Refrigerators are usually thought of as a boring icebox that only keeps your food cold for you. But these days, the best refrigerators offer unique styles and high-tech features.
Bells and whistles available on modern refrigerators are great. Nevertheless, some products might leave you scratching your head while shopping for your new fridge.
How do you compare refrigerators for your kitchen and avoid one of the common mistakes people make when buying a fridge?
It’s essential to consider the basics before you buy. Your budget, kitchen space and lifestyle are all factors. For example, if your kitchen is party central, you need a refrigerator with the best ice maker.
To make this decision easier, here are the top 5 best refrigerators available in 2020s and our guide to picking the right one.
Best for Large Families: LG InstaView Door-in-Door Refrigerator
You always will need a refrigerator with enough food storage capacity.
The LG Insta View Door-in-Door Refrigerator reviews are positive that this is the best refrigerator for large families and offices.
This energy-efficient refrigerator has enough storage space to fit a week’s worth of groceries. In addition, it has some excellent high-tech features like InstaView technology.
- InstaView door-in-door technology: This exclusive feature lets you check the contents of your refrigerator without even opening the door.
- Spacious storage: This fridge has enough food storage area for even large families.
- WiFi compatibility: Have you ever wanted to control your fridge with an app? Well, now you can.
LG Insta View Door-in-Door Refrigerator Cons
- Fluctuating temperatures: The temperatures have been known to vary in the refrigerator doors.
- Large size: This fridge is not suitable for small living spaces.
- Needs space for doors: This French door refrigerator requires space to open doors on both sides.
Best for Small Spaces: KitchenAid Double Drawer Refrigerator
When you live in a small studio apartment, it can be hard to find a high-tech refrigerator that fits your living space.
The Kitchen Aid Double Drawer Refrigerator has solved this common problem. Undoubtedly, it’s compact enough to discretely fit under even the smallest kitchen countertops. Additionally, it has a surprising amount of storage for such a small fridge.
The stacked, double door designs give you the ability to fit both refrigerator and freezer compartments into tight spaces. It even has an ice maker and wine storage compartments. Read our full review to learn more.
KitchenAid Double Drawer Refrigerator Pros
- Ample wine storage: This fridge has a compartment that is perfect for your wine.
- Compact, organized design: No matter how limited your space is, this fridge will still be able to fit.
- Open door alarm: The fridge will sound an alarm if the temperature gets too high or the door is open too long.
KitchenAid Double Drawer Refrigerator Cons
- Limited storage space: As expected with a fridge designed to be compact, this fridge doesn’t have as much usable space as most refrigerators.
- Limited ice maker: This fridge can only make enough ice for a few drinks at a time.
- No WiFi compatibility: If you’re looking for the latest in tech or want to control your fridge with your phone, you might want to make another choice.
Best Sleek and Modern Looking: GE Side-by-Side Refrigerator
If you’re looking for a refrigerator with a modern design, the GE Side-by-Side Refrigerator is perfect for you. Naturally, this sleek, stainless steel refrigerator can fit seamlessly into a variety of different kitchen styles.
It’s the best overall refrigerator because it’s extremely versatile in both function and design. You’ll also find an ice and water dispenser with an advanced water filtration system.
Read our review to learn more.
- Advanced water filtration system: Your water will come out delicious and clean every time.
- Ample storage space: Side-by-side french doors make it easy to store up to 26 bags of groceries inside.
- Sleek, versatile design: This fridge will easily compliment any kitchen style you choose.
GE Side-by-Side Refrigerator Cons
- Limited high-tech features: This fridge doesn’t have some of the popular high-tech features like WiFi compatibility.
- Not suitable for small living spaces: This French door fridge needs a lot of space.
Best Retro Looking: SMEG '50s Retro Design Refrigerator
In search of a high-functioning refrigerator with unique style? SMEG ’50s Retro Design Refrigerator is the best retro-looking refrigerator you can buy. Unquestionably, SMEG is a leading Italian kitchen appliance manufacturer with a reputation for turning boring home appliances into works of art. Its refrigerators are no exception and get good reviews.
This refrigerator comes in a variety of colors like black, red, white, pastel blue, cream, orange and pastel green. While it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles, it does have a lot more style.
- Beautiful design: The retro aesthetic and gorgeous design will make your kitchen stand out.
- Refrigerator and freezer layout: This unit will give you lots of fridge and freezer space.
SMEG ’50s Retro Design Refrigerator Cons
- Limited high tech functions: This isn’t at the top of any list of refrigerators with the latest and greatest in technological advancements.
- No built-in water and ice dispenser: This also means that the fridge doesn’t have a water filtration system.
Best Around $1,000: Haier Quad Door Refrigerator
What’s the best budget friendly refrigerator to buy?
You can’t go wrong with the Haier Quad Door Refrigerator if you’re looking for a modern fridge for under or around $1,000.
This affordable refrigerator has rave reviews because it includes special features like touchscreen temperature control, french-door style freezer and refrigerator compartments, and humidity-controlled crisper bins.
While you won’t find an ice maker or water dispenser inside or outside of this fridge, you will enjoy the ample storage space and the amazing price.
- Ample storage space: This fridge has enough room to fit most people’s needs.
- Price: This refrigerators has an amazing price, particularly considering the great features it has.
- Sleek, compact design: Unlike other refrigerators, this one should fit in most spaces.
Haier Quad Door Refrigerator Cons
- Limited color options: If you want your fridge to be available in certain colors, you might be out of luck. This one doesn’t have many choices.
- No water and ice dispenser: Unfortunately, you can’t get your water and ice from this fridge.
- Not WiFi compatible: This fridge doesn’t have all the features that fridges with WiFi compatibility offer.
How to Choose a Refrigerator that Suits Your Needs
Not even the top refrigerators are a good fit for every situation.
Here are some factors to consider to help you make the right choice for your needs.
You can’t have more fridge than you have space for. Nevertheless, most people forget to take all the right measurements before they buy.
Remember to measure the width, height and amount of space you have for the refrigerator door(s) to swing open.
Don’t forget to measure all of the door frames your new refrigerator has to pass through during delivery. Even the top rated refrigerators won’t do you any good if you can’t get them into your house.
There are different types of refrigerators and they come in lots of different styles. Doors are one of the big differences you can find.
Here are possible options to consider:
- French doors: If you’re buying a fridge with french doors, make sure you have enough space on both sides of the fridge for the doors to fully open. This style is great for large families and busy office spaces.
- Single door: This is the most classic style and what you’re probably most used to seeing. It’s great for singles and small living spaces.
- Top freezer: If you’re more of a microwave cook, go for top freezer refrigerators so you can grab those frozen pizzas without hunching over.
- Bottom freezer: If you cook at home a lot, you might love bottom freezer refrigerators. That leaves more room for fresh foods you’re more likely to want at arms reach.
Drawers and Shelves
Efficient interior storage is one of the most important things to look for in a new refrigerator. When a small, compact fridge has well-organized storage, you won’t even be bothered by its smaller size.
Important storage components to look for include:
- Adjustable shelves and door shelves
- Humidity-controlled crisper bins
- Interior door storage
- Removable spill safe interior shelves
- Spacious freezer space
An energy-efficient refrigerator will save you hundreds if not thousands of dollars on your electric bill in the long run.
Look for Energy Star certified models. They use 10% less energy than other models and help reduce your carbon footprint. Remember, you can find the Energy Star certified stickers on the exterior of refrigerators that qualify.
If you don’t want to have to wipe down the exterior of your fridge too often, look for a fridge with a faux-stainless steel finish or smudge-proof stainless steel. You won’t spend as much time cleaning.
A high-tech fridge can be a great investment. Look for features like WiFi compatibility, app control settings and touchscreen exterior controls if you’re in the market for a smart fridges.
The LG InstaView Door-in-Door refrigerator is one of the best high-tech refrigerators you can buy. This modern fridge features technology that allows you to peek inside your fridge without even opening the door.
One of the most important factors to consider before buying is the size and how much you’ll be able to store.
Consider how many people you’ll need to store groceries for and whether you tend to shop more often for fresh or frozen foods. You’ll need a refrigerator with ample freezer storage if you prefer shopping in the frozen foods sections of the grocery store.
Most people have a lot of questions when they’re trying to look at the perfect refrigerator for their needs. Our FAQ will help you make an informed buying decision.
Where Is the Best Place to Buy a Refrigerator?
According to tech experts, the best place to buy a new refrigerator in 2020 is:
ABT Electronic and Amazon scored high among customers leaving refrigerator reviews for best prices, refrigerator selections and shipping. The trend of online shopping is thriving even for large home appliances.
Don’t discount shopping in person at stores like Home Depot, Lowes or Costco though. Costco was rated the third best place to buy major home appliances after ABT and Amazon.
Steer clear of the worst rated stores for buying a new refrigerator: Menards and Sears. These stores often mislead customers with fake sales prices.
Don’t forget to consider the total cost of buying a new refrigerator and not just the price of the fridge alone. The total cost includes:
- the upfront refrigerator cost
- delivery fees
- installation fees
- the refrigerator warranty
- the increased cost to your monthly electric bill
When Is the Best Time to Buy a Refrigerator?
Because a refrigerator can be an expensive kitchen appliance to purchase, it’s helpful to wait until the best time to buy. You can save yourself hundreds of dollars on your new fridge and even score better deals on warranties.
The best time to buy a new refrigerator might vary, but here are the most common times that you may be able to save money on your purchase.
Late Spring/Early Summer
May is when kitchen appliance manufacturers start rolling out their new refrigerator models and beginning discounting older models.
Consider buying your new refrigerator during the month of January when post-holiday and New Year’s sales are in full swing.
Other major holidays like Black Friday, Memorial Day, and Columbus Day offer discounts worth taking advantage of.
While the best sales seasons are the same online as they are in stores, you can often find great sales prices year-round online. If you can’t wait until May or for holiday sales to start, do a daily search of the best running online sales before purchasing your new refrigerator.
Just remember to consider the cost of delivery when buying online.
What Does a Refrigerator Warranty Cover?
A good warranty should cover mechanical and electronic breakdowns, normal wear and tear and around $250 worth of food spoilage reimbursement.
Other convenient features of warranties worth considering are:
- in-home service repairs
- extended coverage for major parts replacements
- free installation,
- transferable coverage and
- “no lemon” policy
A no-lemon policy is an added perk some warranties include that will replace your refrigerator for free after the fourth repair. Transferable coverage is also a nice bonus. If you don’t end up using your warranty, you can transfer it to another appliance or person free of charge.
Most warranties come in three-year or five-year options and vary in price. For a refrigerator around $1000, you can expect to pay between $100-250 for a good warranty.
Don’t skimp on your warranty just to save a few extra dollars up front. In the long run, a more expensive and extended warranty can save you hundreds, sometimes thousands, of dollars in refrigerator repairs.
How Long Does a Refrigerator Last?
A well-built refrigerator should last anywhere from 14 years to 27 years if you’re keeping up with maintenance and managing refrigerator repairs well.
A good warranty for your fridge is a great investment if you want to keep your refrigerator running as long as possible. Although refrigerators can last more than 10 years, you’ll want to consider replacing your fridge before it breaks down once and for all.
Refrigerator repairs can add up. Buying a new model might be more cost-effective than repairing an old fridge. Also, older refrigerators are often not as energy efficient and start using up more electricity as it gets harder for them to run smoothly.
If your old refrigerator is having a hard time staying below 40 F, it’s likely time to replace it.
How Do You Repair a Refrigerator?
If your new refrigerator does break down, in-home service repairs and 24/7 customer service from a warranty makes it easy to troubleshoot your refrigerator repairs.
Additionally, if your warranty only covers the cost of replacing refrigerator parts, don’t panic. It’s possible to fix your fridge and replace the parts yourself. Use our Refrigerator Repair 101 article to help you learn how to diagnose common refrigerators issues and fix them yourself.
Is your fridge not cooling? Leaking? Ice maker stopped working? Our guide will help you fix it.
Remember to set your refrigerator to the best refrigerator temperature to help keep your food stored safely and check refrigerator reviews to avoid refrigerators that need frequent repairs.
What Temperature Should a Refrigerator Be At?
Did you know that there’s an ideal temperature to store food in your refrigerator?
There’s also an ideal place to store different foods in your fridge to make sure they stay fresh for longer. Setting your refrigerator to the best temperature is a food safety issue according to the Food and Drug Administration.
The FDA advocates setting your refrigerator temperature to 40 degrees Fahrenheit (4 degrees Celsius). Because, any temperature above that can cause bacteria to grow and possibly lead to food poisoning.
In addition, your freezer temperature should be set to 0 degrees Fahrenheit (18 degrees Celsius). When ice melts and then refreezes, bacteria gets trapped inside and the ice can become toxic. Here’s a guide to storing your food safely.
Your refrigerator is arguably the most important kitchen appliance in your home. However, don’t drop thousands of dollars on a new fridge without doing your research, reading refrigerator reviews and figuring out what model will really work for your kitchen and lifestyle.
Consider the top five refrigerators and check out our detailed reviews of our top rated picks before making a purchase.