You are probably trying to decide to go with a traditional side by side refrigerator or wondering if you can keep things organized in the freezer drawer of a modern French door refrigerator.
Side by side refrigerators have been popular since the 1960s. Up until recently, we have not seen any design innovations in this category of refrigerators; the freezer on the left side and the fridge on the right.
Luckily, Samsung and LG introduced new design ideas to this segment. We now have LG’s InstaView door which illuminates the interior with a gentle knock so we can quickly scan what’s inside without opening the door. Also, the door-in-door (a.k.a. FoodShowcase) design provides easy access to family favorites. In summary, almost all best refrigerator brands on the market have a selection of side-by-side models.
These innovations are not only convenient from the usability point of view but also help us save energy as the doors don’t have to remain open.
Overview of Our Side by Side Refrigerator Picks
|Best Entry Level||Frigidaire FRSS2623AS Affordable price point, Ideal price vs. performance, Proven reliability, 36″ Full Depth 25.6 cu. ft.|
|Best Mid Level||LG LRSOS2706S InstaView – Knock Twice to illuminate the Contents of the Fridge, Door In Door – Put your favorites to the front for easy quick access, 36″ Full Depth 26.1 cu. ft.|
|Best Premium||Samsung RS22T5201SR Stylish, Fingerprint resistant stainless steel, LED Lights, 36″ Counter Depth 22 cu. ft.|
|Best Luxury||Sub-Zero BI36SSTH True Luxury, 84″ Tall, Built-In Refrigerator that blends with your kitchen, Best Air Circulation, Humidity Control, Dual Compressors help preserve food longer than other refrigerators|
Pros and Cons of Side by Side Fridges
Currently, there are over 100 different choices (excluding color options) when it comes to side by side refrigerators. You can guess that the selection process is difficult among so many choices.
We also noticed that most review sites rate and review discontinued models. This guide is up-to-date with current models and offers a simple classification “Entry-Level, Mid-Level, Premium, and Luxury.”
You can check our blog or the rest of our website to refine further your selection based on your specific needs and budget.
Pros Here are the most critical advantages of side by side refrigerators:
- This efficient design is excellent for families that want to keep their freezers organized and easily accessible. Think of the bottom freezer models where food may get buried under the new arrivals.
- Each door-wing is narrower compared to that of a wider swing single door refrigerator. This makes a side by side refrigerator fit in tight spaces easier.
- Far more streamlined look in comparison to a top freezer fridge.
Cons Main disadvantages of side by side refrigerators:
- The fridge area is smaller in size. It might be hard to fit pizza boxes, larger pans, etc. to fit.
- The refrigerator is always on the right size which may present usability issues in some kitchen designs.
- Many people think of the side by side design as outdated. If you want an up-to-date design choice consider a French door refrigerator or a bottom freezer fridge.
4 Best Side by Side Refrigerators in 2021
1) Best Entry Level Side by Side Refrigerator: Frigidaire FRSS2623AS
36-inch Full Depth 25.6 cu. ft. Side by Side Refrigerator under $1,049 (Color options in Black Stainless, White, Black or Stainless Steel)
Why we like it:
- Great price vs. features
- Reliable with hundreds of positive customer reviews
- Well designed interior gives you space (adjustable shelving, gallon door storage)
We covered Frigidaire refrigerators in our comprehensive article.
- Fresh filtered water and ice dispenser on the exterior with filter change alert
- Over 100 ways to organize the interior thanks to its adjustable edge to edge shelving
- Deli drawer and clear dairy door
- Width 35 5/8″, Height 68 5/8″ to top of the case (69 7/” with hinges), Depth 2 3/4″ for the box (31 3/4″ without handles) – Approximate Dimensions
2) Best Mid Level Side by Side Refrigerator: LG LRSOS2706S
36-inch Full Depth 27 cu. ft. InstaView Door In Door Refrigerator Stainless Steel
Why we like it:
- You can now place your favorites strategically on the door in door section. This way you don’t need to let cool air out when reaching for them. Both convenient and an energy saving feature
- Great connectivity for smart-living. Compatible with Alexa, Google Assistant. You can get alerts or even use voice commands
- This LG refrigerator has the multi-air flow system to regulate humidity and temperature for longer storage of your groceries
- InstaView – Gently knock on the door to illuminate the interior
- Door in Door design saves energy since it eliminates the need to open the set of doors to reach for popular items
- SlimSpace Plus ice system to provide more interior shelf space
3) Best Premium Side by Side Refrigerator: Samsung RS22T5201SR
Why we like it:
This Samsung refrigerator comes with an advanced air circulation system which helps with food preservation. Counter depth refrigerator design allows this model to blend with your surrounding cabinets while giving you a 22 cu. ft. storage. Samsung also makes this fridge available with a full depth design at 27.4 cu. ft. under model RS27T5200SR. We are happy to report that the stainless steel doors are now fingerprint resistant.
- High efficiency LED lighting illuminates every corner
- Flexible interior with an adjustable shelf system
- Gallon door storage
- Ice Master system stores up to 4.4 lbs. of ice
- Width 35 7/8″, Height 70 1/16″ to top of case (69 6/8″ with hinges) x 24″ for the box (28 1/4″ without handles) – Approximate Dimensions
4) Best Luxury Side by Side Refrigerator: Sub Zero BI-36S/S/TH
36-inch Built-In Side by Side Refrigerator Classic Stainless, Tubular Handles (Stainless Steel, Different Handle Options, Custom Panel Ready Option)
Why we like it:
- Your fruits and vegetables will live longer in a Sub Zero refrigerator thanks to the microprocessor controlled air quality, temperature and humidity. The patented door seal is so efficient that even when the power goes out your food will hold out for an extended period of time
- This is a direct replacement of the old 561 Series. So if your old Sub Zero were to quit after 20 some years no need to worry about fitting the new built in fridge version
- True dual compressor system serves the fridge and the freezer separately. This prevents odor transfer and minimizes freezer burn effect
- You will save money with Sub Zero in the long term due to its 20 year life-span design. Not to mention that a Sub Zero kitchen will increase the value of your home and it is the darling of the real estate marketeers
- Built-in luxurious look with 84″ height
- Design flexibility with panel ready or stainless steel door panel. You can even customize the top louvered panel. Install flush to cabinets or stand slightly proud.
- Thin tubular handles or professional thick handle sets are available
- Interior Illumination with LED lights
- Crispers and deli drawers maintain lower temperatures and capture humidity to ensure freshness
If you are in the market to replace an old refrigerator, and would like to keep it organized, a modern side by side fridge might be a great fit. Side by side refrigrators typically do not come with many bells and whistles therefore they are reasonably priced. Just make sure to measure your cabinet opening, check out the specifications of the new fridge you are eyeing and off you go.
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SIDENOTE. This post was last modified on September 5, 2021. However, we regularly update our content as we test more products and new models are released. We also listen to the feedback of our customers and make changes to our product recommendations based on their experiences. So don’t be surprised if you see some old comments below! Since reader comments contribute to the topic, we have decided not to delete them.