A fridge is often the focal point of the kitchen and in the space of ‘all things food’, it is arguably one of the most important electrical appliances in the room. From ensuring your food is kept fresh and safe to eat, to keeping your favourite drinks cool, it’s certainly an item that needs some pre-purchase research and consideration.
Let us simplify this process for you by helping to identify the fridge for you. This guide explains everything you need to know to ensure you select the best model for you.
Larder fridges are designed to provide a large amount of storage space for fresh food items, such as fruits, vegetables, dairy products, meats, and other perishable items.
A fridge freezer is a single appliance that combines a refrigerator and a freezer compartment. It is intended to provide a convenient way to store both perishable and frozen food items in a single appliance.
A freestanding refrigerator is a self-contained unit that can be placed anywhere in the kitchen as long as there is an electrical outlet and enough space. These refrigerators are typically taller and wider, and they are available in a wide range of sizes and styles, including top-freezer, bottom-freezer, and side-by-side models. They are designed to be easily moved and replaced or upgraded without requiring extensive installation work.
An integrated refrigerator, also known as a built-in refrigerator, is one that is designed to be installed into your kitchen cabinetry. These refrigerators are typically smaller than freestanding models and come in a variety of configurations, including under-counter, column, and drawer models. They are designed to blend in with the kitchen decor and provide a streamlined appearance.
The decision of whether to go freestanding or integrated depends entirely on your available space and kitchen style. Many modern kitchens use integrated solutions as this maximises every available bit of space and conceals appliances behind built-in furniture. When considering integrated, there are many options, including under-counter separates, combined fridge freezer units and even individual tall fridges and freezers. For example, models such as the UKFS18EV2HB and UKFF18EN2HB are designed to be fitted into a tall housing unit and can be positioned side by side in order to create a large refrigeration space that maximizes food storage capabilities.
Fridge or freezer? This is a fundamental question, as it will impact your choice of appliance considerably. You need to think about whether you want just a fridge or both a fridge and a freezer. If both, are they one appliance or two stand-alone units? Could an icebox suffice for your freezer needs or do you require a 50/50 split? Smeg offers fridges and freezers individually or in a combination of splits, giving flexibility dependent on your situation.
An American side-by-side refrigerator will offer plenty of storage capacity, efficient organisation, and a sleek design, making it an excellent choice for anyone looking for a new refrigerator.
To enhance flexibility even further our four-door fridge freezers have a convertible compartment which can be a fridge or become a freezer dependent on which groceries you’ve bought that week!
If you want a fridge that will add a touch of vibrancy and personality to the room, then one of our iconic 50’s retro range might be best for you. From the petite FAB5 mini bar to the spacious FAB50 fridge freezer the range includes seven sizes and comes in a multitude of colours with other special editions released across the years.
Smeg appliances are revered for innovative design, something we’ve bought to some of our collaborations with iconic brands. Inspired by the universally known Fiat 500 hatchback, the Smeg500 is one example of this and a real labour of love. The unique cooler is made from original Fiat 500 parts with working lights and switches for the extra wow factor. Available in a variety of bright colourways, the Smeg500 is a memorable addition to any bar, restaurant or the home of Italian retro lovers. Alternatively, for the fashion followers in the world, our recent collaboration with Dolce and Gabbana has taken the iconic 50’s style fridge and given it a very stylish new dress. Each fridge is one-of-a-kind and features images hand painted by Sicilian artists. Here the fridge is more than something to cool your food and drink – it becomes a piece of art, an Italian masterpiece.
Ideal to use after returning from the shops with frozen items like ice cream that need quick freezing.
This power-saving mode allows you to disable the refrigerator but keep the freezer working, so energy isn’t wasted whilst you're away from home for a long period of time.
Fridges with Auto defrost stop icy build-ups in your fridge.
An Active Ion system neutralises bacteria and other impurities responsible for unpleasant food odour keeping your fridge in top condition.
Did you know, A-rated appliances (at the time of writing) no longer exist?
In 2020, the energy rating system was restructured. This was because improvements in energy efficiency meant the old system was no longer fit for purpose for modern appliances.
As a result, fridge freezer ratings have shifted from A+++ being the best to a simple A-G system with D currently being the best.
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The good news is, new D-rated fridge freezers are still just as energy efficient as the earlier A+++ rated appliances, so these are still an excellent choice for your home.
It's important to be aware of the change as some websites still display old ratings, misleading consumers.
Freestanding fridge freezers can be placed anywhere in the kitchen. As they are not built-in, these versatile appliances can move with you to a new home.
Integrated fridge freezers, also known as "built-in" fridge freezers allow you to attach one of your kitchen cupboard doors to the front, thus making it blend in seemlessly with your kitchen units providing a streamlined look.
A larder fridge does not have a freezer compartment. In constrast, a fridge-freezer comprises of both fridge and freezer compartments.
When considering size, there are two things to consider:
Undercounter fridge freezers, etc are normally around 60cm wide and around 85cm high. In terms of capacity, this depends on the design, phystical size, and whether it's a larger fridge, etc, but as a guide these wll have a capacity of 75 to 200l.
Freestanding fridge freezers are also typically around 60cm (596mm) wide, but can vary in height depending on what capacity you need, and can vary from 72cm to over 200cm. The taller unit can have a capacity of 200-300l.
An American fridge freezer, which is also known as a side-by-side, is a large appliance that combines a fridge and freezer into one unit and typically features two vertical doors side by side.
Many American fridge freezers include ice or water dispensers within the external surface of one of the doors.
Whilst these can also vary in width, typically an American fridge freezer will be around 91cm wide with a capacity of around 500 to 600l.
A French fridge freezer is similar to an American style, but instead of 2 of 4 doors, they typically have an upper section which consists of 2 doors, and a lower section which consist of 2 draws.
As cold air sinks, the 2 draws are normally for the freezer compartment, and the upper section contains the fridge, although with some of our models you can actually choose!
The most ideal temperature for your fridge is between 37°F (3°C) and 40°F (5°C).
Your freezer should be 0°F (-18°C).
When making any adjustments, it can take up to 24 hours for the new temperature to settle to the new level.
Most modern freezers now include some kind of frost-free, no-frost technology which eliminate the need for routine defrosting. This has a number of advantages. It helps reduce energy bills, improves the freshness of food, and reduces maintenance.
For freezers or fridge-freezers without frost-free capabilitiies, you should normally expect to de-ice it roughly every 12 months.
Most manufacturers only provide a 12 month warranty. However, at Smeg all of our fridges and fridge freezers come with 2 year warranty assistance for parts and labour.
Did you know that Smeg has a dedicated support website which is full of useful information about our products, including everything from how to check your fridge temperature to how to register your warranty?