How to Choose Best Refrigerator: 5 Steps
Size, volume and format
With the search for a model of the right format you definitely will not have any difficulties, because now there is a huge selection in stores. You only need to decide which refrigerator is suitable for you and your family. If the family is small, you can buy a traditional two-compartment model with a width of 60 cm. If a lot of people live in one apartment, you can look at models with a width of 70 cm. Such refrigerator is not enough too? No problem! There are French Door models that are 90 or 100 cm wide. But refrigerators with increased width have a disadvantage – they will not fit into every kitchen. There is also a solution for these situations – these are refrigerators with increased height (maximum – about two meters).
As for the volume of the refrigerator (its capacity), then everything is very individual. But still there are a few basic criteria that you should take into account: for a family of 3-4 people, the model with 300-350 liters of volume will be suitable, for a family with more than four people, you should choose a refrigerator from 400 liters. Now we are talking about total useful volume (refrigerator compartment + freezer). If you are interested in the figures for each compartment, then the volume of the refrigerator compartment should be 2-3 times more than the freezer.
Manual defrosting is, of course, a thing of the past. Now there are two defrosting schemes that should be in a modern fridge – full No Frost or drip defrost in the fridge compartment and No Frost in the freezer. Full No Frost protects the fridge compartment from excessive humidity, which can sometimes even lead to mold formation (especially if food is not stored properly). But there is one nuance – the food must be stored packed, otherwise it will get stale due to the circulation of rather dry cold air in the refrigerator (and who stores food without packaging at all?). Also, the No Frost elements take up more space in the refrigerator, and that eats up a little bit of usable volume.
In most modern models, the shelves are made of tempered glass and can withstand a load of up to 30 kg. And this solution looks nicer than the lattice shelves. But there is one disadvantage – solid glass prevents an even distribution of cold air, so you need to pay attention to the presence of multi-stream cooling (the meaning is that the air through several ducts is brought to each shelf). We also advise to pay attention to the presence of a freshness zone, which maintains the optimum temperature and humidity for the storage of different products. Even better if there will be several of these zones, because the storage conditions, for example, chilled meat and vegetables are different – you can not store them in one box.
Now it is difficult to talk about any other control than electronic, because the electromechanics remained only in the most budget models. Electronic control creates a greater variability of settings – temperature and other additional modes (for example, “Supercooling”, “Superfreezing” and “Holiday”). As for controlling the refrigerator from a smartphone, its necessity is much debated. And, unfortunately, full remote interaction has not yet been fully implemented in Russia (for example, there is no link to grocery retailers and no possibility to quickly order missing products via the fridge app). But there are still advantages. For example, some modern models can offer recipes from the foods they keep in them. You can also find out as quickly as possible about the malfunction of the device, because all the information will come to your smartphone.
Here we definitely recommend refrigerators with an inverter compressor. Such models work more quietly (because such compressor works at full power only until the necessary temperature is reached), and they are also more durable (there are fewer wearing elements) and save energy by optimizing the cooling system. Without disadvantages too – it is a higher cost and sensitivity to voltage fluctuations.