Refrigerator Buying Guide. The ultimate buying guide for your next fridge in 2020.

Hello and welcome to My name is Navdeep and since you are here and reading this article, this actually means that you are very much interested in purchasing a new refrigerator for your home. But maybe you are stuck or you are in a dilemma on how to proceed further. Maybe you a first-time buyer or a user who wants to upgrade its appliance. Don’t worry. This guide is for both types of buyers(beginners and regular). This ultimate 2100+ words refrigerator buying guide will have all your queries answered. So let’s start.

Before moving further, just a question. Are you a student, a homemaker, a businessman, single, married, lives in a large or small family? Because your answer to this simple question will be the most important factor in selecting a refrigerator. It will make the base for you in selecting the best kind of refrigerator for your home. So keep the answer with you and move to our next step.

Our next step in our ultimate refrigerator buying guide introduces you to the 7 most important things to consider while buying a refrigerator. After understanding them all you will be able to easily determine what kind of refrigerator will be the best suitable one for you and your family.

Please read the below table of contents before starting to get yourself an idea what we are going to cover in the coming sections.

7 Things to consider while selecting the best refrigerator (refrigerator buying guide).

There are seven important things which needs to be considered before purchasing a new refrigerator. These are :

  1. Space
  2. Size
  3. Capacity
  4. Defrosting Type
  5. Door Type
  6. Energy Star Rating
  7. Compressor

Let’s learn about them in brief.

1- Space.

The first thing in our refrigerator buying guide that needs to be considered while selecting a refrigerator is how much space do you have in your house, room, or kitchen to put the refrigerator. To answer this ask yourself where you want to place it. Whether in your kitchen, your lobby, in your room, etc? Because without proper space the refrigerator will not cool efficiently. Also if you don’t have the proper space it can become a task for you to open the door of the refrigerator which is our 5th point in selecting the best fridge.

Ideal space required for a refrigerator -refrigerator buying guide
Ideal space for a refrigerator

2- Size.

The second thing in our refrigerator buying guide list is the size of the refrigerator. Size here refers to the size of the family. Do you need a small size refrigerator, medium, or big? Consider this according to your family size. Because more the number of members in your family, the bigger the fridge you will need.

3- Capacity.

Our third thing that needs to be considered before buying a refrigerator is directly related to our thing on the second number of our refrigerator buying guide. It is the Capacity of the fridge.

The capacity of the refrigerator comprises two things: Fridge and freezer capacity.

The capacity of a refrigerator is generally measured in liters. If you are a meat lover then you will require a fridge with a large freeze capacity and if vegetarian a refrigerator with a large fridge capacity will do the work. This infographic on your right-hand side will help you to understand this concept better.

capacity of refrigerator - refrigerator buying guide
Refrigerator Capacity

4- Defrosting Type.

The fourth thing in our refrigerator buying guide to consider is the Defrosting Type. But, before getting into defrosting type let’s learn this concept of what is Defrosting in refrigerators?

Ans:- Refrigerators are built to develop temperatures that are below the freezing point temperature of the water. So when a refrigerator runs for a long period of time a layer of ice or frost gets build up around the evaporator coil. This leads to less cooling, the refrigerator will need more power and time to cool and ultimately increase in the power bills.

So the process used to remove ice or frost from the evaporator coil or freezer is called defrosting. It is performed in two ways: Manual and Automatic.

In manual mode, to defrost, refrigerator is shut down and doors are kept open to make the ice melt.

In auto, fans and heater is used inside the refrigerators.

Now since you have learned about defrosting, let’s get back to our fourth thing to consider in our refrigerator buying guide list i.e Defrosting Type.

Refrigerators come with two defrosting type. These are:

  1. Direct Cool.
  2. Frost Free

Direct Cool Refrigerators:

Direct cool refrigerators use natural convection(1)of air to cool the fridge. Food is preserved for less period of time and defrosting is manual. Saves more energy(Energy Efficient).

1- Convection – Process of transfer of heat from one medium to another using a fluid as medium.

Frost Free Refrigerators:

Frost-free as the name suggests does not need to be manually defrosted as there is no ice or frost build-up in the freezer. Food is preserved for a long duration and uses electric fans to keep food fresh. Less energy is saved(Less Energy Efficient).

This differentiating chart below between direct cool and frost free refrigerator will help understand better.

Defrost type in refrigerator - refrigerator buying guide
Defrost Type in Refrigerator

5 – Door Type.

The fifth important thing to consider in our refrigerator buying guide is the door type of the refrigerator. Refrigerators come with different door type designs and sizes. Here is the complete list.

1 – Mini Door Refrigerators.

Mini door refrigerators as the name suggest are very small in size, occupy very little space, and are economical to buy. Can be used mostly to store drinks, juices, and other small food materials. Ideal for a small shop for self refreshment or for a single person.

2 – Single Door Refrigerators.

Single door refrigerators are also economical, have less freezer space, capacity range between 150-300 liters, works on direct cool technology(manual defrost*), and are ideal for a family of 2 members.

*some models are giving digital auto defrost option.

single door refrigerator
Single door refrigerator

3 – Double Door Refrigerators.

double door refrigerator
Double door refrigerator

Double door refrigerators have two separate doors, one for the fridge and another for the freezer. They are more energy-efficient than single door refrigerators, comes with auto defrost technology, have larger freezer space, toughened glass shelves, and have a capacity range between 230 – 600 liters. Ideal for a family of 3-5 members.

4- Triple Door Refrigerators.

The triple door as the name suggests has 3 separate doors. Top for the freezer compartment, the middle door for the regular daily use, and the bottom door for the veggies. Triple door fridges have better cooling retention than the two above mentioned refrigerators. They are generally taller in length, have a capacity between 240-400 liters, and are ideal for a family of 5 members. Built on frost-free defrost technology.

triple door refrigerator
Triple door refrigerator

5- Side by Side/French Door Refrigerators.

side by side refrigerator
Side by Side refrigerator

Side by Side or French door refrigerators is the largest in size. They have multiple freezer and storage option for smarter storage organization. Other features include a separate water/ice dispenser, WiFi, toughened glass shelves, etc. Have frost-free technology and ideal for a family with 5+ members.

Door Type
Mini Refrigerator40-60 litresSingle memberDirect Cool
Single door refrigerator121-300 litres2 membersDirect Cool
Double door refrigerator230-600 litres4-5 membersFrost free
Triple door refrigerator240-400 litres5 membersFrost free
Side by Side refrigerator500+ litres5-10 membersFrost free

6 – Energy Star Rating

Bureau of Energy Efficiency prepare the EER(Energy Efficiency Rating) of household refrigerators and are updated once every two years. Star rating is given on a scale of 1 to 5. More the rating, the more energy-efficient refrigerator. You can take a look at the chart given below to understand how much you can save with the defined ratings. This is a must-have thing to be considered while buying a new refrigerator.

BEE Energy Efficiency Ratings

7 – Inverter Compressor.

The last but not the least factor in our refrigerator buying guide is the Inverter compressor technology. This is a new technology incorporated in refrigerators. This technology extends the compressor’s life and ultimately helps in reducing the energy bills. What happens here is that it switches the compressor to a lower capacity when the temperature reaches the desired cooling levels. When cooling is required again, it switches the compressor to its full capacity. Recommended for those with heavy usage or a family with 5+ members.

Huh! That was a Long List. We have come to the end of our refrigerator buying guide things to be considered list. But wait. While these 7 things are the pillar determinants in selecting a refrigerator, there are some additional features to look for in a fridge that you should also consider buying a new refrigerator. These extra features are given below.

Additional features to look for in a refrigerator.

While you have read about the 7 important things to be considered while buying a new refrigerator in our refrigerator buying guide list above, there are plenty of new features that are introduced in modern refrigerators. You should consider these additional features while making your next purchase.

1 – Stabilizer.

You might have remembered that in the past decade we used to have a stabilizer plugged to the fridge to control voltage fluctuations in the refrigerator. But the situation is reversed now. Modern fridges are coming with stabilizer free option as compared to older stabilizer based refrigerators. These built-in stabilizer refrigerators will be the perfect choice in today’s scenario where frequent voltage fluctuations are common.

2 – Shelves Number.

This second feature is a very important one. It is directly related to space within the refrigerator and convenience. Look for a refrigerator that has shelves numbering 2 or 3. Why I am saying this? Consider a refrigerator having 4 shelves. You put your food items in there, but the time you have to take out something, it becomes a task for you, because more shelves will make the refrigerator looks congested and you will have to make more efforts to bring your food items out. That’s why it is recommend to buy a refrigerator with less number of shelves. It will be easy to arrange and will not look congested.

3 – Water/Ice Dispenser.

You might have seen a lady or guy in tv commercials bringing a glass near to the refrigerator and taking out ice cubes or water from the refrigerator without opening its doors, just like we take water from a tap. These are water/Ice dispensers. This is a new feature coming in modern refrigerators. With these dispensers, it becomes easy to top up your drink with ice without opening the refrigerator door. Filtered watered dispensers can be used to serve cold water.

4 – Toughened Glass Shelves.

Remember your old refrigerator with plastic shelves or plastic-coated steel shelves which we used to have in our fridges to put our food items. It has also changed. Plastic has become past. Now mostly all modern fridges(*above 230 liters) are coming equipped with toughened glass shelves. These shelves are durable and can withstand weights up to 150 kg.

5 – Cool Pack.

Do you experience frequent power cuts in your area? And as a consequence, your refrigerator can’t get cooled to the desired cooling levels and your food items start smelling bad. Then this is the must-have feature you should look in your new refrigerator. This advance feature called cool pack keeps the refrigerator cool for up to 12 hours in case of a power cut. So you don’t have to worry about your food items next time when a power cut happens.

6 – Convertible Model.

Some models are coming with a very useful convertible feature. What it means is when you run out of space to store your items in the fridge you can use the freezer as a fridge by adjusting their cooling zones. Isn’t it a cool feature just like a refrigerator 🙂

7 – Vegetable Storage.

Are you a hardcore vegetarian? If you are vegetarian with heavy veggies consumption then consider a refrigerator that provides ideal storage space for your vegetable. Triple door refrigerators or side by side refrigerators will be the best choice.

Pro Tip:

  1. Never purchase a refrigerator with your present requirements only.
  2. Consider your future needs.
  3. Your family may grow, you can get transfer to another area, or you can have guests coming to your home.
  4. So it is always advisable to buy a refrigerator which can serve your present and future requirements for up to 5 years.


So this was the comprehensive 2100+ words refrigerator buying guide for you. I hope it helped to serve the purpose you were here for. I have tried to keep things simple and short so that you may not get confused about buying the refrigerator. Now, since you have learned about all the important factors to consider while purchasing a refrigerator it’s time to move to another important step i.e selecting the best refrigerator. I have created the best refrigerator in India guide which you can check to have an idea about the best refrigerators. Thank you.