Is Grandma's leftover lasagna too good to throw away, but you're struggling to find the storage space at home? Or maybe you're a Mafia boss that needs to ice corpses real quick? Just kidding! Whatever your needs, you'll find that most fridges come with a small freezer component that doesn't quite fit everything that you may want to keep. If your frozen goods keep popping the door open on your freezer, it might be time to purchase a stand-alone freezer. Buying a secondary freezer can make grocery shopping more economic, as buying in bulk usually means more savings in your back pocket.
Stand-alone freezers have varying capacities and energy ratings. You can select between a deep chest freezer and an upright model that could be either frost free or need to be manually defrosted. With a small range of stand-alone freezer styles and sizes available to purchase it is better to make an informed decision before making a purchase. Consider your storage space, the units’ noise level and any other additional features that might prove useful to you.
Chest freezers are designed for storage capacity. You can store a lot more in a chest freezer than you could in a vertical freezer and there's plenty of room for products that are oddly shaped that wouldn't fit between shelves. Chest freezers are a lot like eskies with their box design and a top mounting door. Chest freezers are cheaper than their upright counterparts but will take up a fair amount of space in your home. Chest freezers are a perfect fit for large families or people who love to entertain. These deep freezers are generally cheaper to run due to their low energy consumption and will keep your food cool for longer if there is a disruption to your power. The only downside apart from their width is that food stored at the bottom will be harder to access as you will need to remove the items sitting on top. Most models come with hanging baskets to help you organise your delicious goods but other than that most items will be directly on top of one another. Generally chest freezers are stored in the garage or in other locations out of the main house.
Upright freezers have the same lay out and look just like regular refrigerators. Vertical freezers are more convenient when it comes to accessing items due to their shelving and layout. It is for this reason that they are generally more expensive than chest freezers. Upright freezers take up less storage space and can be kept in the house which, for most, is more convenient. Vertical freezers consume more energy over chest freezers, making them more costly to run, and due to the shelving you may struggle to fit bulky or odd shaped items between the shelves. Upright freezers are best suited to people who will be using the appliance regularly.
Freezer capacity, like fridges, are measured in litres. Before making your purchase you should consider how much food you would be intending to store based on the needs of your household. If you have a liking for frozen food or buy in bulk due to time constrictions, a chest freezer would be more suited as it has the ability to store a lot more. Freezer capacities can range anywhere from 80 litres to over 700 litres. A freezer with a larger capacity will be more expensive to run so it’s recommended that you don't buy one that exceeds your freezing needs.
Freezers that require a manual defrost are more maintenance compared to frost free freezers. Every so often you will need to manually remove the frost build up from your freezer by emptying the items you have stored and allowing the ice to melt after you have switched the appliance off. If you are considering purchasing a freezer that requires manual defrosting try and find one that has a water drain outlet and hose that will help drain the melted ice water out of the unit.
Frost free freezers are easier to maintain than units that require you to manually defrost the ice build-up on the inside of the unit. Dry air is pushed around the internal cabinet by fans which prevents frost from building up. A lack of frost within your freezer is more convenient as the cold air is evenly distributed around the food and your food will be easier to identify when it is not covered in frost.
Shelves, Storage & Cleaning
Upright freezers have shelves, door racks and drawers making organisation a dream but limited storage space. Upright freezers are easier to clean as their shelves are usually removable so that they can be washed or wiped down. Chest freezers mainly have hanging baskets and but immense storage space. To clean chest freezers the removable baskets can be washed otherwise the contents of the entire freezer will need to be emptied to clean the walls and base.
Just like refrigerators both upright and chest freezers will have an energy rating sticker. The more energy efficient an appliance is the more stars it will receive. The energy illustrates how much energy your appliance will consume per year. When comparing the energy label to other freezers make sure you are comparing them with products that are of the same size and style.
Before buying your freezer consider if the space you have is too close to living quarters. You might want to check out how much noise will be expected from the products fans and motors before bringing your product home.
Freezers unlike a lot of other appliances don't have many additional features. The below list of features are worth mentioning as they give the user more convenience. Keep in mind that any additional features could potentially add to the price of the product.
Interior lighting - Most chest freezers don't have interior lighting but some upright models do. The feature is not a necessity but is more convenient.
Lock feature - Some freezers have a door lock feature which is great for families with children.
Soft freeze compartment - If you hate digging into a tub of rock solid ice-cream this feature could really save some digging time.
Alarm - Some models alert the user if the interior gets too warm which can be caused by leaving the door ajar.
Adjustable thermostat - Allows you to manually control the temperature of your appliance.
Power indicators - Will let you know if the unit is still operating.
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