The Ultimate Fridge Freezer Buying Guide in 2022
The Ultimate Fridge Freezer Guide For 2022
Hello everyone and welcome to the ultimate fridge freezer buying guide to cover pretty much everything you need to know about one of the most important appliances in the household.
We’ll be covering everything from cutting the jargon and the basic information to also advising of the best fridge freezers available to purchase right now, so let’s dive in.
How Cold Should a Fridge Freezer Be?
There’s nothing more annoying that getting a new fridge freezer or refrigerator and not knowing how cold it should be or not knowing what the numbers on the little dial inside the fridge actually mean.
So the ideal temperature for the refrigerator part is between 37°F (3°C) and 40°F (5°C). Which keeps everything inside nice and fresh
The ideal temperature for the freezer part should be at 0°F (-18°C).
With most fridge freezers nowadays it can take them up to 24 hours to adjust to any changes you make to the temperature settings so if it isn’t working right away don’t panic!
How To Take Your Fridge Freezers Temperature?
Believe it or not some people do take their fridges temperature – mostly this is for when medication needs to be stored at a specific temperature.
If you want to check how cold your fridge freezer is and it doesn’t give it you then the easiest way is to use a thermometer, although to do this you don’t just Chuck it in follow these steps:
- Place a thermometer in a standard glass of water – at least 3/4 full
- Leave in the fridge overnight ideally in the middle shelf
- Check the temperature the following morning, ideally the first time you open the fridge door
- Place the thermometer between bags of frozen vegetables – peas and carrots!
- Leave for at least 8 hours or ideally overnight
- Check the temperature reading after the time
How To Know If Your Fridge Is On Its Last Legs?
Do you need a new fridge freezer? Or does your current one just need a bit of love?
Sometimes it’s difficult to tell but some obvious things to check are:
- Is Your food inside the fridge being frozen ?
- Alternatively is Your food inside the fridge warm or room temperature when you take it out of the refrigerator?
- Do you have big icy build ups on the side and back of your fridge
- Is ice melting in the freezer and leaving puddles on the floor?
- Your groceries are going off before their expired date
- You have a noticeable build up of condensation inside or outside the fridge
So what should I do ?
It isn’t always doom and gloom, sometimes your fridge freezer might just need a bit of love and care with a few settings being adjusted to keep it running well, Try these tips to help resolve your problems:
- Make sure the thermostat is on the right setting – it might sound obvious but you’d be surprised how easily they can be knocked and suddenly a setting is changed
- Check that the plug and the electrical socket are both working as they should be – you can simply plug it into another plug or test the socket.
- Give it a listen / you should be able to hear some sort of humming noise, if you can’t or the noise sounds like an annoying vibrating noise then it could be the compressor fan needs replacing – an easy job for an appliance engineer.
- Check behind the fridge freezer so it has enough room to breathe – ideally you should leave a small gap between the fridge and wall, this will also allow the fans to work properly too.
- Get the scraper out and give your freezer a defrosting with a bit of elbow grease to remove any ice that has built up.
Are Frost Free Fridge Freezers Worth It?
A frost free fridge freezer circulates cool air around the unit which stops icy build ups, also the appliance turns off briefly once every 24 hours to allow any ice that’s been built up to melt away.
If yours doesn’t seem to be doing this anymore then you may have a faulty compressor. If you’re unsure of what these look like it’s usually a small round tank and located at the back of your fridge freezer.
If it’s working properly you’ll hear a light vibrating noise and behind the unit will be quite hot – although if it’s too hot then this could mean it’s faulty too. A compressor change is a straightforward job for an appliance engineer but you need to weigh up if you feel it’s economical and worth it for you.
Is It Time For a New Fridge?
Fridge freezers nowadays come in a range of sizes, colours and have many weird & wonderful features, it’s not hard to find one for you – we’ve listed the main types below:
A basic cheap fridge freezer
- The benefit is it solves a problem and gets you on your feet with money to spare – although often these are medium sized fridge freezers, as with anything the bigger it is the more you pay
- Keeps bills down with good energy-efficiency
Integrated fridge freezers
- The modern kitchen fans dream is built in appliances everywhere – an integrated fridge freezer tends to fit in well to any kitchen
- Be sure to measure up the size it’s going into first though
- These also tend to be slightly more expensive than a standard fridge freezer
Tall free-standing fridge freezer
- Usually these are quite big and have enough space for the entire family’s favourites with the weekly shop and weekend beers included.
- Easy to move and can be put anywhere – most nowadays have wheels.
American style fridge freezers
- The big daddy of the appliance world, American fridge freezers tend to have enough space for all of your needs and have up to 10 freezer drawers
- Stylish design with great features like ice dispensers, digital screens and even WiFi
Not sure what model of fridge freezer to buy? Check out our guide of the top 30 fridge freezers to buy right now.
How To Move a Fridge Freezer Into Your New Home
Begin by removing all food and groceries from the fridge. You can use a cooler to store your food or groceries in if you are taking with you to your new home, or you can plan ahead and try and consume all your food and groceries before your move.
Wipe down all the cooler surfaces with a solution of baking soda and warm water and defrost the freezer if necessary (you don’t want this to melt and leak during transportation!). For more tips on appliance cleaning, read our guide on how to clean your refrigerator .
Once you emptied and defrosted the appliance, you can disconnect it from the mains. Make sure you do this at least a few hours before you plan to move your refrigerator. You can put a small bowl of baking soda on one of the shelves to prevent odours from building up.
Roll up the power cord and clip it to the back of the fridge. Let the refrigerator door stay open to avoid odours.
Moving the fridge freezer
If you are moving the refrigerator yourself, make sure you have at least one other person to help you and the correct equipment to move the appliance. Make sure you have a clear path through doorways. Remember, the refrigerator is very heavy, so you may want to consider using professional movers to move your appliance, especially if you have to carry it up or down stairs.
Secure the door shut using either tape or rope. You might want to wrap the appliance in bubble wrap, a blanket, or anything to absorb shocks it may suffer during the move. Secure the appliance to the trolley or truck it’s going travel in with heavy-duty ropes.
Refrigerators travel best standing up. However, this might not always be possible. Though not preferable, you can move your refrigerator laying on its side. Remember, your fridge needs to stand still for hours after the move. If transported on its side, this wait time goes up to twice the time that the appliance has laid on its side.
A Longer Lasting Fridge Freezer - Here's Our Tips
Your refrigerator is the hardest working appliance in your home, and probably the most important too. It’s on 24/7, plus it keeps your food safe to eat! By showing just a little care and attention, you can extend the life of this trusty stalwart for many years to come.
Keep the coils behind the appliance clean
The condenser coils on your refrigerator are crucial in keeping the temperature inside cool. However, over time they can collect a serious amount of dust if left unchecked. Keeping these clean will put less stress on the condenser and will ultimately extend the life of your refrigerator. Just remember, it’s best to unplug the appliance when cleaning the coils, and a vacuum or brush is the best tool for the job.
Keep your fridge full
Well, as much as you can, at least. A fuller fridge has less air to keep cool, so doesn’t have to work quite as hard as a sparsely populated appliance. That said, don’t go cramming it full to bursting—good airflow is important for efficient refrigerator operation.
Don’t block the vents
Airflow is very important in terms of keeping your refrigerator running smoothly. The air vents inside the appliance play a key role in maintaining this airflow, so make sure you don’t block them with and food items or drinks cartons.
Keep door seals clean
Of course, keeping your refrigerator clean in general is a good idea, but the door seals are especially important. These are what keep the cool air in and the warm air out. Any break in this seal caused by food residue or liquid will mean your appliance has to work harder to keep the air inside at the right temperature. Also keep an eye out for any tears or cracks in the door seals—if you do spot any, the seal will need replacing.
Keep it away from the heat
Hear sources like ovens, dishwashers, direct sunlight make your fridge’s compressor to work in overdrive. The compressor is the main part of a refrigerator and most times, it’s not worth fixing it once it’s broken down. Overworking it shortens its and your refrigerator’s lifespan.
How To Prevent Frost Build Up?
When you open the freezer doors, hot and humid air from the outside interacts with the cold air inside the fridge. This causes the water vapor in the warmer air to condense and then freeze to the interior walls of the freezer compartment. Frost build-up inside the freezer will mean it takes longer to freeze things and decreases its performance.
The best way to avoid this is to choose a no-frost refrigerator like 3 Zone No Frost or NeoFrost™ Dual Cooling models. If your refrigerator doesn’t have this feature, you will need to defrost it manually. Do this approximately once a month or when the frost build-up reaches a thickness of 0.5 centimetres.
Avoid opening the door too frequently or keeping it open for long
Frost builds up primarily due to the interaction from letting warm air into the fridge freezer. To avoid this, try not to open the door too often, and don’t leave the doors open for very long.
Check for gaps, cracks, or tears on the door seals
The cold air inside your appliance needs to be properly isolated from the outside. Check the door seals to see if there are any gaps between them and the cabinet. If you find any, adjust the door seal by gently pulling it away from the door using your fingers.
If the doors are not sealing properly, try cleaning the seal with a soft cloth or sponge and warm water. Avoid using abrasive cleaning products as they might damage the seals. If a seal is loose or cracked, it needs to be repaired or completely replaced. If you suspect this to be the case, contact an authorised service agent.
Keep the freezer sufficiently loaded
Store half a kilogram of food for every cubic meter of freezer space. In other words, keep about 3/4 of your freezer full. Ideally, your freezer should be full but not overloaded.
Avoid placing hot food inside the appliance
Wait for the food to cool down before putting it into the appliance. The moisture released from hot food may result in more frost build-up.
Check the temperature setting
Frost build-up might increase if the freezer is warmer or colder than it needs to be. The recommended freezer temperature is around -18 °C. Check the setting and adjust it if needed