Which Style of Refrigerator Is Best?

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Refrigerators are available in various styles and designs to accommodate assorted consumer needs. While there is no "best" style, there is often a style that closely matches individual user preferences.

Top/Bottom Freezer Styles

  • Top freezer styles are the most conventional. The freezer is as wide and deep as the refrigerator beneath it and easily stores large items like frozen pizza or sheet cakes. They are best for adults but not children or persons in wheelchairs who cannot reach the top freezer. Bottom freezer styles are easy to access by children and those in wheelchairs and have the same capacity as top-freezer models.

Side-by-side and French Door Designs

  • Side-by-side models have the refrigerator on the right and the freezer on the left, usually of equal size. They are best for easy stocking and the contents are clearly visible, although the storage shelves are narrower than in top and bottom freezers. French door models have a side-by-side refrigerator atop a bottom freezer drawer, more storage compartment options and extra space in the doors, which make them the best choice for large families who need maximum food storage capacity.

Smaller Options

  • Counter-depth refrigerators come in the aforementioned styles but have less depth. They fit flush with kitchen counters and are best for small kitchens. Compact refrigerators are one-half to one-quarter the size of regular refrigerators and are best for occupants of studio apartments, offices or college dorm rooms who have limited space.

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