Fridges

Image Credit: domani on stock.xchng (http://www.sxc.hu/photo/76532)

Image Credit: domani on stock.xchng (http://www.sxc.hu/photo/76532)

Shopping Checklist: Fridges

  • Fridge size Fridges are measured in litres (L), and range in size from 850L to less than 170L. For an average household of two people, a storage capacity of about 300L should be enough. Don't forget to measure the available space in your kitchen before you choose your fridge size.

  • Frost-free Frost-free fridges take away the hassle of removing ice build-up by using a fan to circulate dry, cold air throughout the freezer compartment.

  • Replaceable shelves Make sure there are easy fixes for glass or plastic drawers and shelves, in case of any breakage or cracking.

  • Delivery Transporting a fridge is hard work, so it's usually worth getting someone else to do the heavy lifting for you. Ask the store about their delivery fees.

  • Installation Some fridges have additional features such as water and ice dispensers that may need to be installed by a plumber—which could be costly. Find out whether specialist installation is required.

  • Warranty and return policy This information is useful in case there are any faults—or if the fridge simply doesn't fit through your front door!

  • Temperature In most fridges, operating the thermostat will let you adjust the temperature to suit your groceries. Some newer models have moved from temperature control dials to digital controls, and some side-by-side models even include drawers that can be controlled separately.

  • Noise Find out how much noise you can expect from internal fans, motors, automatic timers, and water and ice dispensing units before you make your purchase.

  • Energy efficiency The Energy Star rating system is a government-backed program that alerts buyers to energy efficient products. Labels that display more stars and lower kilowatt hours (kWh) will cost less to run.

  • Special features Many special features are available including cooling systems, digital controls, anti-bacterial coating and ice dispensers. Find out what extras are available, what the benefits are and what they cost.

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