6 steps to choosing the best fridge for you
While technology has made many things in our lives easier, choosing the best refrigerator among hundreds of similar models isn’t one of them. Family size and lifestyle are only a few of the factors that influence a purchase. Here are our tips to choose the best fridge for you:
1. Choose your size
The first step to finding the best refrigerator is to consider how much storage you need. The key metric is cubic feet. The average fridge for a family of four varies from around 18 to 25. On average, young couples starting out can make do with 18; a large family should think about a larger size. But who's average anymore? If that young couple likes to entertain with large elaborate dinners or plans to start a family immediately, a bigger refrigerator might make sense. If the large family eats out a lot, maybe a smaller unit works.
2. Choose your style
• Top mount fridges and freezers are the most common and usually the least expensive. As the name implies, the freezer is on top and the fridge below. Most models allow for doors that open left or right depending on the customer’s preference.
• Side-by-side refrigerators are another popular style, with the fridge and freezer alongside one another. Typically, the fridge takes up two-thirds of the space and the freezer the other third. These fridges are often praised for their modern look and definitely have more space, but they do present a common problem – the shelves are quite narrow, which makes fitting some items difficult.
• Bottom mount models have been steadily increasing in popularity for some time. The fridge section is at the top and below is typically a pullout freezer. People appreciate that their most used items are available without having to bend over, but the drawerlike function of the freezer means your frozen food frequently get buried, as new items get piled on top.
You’ll also need to pick a color and finish, whether you want that stainless steel look, black or something a little more conventional.
3. Pick your features
Some of the basic features common to almost all models of refrigerators include shelves, crisper drawers, and door compartments. If all you’re looking for is a space to keep your food cold and fresh, then this is probably all you need. If you would like something with a little bit more luxury, manufacturers today are offering an increasing variety of new and useful features. These include:
• Water dispensers
• Adjustable shelving
• Moisture controls
• Auto-defrosting functions
• Enclosed condenser coils
5. Pick your brand(s)
Consumer reviews often break down appliances by brand, but it’s good to realize that only a few companies actually manufacture most of the major brands out there. For example:
GE manufactured brands include General Electric, Kenmore, and Hotpoint.
Whirlpool manufactured brands include Maytag, Inglis, Kenmore, Admiral, Roper, Estate, KitchenAid, Crosley, Jenn-Air, Amana, Glenwood, Hardwick, Magic Chef, and Caloric.
Frigidaire manufactured brands include Tappan, Kelvinator, Gibson, White-Westinghouse, and Westinghouse.
Some of the other well known refrigerator brands include Samsung and LG.
Feature-rich refrigerators have a tendency to be more popular and each manufacturer makes one or more brands that are considered high-end or premium. These include GE, Whirlpool, Maytag, Frigidaire, Thermadorand KitchenAid, as well as relative new-comers to the appliance scene,Electrolux, Samsung, and LG.
There you go, you're now ready to pick your next fridge!
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