#387: Heatlock

Opening the refrigerator door allows it to fill rapidly with air at room temperature. This causes the system’s cycle to fire up to cool the interior again. Running the compressor motor every time the door opens is potentially very wasteful of energy -especially if you are cooking a roast at the same time…or returning for ‘just one more spoonful’ of Greek yoghurt every 90 seconds.

Today’s invention is a way to avoid this wastage.


Each fridge door would come with a double-glazed window insert, making the inside clearly visible. There would also be an insulated glove penetrating the door and allowing items to be moved around and placed in the tray of an airlock set into the door.

After the normal (weekly) filling of the fridge, via the main door, the vast majority of articles could be extracted from and replaced into the fridge via this mechanism -without having to flood the cold space with warm air each time.

Restricting the ingress of water vapour in this way would also stop the formation of mist on the window.


  1. Our old freezer had a number of shelves each with a flip-up see-through cover. So if you didn’t dither, you’d only flood one of the five or six shelves with warm air rather than the whole thing. Made fitting tall items a bother, however.

  2. Yes my freezer has a similar arrangement…but the problem is that opening the main door sucks in vast amounts of moist air which condenses its water vapour on the transparent areas so that they aren’t.

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