Five feature-filled refrigerators for $1,600 or less
As refrigerators have gotten bigger and better—often boasting more than 30 cubic feet of claimed capacity and neat features like LCD displays and seltzer water dispensers—prices have also increased. Nearly half of the 60-plus models on our list of recommended refrigerators cost $2,000 or more, and you can easily spend many times that on a pricey built-in. But there are also plenty of less-expensive, yet still high-performing models to choose from. Here are five to consider if money is a concern.
Whirlpool WRT771REY[W], $1,100
Top-freezers cost less than other types of refrigerator, retailing for as little as $600. But the super-cheap models are as no-frills as they come. Spending more on this Whirlpool gets you features more common with pricier refrigerators, including an external water dispenser, spillproof shelves, and touchpad controls. The top-freezer performs well too, delivering very good temperature control and quietness, and superb energy efficiency.
Kenmore 7201, $1,550
A lot of popular French-door bottom-freezers cost between $2,000 and $3,000. This 36-inch-wide Kenmore sells for less, while delivering superb temperature control and exceptional energy efficiency. It’s also fairly quiet and serves up a respectable 16.9 cubic feet of usable capacity. Other pluses include pullout shelves and bins, a temperature-controlled meat/deli bin, and an alarm that tells you when the door is ajar, reducing the risk of food spoilage.
Whirlpool Gold GX5FHDXV, $1,600
Paying more for this 36-inch-wide French-door bottom-freezer from Whirlpool gets you slightly better storage options, including pullout shelves and bins. It also boasts excellent temperature control and energy efficiency. On the downside, it’s noisier than other top-rated French-door refrigerators, something you may notice if your kitchen is part of an open floor plan with living spaces within earshot.
Amana ABB2224WE, $1,350
Want a conventional bottom-freezer? This 33-inch-wide Amana is one of the roomiest in the category, boasting 16.4 cubic feet of total usable capacity. Gallon door storage in the refrigerator and pullout shelves in the freezer facilitate storage. Other pluses include an icemaker, touchpad controls, and a freezer light, though it lacks a temperature-controlled meat bin.
Samsung RS265TD[WP], $1,300
A side-by-side is the way to go if you want a narrow door swing, perhaps to save space in a galley-style kitchen. This well-priced Samsung boasts 18.1 cubic feet of usable capacity, thus making it one of the roomiest in its category. It’s also one of the quietest. Notable features include through-the-door ice and water dispensers, spillproof shelves, and touchpad controls. It doesn’t come with a temperature-controlled meat/deli bin, but its dual evaporators help maintain higher humidity levels in the fresh-food section.