HOW EXACTLY WE Test Freezers
To check freezers, our engineers fill each model with boxes of frozen spinach and run them inside our test chambers for about six weeks to judge how well they keep carefully the packages frozen.
The results allow us to guage their thermostat control and temperature uniformity (the opportunity to keep up with the same temperature through the entire freezer cavity). Our engineers also measure usable storage capacity, which doesn’t always match what manufacturers claim.
Furthermore, we calculate energy efficiency, evaluate noise output, and judge how long a freezer will keep food frozen throughout a power outage. All of this data is folded into a standard Score for each and every model and appears inside our freezer ratings charts.
Stand-alone Freezer Types
In terms of both most popular types of freezers-upright and chest models-we find that there surely is no clear winner. Below, we consider the professionals and cons of every type. Other options include freezer drawers and lightweight freezers; for more, see below.
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Stand-alone freezers used to be about utility, with no-frills designs and an open-box interior that managed to get a challenge to keep foods organized. Those bare-bones freezers remain available-and most of them do well inside our freezer ratings-but we’re also seeing a whole lot of improvements to the appearance and functionality of freezers. Examine these factors before you hit the store:
If you intend to keep carefully the freezer in a full time income area, consider how noisy it really is (and in addition how it looks). Most manufacturers say that their freezers can operate in an area where in fact the temperature can reach up 110 degrees Fahrenheit, but check product specifications in the event that you intend to put the freezer within an unheated area, like a garage.
Sizing Things Up
Freezers, whether chest or upright, can be found in three basic sizes: compact or small (5 to 9 cubic feet), medium (12 to 18 cubic feet), and large (a lot more than 18 cubic feet). Upright freezers have a smaller footprint for the same storage space.
Most manufacturers say that their freezers will keep food adequately frozen every day and night with the energy off, given that the freezer remains unopened. But our tests simulating an extended power failure showed that some uprights allowed a comparatively large upsurge in temperature after only nine hours.
Almost all of the freezers inside our tests maintained a steady temperature. Manual-defrost uprights were the exception. Without fans to circulate cold air, temperatures of on-door shelves were between 9 and 19 degrees greater than in all of those other freezer.
Don’t expect your brand-new freezer to be quite as energy conserving as its yellow EnergyGuide label implies. That’s because our tests are tougher and, we believe, similar to real-world conditions than those specified by the U.S. Department of Energy. Energy Star products must meet certain governmental energy-efficiency standards.
For More, Check Our Freezer Ratings
Nice Ice, Baby
Once you have gotten your freezer, you might want to give it just a little help keeping its cool-and making food go longer. Have a look at these simple tips from our experts:
Keep your freezer in a cool spot, including the basement, where it will stay well below normal room temperatures. Despite the fact that most manufacturers say models will operate in temperatures up to 110 degrees Fahrenheit, check the merchandise information for specifications.
Open the lid or door less often. Keep a listing of what’s inside and that means you don’t need to hunt around. Label food well for the same reason.
Store Food Correctly
Repackaging food in a number of layers of plastic wrap helps reduce moisture loss and freezer burn. Some typically common freezing guidelines: You can freeze ground beef for 4 months, and a complete chicken for just as much as a year. A pack of hot dogs should only stay frozen for one to two 2 months.
Freezer Ratings by Consumer Reports
The Coolest Features
It’s an appliance with a fairly straightforward purpose, however, many freezer options could make them far more convenient to use (although they could bump up the purchase price).