Before you start shopping for new kitchen appliances, make sure you have a well-thought-out kitchen renovation plan. You’ll need to set goals and priorities with the help of a completed “a day in the life of the kitchen” quiz and “kitchen goals worksheet.”
After exploring various kitchen designs and layouts and planning space and storage, you also need to have a clear idea of what your new kitchen will look like. Finally, you need to have a solid budget to follow.
Gone are the days of boring refrigerators. Today, designers are always thinking outside the box to bring new technology, design and functionality to your home.
Whether you’re renovating your kitchen or just need to replace your old refrigerator, choosing a new refrigerator can seem overwhelming. This guide will help you focus on the important things that will help you find the right refrigerator or freezer.
Buyers can expect to pay $350 for a narrow top-freezer in a white cloth wrap and up to $2,500 and up for a walk-in refrigerator with french doors, a water-tight door and a stainless-steel sliding door.
Refrigerators come in three main body systems: side-by-side, top-mounted refrigerator, and bottom-mounted refrigerator. The popular french-door style is a new-set floor-mounted freezer. Generally, refrigerators increase in size and cost along with convenience and style.
Freezer mounted on top:
So named because of their refrigerator-over-refrigeration configuration, these economical refrigerators are a natural choice for consumers with space and budget concerns.
Prices typically fall in the $400 to $600 range. But because these models tend to offer small interiors (16 to 22 cubic feet), they’re less than ideal for large families or those who regularly entertain. Also, because the most visited refrigerator area is at the bottom of the freezer compartment, customers are forced to bend down every time they need something.
Side by side:
Because these models provide easy access to refrigerators and freezers, and have enough interior space (22 to 26 cubic feet), they are the most popular on the market. Prices also range widely, from around $700 to over $2,000. Because there are two long, narrow doors side by side, these appliances are ideal for kitchens with little gap between the appliance and the island.
In exchange for better clearance, customers lose a horizontal shelf, usually on the side of the freezer. The cramped freezer compartment makes it difficult to store bulky items like frozen pizza boxes and party plates, logsdon said.
Bottom mounted freezer:
While they generally offer the same amount of space (16 to 23 cubic feet) as top-mounted freezers, bottom-mounted freezers are more convenient because the main compartment is eye-level.
Even the bottom freezer is easy to access thanks to a pull-out drawer that can be accessed from either side (unlike the door). This convenience comes at a price, as most walk-in refrigerators cost between $800 and $120.
The brand’s popularity has grown dramatically over the past five years, logsdon said. As part of a bottom-mounted kaasujääkaappi, french door models have two opposing doors instead of one large refrigerator door, requiring less clearance to open.
Like most devices, lightness, flexibility and style increase with price. “a lot of things have to do with lifestyle. Consumers must decide which features are important to them and why. For example, a simple stainless-steel model costs $200 more than the same plain model.
Not only is water and ice filtered through the door convenient, but it also saves energy by eliminating the need to open the appliance door. Just make sure there is a water outlet nearby to install.
Almost all refrigerators have multiple adjustable shelves, but higher-end models will offer better settings, more flexibility, and blast-proof shelves with raised edges.
High-end models can include fruit and vegetable crispers with precise controls, from simple low-humidity sliders to adjustable settings. A popular feature: a drawer that regulates temperature and humidity is placed between the main refrigerator and freezer drawers.
These drawers, with names like “flexzone” or “glide-n-serve,” can be set cold for meat dehydration or non-refrigerated for drinks or party plates.
When it comes to temperature control, logsdon explains, “lower-end refrigerators will have old-fashioned dials with numbers, while higher-priced refrigerators will have digital controls where you can set the exact temperature.”
Models priced above $2,000 will have separate cooling systems for the refrigerator and freezer, “so your vanilla ice cream doesn’t taste like smoked salmon,” says logsdon.
Domestic refrigerators account for one-sixth of household electricity consumption. The good news is that today’s devices are more powerful than older models. Consumers can save up to $30 a year on their utility bills by simply replacing a 10-year-old refrigerator with a new energy star model.
Innovation and trends
When it comes to choosing a refrigerator that will last for years, a few little things can make a big difference.
- Quick access: Samsung showcase, ge and lg door-in-door technology provides quick access to frequently used door bins, which puts your favorite food at your fingertips, making it easy to organize and save energy.
- Connected: smart refrigerators with wi-fi displays allow you to access apps, leave notes, check calendars, find recipes and more.
- Convertible fridge/freezers: an adjustable cooling unit that allows you to switch from fridge to freezer and back, depending on your needs.
- Food freshness: dual evaporation technology controls the humidity in your fridge and freezer to keep food fresher, longer.
- Fingerprint-resistant: the protective coating on the exterior resists smudges and smears. If you have children, a finger-proof option may be what you are looking for to reduce cleaning time.
- Energy efficiency: with an energy star certified refrigerator, you can increase your energy and dollar savings without sacrificing the features you need.