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Advice on buying the right fridge or fridge-freezer

Last month’s blog tackled the more general issues when choosing new kitchen appliances, providing useful hints and tips of things to think about before hitting the shops or online stores. Buying a new appliance often happens when you least expect it. Wear and tear and breakages are the main reason for having to replace a single kitchen appliance while a kitchen refurbishment or remodelling project often requires multi purchases all at one. Most homeowners find the final part of any renovation process, the part where it is time to select shiny new appliances, an exciting one. Some can find it daunting and then there are those that simply dread it!

Kitchen-compare’s ‘Advice on …..’ series provides help when it comes choosing bigger ticket kitchen electricals. It is key to get these purchases right first time as they are expensive to replace and may leave you wishing you’d done more research if you’re not happy with.

Firstly, fridges and fridge-freezers. Many mid-range fridges or fridge-freezers do almost as much as the high-end ones. It is not always necessary to go for the biggest or the one with the most features to achieve maximum efficiency that suits your personal lifestyle. The main options are:

Compact fridges and freezers whether freestanding or integrated, sit on or under a worktop in a W60cm space and are ideal for smaller kitchens or as an extra in a utility room. If you only have space for the one appliance, the fridge is the obvious choice; but if you want more freezer space than the box that these fridges come with, a taller fridge-freezer is the solution.

Fridge-freezers whether freestanding or integrated, fit into a W60cm gap in an average-sized kitchen. Think carefully about the size of fridge versus size of freezer and whether you prefer the fridge above the freezer or vice versa.

American style fridge freezers generally have the fridge and the freezer side by side, and therefore are wider (W90cm) than standard fridge-freezers. More suited to a larger family or for those that do a lot of entertaining, an American style fridge-freezer creates a focal point in a contemporary kitchen.

Chest freezers/Upright freezer are ideal for larger families and those who bulk freeze. They are often a good solution for those with a compact fridge only or a fridge-freezer with smaller freezer section if additional space is available in a garage rather than in the kitchen as they can take up a lot of room.

So, what are the key features to consider when buying a fridge or fridge-freezer:

  • Auto-defrost is when water drains into a trough at the back of the fridge, then evaporates.
  • Digital display allows you to monitor the fridge, from temperature to doors being left open to replacement filters.
  • Energy efficiency rates performance so for best overall energy performance choose a fridge or freezer with an A+++ rating.
  • Frost-free freezers have a heater and a fan which means you do not have to worry about ice build-up and defrosting.
  • Holiday mode is useful for turning off the fridge whilst you are away but leaving the freezer on.
  • Humidity controls help keep salad, meat, and cheese drawers fresh.
  • Reversible doors provide flexibility in terms of where you can site your fridge / fridge-freezer.
16th Nov 2020