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Which? Best Buy fridge freezers

by Ben Slater

The best fridge freezers chill and freeze fast to help your groceries last longer. Compare the best we've reviewed below before you buy.

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If you need a new fridge freezer, how do you know which ones will keep your food safely preserved and which will cause it to go off more quickly than it should? We’ve tested hundreds of fridge freezers to find the ones that keep your food fresher for longer and that don’t cost a fortune to run.

  • We spend nine weeks running dozens of tests on every fridge freezer we review, so you can be sure your Best Buy is one of the very best models on the market.
  • Our temperature tests uncover the fridge freezers that cool your food quickly and keep it safely preserved, even when your kitchen heats up and cools down.
  • We reveal true running costs to give you a good idea of how much each model will add to your energy bill - including the amount of energy it uses to chill and freeze food. We’ll also tell you whether it’s pricey to power for its size.
  • We expose the terrible fridge freezers that struggle to chill and freeze, to help you steer clear of models that will cause your food to go off before you’ve had a chance to eat it.

Is your fridge freezer leaving you feeling frosty? Join Which? to access all our in-depth fridge freezer reviews. Already a member? Log in to find your new fridge freezer.

How we uncover the best fridge freezers

The best fridge freezers chill and freeze food fast, keep it safely cooled around the clock, run quietly and won’t hike up your energy bills. We’ve tested fridge freezers from all the big brands to uncover the Best Buys that stand out from the crowd. And we test for everything, including the actual usable volume that's in a fridge freezer, rather than the claimed capacity the manufacturers quote. Our investigations found this can be up to an average of 35% less space. But we also look for:

Cooling power We see how quickly a fridge freezer can chill and freeze food-equivalent gel packs. The best can do the job in a matter of hours, whereas the worst can’t cool in two days of testing.

Temperature stability We crank the temperature up in our test lab to see whether a fridge freezer will keep your food perfectly chilled and frozen when your kitchen heats up. We then lower the room temperature, to test how well your food is protected during chilly winter nights when your heating is switched off.

Reliable thermostat setting A great fridge freezer will chill and freeze to perfect temperatures when you first set it up in your kitchen, so we follow the manufacturer’s recommended thermostat setting to test how accurate it is. The best models are spot on for perfectly chilled and frozen food, but the worst are so far out you would have to use a fridge/freezer thermometer to get your appliance running properly.

Energy use We measure how much energy a fridge freezer uses to chill and freeze food and keep a steady temperature – and we work out how much it will add to your energy bill. We also reveal whether a fridge freezer is energy-saving or an energy guzzler for the amount of food you can pack away.  

Ease of use and cleaning Smooth-sliding drawers, easy-to-adjust shelves, door racks that are deep enough to hold large bottles of water – you’ll find these inside the best fridge freezers. Our ease-of-use and cleaning tests uncover the models that are well-designed, as well as those that will quickly get on your nerves.

The best fridge freezers create perfect conditions for storing your chilled and frozen food, even when the temperature in your kitchen changes.

Fridge freezer backings and fire risk

All fridge freezers currently have a backing made from plastic, metal or aluminium laminate, depending on the make and model you buy.

We continually monitor and vary the assessments that underpin our reviews to take account of changing standards and areas of concern.

Our tests have revealed that plastic backing can be highly flammable. We have made all flammable plastic-backed fridge freezers Don't Buys, regardless of how else they performed in our chilling and freezing tests.

Our Best Buys only contain fridge freezers we know to have flame-retardant backings and that have also aced in our chilling, freezing and other tests.

You can check whether a fridge freezer is metal or plastic-backed in our fridge freezer safety guide.

Fridge freezer reviews you can trust

We don't just reveal the best – we also highlight the low-scoring Don't Buy fridge freezers that fail to make the grade, so you don't end up with a dud that you'll soon by keen to replace.

Which? tests the latest freestanding, integrated and American-style fridge freezers from all of the big appliance names, such as AEG, Beko, Bosch, Hotpoint, Indesit, John Lewis, Samsung and Zanussi. We’ve come across good and bad fridge freezers from the same manufacturer, and found you can’t always rely on the brand badge on the appliance to guarantee a top-notch model. And this is where our reviews come in.

Which? is independent – we work for you, the consumer, so you can be sure that our product recommendations are influenced only by our test results. We're not influenced by third parties and we don't accept freebies from product manufacturers or retailers. We buy all the products that we test ourselves, so our advice helps you to make the right choice first time and avoid costly mistakes.

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