Do you need a new fridge? Buying new appliances for your home can be a stressful process, that’s why I’ve put together some simple tips for buying a new fridge to ensure you make the right choice.
- Decide if you really need a new fridge
Are you having problems with your fridge and figure you need to replace it. Before splashing out on a new fridge, it’s worth checking if you need an entirely new fridge or if you just need some replacement parts.
Sometimes, a replacement water filter, grease filter, water valve, or door shelf can make you feel like you have a new fridge but at a much lower cost.
- Know the difference between different types of fridges
If you need a small or subtle fridge that can slide under a counter or behind a cupboard door, you’re looking for an integrated or built-in fridge. These can come in small and large sizes, but it’s all the more important that you get the measurements right if you plan on tucking your fridge away.
Larder fridges are fridges without a freezer. You can buy free-standing or integrated larder fridges and small larder fridges are great if you need an additional fridge for storing groceries. They’re often cheaper than fridges with a built-in freezer, but be careful not to buy a larder fridge if you’re expecting a built-in freezer!
Some fridges have iceboxes, which are a small freezer compartment within the fridge. These are handy for ice and a small number of frozen products and are common in mini-fridges and under-the-counter fridges. Bear in mind that a fridge with an icebox is not the same as a dual fridge-freezer and the icebox itself is small but also takes up room in the fridge itself.
- Figure out your budget
The average cost of buying and installing a fridge is $1500. It’s important when buying a fridge to know your budget and to take into account additional costs such as delivery and installation.
The most expensive fridges are usually tall, integrated fridge-freezers. If you’re willing to compromise on size and you don’t mind having a freestanding fridge, you can save some money. If you are on a budget, it’s even more important to research your fridge of choice and check reviews.
- Remember the fridge shouldn’t fit exactly in a space
When you measure the space that your fridge, it’s important to remember that the fridge shouldn’t fit exactly into that space. This is because many fridges need room for air circulation at the top, back, and sides, often up to 5cm.
When buying a fridge, investigate how much additional space it needs for air circulation and how much room the plug and wiring at the back might take up.
- Read up on energy labels
The upfront cost of a fridge is the first ‘price tag’, the second is its energy efficiency. Fridges with poor energy efficiency cost more to run, meaning that a cheap fridge could cost you more in the long run.
Using a guide like this one, you can educate yourself about the different types of energy labels and certifications. Common labels include the Energy Star and the EnergyGuide labels and some appliance sellers even offer ‘smart fridges’ that can be connected to your smart meter.