Are you thinking of an under counter refrigerator freezer combo for your home? We have some information for you if so. There are under counter refrigerators and under counter freezers sure, but we want to take a look at under counter refrigerator/freezer combinations.
You can get an under counter fridge and freezer combo for anywhere from around $500 to as much as $3000. That is a pretty wide price range. As you can imagine, there are all sorts of options and we will cover a few of them here.
We started our investigation online and found that on the lower end of that price range, there is the Summit brand BI540 model 24 inch Built-In Under-Counter Refrigerator and Freezer for as low as $640. It is two feet wide, 2 feet deep and 33 inches high. The food holding capacity is 5.3 cubic feet of interior space. This Summit brand model can also be used as a free standing unit. The freezer on this model is rather small and is contained inside of the under counter refrigerator instead of having its own door, it only has one door on the outside. Although not energy star compliant currently, the yearly energy usage, at 434.0 kWh/year, is not excessive.
Now, let’s look on the higher end of the price range. For around $2,750 you can get the U-Line brand under counter combo refrigerator freezer (model number C2275DWR). This U-Line appliance is the top of the line in under counter freezer & refrigerator combos. It has a separate freezer that has its own door underneath the fridge door. Of course with the higher price tag comes more cubic feet.
The freezer on this luxurious model even has an ice maker with a removable ice bucket that can store up to ten pounds of ice. This combo unit also features its own command module so that all of the controls are at your fingertips.
The size of this unit is approximately 23 inches wide, 26 inches deep and 33 inches high, which isn’t much different from the size of the less expensive unit mentioned in the above paragraph. The inside capacity of the fridge part is 3 cubic feet and the freezer capacity isn’t mentioned exactly, but is equal to that of ten pounds of ice. It has a better freezer than the less expensive model above, but the fridge part is smaller.
What you are paying for seems to be the extras such as the ice cube maker, refrigerator temperature touch controls, leveling legs and auto defrost features. Also, it has been mentioned that these under counter refrigerator freezer combo units require a lot of maintenance suggesting that they are not really worth the added cost. There are sure to be other brands however that may be more reliable.
Glass Door Models
If you are looking for a freezer refrigerator combo with a glass door, you may have a hard time finding one, as glass door models are usually refrigerator only, and either they are used for commercial refrigeration applications, such as resteraunts or bars, or they are dedicated beverage appliances, like those used for wine storage, with sliding glass doors.As such, they are in a higher price range. For example, the True TUC-60G – 60″ Undercounter Refrigerator with glass doors recently carried a price of around $2,700. Although it has 2 energy efficient, Low E sliding glass doors, it is not enrgy star approved. This is mainly because energy star is a consumer oriented rating, though.
As long as you are buying a new freezer refrigerator, you may as well save money on your energy costs and help save the environment. You can do this by looking for the energy star logo on the label of the refrigerator. Kitchen appliances use about 10% of the overall energy cost of a typical home, so over the life of your new freezer refrigerator, you will save a lot of money by going with an energy star approved appliance. An Energy Star refrigerator is required to use 20% less energy than non energy star models. The better energy efficiency comes from improvements in the insulation and the refrigerator compressor. Any glass door needs to be made of high efficiency Low E glass.
If you home has anyone living in it that are wheelchair bound, look for a compact refrigerator that is Ada compliant. This means that all the freezer refrigerator temperature controls and door handles are within reach of someone close to the floor and it will be fully usable and wheelchair accessible. Ada compliant compact refrigerators are easeir to find than an ada compliant under counter refrigerators freezer combo, since ada compliant appliances are mainly intended for residential use, plus the height requirements of standard counters mean that the refrigerator would need to be too tall to be ada compliant. That is why a freezer refrigerator specially designed to be ada compliant is a better choice.
The SUMMIT model AL650BI series does include built-in under counter refrigerator freezers made to fit under lower ADA counters. 32 inches high, these AL650BI units fit under low ADA counters and operate as either a built-in or freestanding refrigerator-freezer combo. Again, no glass door models are on offer, though.
There are some important points to consider when preparing to install an under counter refrigerator & freezer combo. First of all is the size of the opening. When planning on the size of the opening, don’t forget to check to see if the unit you will be using needs space for ventilation and what sides need space. See the above remarks on ada compliant requirements as well.
All makes and models of freezer combo can be different when it comes to how they ventilate. A good unit will normally ventilate in the front so that you can put it into a tight spot, but unfortunately they are not all that way. Be sure to read the user’s manual for the make and model you are going to install. Also make sure you have at least 1/8 inch clearance on all sides just so that it will slide into place without getting stuck.
The next thing to consider is the power. Does yours have a plug? Do you need to wire it into your homes existing wires? You will need to make sure that the plug can reach an outlet before installing it. If it doesn’t have a plug, plan out your wiring route before you install it as well.
If you need to use an extension cord, make sure it is a heavy duty one that can handle the load of a refrigerator. Using a normal extension cord is dangerous if the unit draws a lot of wattage.
Another thing to consider is standard sizes. It seems that most of the models we looked at are the standard size of two feet wide and 33 inches high. If you have a space to fill that is bigger than that, then you may have to be satisfied with filling in the extra space with paneling or wood cut to the proper size and painted or a similar method with other materials according to whatever matches your kitchen.
If your space is smaller than the standard, then see if it is possible to make the hole bigger and if not, you will have to find another solution such as a smaller fridge & freezer combo which may be tough to find depending on how small it is.
Take this knowledge with you when you plan on installing your under counter refrigerator and freezer combination. Don’t forget to measure everything twice and get a unit that will fit under your counter, as installation spaces for this type of compact refrigerator are uusually very restricted. Luckily most counters are the same height, but there are always some out there that were not built according to normal height standards.
You may have to improvise in certain situations. Good luck installing your combo unit however you go about it. Once it is done, you will enjoy the space saving unit surely as much as the rest of your family will.