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Thursday, October 6th
Whirlpool Corporation got its start in 1911 as a small business in Michigan. They introduced the first-ever automatic washer in 1948 and have continued to innovate ever since. You'll find around 75 different refrigerator models that are specific to the Whirlpool brand, but this company includes many other brands in the family (many of which we've reviewed separately).
Check out the features
Whirlpool offers some features we liked that we didn't see in every brand on the market. If space is an issue, look for models that have the Drink Loft: it lets you hang cans in an overhead storage area, to give you more room for other things on the shelves (you'll just have to get out of the habit of shoving pizza boxes in that upper space). In some side-by-side Whirlpool fridges, you'll get in-door ice storage, freeing up space in the freezer for more food. And in the French door styles, you'll enjoy panoramic LED lighting and an Infinity Slide Shelf that moves out of the way when you need to fit taller items like wine bottles or juice pitchers. There's also a "Platter Pocket" on some models that lets you store those pizza boxes we mentioned or any other wide, flat items without running the risk of having other foods stacked on top.
Low-tech = lower prices
Prices on Whirlpool refrigerators tend to stay towards the middle of the range: you probably won't find any that are over $5,000. That's largely due to the absence of high-tech features: we didn't see any models that incorporated WiFi capabilities or other expensive extras often seen in competitors' most costly refrigerators.
Is it in stock?
One thing that surprised us about Whirlpool was availability - or more accurately, the lack of it. Although they make about 75 different refrigerator models, many of them were out of stock during the time of this evaluation. In some cases, it was only in stock for one of three available finishes (only in white, but not in black or stainless), but in others it wasn't in stock at all. You may have better luck at the time you're shopping for a fridge.
BBB gives Whirlpool top marks
Even though there were more than 1,500 complaints filed against Whirlpool with the Better Business Bureau in the last 12 months, the BBB still gives the company an "A+" rating and accreditation. As the note at the top of Whirlpool's BBB listing explains, "the number of complaints represents an extremely small percentage based on unit volumes throughout the USA" . In other words, given that Whirlpool sells about 26 million products every year, 1,500 complaints isn't so bad.
Reliable and better-than-average warranty
Whirlpool refrigerators have good warranty coverage. They all come with a one-year parts and labor warranty on the whole appliance, and then an additional four years on the sealed refrigeration system. If you're like most Whirlpool fridge owners, though, you shouldn't need to use it: these refrigerators have a relatively low rate of repairs, and even outside of the warranty period their parts tend to be inexpensive and not hard to find.
Great choice for more basic refrigerators
Whirlpool isn't going to be your brand of choice if you want the latest, greatest refrigerators on the market, but it's definitely worth considering if a reliable fridge with decent (and sometimes novel) features is what matters most.
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.
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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