If your kitchen space is at a premium, then you probably don’t have the luxury of considering a separate fridge and freezer. Or maybe you’ve just got your heart set on filling that space with a gargantuan American-style unit. Either way, there are plenty of great fridge-freezers on the market that can provide everything you’re looking for everything in one tidy, easy-to-get-at package.
Of course, with so many fridge-freezer models on show, working out which model to buy can be an intimidating process. Do you go for a wide American-style, two-door option, an upright 60cm, single-door model with a 60/40 split (60% for the fridge and 40% for the freezer) or a smaller stature 60cm model with a large fridge section and a much smaller freezer compartment? That all depends entirely on how much room you have, and how much you value a constant supply of fish fingers and ice cream – and, of course, whether you could even fit a 1.8m-tall monster in your kitchen in the first place.
To make your life a little easier, we’ve curated this shortlist of the best fridge freezer models, which cover the whole gamut of options from more compact models suitable for more modest kitchens to king-sized giants for the smartest of smart homes.
How to choose the best fridge freezer for you
What is an American-style fridge freezer?
These two-door behemoths are the be-all and end-all of fridge freezers and anyone with a large family, enough space and a high enough income to afford to stock it should seriously consider putting one near the top of the list. When it comes to refrigeration, you can never have too much space.
What does No Frost mean?
Frost and ice is usually caused by internal condensation hitting the freezer’s cold coils. This condensation freezes against the rear wall and, over several months, grows like a mushroom, eventually engulfing the contents in an impenetrable Arctic ice floe. Frost Free or No Frost freezers get around this anomaly by using a fan to blow cold air around the interior. This cold air is then ported to a coil hidden behind the freezer’s rear wall where it turns to frost. Every so often, the coil is heated up and the melted water runs down a pipe into a tray where it eventually evaporates. Wahey, no more long-winded defrosting sessions.
How long can I freeze stuff for?
It depends on the type of product and whether it’s cooked or raw. Most cooked foods can be safely frozen for up to three months but some items such as pre-cooked sausages and hot dogs are best consumed within one to two months. Raw foods can be frozen for up to a year, but again this changes from product to product. A whole chicken, for instance, can stay frozen for up to a year, but chops and steaks are best stored for no longer than six months, while bacon is best eaten within a month. Remember, these are only rough guidelines, so it’s best to check instructions on the food packaging first.
How does the energy rating system work?
A fridge freezer’s energy rating label gives an indication of any given machine’s annual running costs. As of March 2021, these energy ratings have had been given an overhaul. Where the previous system denoted the overall energy efficiency with a rating from A to D followed by up to three plus signs, the new system does away with the plus signs in favour of a simpler A to G scale. As before, A is reserved for the most energy-efficient appliances.
The energy rating labels for fridge freezers also reveal the estimated yearly running costs in kWh and the total capacity of the fridge and freeze compartments in litres. The claimed noise level is also shown, and is indicated by both a broad A to D rating and a specific loudness figure measured in decibels.
The best fridge freezers you can buy in 2022
1. Fridgemaster MS83430FF: The best American-style fridge freezer under £500
Price: £449 (silver) | Buy now from Hughes; £449 (black) | Buy now from Hughes
An American-style fridge freezer at this price represents a fantastic deal, particularly when you consider how well liked it is by users. They love the storage space it offers as well as the sleek minimal appearance, and of course the value for money.
At this price you’ll have to forgo a couple of features that you might see on more expensive models, such as a water or ice dispenser. But on the plus side, without these features there’s more usable storage space for food, which is the most important thing.
The no-frost technology means you can forget the annual misery of chipping ice away by hand, and adjustable shelves as well as LED lighting make for a user-friendly interior. It might not have all the bells and whistles, but if you want a spacious fridge freezer at a price that won’t break the bank, you can’t go wrong with this one.
Key specs – Type: Freestanding; Rated efficiency: F; Net fridge capacity: 264 litres; Net freezer capacity: 164 litres; Frost-free: Yes; Ice dispenser: No; Water dispenser: No; Width: 83.2cm; Height: 178cm
2. Hisense RQ563N4AI1: A brilliant American-style fridge freezer
Price: £719 | **Buy now from Hughes
Hisense’s RQ563 is a brilliant American-style fridge freezer. If you have the room in your kitchen to accommodate it – bear in mind that, at 79cm wide and 177cm high, you’ll need a fair amount – then it provides oodles of. storage space in a gloriously good-looking package.
The fridge compartment is nicely laid out and provides all the storage options you could ask for. It keeps things at a nice stable temperature, and the twin crisper drawers glide in and out smoothly thanks to the rollers underneath.
The freezer drawers lack the silky-smooth rollers of the crisper drawers above, but there’s plenty of storage on offer. And as the two no-frost freezer compartments are separate, you also have the flexibility to set each to different temperatures. Both performed well in our range of tests and also kept items frozen in our four-hour power-cut simulation.
If there are downsides to be found, they’re minor. We’d ideally want some more LED lighting, as there’s not quite enough in either compartment, and the stainless steel finish tends to pick up smudges and fingerprints more readily than we’d like. Given the performance and value on offer, though, that shouldn’t be enough to put anyone off.
Key specs – Type: Freestanding, American-style; Rated efficiency: A+; Net fridge capacity: 290 litres; Net freezer capacity: 142 litres; Frost-free: Yes; Ice dispenser: No; Water dispenser: No; Width: 79cm; Height: 178cm
3. LG InstaView ThinQ GSXV91MCAE: The best high-end American-style fridge freezer
Price: £1,599 | [Buy now from Hughes]
While £1,600 is a lot to spend, this fridge freezer is packed with cool technology that will delight gadget lovers. The big attraction is InstaView: simply knock twice on the door and the black glass becomes transparent to allow you to see what’s in the top half of the fridge.
As you’d expect, Wi-Fi connectivity and an accompanying app come as standard, and the non-plumbed ice and water dispensers mean installation is easy. The integrated UV light kills bacteria in the water dispenser for peace of mind, too.
With the left side housing the freezer and the fridge on the right, this American-style model offers a vast amount of storage space that’s well laid out with a combination of shelves and drawers. What’s more, the matte black exterior elevates the appearance, making this an appliance you’ll want to show off to your friends. Users don’t disagree, praising its looks and quality as well as the amount of space on offer.
Key specs – Type: Freestanding; Rated efficiency: E; Net fridge capacity: 416 litres; Net freezer capacity: 219 litres; Frost-free: Yes; Ice dispenser: Yes; Water dispenser: Yes; Width: 91.3cm; Height: 179cm