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Whether you're equipping the kitchen in your brand-new home or replacing the trusty appliance you've had for years that finally gave up the ghost, you're making a major purchase that needs to be reliable and give you a good value for your money.
Today's refrigerators range from your basic side-by-side (or even a more old-fashioned freezer-on-top, fridge-on-bottom style) all the way up to cutting-edge designs that have a touchscreen in the door - for displaying recipes, checking the weather, or even listening to your favorite Spotify playlist.
Saturday, August 20th
GE is a standing favorite for people who want appliances that are (mostly) made in America, and they've got enough models and features to satisfy every shopper. GE refrigerators are built to last - and they actually do, with most going up to 15 years without the need for major repairs. Whether you're going for high-tech or just the basics, you can get a reliable, well-made refrigerator from GE. This is our preferred brand.
If you want cutting-edge technology incorporated into your refrigerator, you should look for a Samsung. This brand is known for being the first-to-market with the newest features, but you can still get an affordable fridge with a few less frills too. These appliances perform well over time and offer a slightly longer warranty period than most rival brands. Rest assured that purchasing a Samsung refrigerator is likely to be a good decision in the long run.
Whirlpool refrigerators may not be tech-fancy, but they come with lots of features you won't necessarily see with other brands. Although in-stock availability can be an issue, these fridges have a good reputation for having lower-than-average repairs needed over the lifetime of the appliance and warranties that are more generous than many competitors'. Whirlpool is a name you can trust when shopping for a quality refrigerator.
LG offers just about everything, from simple top-freezer fridges to "you've seen it here first" tech features most brands can't even touch. There's a refrigerator for every budget and kitchen space, and repair statistics put this brand right up there with the best. We have some concerns about how LG is handling warranty claims in recent months - and a subsequent change to "Not Rated" by the Better Business Bureau - but in general we'd say that LG refrigerators are a solid choice.
If you're looking for a fridge with decent features and a budget-friendly price tag, Kenmore could be the right choice - if you can find it available for purchase, that is. Also, these appliances are usually manufactured by other brands, so you'll need to do a bit of research to make sure the behind-the-scenes maker is one you can rely on for a long-lasting refrigerator. And, be sure to prioritize the Elite models in the Kenmore line, to take advantage of longer warranty coverage on certain components.
Just the basics: that's what you'll get out of an Amana refrigerator. The good news is that you'll spend under $1600 to get it. These fridges won't blow you away with any high-tech gadgets or fancy finishes, but you'll find a few different options for top or bottom freezers and side-by-side models. With a history spanning nearly a century, this company can be trusted to provide a reliable, simple refrigerator that gets the job done.
Frigidaire gives you about 50 fridge styles to choose from, including compact models perfect for the office or college dorm. The company has a long history - over 100 years - and we expected their refrigerators to perform accordingly. Unfortunately, they tend to be much louder than average, and buyers report lots of repairs required just a few months after installation. Unless you've got the extra budget for an additional warranty plan, you may want to look at other brands before buying a Frigidaire refrigerator.
KitchenAid is probably best known for its fantastic stand mixers, but they offer a good array of refrigerators and other appliances as well. If you're looking for high-end built-in fridge options, they've got several; the selection also includes a few dozen freestanding models with some interesting features. But, these refrigerators have not only gotten a bad reputation for needing multiple repairs in the first two years of ownership, but they've also been the focus of more than one class action lawsuit. That puts this brand at a worse-than-average position among the competition.
Maytag has about a dozen models of refrigerators under $2400. Their selection includes a few options in most styles, from side-by-sides to French doors and top/bottom freezer choices. Most Maytag refrigerators don't last as long as other brands, and you've only got a year of warranty protection (plus a 10-year warranty strictly on the compressor). You'll find more options and better longevity with a higher-ranked manufacturer.
German brand Bosch is known for having the most cutting-edge technology in its appliances, including refrigerators. These high-end fridges have many available options that can keep your food fresh longer, connect with your smartphone, or give you easy access to your favorite beverages - all for higher-than-average prices, unsurprisingly. But, we were very disappointed in customer feedback on Bosch refrigerators: not only do they break down frequently, but they also come with expensive repairs that the company may refuse to fix under warranty. We recommend choosing a different brand for your new refrigerator.
Choosing the right fridge requires taking several factors into account. First, what's your budget? Believe it or not, you can find models for less than $500 and for more than $5,000, so having an idea of what you want to spend can help you narrow down the possibilities.
Next, how much room do you have? Taking accurate measurements is a must, otherwise your fridge may not fit on installation day - and don't forget to account for the room needed to open the doors. Also, how much room do you need inside? A good rule of thumb is four to six cubic feet of interior space for every adult in the household. Finally, what features are must-haves (or must-avoids)? Not everyone wants an in-door water/ice dispenser or a Wi-Fi capable appliance.
Once you've come up with a general overview of the refrigerator that will best suit your needs, it's time to see which brands fit the bill. Some manufacturers are more reliable than others: a few makers have a reputation for dropping the ball when it comes to customer service after the sale, and at least one has experienced major recalls due to fire hazards. No matter which brand and model you eventually decide, it's a smart idea to see what extended warranty coverage is available to help mitigate any costly problems you might experience down the road.
To recap, here are the criteria you should have in mind as you shop for a new refrigerator:
TopConsumerReviews.com has evaluated and ranked the most popular brands of refrigerators on the market today. We hope this information helps you choose the right model for your next major appliance purchase!
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