Choosing a Fridge

Your fridge is full of food and it just died. What do you do?

Bottom line, you need a new fridge and you need it fast. A quick search will show you there’s a lot out there so it can be overwhelming on a time crunch. We’ll try to cut thru the clutter and save you some time with a few pieces of advice.

Measure First

This is the most important piece of advice we can give. Remember, there is no such thing as a “standard” size.

Measure all aspects of the opening: height, width, depth. The opening, not the existing fridge itself. Measure at the top and the bottom, front and the back to be sure the measurement is consistent front to back. You’d be surprised how often it isn’t.

Bring the dimensions to the store with you or have them handy as a guide while shopping online.

Consider a Bottom Freezer Configuration

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Assuming you have at least 30-inches wide and 67-inches in height, there are quality bottom freezer fridge options available to you.

A bottom freezer configuration is preferable for a few reasons. First, it puts the items you access most up high in plain sight. This is the biggest advantage over top freezer and is easily evidenced by the three-door French door pictured in this section.

Second, the full-width fridge and freezer sections are perfect for pizza boxes, frozen lasagna, party trays and other over or odd-sized items. See the unit in the section below. It presents adequate storage options for containers of various size and shape.

Understand French Door Options

French door fridges are extremely popular. From July 1 to August 31, roughly the last 60 days, French door fridges have accounted for 89% of our total bottom freezer models sold and are outselling side-by-side fridges 3.5 to 1. Based on those numbers, there’s a pretty good chance you’ll at least consider a French door so you should be aware of your configuration options.

French door fridges are available in a variety of different door styles and configurations, but typically have two things in common: #1 a bottom freezer (usually a drawer) and #2 a pair of side-by-side doors that open up to the largest refrigerator cavity at the top of the unit. The similarities often end there.

First, you’ll need to choose the number of exterior doors. The most common is three-door configuration as shown below on the left. Most brands also have at least a couple four-door options and KitchenAid even has a couple five-door options.

In addition to the number of doors, there are also some very unique features like LG’s InstaView, which features glass doors that light up when you knock and Samsung’s Smart Hub, which has an interactive touch panel that can control your home music, keep family schedules and even beam images of your fridge’s contents to your smartphone while you’re shopping at the grocery store.

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LG InstaView

 

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Samsung Smart Hub

 

Consider a Counter Depth Fridge

Counter depth fridges are extremely popular because they’re designed to look built in without the built-in price.

The fridge can be pushed back to the wall, surrounded by cabinetry and only the doors and handles will stick out.

Full depth fridges, on the other hand, are usually 6 to 9 inches deeper. In addition, they can’t be completely enclosed by cabinetry as they require some space to breathe.

That said, full depth has a few advantages. Size is the most obvious. The extra 6 to 9 inches in depth usually results in 3 to 6 cubic feet in capacity. Additionally, standard depth fridges are typically less expensive. $100 to $200 is a common upcharge for that counter-depth look.

Dispensers 101

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GE Cafe French door dispenser with built-in Keurig coffee brewing system

Most fridges have a built-in ice-maker or one can be easily added. Not quite as many, but still a good majority also have a built-in water dispenser. If you decide to take our advice and go with a French door model, the likelihood of the unit having some sort of dispenser is even greater.

There are a variety of dispenser types including specialty options like the pictured GE Cafe dispenser, which features a built-in Keurig coffee system.

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Internal dispenser available on several French door models.

If you don’t want a visible dispenser cluttering the front of your fridge, don’t worry. Many brands offer models with a hidden dispenser inside the fridge or even items without a dispenser at all.

In general, if your current refrigerator has a functional ice maker and/or water dispenser, there should be no problem replacing it with another refrigerator with ice and/or water.

If you currently have neither ice nor water, you’ll likely need to install a water line. Our professional install team can do this for just $119 including parts and labor. Every home is different, however, we can usually complete this job without any visible trace. Talk to your salesperson to determine if we’ll be able to add a water line in your specific setup.

View in Person Before You Buy

In the age of the internet, we’ve successfully grown our company by placing showrooms strategically in the communities we serve. We do this because we feel you can’t get a feeling for a product unless you open and close the doors, push the buttons, turn the dials, etc. Our showrooms display hundreds of fridges. We welcome you to stop in and work with our experienced product experts to find the perfect unit for you. View a list of showrooms here.