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A French door refrigerator is characterized by a pair of side by side doors used to access the refrigeration compartment. Usually, the freezer compartment is at the bottom of the refrigerator, housed within a drawer.
This double door refrigerator style is fast becoming the most popular form of refrigeration for modern American households. It brings the most commonly used items, like eggs, milk, soda, and veggies, up to eye level and within easy reach. Since each door measures half the width of the entire fridge, it takes up less space when the doors are open, making it easier to plan comfortably around kitchen islands and tight spaces.
Chilled air escapes every time a refrigerator is opened and raises the internal temperature of the entire unit. Opening only one of the French doors at time reduces the amount of cool air lost and, in turn, reduces the amount of energy needed to return the interior to the best temperature for storing fresh food.
Since the refrigeration compartment spans the full width of a French door refrigerator, the shelves housed within span from side to side, making it easier to store large items like pizza boxes, deli trays, and casserole dishes. Many of these refrigerators include shelves that can be adjusted from front to back as well to accommodate unusually tall items without laying them on their side.
The last quarter of the 20th century saw the rise of the side-by-side refrigerator. Characterized by placing the freezer and refrigerator sections next to each other, its popularity has been waning in recent years due to the contemporary style and technical advances of French door refrigerators.
Although no longer at the top of the refrigerator heap, there are many benefits to a side-by-side setup. The freezer compartments are often much larger than a bottom freezer refrigerator’s freezer drawer and the inclusion of multiple shelves and drawers within the compartment make it easier to organize and access frozen goods. Since frozen goods can be stored at chest or eye level, it also greatly reduces the amount of bending and stooping that is required when using a freezer drawer setup.
If an in-door ice and water dispenser is a must-have for your kitchen, a side-by-side refrigerator may be the best option. Dispensers take up less usable space in a freezer door than in a French door, leaving more cubic feet within the freezer compartment for storing bulk frozen foods.
A freezerless refrigerator is exactly what it sounds like, a refrigerator that doesn’t include a freezer. Often purchased as a supplementary appliance for households that need more space to store fresh food, these models are also perfect for small apartments or vacation homes where frozen storage isn’t a priority.
For a custom kitchen feel with a luxuriously large refrigeration system, freezerless refrigerators are often paired with a matching upright freezer and installed side-by-side with a corresponding trim kit to mask the empty space between the units and solidify the aesthetic. Not only does this provide a luxurious amount of interior storage space, but each unit runs independently with its own motor and circulation system.
Anyone who has lived in an apartment or condo has likely lived with a top freezer refrigerator. Engineered with the freezer compartment at eye level, each section spans the full width of the unit with crisper drawers located closest to the floor.
Although top freezer refrigerators usually include just one shelf within the freezer compartment limiting organization options for larger frozen goods, there is additional storage on the full width door that isn’t available within a drawer style freezer.
Hands down, this is the most cost effective model on the market and if bending and stooping to reach fresh fruits and vegetables doesn’t bother you, this traditional model does the job.
Counter depth refrigerators, also known as cabinet depth refrigerators, are designed with a shallower profile, so they can be installed amid existing cabinetry and appliances without protruding past the front edge of the surrounding countertop.
Perfect for custom kitchens, the sides of the refrigerator are hidden from view, creating a seamless kitchen featuring the desired finish of the refrigerator instead of the unfinished sides. The shallower depth also makes it easier to integrate with a kitchen island, leaving more room between the refrigerator and the island countertop, or into a galley kitchen, opening up the floor space between the appliance and the parallel wall or cabinetry.
When talking about refrigerator colors, there’s no question about it stainless steel refrigerators are king. Stainless steel looks professional yet chic in every style of kitchen and with its popularity growing every day, it’s hard to imagine a time when stainless steel will be out of style. Busy households have tuned into what the Restaurant and Hospitality industry has known for years, stainless steel is durable and easy to clean. Although the average American kitchen doesn’t see half of the action of a full-time restaurant kitchen, it’s nice to know that every day bumps, jabs and messes won’t harm the overall appearance of the family refrigerator.
Black refrigerators come in as a close second for most popular refrigerator colors. It’s a classic style that integrates easily with more modern décor. From urban open floor plan lofts to apartment galley kitchens, a black finish complements dark and neutral color palettes and camouflages life’s little mishaps until they can be properly cleaned up. There are countless top-of-the-line black refrigerators on the market that satisfy every possible refrigeration need without overpowering custom cabinetry or specialty countertops.
There’s nothing wrong with taking a more traditional approach to choosing a refrigerator color. If your kitchen has a lack of natural light, a white refrigerator may be just what you need to help brighten the overall atmosphere of the room. From contemporary style kitchens to country chic, white appliances help bring a light and airy feel to the most popular room in the house.
Many brands are coming out with specialty finishes for a trendier, more unique kitchen feel. LG and GE offer black stainless steel refrigerators with the same durability as a standard stainless steel, but in a darker tone for modern and contemporary tastes.
GE has also found great success with their line of Slate refrigerators. GE Slate is an earthier tone, inspired by the look and feel of natural stone. One thing that sets this specialty finish apart from the rest is its easy-to-clean matte surface that refuses to collect fingerprints or mystery smears that can sometimes become a headache with glossier refrigerator finishes.
For a more luxurious look to your kitchen, it doesn’t get any more chic than a custom panel refrigerator. Often outfitted with a featureless stainless steel exterior, these refrigerators need to be outfitted with a custom panel that matches the rest of your kitchen cabinetry. These are a little more difficult to install and often require the help of a specialized craftsman to ensure that the refrigerator’s profile is completely hidden from view. It’s important when you shop for a custom panel refrigerator to find out what your custom panel options are and if it requires a specialty installer.
If you buy a lot of frozen goods, consider a deep freezer to extend their shelf life. A tall vertical freezer can give more storage without taking up extra floor space. Do you have a hard time reaching into the deep depths of a standard chest freezer? Not a problem we have many upright freezers that cut down on all that bending and reaching. This design also means the freezer can fit into spaces not wide enough for a standard deep freezer.
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