Freezers buying guide
Buying a new freezer can be a more complicated process than you might think. What size and capacity of freezer do you need? Do you just want a standalone unit or a fridge -freezer? What extra features should you look out for? Our buying guide to freezers answers all these questions.
Choosing a new freezer
Perhaps the first things you need to consider when buying a new freezer are:
- How much space do you have for your freezer?
- How much food do you need to store in your freezer?
- Do you want a chest freezer, or an upright freezer?
- Do you need fridge space in the same unit?
- Energy saving
For example, if you live in a flat, or have limited kitchen space, you may not want a large freezer. Similarly, if you have a big family and need to store plenty of frozen food, then you might want to look for a good size chest freezer that can be installed in the garage or utility room. If you buy a moderate amount of frozen items, but also want to store fresh vegetables and foodstuffs, then you could buy a fridge-freezer model.
Freezer size and capacity
Freezers and fridge-freezers slot under a work surface, like a dishwasher, stand separately in the kitchen, or sit in a different room (usually the garage) like a chest freezer.
The type that is right for you depends on the amount of frozen food you think you will need to store. The storage capacity of a freezer (usually measured in cubic feet) gives you an idea of how much space you will have for foodstuffs. Generally chest freezers have the most space, followed by uprights, and then the smaller under-counter units.
If you choose a fridge-freezer, then you will need to check the split between fridge and freezer space.
There are two main types of freezer to choose from. The upright and the chest freezer:
- Upright freezer
- Easy to take out items. Compartments and shelves to sort your food.
- Suitable size for lots of kitchens.
- Chest freezer
- Large amount of storage space.
- Can store over-sized food items, such as turkeys and hams.
- Food can be hard to access, particularly goods at the bottom.
- Usually has to be kept in a garage or utility room, making it less convenient.
Freezers are rated on a scale of A++ to G according to their energy efficiency. A++ appliances are most efficient and therefore cheaper to run; while G rated appliances are least efficient.
There are a number of additional features that some freezers offer, you might want to check for:
- Frost-free: this can help prevent the trays icing up.
- Auto fast-freeze: some models will have automatic fast freeze, which is enabled when the temperature in the freezer is too warm, and stops when food is properly frozen again.
A fridge-freezer is the best option if you need a little more freezer capacity than the icebox on a small fridge, but require enough fridge space to store fresh food and drinks. You should still consider many of the above points when buying a new fridge-freezer.