Measure all the doorways and the fridge itself to ensure you have a safe, direct route to move your fridge.

It’s also important to have help while moving your fridge – it’s not a one person job. Use the correct equipment and always take breaks along the way.

Once the fridge is in its final destination, be patient and wait the correct amount of time before plugging it back in. You do not want to damage your fridge at the end of the process, you’ve come so far!

A couple of hours isn’t going to be that long, and it will guarantee that your fridge will function correctly.

Remember safely is the number one goal for yourself and those helping you.


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