How to Find the Right Size Refrigerator for Your Kitchen


The refrigerator market seemingly has thousands of models in every shape, size, appearance and price level. If you just want a great refrigerator for the least amount of money, you should judge the models available to you on three criteria.


Looking for sales on appliances isn’t the first thing you should do when looking for discount refrigerators. Instead, you should do a bit of measuring to see what will fit in your kitchen. If your kitchen will only fit a medium-sized unit, you can stop thinking of a way to afford a larger refrigerator and instead concentrate on finding the best price on something that’s the right size for you.

Often, while the refrigerator bay in your kitchen has enough space to fit a large unit, you can still find that there isn’t enough room to fully open the refrigerator doors – perhaps because the refrigerator bay is right in front of the kitchen door. Manufacturers make a special design for such kitchens – French door refrigerators. These models have their doors designed the way they are on side-by-side models, except that the part on the left isn’t occupied by a full-length freezer. At $1400 for an entry-level unit, these are very expensive.


The drawers

If you have a lot of food to store in your refrigerator, it may seem like you only need to look for a large capacity model. Some refrigerators, though, have poor internal design. They don’t let you make efficient use of all the space available.

The basic rule when choosing a refrigerator is to choose whatever model has the most drawers, shelves and compartments. The best models divide the space available into three zones. You can have a high humidity drawer for leafy vegetables that are prone to wilting, a medium humidity drawer for oranges, melons and tomatoes and a low humidity drawer for apples, grapes and pears.

Storing different kinds of produce in different compartments isn’t just about choosing the best humidity level. Many fruits and vegetables emit a gas called ethylene that can cause other fruits and vegetables in the same area to wilt. Fresh greens and strawberries don’t emit ethylene. They do tend to be sensitive to ethylene from other produce, though.


Refrigerators aren’t directly priced for their capacity. A large refrigerator can be cheaper than a unit that’s much smaller, depending on the style that it’s built to. French door refrigerators are among the most expensive models. Since bottom-mounted freezers are favored by consumers for their convenience, these models are usually cheaper than refrigerators with top-mounted freezers.

The price of a refrigerator is also determined by the features on board. Since the brushed stainless steel look is very popular now, these refrigerators usually come at a $200 premium (when compared to similar models with painted finishes). Models with digital controls on the door can come at a premium, too. Air filters, food fresheners and icemakers equipped with water filters all cost extra for no proven benefit.

Whatever refrigerator model you decide on, you should check prices online for the best discounts. When you go directly to an outlet, you should never buy without haggling. Surveys show that haggling works three out of four times.

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