So, looks like you have come to this post to get a detailed explanation on all the aspects to consider before you reach a retail store to buy a new refrigerator. Let us tell you that we have got everything you will ever want! We have created this post to help any person understand every technicality involved before swiping their cards at their local stores.
Gone are the days when refrigerators were only used for preserving your food items like vegetables and fruits. Nowadays, refrigerators come with a lot of innovative features that we will discuss later in this post. This article will walk you through refrigerator buyers guide and guidelines on how to buy a refrigerator.
Table of Contents
- What Is a Refrigerator? How can we beat the heat?
- Why Do You Need a Refrigerator?
- Direct Cool vs Frost Free – Fridge Buying Guide
- Which Is The Best?
- Types of Refrigerators
- Additional Features to Look For - Fridge Buying Guide
- Best Refrigerator to Buy
What Is a Refrigerator?
A refrigerator is made up of a number of compartments that are built in such a way that they can store all your food items be it vegetables, milk, fruits, etc. A refrigerator is insulated thermally and is able to maintain a constant temperature across all the corners of itself. Refrigerators also have a freezer compartment in them that is ideal for the storage of non-vegetarian items.
Why Do You Need a Refrigerator?
Your body requires nutrients which come from the consumption of rich, healthy, and fresh foods, be it vegetables, fruits or meats. It is very difficult to shop for food items regularly due to our busy schedules. So, it is a great idea to shop for food items in bulk and store them in your fridge. Refrigerators are capable of maintaining the freshness of your food items for a longer period of time without losing the flavour of your food.
This fridge buying guide will explain you all the details about the basic and advanced features of refrigerators. You just have to go through all the features and aspects in order to get to the best refrigerator to buy. At the end, you will also end up learning about some accessories that you should buy along when looking to buy refrigerator online.
Direct Cool vs Frost Free - Fridge Buying Guide
Direct Cool Refrigerators
Refrigerator working on direct cool technology are those kinds of refrigerators that are more of basic in nature. The first thing that you will notice in the direct cool fridge is that you won’t see fans for cooling in the fridge compartment. Fans are not used to distribute the cold air throughout the fridge. The cooling inside your fridge is the result of a natural convection where one part of the compartment may get cooler than some other areas. Direct cool refrigerators are highly energy-efficient, which means that they consume a very less amount of electricity. Some of the direct cool refrigerators have been equipped with digital auto defrost technology lately.
Here are some advantages of a direct cool refrigerator:
1. The cooling is a result of the natural convection process inside the refrigerator.
2. Direct cool refrigerators are highly energy-efficient, which means that they consume a very less amount of electricity.
3. Direct cool refrigerators are quite affordable when it comes to the initial price that you pay for them.
4. The freezer compartment inside the fridge is highly efficient.
5. The latest models of direct cool refrigerators are coming with auto defrost function. Defrosting is easy with just the press of a button.
Frost Free Refrigerator
Nowadays, most of the refrigerators are coming with frost-free technology except for a few basic ones. These frost-free refrigerators come with an electric fan which helps it circulate the cold air through all the corners. The usage of an electric fan prevents the formation of ice outside the freezer compartment. The electric fan controls the cooling of all the compartments inside your refrigerator. Moreover, refrigerators that are operating on frost-free technology are best at maintaining a constant temperature across all the corners of your fridge.
Here are a few advantages of frost-free refrigerators
- The primary advantage of refrigerators operating on frost-free technology is that you won’t need to defrost the unit. It helps you save a lot of time and physical effort.
- You just have to clean the inside of your refrigerator once a year. Just wipe down with the help of a cloth and a decent cleaning solution.
- Your food items are not affected as ice crystals don’t form on the surface of stored food.
- Frost-free refrigerators come with a capacity ranging from 50 liters to 650 liters. Frost-free refrigerators that come with huge capacities are suitable for big families.
- Frost-free refrigerators are available in different models like the double door, single door, triple door, as well as the side-by-side door.
Read about all different types of refrigerators here:
Which Is The Best?
The refrigerators that work on direct cool technology produce cold air through the natural convection process. But direct cool technology is not as effective as frost-free technology in keeping your food items cold and fresh. The fact behind this capability is that frost-free technology helps to maintain a constant temperature across all the corners of your refrigerator.
The refrigerators working on direct cool technology consume very fewer amp-hours of electricity. Direct cool technology helps the refrigerator produce cold air instantly. If you see, at some ice cream parlours, refrigerators work on direct cool technology and you will get a strong visual of the cooling cycle of refrigerators working on direct cool technology. This is the reason why direct cool refrigerators are more popular than the frost-free refrigerators. But this is going to change with time.
Manufacturers are now focusing their production more on frost-free technology than on the direct cool technology. The life expectancy of the frost-free refrigerators is greater than that of the refrigerators working on direct cool technology.
In Short – Frost-free refrigerators might seem expensive but the price gap is declining. Frost-free refrigerators are better at maintaining constant temperatures and keeping your food fresh for a longer period of time.
Types of Refrigerators
To help you buy the right refrigerator, we have discussed some major types of refrigerators in this section. Make sure you understand all the types of refrigerators in order to buy the right refrigerator.
1. Single Door Refrigerator
As the name suggests, single door refrigerators come with only one door and their capacity ranges from 50 liters to 250 liters. Single door refrigerators are the most economical refrigerators available out there. Apart from fridge space, single door refrigerators even offer modest space for the freezer compartment. Single door refrigerators mostly come with direct cool technology, but the trend is changing with time as companies are now focusing more on the production of refrigerators working on frost-free technology.
You even get to see a vegetable compartment where you can keep your vegetables separate from other food items. Single door refrigerators are considered to be the entry-level refrigerators and are easy to afford. These refrigerators are ideal for nuclear families, small offices, clinics, and grocery stores.
Advantages of Single Door Refrigerators:
- Single door refrigerators are one of the most energy-efficient refrigerators as they consume very less amount of energy. The energy consumption is approximately 40% – 45% less as compared to double door refrigerators.
- The compact size of the single door refrigerator allows it to be used at small offices, small families, clinics, small stores.
- Single door refrigerators are the most affordable and economical refrigerators. You will find various reputed brands that manufacture single door refrigerators.
- These refrigerators occupy very less space as compared to other types of fridges.
Disadvantages of Single Door Refrigerators:
- Single door refrigerators come in a maximum capacity of 250 liters. So it would be difficult for you to place huge utensils or containers inside them.
- Single door refrigerators come with direct cool technology only. So you will have to clean the ice manually.
- Not suitable for families having members more than three.
- You can’t open the freezer directly as you will have to open the main door first. This results in a lot of cold air loss.
- The freezer compartment is very small because of space constraints.
As the space is so limited, some people end up placing so many things in a congested manner and this result in interrupted circulation of cold air.
2. Double Door Refrigerators
The double door refrigerator, as the name suggests, comes with two doors; one on top of the other door. The upper door is reserved for the freezer compartment and the lower one is reserved for the fridge compartment. The lower door is meant for regular use as the majority of your food items are kept in the fridge compartment. This way, you end up getting a dedicated space for the freezer. Double door refrigerators are designed to consume very less amount of energy. Double door refrigerators are frost-free in nature.
Double door refrigerators featured energy-efficient fridges and freezers. These types of refrigerators are bigger in size and storage capacity ranges between 200 to 600 liters. The fridge compartment maintains the temperature from 0° to 10° and the freezer compartment maintains the lower temperature. With the help of a two-door concept, the chances of cold air escape are very low.
Advantages of Double Door Refrigerators:
- The daily need of a family consisting of 4 to 5 members can fit into this large double door refrigerator easily.
- Shelves are so big and are mostly made up of toughened glass. So you can easily place huge and heavy containers inside your fridge.
- You won’t need to open the fridge door in order to access the freezer compartment, like in the case of a single door refrigerator.
- Double door refrigerators come with frost-free technology, which means that you don’t have to clean the ice manually. The refrigerators come with auto-clean function.
- The freezer section is usually large as compared to single door refrigerators. So you will end up having a lot of space for the non-vegetarian items or other things.
Disadvantages of Double Door Refrigerators:
- For some people, a normal size double door refrigerator’s price may seem high as the price starts from around Rs. 25,000.
- Energy consumption is relatively high as compared to single door refrigerators.
- All double door refrigerators work on frost-free technology, which means that fans are there to circulate the cold air. This makes refrigerators consume 30% – 50% more electricity.
3. Triple Door Refrigerators
Triple door refrigerators are slimmer and taller than other models of refrigerators. These types of refrigerators are ideal for homes that have less floor space. Triple door refrigerators typically come in capacities ranging between 250 – 400 liters. The door at the top is dedicated for the freezer compartment, the middle one is for the regular use, and the door at the bottom is known as a vegetable drawer.
So the structure of the fridge is like three doors from top to bottom. But you may see some refrigerators having a structure like, two side by side doors on the top and a bottom door that gives the access to freezer compartment. These refrigerators also come with frost-free technology. These refrigerators also have an energy-efficient fridge and freezer compartment.
Advantages of Triple Door Refrigerators:
- Triple door refrigerators don’t consume much energy as these fridges come with an energy-efficient fridge and freezer compartment.
- To open the fridge compartment, less space is required as the fridge section is divided into two doors. This design makes this fridge adjust at any corner of the kitchen.
- You get more storage space for your food items.
- In some triple door refrigerators, the fridge section is given at the top which makes it easy for regular use. The freezer section is used less so it is given at the bottom.
Disadvantages of Triple Door Refrigerators:
- These types of refrigerators are a little expensive than other refrigerators because of their design.
- The design of this is not popular among some people
4. Side by Side Door Refrigerator
Side by side door refrigerators, as the name suggests, have two doors side by side. The doors are designed like a cupboard’s design. Side by side refrigerators come with a large capacity of up to 900 liters. These refrigerators offer huge space for the storage of food items in several different sections. The side by side door refrigerator is made with a fridge on one side and a freezer parallel to it. You may come across refrigerators having
both sides equal and some having one side more wide than the other one.
Side by side door refrigerators is more expensive than other types of refrigerators as these fridges offer more space and several other features. You can store a huge amount of food items like vegetables, fruits, drinks, and packed food items too. You require very little clearance to open the doors of this fridge as they are split into two parallel doors. This is the best fridge in this fridge buying guide. This is probably the best refrigerator to buy.
Advantages of Side by Side Door Refrigerators:
- Two doors are placed side by side like a cupboard is designed.
- Side by side door refrigerator offers greater capacity for freezer and fridge compartment.
- These types of refrigerators come with water and ice dispenser. So you don’t have to pour water into the glass from the bottle. You will get cold water and ice at the press of the button.
- If you buy the right refrigerator with high BEE ratings, you will probably end up saving a lot of money every year. To know more about side by side refrigerator buyers guide, click on the above-mentioned link.
Disadvantages of Side by Side Door Refrigerator:
- Side by side door refrigerators are very expensive as the price of these types of refrigerators can range between Rs. 75,000 to Rs. 1,20,000.
- Due to their dimensions, they occupy a lot of space in your kitchen. So this fridge is not suitable for houses having less floor space for the kitchen.
- You may not be able to accommodate containers or utensils that are a little wide.
Additional Features to Look For - Fridge Buying Guide
There are plenty of features that come bundled with refrigerators. Have a look at these additional features:
1. Water/Ice Dispenser
This is a feature that is most likely to come with side by side refrigerators. This feature allows you to get the cold water or ice at the press of the button. You don’t have to take the bottle out and pour water into the glass.
2. Shelves Made of Toughened Glass
Nowadays, some refrigerators come with toughened glass shelves. This is one of the best features that people look for in order to ensure long-term hassle-free usage of the fridge. Shelves made up of toughened glass are more durable than plastic ones and they are able to hold more weight.
3. Convertible Technology
Some models come with convertible technology which helps the user to convert the freezer compartment into the fridge. This feature comes to use when the user runs out of space in the fridge section. For this feature, you might need to spend some extra bucks.
4. Adjustable Shelves
Got a large birthday cake and have no space left in your fridge? Make sure you look for a fridge that has adjustable shelves. This is one of the best tips for online freezer buying.
5. Cool Pack Freezer
This is a feature that keeps the freezer at a lower temperature for up to 12 hours without power supply. Such refrigerators are very popular among people living in areas where electricity cut-offs are very common.
6. In-built Stabilizer
In case you live in areas where voltage fluctuation is a very common thing, then the refrigerator that comes with an in-built stabilizer will be suitable for you. The in-built stabilizer prevents your fridge from damages that occur from voltage fluctuation. The absence of an in-built stabilizer can damage the compressor of your refrigerator.
7. Deodorizing Filter
Nowadays, this feature has become very common in all refrigerators. The deodorizer filter ensures that the flavour and nutrients in your food items remain intact. The deodorizer filter keeps your food items fresh for a longer period of time.
Best Refrigerator to Buy
In this section, we will discuss which ones are the best refrigerator to buy from the compressor’s point of view. Compressors of your refrigerator are responsible for maintaining a constant temperature inside your fridge. One should have knowledge about the compressors that they come in two categories, i.e. General Compressor & Inverter Compressors.
General compressors start working at very high speeds, but then continue running at a constant speed even when cold air did not escape. These compressors keep working at the same speed and shut off when the optimum cooling temperature is reached. This is the reason behind that ‘tick’ sound from your old refrigerator which you must have heard thousands of times.
Inverter compressors keep running at varying speeds depending on the cooling that is required inside the fridge. These compressors have the ability to sense the temperature inside the fridge and adapt according to it. Through this technology, refrigerators save a lot of electricity.
Prefer 5-Star Rated Refrigerators
It is a great idea to select a refrigerator that comes with a 5-star BEE rating. The 5-star rated appliances are the most energy-efficient appliances. With this, you will end up saving a lot of money annually.
Nowadays, refrigerators come equipped with a bundle of smart features. You might see some refrigerators even come with smartphone connectivity feature through which the user can control the fridge even when he is not home. We created this post to help you buy the right refrigerator without going through any troubles. In case you are looking to buy refrigerator online, make sure you go through the product features and description section. There are a lot of energy-efficient fridges and freezers available in the market that you can choose from. So this was all about the refrigerator buying guide. We hope this refrigerator buying guide helped you buy the right refrigerator for your home.