For large families, a spacious fridge is a necessity. With it, you can buy products for a week in advance and they will stay fresh for a long time. If you have enough room in the kitchen, take a look at side-by-side fridges, which come with two doors and independent compartments.
You can find big two-way refrigerators in various online and offline appliance stores. Your choice should be based not only on the price but also on the technical features of the appliance.
Side-by-side models feature multiple doors, and the refrigeration and freezer compartments are vertical and parallel to each other. When choosing an appliance, pay attention to the size, capacity, defrosting technology, energy consumption, noise level, accessories, control system, and additional functions. The manufacturer also plays an important role.
The two-door fridge is larger than a regular two-compartment fridge. It can be from 67″ to 86.6″ in height, and from 31.5″ to 60″ in width. Depth goes from 24″ to 43″. Swing doors also provide additional space.
The appliance will be tight in a small kitchen of about 7 square meters, but it can be well suited in a room of 97-108 sq. ft. or more. An overall fridge size and its capacity ratio may vary from model to model.
The useful storage capacity of the two-door units ranges from 300 to 800 liters. Focus on your needs or the needs of your family as well as the location of the individual cooling zones.
All two-door models have a forced-air circulation system in the refrigeration and freezer compartments, with each of them having its own defrosting system. Drip and No Frost are the most common. The second option is more convenient as it is automatic. And in the first case, you will have to turn off the fridge and wait for complete defrosting.
The useful storage capacity of side-by-side fridges is bigger than that of other units. Thus, more energy is needed to preserve the products. The most economical device is the one marked A+++. The following letters in alphabetical order mean more energy consumption. The highest rate is in class G. There are models that have an energy-saving compressor which saves energy by optimal on/off switching.
Two-door fridges are noisier than other models. Thus, additional fans are installed on the outside of the unit to maintain the correct temperature in a large space. Their operation also creates additional noise. Some models also feature Quiet ZoneTM noiseless operation mode. Choose refrigerators with noise levels up to 40 dB.
An essential advantage of such refrigerators is that they have several zones with different climates:
- Dry fresh zone for storing chilled meat and fish food. Here they don’t freeze and remain fresh for several days;
- Humid fresh zone for fruits/vegetables;
- Minibar for storing bottled drinks, soda cans, etc.
The climactic section availability is, without any doubt, convenient, though it always leads to higher prices.
Shelves and Drawers
Choose refrigerators with convenient shelf placement. Note that not all of them can be removed/replaced in different fridges. Determine correct drawer capacities in the freezer, so that you don’t have to cut products into parts every time before freezing. Shelf and section illumination is also very important.
Side-by-side fridges typically have one to three compressors installed. If there are two compressors in the unit, one of the defrosting sections can be safely turned off and the other will continue to run. In addition, fridges with two or more compressors are more energy-efficient and, of course, more expensive.
The appliance is set up by means of an electronic information panel typically located on the door. That’s where you can adjust the temperature for each section. Some models have a self-diagnostic function – if any of the parts break, the corresponding error code will be displayed on the panel.
Extra features worth paying for are as follows:
- Dispenser. With this system, you can get cooled drinking water. In this case, make sure you have an additional filter installed for clean water.
- Ice machine. This appliance can produce ice cubes or crushed ice. It requires a tap water connection.
- Shock freezing mode.
- Sound indicator (if the fridge is open).
The “Vacation” mode (for energy savings) can also be a great addition. If you go away for a while, there’s no need to disconnect the fridge from the mains – simply activate this mode and the appliance will maintain a constant set temperature.
Double-door models beneficially differ from regular fridges with their modern design. There are units with metal doors, wood-stylized doors, and a variety of ornaments. The door color is also very diverse. It’s best to choose your fridge model based on the kitchen interior.
Manufacturer and Price
The first refrigerators with such a large storage capacity and vertical freezer arrangement appeared in the USA. It is believed that the best of them are produced by Jenn Air, Viking, General Electric, and others. For all the positive qualities of these brands, the price of their products usually exceeds $2,500 and can even reach prices over $15,000. However, the following brands successfully compete with them:
Prices for such models are higher than for classical ones, ranging from $900 to $1800.