We use cookies to allow us and selected partners to improve your experience and our advertising. By continuing to browse you consent to our use of cookies as per our policy which also explains how to change your preferences.

Which? Don't Buy fridge freezers

by Ben Slater

A bad fridge freezer struggles to cool, meaning your food won’t last as long as it should. Find out which fridge freezers you should avoid.

Put us to the test

Our Test Labs compare features and prices on a range of products. Try Which? to unlock our reviews. You'll instantly be able to compare our test scores, so you can make sure you don't get stuck with a Don't Buy.

Avoid low scoring fridge freezers

We've tested hundreds of fridge freezers from all of the big appliance brands, including Beko, Bosch, Miele, Samsung and Zanussi. The best cool quickly and keep food evenly chilled and frozen 24/7, no matter what the temperature is in your kitchen. But some fridge freezers are so bad they fail our chilling and freezing tests – which is bad news for the shelf-life of your groceries. 

To help you avoid buying a terrible fridge freezer, we’ve highlighted the very worst models as Don’t Buys.

  • The worst fridge freezers struggle to chill and/or freeze our food-equivalent gel packs in two whole days of testing. The best manage the job in a few hours.
  • Our temperature tests expose the fridge freezers that can’t keep your food evenly chilled and frozen, causing your food to over-cool or warm up several degrees when the temperature in your kitchen changes.
  • We measure how much energy a fridge freezer uses to do its job and highlight the energy guzzlers that cost a fortune to run for the amount of food they hold.

Sales and promotions can easily make a poor fridge freezer look like a tempting bargain.  But our tests identify those models that won't break the bank. Look out for those Best Buys we've labelled 'energy savers' as they're also cheaper to run. 

Safety related Don't Buy fridge freezers

At Which? we continually monitor and vary the assessments that underpin our reviews to take account of changing standards and areas of concern. We’ve named 250 fridges, freezer and fridge freezers Don't Buys after our research proved that their plastic backs may dramatically accelerate the spread of flames in the event of a fire in your home.

We requested information from manufacturers about their appliance backings. Then we tested backing samples from more than 80 different refrigeration appliances, across every refrigeration brand that we carry reviews for.

We applied an open flame to each sample for thirty seconds and any product that was deemed to be unsafe has been made a Don’t Buy.

Hundreds more products have been made Don’t Buys because the manufacturer either confirmed, or our own research indicated, that the backing on these products was identical to a product we tested and found to be unsafe.

Fridge freezers account for 108 of these 250 safety-related Don't Buys. They are listed below. Follow the links for more details.

Just because a fridge freezer isn't included in this list doesn't mean its backing isn't plastic, however. There's a chance it could be a model we haven't tested, or an older model that's not on sale any more. If after checking our fridge freezer reviews, you haven't seen details of the backing material, please check with the manufacturer.

If you do own a model with one of these plastic backs, be assured that refrigerator fires are rare. Our March 2018 research into government data found that only 8% of fires caused by faulty appliances were caused by fridge freezers, fridges or freezers. And although these plastic backings may accelerate the spread of flames, they are not the cause of fire itself.

While the manufacture and sale of these products remains completely legal, thanks to flawed current safety standards that won't be replaced until 2019, all of these manufacturers have committed to replacing plastic backing and are either in the process of discontinuing plastic-backed appliances, or are upgrading to different backs. Our Don't Buy recommendations below relate to the plastic-backed versions of any upgraded product. They will remain Don't Buys until the plastic version is no longer available to buy in shops.

AEG S53520CTW2

AEG RCB53724MX

AEG SCB61812LS

AEG SCE81864TC

AEG RCB53324MW

AEG RCB53325MW

AEG RCB53325MX

AEG RCB53724MW

AEG RCB53725MW

AEG RCB53725MX

AEG RCB83724MX

AEG RCB83724MW

Bush BSFF50152W

Bush BFFF55174W2

Bush BFFF55174B2

Candy CBF6182XFHK

Candy CBF6182WFHK

Candy CSC1365BE

Candy CSC1365WE

Candy CSS5175WE

Currys Essentials C55CW16

Daewoo DRZB53NPES

Gorenje ONRK193BK

Gorenje ONRK193C

Gorenje ONRK193R

Gorenje RF60309OC

Gorenje RF60309OC-L

Gorenje RF60309OX

Gorenje RF60309OBK

Gorenje RKI4181AWV

Hisense RB320D4WG1

Hisense RB320D4WW1

Hisense RB320D4WB1

Hisense RB385N4EW1

Hisense RB385N4EC1

Hisense RB385N4EB1

Hisense RB335N4WB1

Hisense RB335N4WG1

Hisense RB335N4WW1

Hisense RB381N4WW1

Hisense RB381N4WB1

Hisense RB381N4WC1

Hoover HVBF6182WFHK

Hoover HVBF6182XFHK

Hoover HVBF5172WK

Hoover HF18XK WiFi

Hotpoint RFAA52P

Hotpoint RFAA52K

Hotpoint RFAA52S

Hotpoint NRFAA50P

Hotpoint NRFAA50S

Hotpoint FFAA52P

Hotpoint FFAA52K

Hotpoint FFAA52S

Hotpoint Quadrio FFU4DX

Hotpoint Quadrio FFU4DK

Hotpoint FFU3DW TRIO

Hotpoint FSFL58G

Hotpoint HMCB50501AA.UK

Hotpoint HM7030ECAAO3

Hotpoint LAO85FF1IW

Hotpoint SMX85T1UG

Hotpoint LC85F1W

Hotpoint LC85F1G

Hotpoint LC85F1K

Hotpoint XUL85 T3Z XOV

Hotpoint XUL85 T3Z KOV

Ikea Kylig (502.823.56)

Ikea Kylslagen (403.127.59)

Ikea Frostkall (803.127.57)

Ikea Isande (002.823.73)

Ikea HÄFTIGT (202.823.67)

Ikea TINAD 203.660.79

Indesit CAA55

Indesit CAA55SI

Indesit CAA55K

Indesit NCAA55

Indesit NCAA55S

Indesit NCAA55K

Indesit LD85F1W

Indesit IB7030A1D

Indesit XD95T1IW

Kenwood KNF55X17

Kenwood KNF55W17

Kenwood KNF55B17

Kenwood KNFD55W17

Kenwood KNFD55B17

Kenwood KS55W17

Logik LFC55W16

Logik LFC55B16

Logik LFC55S16

Smeg FAB30RFC

Smeg FAB30RFA

Smeg FAB30RFB

Smeg FAB30RFG

Smeg FAB30RFN

Smeg FAB30RFO

Smeg FAB30RFP

Smeg FAB30RFS

Smeg FAB30RFW

Smeg FAB32RNC

Smeg C7280NLD2P

Smeg FAB32LNC

Smeg FAB32LNG

Smeg FAB32LNN

Smeg FAB32RNN

Smeg FAB32LNR

Smeg FAB32RNR

Smeg FAB50LCR

Smeg FAB50LBL

Smeg FAB50LPB

Smeg FAB50LPG

Smeg FAB50LSV

Smeg FAB50LWH

Whirlpool BLF8121OX

Zanussi ZRB23200WA

Zanussi ZRB23200XA

Zanussi ZBB27650SA

Zanussi ZBB28651SA

Zanussi ZBB27640SA

Zanussi ZRB23055FW

Zanussi ZRB23055FX

Zanussi ZRB35224WA

Zanussi ZRB38224WA

Zanussi ZRT23103WA

Zanussi ZRB35224XA

Zanussi ZRB38224XA

Zanussi ZBB28441SA

To unlock other Don't Buys we've found, take a trial to Which? Or if you're already a Which? member, log in now

All recommendations