Best top-freezer refrigerators
A top-freezer refrigerator is a convenient option for those who need less space for frozen food and want to dedicate more room to storing cold food. When it comes to getting a new one, however, there are a few things to consider. This includes the capacity of both sections of the refrigerator, the overall size and any additional features it has.
Most top-freezer refrigerators are made to fit into a standard kitchen. They’re usually at least:
- 62 inches high
- 36 inches wide
- 29-36 inches deep
Some modern ones are designed to fit the space between the front of your countertops and the backsplash or wall. These are called counter-depth refrigerators. They’re usually 24-30 inches deep, making them shallower than most models.
Before choosing a new refrigerator, consider how much space you have and what aesthetic you want to achieve. For example, counter-depth refrigerators have a sleek, simple design that looks great in modern homes. On the other hand, miniature refrigerators are better if you don’t have a lot of floor or vertical space.
The internal capacity refers to the actual storage space inside the refrigerator. With a top-freezer model, you can expect the following:
- A small freezer section with less storage space than the main refrigerator.
- The larger refrigerator with different shelves and drawers to fit your typical cold foods.
Usually, the capacity is measured in cubic feet. On average, a standard top-freezer refrigerator has an overall capacity of 18-20 cubic feet, including both sections. There are also larger ones that store up to 33 cubic feet. These are ideal for bigger families or home chefs.
Double-check the description to see how large each section of the model is. That way, you can pick the one that works best for you.
Most top-freezer refrigerators have some or all of the following compartments:
- Open shelves: Many models have two to five shelves fitted directly inside the main refrigerator. Some are removable or adjustable, which is convenient if you need to fit larger or taller items on them. The shelves are sturdy and easy to wipe down and clean. They can hold easy-to-grab foods, leftovers, ingredients, drinks and more.
- Drawer section: Modern refrigerators usually have two to four drawers for you to store food and ingredients. Some drawers are basic, while others have separate humidity control. This is particularly useful if you want to store specific items, such as vegetables or fruits, in one drawer over another. Certain models also have a large drawer near the base for extra storage.
- Door shelves: Inside the door, you can often find additional compact shelves or other storage solutions to keep smaller ingredients, condiments, beverages and other staples. Some refrigerators also have dedicated compartments for eggs and butter.
- Freezer shelves: The freezer usually has either one large boxlike compartment or one or two simple shelves. Larger models are sometimes separated into two or more sections for bulk items.
- Ice maker compartment: Most modern freezers have a dedicated ice maker, which is great for anyone who doesn’t want to buy separate ice cube trays.
Material and color
Top-freezer refrigerators usually have a stainless steel exterior since it’s strong and durable. Other common metals include copper or aluminum, but these are mainly used for smaller components or as accent pieces. The shelves and interior of the refrigerator and freezer generally consist of acrylonitrile butadiene styrene or polypropylene, which are durable polymers.
In terms of color, most models are either:
There are also vibrant options, such as blue, yellow, pink or beige. These are a little less common, but they fit in well with a retro aesthetic.
When it comes to opening mechanisms, there are three main designs:
- Two handles, one for each main door.
- Indented sections you can slip your fingers into to open them.
- Ones designed to be flush with the counter and other appliances, but that open when lightly pressed. These often are made to fit within the existing cabinetry aesthetic, giving the impression there is no refrigerator at all.
All refrigerators come with a label that’s usually black and yellow that indicates the following:
- How much power it uses.
- Its efficiency grade or rating.
- The estimated annual cost for operating it.
Many modern models are Energy Star-certified, meaning they’re energy-efficient. Some manufacturers also use a federal minimum energy efficiency standard, which Energy Star tries to surpass. If you want to know how efficient your appliance is or get an idea of how much it costs to run, check the energy guide label.
8 best top-freezer refrigerators
This stainless steel appliance is Energy Star-certified and highly efficient. It comes in stainless steel, black or white. It offers a lot of internal space, making it perfect for four-person households. It has hidden hinges and contoured doors, giving it a sleek appearance. It also has humidity-controlled compartments for keeping fruits and vegetables in the ideal environment. Sold by Home Depot
With easy-to-access, adjustable shelves that can hold anything from large casseroles to tall containers, this model is convenient and simple to maintain. It has 20.8 cubic feet of internal storage. It’s also Energy Star-certified. Sold by Amazon
Available in stainless steel, white and black, this appliance has gallon-sized door bins that can hold several large beverages and containers with ease. It has a reversible door and humidity-controlled drawers. It has a storage capacity of 20.5 cubic feet. Sold by Home Depot
Compact enough for smaller kitchens, this retro-inspired appliance comes with different options, such as a microwave or a blender. The refrigerator section has three adjustable shelves and storage bins. It has 7.5 cubic feet of internal storage. Sold by Amazon and Home Depot
Available in five colors, including stainless steel, white and black, this model comes with LED interior lighting, electronic temperature control and adjustable shelves to customize your storage space. The freezer is 3.98 cubic feet, yet it’s still roomy enough to store most frozen items. Sold by Home Depot
This appliance is Energy Star-certified and features temperature controls, so you can regulate the temperature in both the freezer and fresh food section. It has adjustable wire shelves. In all, it’s 28 inches wide, so it’s compact enough for smaller kitchens. Sold by Wayfair
With adjustable shelves and a height of 56 inches, this appliance is a little smaller, making it ideal for apartments and compact kitchens. It has hidden handles, giving it a more modern aesthetic. The freezer is 1.4 cubic feet, making it a good size for one or two people. Sold by Home Depot
Available in either brushed steel, white or black, this appliance is energy-efficient. It has a large fresh food section that’s 10 cubic feet. The shelves are adjustable. Sold by Home Depot and Wayfair
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Angela Watson writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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