If you are considering to invest in a brand new refrigerator, it is very important to study all the aspects before finally making a decision. Refrigerators are becoming smart by the day, thanks to the new functionalities being added consistently. However, it becomes very difficult to keep track of these features. Don’t worry, we are here to make your life easier with our ultimate buying guide so that you can make an informed decision.
The most important things to consider:
- Refrigerator type
- Energy rating
- Additional features
Perhaps the most important thing to consider is to determine what size or capacity of fridge you actually require. This metric is usually available in litres. While considering the capacity, also make sure that you have enough space to accommodate the fridge at your home. That being said, refer to the table below to get an idea of what might be right for you.
|Number of members||Recommended Capacity|
|Bachelor or couple||50L to 150L|
|Family of 3 to 4||250L to 300L|
|Family of 4 to 5||300L to 350L|
|Family of 6 and more||400L to 500L|
First and foremost, make sure that the fridge can be brought into the house. The fridge has to be able to fit in through the elevator (if required) and the central doors. Then we have to make sure that it fits perfectly in the space allotted for it. Apart from taking the height, width and depth into account, you also have to consider other factors such as door opening so that the fridge does not hit other appliances while opening. Additionally, make sure that there is at least one inch of space above and behind the bridge to make room for ventilation. Poor ventilation can cause motor damage and might require more energy to function.
Air Circulation: Direct cool and Frost free
The direct cooling option facilitates air circulation through natural convection. Although a cheaper option, it requires regular manual defrosting.
Frost-free technology, on the other hand, facilitates air circulation through electric fans, preventing any frosts. This method is more expensive and consumes more electricity.
Portable Mini fridge
This is the best option for students and working individuals who keep relocating or/and have limited space to accommodate a fridge. These models are available in a capacity range of 45 to 110 litres.
Price Range: Rs. 6,800 to Rs. 12,000 (depending on the capacity and other features)
This type of refrigerator has just one door and accommodates both the fridge and the freezer. These entry-level refrigerators are ideal for a family of two and occupy less space as compared to the other models. Most of the single door refrigerators are still direct cool in nature. However, certain companies have introduced the auto-defrost option as well. The capacity ranges from 100 to 300 litres.
Price Range: Rs. 10,000 to Rs. 25,000 (100-250 Litres)
This is one of the most popular types of refrigerators in families of 4 to 5 members. It has two doors, one on top of the other. Usually, the upper compartment is the freezer and the lower one is the fridge. They have frost-free technology and can range from 235-495 litres.
Price Range: Rs. 20,000 to Rs. 55,000
This is a variation of the double door refrigerators where the freezer is the lower compartment. Being the less popular option, not many bottom-freezer models are available in the market. Nevertheless, this option is very convenient if you want the fridge compartment to be at the eye level. This type of design also accommodates larger freezers as compared to its top freezer, bottom fridge counterpart.
Price Range: Rs. 20,000 to Rs. 50,000
These refrigerators are usually slimmer and taller than the other models and have three compartments: top freezer, middle fridge and lower vegetable drawer. They have frost-free technology and can range from 250 to 350 litres.
Price Range: Rs. 24,000 to Rs. 40,000
Side By Side Door
The side-by-side model is wider than the other models and is split into two equal compartments for the freezer on the left and the fridge on the right. This type of design is a good option if the customer wants both fridge and freezer to be at eye level and does not want to bend more. They have a lot of shelves and bins and are ideally designed for a large family of six or more members. They have built-in ice and water dispensers in the door. They have frost-free technology and can range from 500 to 700 litres for 5-6 members and 700 to 900 litres for larger families.
Price Range: Rs. 70,000 to Rs. 1,92,990 (Discounted prices start from around Rs. 45,000)
This model, although spacious, has a very peculiar design with two fridge compartments side-by-side and a bottom freezer usually split into two. They have a lot of storage capacity with plenty of shelves and deeper space for the freezer. A big advantage of the design is that we do not have to open all the compartments at once. This helps in saving a lot of energy. They have frost-free technology and typically range from 450 to 700 litres.
Price range: Rs. 73,000 onwards (Discounted prices start from Rs. 60,000)
Counter-depth refrigerators are one of the most expensive models out there and are designed to align perfectly with the kitchen counter such that only the door sticks out.
These refrigerators are WiFi-enabled and provide features such as built-in food recognition technology. One such popular model is Samsung’s IoT-enabled refrigerator, ‘The Family Hub’ which features a giant touch screen on the door and a voice-controlled assistant named Bixby. Bixby can recognise voices and convey messages to different family members. For example, you can leave a message for one of your kids and Bixby will play the message for the particular kid. Think of the fridge as more of a personal assistant as it can manage space, plan meals, play music, schedule tasks, among others.
Price Range: Rs. 2,50,000 onwards
While buying a refrigerator, it is very important to consider its energy efficiency through the Energy Efficiency Rating (EER) or star rating. Higher the rating, lesser is the energy consumed by the fridge. In simple terms, the higher the rating, the better it is. The higher-rated models are expensive initially but save money in the long run.
Some models offer several additional features that include:
- water and ice dispenser on the doors
- toughened glass shelves for more durability
- convertible technology wherein freezers can be converted to fridge
- deodorisers to remove foul smell
- Cool Pack that can keep food frozen up to 12 hours even during power outages
We hope that our guide will help you make a good decision. Last but not the least, consider buying an extra warranty for the fridge. This will not be a huge amount in front of the cost of the fridge and can be very helpful sometimes. All top brands such as LG, Samsung, etc, provide extended warranty on their refrigerators.