Confused by all the dazzling fridge features on the market today? Use our handy guide to find the style that’s right for you.

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Freezer up top

This classic fridge style has a freezer on top and a fridge at the bottom.

Pros

• Economical and energy efficient
• Vast number of models to choose from
• Various sizes to fit into just about any fridge cavity
• Offers plenty of internal space without taking up much floor space

Cons

• You’ll need to bend down to reach the bottom of the fridge
• Limited freezer capacity

Where to look

The models to look out for are Bosch‘s KDN49X70A, Whirlpool‘s WRID45T, and GE‘s PTS25SHSSS.

Freezer on bottom

This upside down style – or ‘bottom mount’ – style has a fridge at the top and a freezer drawer at the bottom.

Pros

• Fridge items are all at eye level and within easy reach
• More freezer space than freezer on top models
• Generous internal capacity without taking up much floor space
• Various styles to fit into most fridge cavities

Cons

• More expensive than freezer on top models
• Not as many models to choose from as freezer on top
• Less energy efficient
• You’ll need to bend to reach freezer items
• Freezer drawers can be difficult to organise
• The base-level position of the freezer can affect the temperature in the crisper drawer above causing freezer burn to your fruit and veg

Where to look

The models to look out for are Smeg‘s FAB32/7, Westinghouse’s WBM4304SB, and Sharp‘s SJWP32THS.

Side by side

Here, the fridge and freezer sections are situated side by side.

Pros

• Generally more internal storage space than freezer on top or freezer on bottom styles
• Plenty of door storage
• Narrow opening doors are well-suited to small or galley kitchens
• Generous freezer size is perfect if you have a lot of frozen items to store
• Many styles have built-in ice and water dispenser, plus other handy features such as door alarms
• Chic, modern look

Cons

• More expensive than freezer on top or freezer on bottom styles
• Fridge shelves tend to be narrow – not ideal if you have large cakes or platters to store
• Can take up a lot of floor space
• A built in ice and water dispenser can swallow up freezer space
• Can’t be positioned in the corner of the kitchen

Where to look

The models to look out for are LG‘s GC-B19STF, Bosch‘s KAN58A70AU, Smeg‘s SR620X, Westinghouse‘s WSE7000SE.

French Door

Three and four door French Door fridges have a two-door fridge on top and one or two freezer drawers down below.

Pros

• Generous internal capacity – great for families or entertainers
• Wide shelves easily accommodate large platters
• Plenty of door storage
• Lots of useful features which, depending on the model you choose, could include energy saving mode, quick freeze and child lock
• Trendy modern appearance

Cons

• Expensive
• Not as energy efficient as freezer on top models, but many newer styles have energy-saving functions
• Requires a lot of floor space
• Difficult to fit through narrow doorways
• You’ll need to bend down to reach the freezer drawers

Where to look

The models to look out for are LG‘s GR-L219CSL four door French door fridge, Fisher & Paykel‘s RF610ADUX, and GE‘s CFSP5RKBSS.

Larder style fridge

Dedicated fridges with ample storage space for chilled goods.

Pros

• Inexpensive
• Gives you maximum fridge storage capacity for the size
• Takes up minimal floor space
• Energy efficient
• Many models have reversible doors that can be switched around to suit your kitchen layout

Cons

• Requires a separate freezer elsewhere in the house

Where to look

The models to look out for are Haier‘s HRZ-241, and Westinghouse‘s WRM4300SBRH.

Pigeon pairs

Separate, matching fridge and freezer units that can be installed side by side or in different rooms altogether.

Pros

• Gives you the flexibility to have a separate, matching fridge and freezer fitted side by side, or located in separate rooms
•  Generous storage space
• Separate temperature panels for maximum control

Cons

• Not a lot of choice on the market
• Takes up a lot of floor space

Where to look

The models to look out for are Electrolux‘s ERM4307SCRH fridge and ER3607SCLH freezer, and Fisher & Paykel‘s WRM3700PBRH fridge and WRM3700PBLH freezer.

Fridge/freezer drawers

Refrigerated drawers are fitted into your kitchen cabinetry, and offer pull-out fridge or freezer storage.

Pros

• Can be fitted anywhere within your kitchen cabinetry and blends in seamlessly with the overall design
• Easy access – can be positioned so that you never have to bend to reach into the fridge or freezer
• Adjustable temperature settings mean that you can switch it from fridge and freezer to a chiller drawer at the touch of a button
• Space-efficient design

Cons

• Expensive
• Limited storage capacity
• Not much choice on the market

Where to look

The models to look out for are Fisher & Paykel‘s Izone CoolDrawer, and Sub-Zero‘s ICB700BR fridge drawer.

Compact and bar fridges

Small capacity fridges that fit beneath the kitchen counter or into the tiniest of alcoves.

Pros

• These space-saving models fit under most countertops – perfect for apartments or small homes
• Ideal as a second fridge or if you only have few chilled goods to store
• Inexpensive

Cons

• Bar fridges tend to have little or no freezer space, so you may require a separate freezer elsewhere (however many compact fridges have full width freezers)
• Limited temperature controls
• Can be hard to find compact fridges with cooler drawers for fruit and vegetables
• You’ll need to bend down every time you want to reach into the fridge

Where to look

The models to look out for are Whirlpool‘s WR012, Haier‘s HBF130SS, and Westinghouse‘s W1M1200SC.

 

Like this? Try our other guides too:

* Buyer’s guide to energy-efficient fridges
* Buyer’s guide to family fridges
* Buyer’s guide to kitchen cookware essentials

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