Best Refrigerator Brands – Buying Guide
Can you imagine your kitchen without a refrigerator? The answer is no. A refrigerator constitutes one of the most useful kitchen appliances that are present in almost all Indian homes. Today, different households have different types of refrigerators that perform varied functions.
A refrigerator is concerned with the task of storing your food, fruits, vegetables, freezing ice, and preserving their freshness so that you could use these food products for a long time. The role of the refrigerator is also to ward off the spoiling of food and slowing down the growth of harmful bacteria.
Over time, the best refrigerators have evolved into various types, shapes, sizes, designs, and even technology.
Types of refrigerators
Direct Cool Refrigerator:
You may term it as the most basic version of a refrigerator available in the market. Direct cool refrigerators do not include fans and work on the concept of convection cooling. Under this type of cooling, some parts may get cooler than the other compartments. They are highly energy-efficient and available in different sizes and at varied price ranges.
Frost Free Refrigerator:
A frost-free refrigerator includes an electric fan that helps to circulate cool air inside the chambers. The advantage of a fan is that it accelerates an even and controlled cooling in all the compartments of the appliance. Furthermore, these refrigerators come with auto-defrost technology. Hence, you do not have to remove the ice manually from the freezer.
Direct Cool Vs. Frost Free – which one is better?
While a direct cool refrigerator is energy-efficient and may help you cut down your monthly electricity expenditure to an extent, it is a frost-free refrigerator that stands out in terms of performance. A frost-free refrigerator keeps your food fresh for a longer time when compared to the former. Also, it does not require regular maintenance because of its feature of automatic-defrosting.
This fridge comes with a single door that locks the cool ambiance inside the appliance. The structure of this refrigerator is very simple. There is a fridge, freezer, and a vegetable tray. Single-door refrigerators are very affordable and energy-efficient.
A double-door refrigerator is bigger and is a suitable option for all large families. As the name suggests, this fridge uses two doors. One of the doors seals the freezer chamber, and the other includes all the compartments where you may preserve the food. The separation of doors makes more space into this refrigerator so that you could store a great deal of food, fruits, and vegetables in the same.
It is a French-style refrigerator comprising two doors that opens at sides. The storage capacity of these refrigerators is larger when compared to the other models. These refrigerators even include an ice or water dispenser so that you could fill up your glass without opening its door. Do not buy this fridge if you are falling short of space. They are a little expensive when compared to the other variants.
Bottom Mounted Refrigerator:
A standard model of a refrigerator includes a freezer at the top and the compartments and vegetable tray at the bottom. However, this is not the case with a bottom-mounted refrigerator. This fridge comes with a unique structure. It has a freezer at the bottom and compartments on the top. This kind of refrigerator is trendy, unique, and very energy-efficient.
A mini refrigerator is the smallest in size and offers a basic-cooling feature only to keep your food fresh. You cannot store or freeze ice in such a fridge. However, some of these models may include a small freezer to do the needful. These refrigerators work on a direct-cool technology, and you are required to manually defrost them now and then.
This type of refrigerator works on conversion technology. Buying this refrigerator could be a cherry on the cake, especially if you are a non-vegetarian and store non-veg food in your appliance. The best convertible refrigerator enables you to convert the freezer into a fridge or a fridge into a freezer, as per your preference.
Here is everything to include in your buying guide while buying the best home refrigerator:
Choose the right capacity
As a refrigerator varies in terms of shapes and sizes, it is advisable to buy the appliance of the right capacity so that you can utilize it to the optimum. The capacity of the fridge directly depends upon the size of your family as well as your eating habits.
If you are a family of 1 or 2 members, do not buy anything more than 200 liters as it would be a waste of money. You may look for some advanced models having varied features in this size of a fridge. For a small-sized family, a unit of 200-300 liters is more than sufficient. But if you are a large family of more than five members and are prone to storing a lot of food in the fridge, you need a 400 liters refrigerator for ideal usage.
Check the power consumption of the Refrigerator
A refrigerator is a heavy electrical appliance, and hence you must be careful while buying it. A frost-free refrigerator may consume more power than a direct cool refrigerator. However, you cannot measure its power consumption solely on the type of refrigerators.
The power consumption of the refrigerator can be determined by its BEE-star rating. A fridge with a low-star rating consumes more power and may add up to the electricity bills, whereas a fridge with a high-star rating is energy-efficient, hence a good buying-option. We suggest you buy a refrigerator with a 5-star rating. Do not go below 4-star in any case.
Space inside the refrigerator
Your primary purpose in buying a refrigerator is to store food. Hence, we advise you to look for a spacious model in the first place. Next, always buy a model that includes adjustable shelves as opposed to wired shelves.
The use of wired shelves has become very obsolete. The best fridge brands have added adjustable shelves into their refrigerators. The advantage of adjustable shelves is that you may adjust them according to the height of your utensils. It lets you store utensils and boxes of different shapes and sizes. Buying a refrigerator with an adjustable shelving system means increased utility of the equipment.
Buy a refrigerator with a voltage stabilizer
This factor should be your top consideration if you live in an area prone to voltage fluctuations. A built-in stabilizer in a refrigerator ensures that the compressor of your appliance doesn’t get affected or damaged with the constant fluctuations of voltage. Eventually, you save your refrigerator from all kinds of damages, particularly from short circuits.
Inspect the compressor of the refrigerator
Just like the air conditioners, refrigerators, too, include a compressor. The role of a compressor in a fridge is to maintain the temperature inside the appliance. Smaller-sized fridges include a general compressor while all the medium and large-sized fridges have inverter compressors attached to them.
A general compressor runs at a constant speed and does not deliver as efficient cooling as an inverter compressor. The mechanism of a general compressor is straightforward – it begins to operate at a high speed and then runs at a constant speed. On the account of zero cooling loss, this compressor does not change its speed and switches off only when the fridge reaches its optimum cooling. The drawback of such a compressors is that it may consume a lot of power.
An inverter compressor, on the other hand, is very adaptable. It runs at different speeds, depending upon the cooling that your refrigerator requires. Hence, such a compressor does not consume a lot of power.
Other features to look for while buying the best refrigerator in India:
It is one of the newest features that you may find in all the latest models of a refrigerator. The mechanism of a cool pack is simple. A cool pack comprises a cooling gel and upon power outage, this cooling gel may help you retain the temperature of your refrigerator for a long time.
The moisture control technology regulates the moisture inside your appliance. This feature senses all kinds of foods, hence controlling their moisture as required. Eventually, your food does not get dried up or wrinkled because of more/less moisture.
Door Locks And Alarms:
Some refrigerators include an alarm, the role of which is to signal you if the door of the fridge is open. These refrigerators also have a door-lock feature that lets you lock its door so that your notorious child does not play with the appliance or leave the door open.
Some foods in your refrigerator may smell bad when stored for a long time. The use of antimicrobial or anti-bacterial technology may help you counter such odors. This technology also reduces the growth of microbes or bacteria in your food. Eventually, your refrigerator does not smell bad, and your food remains odor-free, fresh, and healthy.
The high-end models of a refrigerator include an LED touch-display that lets you make the most of the smart operations. Such displays also comprise a Wi-Fi connection. You can use this Wi-Fi technology to adjust the temperature of the appliance, dispense water, receive alerts, and to perform a variety of other functions.