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Fridge and Fridge Freezer Buying Guide

June 19, 2017
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Fridge and Fridge Freezer Buying Guide

A Guide to Buying a New Fridge or Fridge Freezer by Nailsea Electrical Bristol

Your refrigerator can be an appliance that sits in the corner of the kitchen and gets little thought. The occasional wipe-down with a cloth to keep it clean or to remove those fingerprints that seem to appear from nowhere – and that is the only attention you give the fridge from one month to the next.

However, when buying a new fridge or freezer or fridge freezer you ought to put some consideration into the purchase. This buying guide will help you make the correct choice for you and your needs.

Fridges, freezers and fridge freezers are available in all different sizes, combinations and colours to allow you the flexibility to choose a fridge that has enough space for your fresh groceries and frozen food, and looks beautiful in your kitchen.

If you want to see the different combinations available for yourself, come into our appliance superstore on Gloucester Road, Bristol to see and feel your choice for a new fridge.

Measuring Your Kitchen Space

Before you can start making the choice for your new fridge or freezer you need to ensure that your selected appliance will fit into your kitchen.  Use this checklist as a guide:

1. Measure, and write down, the height, depth and width of the space in your kitchen where you would like to place the fridge or freezer. When you are in the store you will not want to doubt yourself on the accuracy of what you have written down – so double check the measurements.

2. To ensure ease of use of your new appliance, consider (and again write down) which way you want the door to open, and therefore which side the hinges need to be on. Make sure that you can open the fridge and freezer door fully without knocking kitchen cupboards or without blocking a well-used route or walkway through the kitchen (you don’t want a person walking in to the fridge door when you are unloading your shopping)

3. Consider how you are going to manoeuvre the fridge or freezer into the required space. 99.9% of appliances will fit through standard doors in your home, however, are there any tight corners to navigate, for example. If being delivered by an appliance retailer, such as Nailsea Electrical, also take into consideration – can their delivery lorry get to your address easily? Are there any long paths, steps or stairs to navigate? There are not normally any situations that cannot be overcome, as long as they are planned for.

4. Fridges and Fridge Freezers need an air gap around them for ventilation space. Ensure that the home for the fridge allows for a 2cm gap or space on both sides and above the top of the fridge.

5. If you are considering a fridge or fridge freezer with an ice or cool water dispenser, such as an American Style Fridge Freezer, then you will need to ensure that a water source, such as a pipe or tap, is within 1.5 metres of your desired fridge space.

Types of Fridges & Fridge Freezers

Now we understand the practical constraints on your new fridge freezer it is time to decide the type of fridge freezer you should buy.

Freestanding Fridges & Fridge Freezers

Freestanding fridges and fridge freezers are by far the most popular choice. These are appliances that stand in the kitchen, and are not built into kitchen cupboards nor have a cupboard door covering the fridge door.

They have many advantages including:

1. As the most popular type of fridge and fridge freezer there are 100’s of manufacturers, models and features available. Making it easy to get the perfect appliance for your needs.

2. Cheaper to run than larger fridge types such as “American Style Fridge Freezers”

3. From the smallest of budgets to the largest, there is a freestanding fridge freezer to meet the needs of the budget conscious buyer through to the person who likes to buy quality and high-end products.

Integrated or Built-In Fridges and Fridge Freezers

These appliances sit behind a “kitchen door”. They actually have a door that is designed for the purpose and attaches to the fridge door, rather than sitting behind it. If getting an integrated fridge freezer for the first time you will need to contact the company that supplied your kitchen to buy a door to cover the appliance.  Nailsea Electrical have a sister company of “Nailsea Kitchens” and may be able to source the door for you.

Slimline Fridges and Fridge Freezers

A typical space required for a fridge or fridge freezer is 60cm (integrated fridge freezers use a 60cm cupboard space with allowances for ventilation). A slimline appliance typically comes in a size of 50-55cm. This means that they are ideal for smaller kitchens or utility rooms, without much loss of internal space in the fridge. A slimline fridge or fridge freezer is also less likely to protrude into the kitchen, which the 60cm appliances can do.

American Style Fridge Freezers

For those with a larger family and a larger space in the kitchen, the practical and ever more popular choice of fridge freezer is an American Style Fridge Freezer. These are double sized with double storage. From retro look to modern chrome styling – there is an American Fridge Freezer to suit your tastes and style of kitchen.

The benefits of this appliance are endless. With so many models on the market, finding your ideal combination of fridge and freezer storage will be easy.  As a higher quality and higher price appliance, they often have more features available such as ice or cool water dispensers.

What Features Should I Consider?

You know the size and type of fridge or fridge freezer you would like to buy – now you need to consider the features available and the benefits to you.

Should definitely consider:

Frost free fridge and freezer – gone are the days when you had to “defrost the freezer”. Using up all the food stored in there and chip away at the ice walls that had built up. Modern fridges and freezers use technology and air flow to significantly reduce the build-up of ice.

Shelving – glass shelving should be preferred to wire shelves. Glass shelves will prevent juices from meat or spilt milk running down through the fridge. Shelves that are easy to slide out or remove will make cleaning them easier.

Adjustable Door Racks – whether storing a pickle jar or a 6-pint bottle of milk, you will want the flexibility to adjust the door rack so it fits snuggly without risk of falling out of the door.

Open Door Alarms – We have all walked away from the fridge swinging the door closed behind us to find later that it didn’t close fully. A door alarm alerts you to the fridge or freezer door being ajar. Saving money on wasted energy and any spoilt food if the door was otherwise left ajar for any period of time.

Low-Temperature Alarm – Similar to the open door alarm, the “low-temperature alarm” will warn you if the freezer has risen in temperature to a level that may risk food being spoilt.

Fast Freeze – if cooking and freezing food you may wish to consider a “fast freeze” option. This will quickly freeze any food that has been stored in the freezer, keeping the food fresher and reducing the rise in temperature in the freezer.

Salad Crisper Drawer – Great for keeping salad and vegetable food items fresh for longer. Ensure that there is sufficient space for your normal weekly shop. Also check that the drawer slides out easily, but also does not slide out fully too easily (sending salad all over the kitchen).

What Are Other Features Available?

Egg storage – every fridge has one. Have you ever used it?

Wifi Connectivity – Some very high-end fridges have wifi connectivity and apps for you to monitor (and automatically add to your shopping list) food items that are running low. No doubt, this will be the norm for all fridges that today’s young generation will be buying in the future. If this is not a necessity, or you do not have the budget, for this luxury “add on” then you may want to stay away from internet-connected fridges. Lower budget fridges do have wifi connectivity for monitoring and altering the temperature in the fridge or freezer, which again you may not consider worth the additional costs.

Where to buy a new fridge or fridge freezer?

Even if you are absolutely convinced on the make and model of fridge freezer you want to buy, you may just want to check it out in person. Nailsea Electrical, on the Gloucester Road, Bishopsworth, Bristol, BS7, is the largest independent Appliance Superstore in Bristol and the South West UK.

You can buy online or order over the telephone, however, we also have a huge team of experienced appliance experts to help you get the perfect new fridge or fridge freezer for you and/or your family.


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