Overall rating: 3.5 out of 5
Our previous refrigerator was a very basic model with the freezer on top. Despite this though, even after 15 years, I only had minor hang-ups about it, specifically the freezer. The best feature of the entire appliance was that it had a fantastic ice maker that never let us down, but the size of the freezer was on the small side and had begun to show its age by frequently accumulating frost on the ceiling. In addition to the fact that our refrigerator was already on the outside of Bob Vila’s useful lifecycle estimate of 10 to 15 years, I knew that this meant I was wasting energy and negatively impacting the environment.
When we made the choice to replace all of our kitchen appliances, I was really excited to pick out one of the french-door designs with a bottom freezer. Another convenient feature I really wanted was the water and ice dispenser in the door. I was on a mission to fit a GE refrigerator, that would match the stove we picked out, with these major features into our budget and found that this one did.
This new refrigerator does have a very spacious freezer that is easily kept organized, however, I feel that I may have sacrificed some of the space and organization in the refrigerator for it. I tried to play around with the way the fridge shelves were organized to see which configuration would provide the most space, but the possibilities are very limited. There are only four possible shelf positions on both the right and left sides of the refrigerator. Furthermore, the shelves cannot be interchanged from side-to-side, meaning that each shelf is either designed to be installed on the right or the left and are not interchangeable. That being said though, I did find a configuration that works best for us and we are adjusting.
The water and ice dispenser is a wonderful convenience to have but it does limit the storage space in the refrigerator door. I was aware that this would be the case though, so we have found a way to make do. On the other hand, these refrigerator drawer bins are far more spacious than in my previous fridge and now that we are in full back-to-school preparations, I cannot wait to fill them with all the great school lunch choices the kids can easily grab.
I read in many of the reviews I looked over before buying that this refrigerator is a bit noisy, which I have found to be very accurate. This took some time to get used to only because it has a tendency to sound like a vibrating cell phone notification but otherwise, it doesn’t bother any of us. If you are easily bothered by low frequency noises though, you may not find this particular refrigerator enjoyable to be around.
It was important to me to make sure that our new refrigerator was an energy star rated appliance because I thought that indicated a more positive environmental impact as well as financial energy cost savings. However, I feel that I failed to do enough real research beforehand. It wasn’t until after we had been using our new refrigerator for several weeks that I began to wonder whether my conception of what an energy star rating meant for a refrigerator was true. I found two separate articles, here and here, that gave me a lot of insight into our new refrigerator, which lists R134A as the refrigerant it uses. While R134A is an improvement over its predecessor types, it still has a big impact on the environment and global warming. While I’m sure that the carbon footprint of this new refrigerator is smaller than that of its predecessor and while we were sure to pay the extra fees to ensure that our old appliances were disposed of properly, I do wish I had given more thought to the types of refrigerants on the market and which specific products were more environmentally responsible. Moving forward, I will be sure to do everything necessary to ensure that I am aware of the refrigeration chemicals I am purchasing and how those chemicals affect the environment.
- Spacious freezer
- Ice and water dispenser in the door
- Spacious refrigerator drawer bins
- Refrigerator shelves are poorly designed with limited configuration
- Limited door shelf space
- Appliance is a bit noisy
- Chemical refrigerant used negatively impacts environment
Thanks for reading!
Remember to always make a conscientious effort.