When you first think about purchasing a new refrigerator, it’s likely that you’ll get overwhelmed by the fact that there are so many models and suppliers on the market at the moment. Why are there so many different products? Is there a specific classification of refrigerators? How to tell them apart?
This section is dedicated to helping you find the answers to these questions. Before going into details, we think it would be useful for you to remember that based on the design of the door, there are four main refrigerator types: Top Freezer Refrigerators, Bottom Freezer Refrigerators, Side-by-Side Refrigerators, and French Door Refrigerators
1. Top Freezer Refrigerator
Top freezer refrigerator is probably the type that you encounter most commonly. It’s the classic type that’s used almost everywhere by almost everyone.
The design of top-freezer fridges is characterized by the freezer section mounted on top, above the fridge section. You may recognize this style of design by looking at the RCA RFR1207 Top Freezer Apartment Size Refrigerator, or the LG 33-inch Top Freezer.
Because they’re basic, top freezer fridges come in a lower price range. They are, therefore, more affordable to purchase. The cost for operation and maintenance is also lower in comparison with other, more modern fridge types. However, because the fridge is below the freezer unit, in some cases you may find it uncomfortable since you have to bend down to reach something.
2. Bottom Freezer Refrigerator
The name says it all: this type of fridge has the freezer unit placed at the bottom instead of on top of the fridge unit. Because they’re put in such a position, the freezer is opened by sliding down instead of swinging like in the top freezer fridges.
The most tangible advantage of bottom freezer refrigerators is that since the fridge unit is above, everything is kept at eye level. No more hovering over to find something you need in the fridge!
If you’re interested in bottom freezer fridges and don’t mind spending some more money (because yes, they indeed cost a bit more than top freezer fridges do), how about taking a look at the Smeg FAB32 50's Retro Style Aesthetic Bottom Freezer Refrigerator and the LG Refrigerator LBNC10551V?
3. Side-by-Side Refrigerator
The term “side-by-side” refers to two long, adjacent doors featured in this product type. Instead of being on top of each other, the fridge and the freezer unit in this device line stay side-by-side, making access to both cooled and frozen items equally easy.
Another perk of side-by-side fridges is that they often come with many “add-ons”. These extra features are usually ice and water dispensers, so if you want your fridge to have as many interesting functions as possible, don’t forget the side-by-side refrigerator.
In this category, we highly recommend two models: the GE GSS25GMHES Side Refrigerator and the LG LSXS26366S Side-by-Side Refrigerator. Keep in mind that in most side-by-side fridges, the internal width is quite limited so under some circumstances you would find it insufficient, for example when you want to store a whole pizza box.
4. French Door Refrigerator
French door refrigerator is like a variation, a more elevated version of the bottom freezer. The sliding freezer unit is at the bottom, while the fridge is on top and can be opened by two swinging doors. Thanks to this design, it has the convenience of a bottom-mounted freezer fridge while still giving enough capacity for any household.
Not only does it bring the best of both worlds, but this refrigerator type also looks chic and elegant. Its sleek appearance would be a nice addition to your kitchen no matter which overall theme you’re following. The only downside to French doors is that products of this type are often quite expensive, so you need to pay more for them than others. Yet, the extra money can be compensated by the premium quality easily, thus you can say that in the long run, it’s a worthy investment.
One remarkable example of a French door fridge is the Frigidaire FFHB2750TS 36-Inch French Door Refrigerator. GE also offers another excellent choice in this line: the GE Appliances GNE27JSMSS French Door Refrigerator.
Antarctic Star Mini Fridge Cooler - 60 Can Beverage Refrigerator Glass Door for Beer Soda or Wine – Glass Door Small Drink Dispenser Machine Clear Front Removable for Home, Office or Bar, 1.6cu.ftView on Amazon
- BrandAntarctic Star
Danby DAR110A1WDD 11 Cu.Ft. Apartment Refrigerator Full Fridge for Condo, House, Small Kitchen, E-Star Rated, Cubic Feet, WhiteView on Amazon
Euhomy Beverage Refrigerator and Cooler, 120 Can Mini fridge with Glass Door, Small Refrigerator with Adjustable Shelves for Soda Beer or Wine, Perfect for Home/Bar/Office, Black Stainless SteelView on Amazon
- BrandE EUHOMY
hOmeLabs Beverage Refrigerator and Cooler - 120 Can Mini Fridge with Glass Door for Soda Beer or Wine - Small Drink Dispenser Machine for Office or Bar with Adjustable Removable ShelvesView on Amazon
Galanz GLR46TRDER Mini Fridge with Dual Door, Adjustable Mechanical Thermostat with True Freezer, 4.6 Cu.Ft, RedView on Amazon
COLZER 15 Inch Beverage Cooler Refrigerator - 126 Cans Capacity Freestanding and Built-in Mini Fridge with Glass Door for Soda Beer Wine or Water - Compact Drink Fridge for Kitchen Bar OfficeView on Amazon
Phiestina 15 Inch Dual Zone Wine Cooler Refrigerator - 29 Bottle Built-in or Free-standing Frost Free Compressor Wine Refrigerator for White and Red Wines with Digital Memory Temperature ControlView on Amazon
Last update on 2021-06-17 / Affiliate links / Images, Product Titles, and Product Highlights from Amazon Product Advertising API
Knowing how to distinguish one type of refrigerators from others is important, but that’s not the only thing you need to know. After all, you need something more specific, a thorough guideline to help you navigate between different models. That’s why you should continue reading this article, because now we’re gonna show you tips on what to look for in a refrigerator.
1. Installation Styles
Besides choosing the design of the door, it would help you a lot when you know how you want your refrigerator to be installed. In general, there are two ways that a separate fridge can be installed in your kitchen: counter depth and standard depth (or full depth).
Counter depth: Counter depth fridges are those whose box is small enough to neatly fit in the cabinet. In other words, the outline of such models is aligned with the edges of the counter, only the doors extend outwards so they can be opened properly. Because the box stands right in, counter depth fridges often look cleaner and more modern.
Standard depth: Unlike their counter depth counterparts, standard depth models have doors protrude from the cabinet. This gives you more storing capacity but also takes up more space.
To further understand the difference between these two types, let’s take a look at the measurements of a traditional cabinet and counter. Normally a cabinet is around 24 inches deep, and this number for a counter is around 25. Looking at the two refrigerator types, a counter depth fridge has its depth standing at 23 to 27 inches, meanwhile a standard depth is about 30 to 34 inches deep. The discrepancy in depth is directly proportional to capacity and size, so it all comes down to how you balance between these two factors.
If the size of the refrigerator is not something you worry about and you much prefer one with large capacity, a standard depth model like the Frigidaire FFTR1821TS 30 Inch Freestanding Top Freezer Refrigerator is definitely made for you. On the other hand, if you have a small kitchen and need to save some space for a walking path, choose a counter depth one like the GE Profile PWE23KYNFS Counter Depth French Door Refrigerator or the Bosch B36CT80SNS Counter Depth French Door Refrigerator.
Although the external design of refrigerators is different in each model, there are still some common things regarding their finishes.
The most popular finish is stainless steel. This gives your fridge a modern look, while still remains neutral enough not to mess up with your interior design. However, when you consider buying a refrigerator with a stainless steel finish, make sure that it doesn’t get smudged with fingerprints and other factors easily. For this condition, the WINIA WTE18HSSLD Top Mount Refrigerator Fingerprint Resistant Metallic Finish proves itself as a great choice.
There can also be white refrigerators that are easier to clean when compared to stainless steel ones, for instance, the Kenmore 50042 Side-by-Side Refrigerator. Black and bright-colored fridges are also available, but remember that while black models can make your kitchen appear darker, a bright one can be a bit of a statement piece. If you still want to opt for these types, check out the Galanz GLR12TRDEFR Retro Refrigerator that comes in both red and black.
3. Extra features
Another factor that should not be overlooked is the additional features. The most common extra is the water and ice dispenser, which is integrated outside the door and allows you to get cold drinks without having to open and close the fridge over and over again. A model with this feature that deserves your attention is the Frigidaire FFHD2250TS Counter Depth French Door Refrigerator.
Over the recent years, there has been a new development with French door fridges. Some manufacturers have decided to add a third drawer, and you can freely customize it to do whatever you want, from storing pre-made meals to keeping some fun snacks. If this idea appeals to you, check out the Samsung RF24R7201SR French Door Refrigerator.
You might also like: Best Refrigerator Water Filters.
1. How does a refrigerator work?
The principle behind refrigerator’s operation is based on compressed gas. Your fridge has a component called a compressor, and this component compresses the refrigerant gas to increase the pressure of the chemical refrigerant as well as the temperature inside. But why the heat? Isn’t a refrigerator supposed to keep your items cooled and chilled?
This is where the heat exchanging part on the outside of the fridge does it work. Have you ever noticed that your fridge has a vent where higher-temperature gas goes out? The heat exchanging coil like mentioned above lets the refrigerant disperse the heat caused by pressurization, that’s how the fridge can maintain its internal low temperature.
Inside the fridge there are also components that boost the refrigerant absorb heat. That’s why the temperature is constantly lowered and then maintained stable when it reaches the desired number, which can be altered by users.
2. How to set up temperature control settings in my fridge?
The first thing you need to do is to check for the recommended settings for your fridge from the manual instructions. From there you use a thermometer to measure the temperature inside, then set it to the appropriate level. In most cases, the fridge unit should be kept at 3 degrees, and the freezer unit at -18 degrees.
One thing that tends to be forgotten is the air flow inside the fridge. If the air flow is somehow blocked, the internal space of your fridge won’t be even in temperature, resulting in hot and cold spots, which in turn can have a negative influence on what you keep inside. Therefore, our advice is not to overload your fridge with numerous items, otherwise consistent airflow is not maintained.
3. What to do when the fridge has frost?
To tackle the problem, we first need to know why frost happens. Normally the cool air is distributed evenly throughout the chamber, and no problem occurs. Nevertheless, when this low-temperature air gets in contact with hot air, the frost immediately forms.
So where does this hot air come from? The most common reason is because the door is not closed properly. To solve this is pretty simple, make sure that you close the door completely, and there’s nothing stuck in the hinge, the gaskets as well as other small compartments of the door. If you discover any part with this kind of issue, replace them immediately.
Another reason for this phenomenon is problems with ventilation. Maybe the space is overcrowded, or the air vent gets blocked. You should remember that there is a limit for how much your fridge can handle, and you should not exceed it unless you want your appliance to malfunction.
4. If there is an unwanted smell in my fridge how can I remove it?
To get rid of an unwanted odor, follow these simple steps:
Find out the culprit for the smell by taking everything out of the fridge. You should do it fast, because there are some chilled items that when suddenly moved out of a cool environment their quality starts to deteriorate.
Check carefully for any spoiled food and/or ingredients.
Clean the shelves, the gaskets and the walls with warm water and some soap.
If the unpleasant smell is still there, even faintly, adding some baking soda into your fridge as baking soda can soak in the odor.
5. Is it normal for my refrigerator to make loud noises?
During operation, there could be some buzzing and humming here and there, which is absolutely normal. Your fridge is getting its components to do their jobs.
However, when there are loud noises and these noises won’t stop, it’s a sign that your fridge is having some kind of problem. If you’re an expert yourself, now is the time to check and intercept. But if you’re not so confident with your maintenance and repair skills, try calling a professional. No matter which way you opt for, always remember to disconnect the power before doing anything else. By doing this you are protecting both yourself and your refrigerator.
Read more: Best Manual Espresso Machines
With so many suppliers and models, finding the best refrigerators is no easy task. To make it easier for you during selection, we’ve picked out the final winner of today’s article: the Frigidaire FFHB2750TS 36-Inch French Door Refrigerator.
If you want to find a more compact refrigerator, check out: Best Mini Fridges
The Frigidaire FFHB2750TS 36-Inch French Door Refrigerator has everything you could demand from a refrigerator. It's a counter depth model so it could fit in a kitchen of any size. The door style is French door, so you have the convenience of the fridge unit being at eye level and the inside is spacious. It also comes with an ice and water dispenser, and the finish is stainless steel to make it look sleek and modern.
A summary of the best fridges is given below:
Best overall, also best French door: Frigidaire FFHB2750TS 36-Inch French Door Refrigerator
Best top freezer: GE GTE22JSNRSS Energy Star Top Freezer Refrigerator
Best bottom freezer: GE GDE25ESKSS 33-inch Bottom Mount Refrigerator
Best side-by-side: LG LSXS26366S Side-by-Side Refrigerator
Best counter depth: Bosch B36CT80SNS Counter Depth French Door Refrigerator
Best standard depth: Frigidaire FFTR1821TS 30 Inch Freestanding Top Freezer Refrigerator
Best retro look: Galanz GLR12TRDEFR
Best with third drawer: Samsung RF24R7201SR French Door Refrigerator
The list of all the exceptional refrigerators has concluded our today’s post. We hope that you can find what you need from the devices suggested, and stay tuned for our future articles.