Are you in the market for a new refrigerator, perhaps an upgrade from a basic model you have had for years?
The 21st century has brought about innovations that the 1980s and 90s could only speculate about. Let’s take a look at some of the features that are becoming more common and some of the newer innovations.
The Refrigerator Reconfigured
Besides the standard freezer on top configuration, there are three other styles that are becoming increasingly popular.
Side-by-side: Giving access to the freezer on one side and the fridge on the other, this type is one of the most popular now. The tall slender doors are also good for kitchens with little clearance space. This type promotes better organization and more freezer space than other types. The narrower the fridge and freezer compartments, though, the less capacity there is to store wide items such as party trays.
Bottom-Mount Freezer: With the freezer on the bottom, the main compartments remain at eye level, a no-brainer when accessed more frequently than the freezer. With a bottom-mount freezer, there’s no need to bend over to access fruits and vegetables. And being able to keep an eye on your fresh food can mean less waste.
French Door: The newest addition, and a variation of the bottom-mount freezer category, this model features two half-width doors that open from the center (like a side-by-side). This type of fridge is also good if you have less clearance when a door opens and you still have the full-width shelves in the inner compartment.
Flexible Storage: This feature makes it easier to store your groceries any way you like. Almost every refrigerator will let you rearrange the shelves but look for a refrigerator with shelving that slides in or folds up to make room for tall items below, or shelves that slide out to help you reach items in the back of the fridge.
Fingerprint Resistance: Stainless steel is popular, but it’s a challenge to keep that shiny, metallic finish free from fingerprints. Now, several major brands have introduced smudge-proof stainless steel refrigerators. In general, manufacturers may increase the brushing on the stainless steel and add a coating to the surface to make it easy to clean and better at hiding fingerprints and smudges. Black stainless steel appliances can be better than plain stainless steel at resisting fingerprints. Slate-finished refrigerators have a sophisticated look and also do a better job of staying smudge-free than regular stainless steel.
More Doors and Drawers Offer Temperature Controlled Environments: One of the most noteworthy trends has been creating refrigerators with a variety of doors and compartments to hold food at different temperatures. This creates optimal conditions for food safety as you can tailor your refrigerator to suit its contents. With 4 or 5 doors (2 doors on top, a pull-out drawer or 2 drawers side by side in the middle of the fridge, and the freezer (sometimes with 2 drawers) on the bottom, you can create colder sections for meat and dairy with cool sections for your produce and chilled drinks. These areas of the fridge are also called flex zones-places where you can control the temperature and humidity separately from the rest of the fridge. This will allow you to prolong the lifespan of your perishable items and save on food waste.
Ice Makers That Produce Higher Quality Ice, Quickly: While fridges have featured built-in ice makers for years, its implementation has been advancing. Based on the trends, your new fridge’s ice maker will likely produce ice of a much higher quality, and of different shapes and sizes and at a significantly increased quantity more quickly than ice machines from just a few years ago. Slim in-door ice makers are becoming widely popular because you get all of your ice as well as 100% usage of your freezer’s top shelf.
Trend Alert – Glass Door Refrigerators: This is clearly a luxury option and will add to the price tag. But there are a number of advantages.
- Durability. Compared to metals like stainless steel, glass door refrigerators don’t dent and they don’t scratch as easily, especially if you use a soft towel or gentle glass cleaners. Their sheen makes them look brand new for years to come.
- Glass door refrigerators come in a variety of glass panel styles ranging from high-gloss colored glass to frosted glass to stainless steel doors with a clear glass window insert.
- You can see what is in your fridge without opening it which can help to keep the fridge’s temperature level(s).
- Modern and stylish, it can be a centrepiece in your kitchen
- The interior glow will add extra light to your kitchen
There are also a few drawbacks to glass doors:
- Glass doors means no shelving on the door available so there is less storage
- Requires regular cleaning
Other Features to Look For:
- Sliding, adjustable shelving along the fridge door
- Filters that take out ethylene gas (this gas hastens fruit rot)
- Quick chill function in freezers – chills soda, beer or wine in minutes with a press of a button
- Airtight crispers. A special pane of glass locks moisture in and maintains an ideal environment for produce.
- A door-in-door option. This is a hidden compartment behind an exterior panel—usually on a French door refrigerator- that pops open with the press of a button. This allows you to reach for often used items without opening the entire door and letting warm air rush into the rest of the refrigerator. It’s great for those of us who like to take their time.
No matter what style, size, model, brand and features you are looking for, there’s a fridge waiting for you. Enjoy choosing just the right one for you and your family.
Your major appliances are an important investment. You can rely on C&W Appliance Service to protect that investment. Call us at (855) 358-1496 or contact us online for all your repair and maintenance needs.