Whether you are looking to buy a first refrigerator for your new house or replace an old one you will want to find a model that is right for you. There is such a wide variety to choose from including top-mount, bottom-mount, side-by-side, compact and built-in refrigerators. You will want to find one that combines the right capacity, features and look you want.

Replacing an old refrigerator with an energy-efficient model may also help you reduce your energy consumption and lower monthly utility bills.

What should you look for? Well, you should determine how wide, tall and deep your unit needs to be to fit and that you need to take into consideration that you need added space for the doors to swing freely. You also need to consider the access into your house once you buy it. Will the delivery guys be able to get it in the front door, garage door or patio doors?

What are the different style you  may ask? Here is a short list:

The Top-Mount Refrigerator~ the freezer is located above the refrigerator section which is the most common design and provides a spacious interior.

The Bottom-Mount Refrigerator~has the freezer underneath the refrigerator section allowing easy access for the items in the freezer but also easier access to reach the food in the refrigerator without having to bend over. The freezer door may pull out or swing open and the refrigerator may feature a single door or two French doors which would require more room.

The Side-by-Side Refrigerator~has the freezer and refrigerator directly next to each other therefore having easy reach of both refrigerated and frozen foods. The side-by-side units are designed to accommodate larger plates and platters.

Counter-Depth Refrigerators~ There are two kinds of counter-depth refrigerators: the freestanding and the built-in. the cabinet depth of these types of refrigerators is 24 inches to fit flush with kitchen cabinetry.
The freestanding counter-depth refrigerators~ have finished sides and do not need to be secured or fastened. They have less depth than most freestanding units but are generally wider to compensate for space. They are also less expensive than built-in but offer similar sleek contour design.

Built-in counter-depth refrigerators~ on the other hand have unfinished sides and an evaporator mounted at the top. Due to the top-heavy nature of this design, built-in need to be secured to the surrounding cabinetry and wall. They are constructed to blend in with the rest of the kitchen cabinetry rather than being installed as a separate unit. They seamlessly integrates with the kitchen decor and the custom-made panels can offer stylish options. They are typically 84″ in height which includes the evaporator and range from 36 to 48 inches in width.

The compact refrigerator~as its name imply is small and provides less capacity but can fit into tighter spaces or underneath counters. It is ideal for dorm rooms, bedrooms, home offices and basement bar area. The smaller units can be placed on counter tops.

CAPACITY

Refrigerators come in a range of size and capacity from 3 cubic feet of space for a compact unit to 30 cubic feet of space for a family sized units. The average need for a two person household is at least 10 cubic feet of space, excluding the freezer storage. In a larger household you would want to add 1.5 cubic feet of refrigeration space for each additional person. If you dine out or entertain a lot you would also want to consider these as to whether you should go for less or more space. On the average 21 cubic feet of space of refrigeration and freezer should be enough for an average sized family. Many families have a second unit in the garage or the basement to deal with extra space requirements.

ENERGY

You should look for a unit with an Energy Star rating which will offer at least a 20% energy-saving. Other ways to cut energy with your refrigerator is to avoid placid it next to a heat source like the stove or dishwasher. Defrost it as soon as necessary if it is not a frost-free model. Avoid keeping the doors open for a long period of time and leave space around the unit for air flow to the condenser coils to prevent heat buildup. Models that are energy-efficient help reduce utility bills and are more environmentally friendly than standard refrigerators. The electronic controls and digital displays make it easy to set precise temperature and advanced temperature regulation systems keep refrigerators efficiently functioning at optimal temperatures. You should also be aware that an empty refrigerator operates with less efficiency than a fully stocked one.

 

STORAGE

Bins, shelves, drawers and baskets are the primary means of storing the food in your refrigerator. If you have small children you might consider spill proof glass shelves instead of wire shelves therefore reducing the mess if a spill occurs. Adjustable shelves will allow you to move them up and down to create the space needed based on your lifestyle. Look for areas of the fridge that will allow for different sizes such as space for bulky milk jug, tall bottles or small containers.
If you buy a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables you should look for produce drawers with humidity controls to help prolong the crispness and life of the fruits and vegetables.
Keep an eye for bins with adjustable heights to accommodate a wider range of food and beverage containers. Sliding shelves will make it easier to reach items placed toward the back of the refrigerator. Deli trays allow you to store large platters of meats, cheeses or hors-d’oeuvres. Built-in beverage holders keep canned or bottled beverage organized and easily accessible.
OTHER FEATURES

You could also look for features such as door or temperature alarms which alerts you if a door has been left open for more than a minutes therefore avoiding food spoilage and energy waste. A child lock unit would also prevent little ones to accidentally leave the door open or to access food without permission. Looking for an automatic ice-maker and dispenser  with built-in filtration system will give you clean, pure water at the touch of a button and plenty of ice just when you need it.
Some refrigerator even have quick cool down compartments which will cool food or beverage swiftly without freezing them.

STYLE AND DECOR

While capacity, energy and storage will be your most important features don’t forget the style and finish of the refrigerator. You will want to select a model that will fit into your changing taste and still look great no matter what the decor. Whether you choose a stainless steel model, bisque, black or white you will likely have this model for a several years, so choose carefully. Some of the newer material used to create refrigerators are not magnetic and you should bear that in mind if you love your children’s drawings or keep to do list on the fridge.

***If you don’t want to change your refrigerator but want to change HOME now is the time***

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Style and Finish

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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