At the core, all refrigerators serve the same purpose, to keep your food from spoiling. Over the years however, many modern refrigerators have gained numerous new features and design changes. The following is a quick guide to cover these new features and options with modern fridges.

Size – The size of the refrigerator is one of the most important things to consider when re-doing a kitchen. If you allow for an opening to fit your current refrigerator, if you wish to update in the future, you may not be able to if you have not allotted yourself enough space for the model you wish to have. Most refrigerators come in Widths ranging from 30″ – 36″, Heights from 65″ – 72″, and Depths from 26″ – 35″. The size of your fridge will generally determine how much storage you will have available in the fridge, and how large of an area you must allow for in the kitchen to place the fridge.

Style – Most commonly when you think of a refrigerator, you think of a unit with a door on the front, and a small door above for a freezer. That is just one style of fridge, known as a top mount style. All the styles of a fridge are as follows: Top Mount, Bottom Mount, Side by Side, French Door, and Standalone (there are other styles but those are generally used in commercial applications).

Top Mount Refrigerators have a large fridge section available from the ground up, with a small freezer compartment located at the top of the unit. These models are generally smaller in size, and provide large amounts of storage while taking up low amounts of kitchen space.

Bottom Mount Refrigerators have a small freezer section at the bottom of the unit, with a fridge compartment located above. The benefit of this model is that generally the freezer below is a pullout drawer, making it much easier to access everything in your freezer.

Side by Side Refrigerators are split vertically down unit, with a small freezer component on the left side, and a larger fridge unit on the right side. These models provide more freezer storage when you’re tight on width,  as they gain more storage through their often increased height.

French Door Refrigerators will have a pullout freezer drawer (or two) located at the bottom of the unit that runs the full width of the fridge. Located above this are two doors that open up independent of each other to access the fridge section. The benefit in these models is to provide an easier way to access the fridge on the larger units (commonly in 34″ and above wide models), to prevent having to open one very large door. This also cuts down on energy usage as you can choose to only open half of the fridge instead of the entire unit.

Standalone Refrigerators are units that are one large door, and the entire unit is a refrigerator, and there is no freezer in the unit at all. These are useful in large kitchens, or for households that require a large amount of frozen storage room. A large matching freezer unit can be purchased, allowing for one entire unit to be used as a refrigerator, and the other to be used as a freezer.

Finish – When choosing new appliances, it’s nice to have a set that matches completely in both style and colour. Most appliances will come in three different finishes, which are white, black, or stainless steel. Stainless steel is the most common type of appliance to find nowadays, however black and white appliances can still be ordered, but are usually more limited in selection however.

Water Lines – Common place in refrigerators now is the water and ice dispenser, generally located on the face of the unit. These dispensers are handy to grab a cool drink of filtered water, or to chill any other drink you have with crushed or cubed ice, ready as soon as you hit a button. Always keep in mind however that you will need to have a water line available near the refrigerator to hookup to use these functions.

That is essentially everything major to consider when choosing a new refrigerator. Try and decide what features and styles will be right for your needs to find the perfect refrigerator for your household. If you have any other questions about refrigerators, you can ask your local appliance expert, or ask the team at Handcrafted Wood Furniture and Kitchens about them.


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