(BPT) - Whether you’re remodeling your kitchen, replacing a broken unit or upgrading your full appliance suite, looking for a new refrigerator can feel overwhelming with all the options available — but it doesn’t have to be! Check out this list of tips and tricks to help you keep your cool as you navigate your shopping experience — from design and finish to features and capacity, you’ll have everything you need to find the right refrigerator for you.
1. Measure up: Making sure it fits your kitchen.
When measuring for a refrigerator, make sure to measure the cutout size, and not just the size of your old refrigerator. Pay attention to height, depth and surrounding spaces in your kitchen. Size options include counter depth, which lines up with your countertops, and standard depth, which offers more capacity and extends past your countertops.
When thinking about fridge type, there are two options to consider: freestanding refrigerators simply slide into your kitchen cutout for ease and convenience, whereas built-in refrigerators are installed completely flush with your cabinetry.
2. Open the door to a better kitchen: Choosing a type.
Determine the type of refrigerator that works best for your kitchen space, including door configuration. You can choose French door bottom mount (double fridge doors on top, freezer on bottom), Side by Side (fridge on the right and freezer on the left), Bottom Freezer (single fridge door on top, freezer on bottom), among others. If you have a narrow kitchen, choose a refrigerator type and size that allows the refrigerator and freezer doors to open all the way.
Capacity pro tip: Some fridge models are more suitable for certain household sizes. French door refrigerators are optimal for larger household sizes, as they offer greater capacity, while a small 24-inch fridge with a bottom freezer might be better for smaller households.
3. Cheers to you: Assess your beverage needs.
Choosing a refrigerator that keeps your beverages at the right temperature is key, from a fast, reliable ice dispenser to specialty beverage storage within the fridge. With the Bosch QuickIcePro System, you can avoid frequent runs to the grocery store to keep your drinks ice-cold. Or, with the Refreshment Center, there’s nothing to “wine” about — it’s like a wine cellar for your refrigerator, storing bottles at the optimal temperature and humidity.
4. America’s Next Top (Fridge) Model: Choose a design that fits your style.
From timeless stainless steel to bold black stainless steel, choose the finish that makes the right statement in your kitchen. Stainless steel offers a classic/traditional feel; black stainless steel is stylish and functional; custom panel ready refrigerators install fully flush for clean lines and a uniform style. Some refrigerators are even finished with premium glass over brushed stainless steel — a great option for a sleeker look.
5. Your saving grace: Choose energy-saving appliances.
Sustainability is key to a forever home. Be on the lookout for appliances that are energy efficient, saving both the environment and your wallet. Since your fridge will be running 24/7, select a model that is ENERGY STAR® certified. Some ENERGY STAR® certified refrigerators feature high-efficiency compressors, generating less heat/energy, and an Eco Mode, which automatically adjusts temperatures in the appliance.
6. Back to the basics: Keeping it fresh.
Consider how your refrigerator can help you keep food cold and fresh while limiting food waste. First, think about your typical trip to the grocery store. What perishables do you usually buy, or want to buy? The items in your bag may influence the interior layout and shelving options you'll want in a fridge — be sure to choose one with greater storage flexibility.
For example, a large, “smart” storage compartment is best for fruit and vegetable lovers. The FarmFresh System from Bosch keeps produce fresher, longer, by automatically adjusting the humidity and temperature based on the food setting selected. Wide gallon door bins are best for families that buy multiple milk jugs. A colder chiller drawer is the perfect spot for meat and fish. For smaller items and hard-to-place, tall bottles, opt for a fridge that offers adjustable shelving to maximize space.