Anyone using second fridge in garage or utility room?

loves2readAugust 27, 2013

We have vacation house in FL where the sellers left an almost new top/freezer fridge in garage...
many people in FL apparently keep extra fridges in garage for chilling drinks/water and overflow food for party prep...
at least everyone we know does...
Now my husband wants to do that at home in TX--
we have big side/side built in (with wood panels to match cabinetry) that has almost zero freezer space, especially for large/bulky items and just not what I consider good useable space...the crisper drawers can't be taken out because the door won't open all the way back for example...product of the instillation I am sure...

getting an under-counter drink fridge wouldn't be choice because we need some extra freezer space as well...
Since it will be going in garage does it make sense to get model with closed coils vs exposed?
We don't need ice maker/water for this model--have it in kitchen now...and would just buy couple of bags of ice for this freezer if we needed xtra...

I would like to get an LG bottom-freezer model with excellent reviews but it is only 10 cu ft...much smaller than most fridges we are used to...and don't think I can even find one to actually look at the space available...

BUT the smaller size would allow us to put it in garage in a more convenient location than a larger model--right next to door into the house/kitchen...
There are 3 drawers in freezer which seem pretty user friendly vs stooping down to check one with shelves... == one drawer is big enough for pizza boxes--and I think the interior would hold enough of what we would stack in it to do what we want...w/o being too big...
He just thinks the cost (600 for the white) would not be worth what we gain...
Personally I think getting a larger model and NOT using all the space would be wasteful...

I know most of the time if anyone has an extra fridge it is because you bought a new model for kitchen and the one you took out is still working so you move it to garage....

Anyway to gauge/compare how inefficient use of a fridge increases the cost of use?

Any other suggestions for optimum choice?
I don't think he will be willing to buy off Craigslist but we do have several Sears Outlet stores in area and have checked out their stock online
Also know that Lowe's and Home Depot run sales on floor samples--but not so easy to check what models any particular store might be offering...

Here is a link that might be useful: LG model I like

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dadoes

I've had a 1997 KitchenAid top-freezer unit in my garage for 8.5 years for additional soft drink storage and freezer overflow from the SxS. In TX.

    Bookmark   August 27, 2013 at 10:42AM
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catman_gw

Check carefully that the one you choose will work in a cold ambient temperature. Most fridge-freezer combos have a single compressor that's controlled by the fridge temperature. If the ambient is cool enough for the compressor to only run infrequently the freezer will thaw.

    Bookmark   August 27, 2013 at 11:05AM
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dadoes

The issue described by catman is a potential problem but I've not had that happen. Depends on where in TX you're located, what degree of cold weather occurs.

    Bookmark   August 27, 2013 at 12:33PM
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loves2read

We are in DFW TX and winters can be cold...but not usually sub-zero...
how cold would it need to be to make a freezer stop working?

unfortunately we don't have working fridge we can use--we had one in house we were renting to our son and he took it when he bought/moved into house of his own...

    Bookmark   August 27, 2013 at 12:43PM
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Debbi Branka

I'm in Michigan and I've always had a fridge in the garage! Ours died at 19 years old, and we just got a new one. We went with a Whirlpool bottom freezer (not french doors). We like it so far.

    Bookmark   August 27, 2013 at 1:50PM
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loves2read

that is the design for the LG model I like best with the three drawers in freezer...puts everyday stuff more at eye level...

    Bookmark   August 27, 2013 at 2:06PM
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philwojo99

My wife and I both grew up with having 2 refrigerators, but both of our families always had them in a basement. When we got married, shortly after I should say, my parents moved and gave us their "2nd" fridge and we put it in our garage. We had it up until just past our remodel that finished late last year, and then it died on us. It was at least 20-30 years old and was a kenmore or some Sears brand.

We got a new one to replace it as we are both so used to having it for overflow and extra space we couldn't live without it.

I will say that being in the Chicago area it does get cold, so when we got it in the spring the freezer would act up and get up to about 20F or so from time to time. They sell a "heater" kit that you put in the fridge where the controls are located and it keeps the unit warmer so it runs a little more which is what is needed to keep the freezer colder. Since I put it in I haven't had any problems.

It was a 30 minute job at most and it cost about $30 or so. Do a search for the model of fridge you are looking at and i would guess they have one for it as well.

Phil

    Bookmark   August 27, 2013 at 3:33PM
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Whit461

Had a beer fridge and a fish freezer downstairs in our home on Galveston. Since moving to FL 8 years ago we had the fridge that came with the house moved to the garage. That died a year ago and I spent $50 for an old 18 cf unit. All the neighbors know they can come over and have whatever is in the fridge, but bring something sometime to replace it. Now and again I let DW put some food in it...

    Bookmark   August 27, 2013 at 5:13PM
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zuponcic

I actually planned my renovation with that idea in mind. I have a utility room some steps from my kitchen. I installed two sets of double refrigerator drawers plus a beverage fridge with icemaker to maximize my counterspace in the new kitchen. I bought a cheap fridge for the utility room for overflow from time to time and party trays. It has a top freezer, and since I use very little frozen food, it is more than adequate. Works for me.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2013 at 4:15PM
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binnesman

We have a second fridge and a second freezer in our garage. We tried for a while using an old bottom freezer fridge but found we just didn't have enough freezer space. And having two separate units avoids the ambient temperature problem.

As far as freezer size, we went with the larger one and we are not sorry. Yes, sometimes the freezer is not totally full, but having that extra space has been very useful over the years.

I don't think there is a huge operating cost difference between the next size down, at least that's what my aging brain remembers from the research I did at the time of purchase.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2013 at 2:17PM
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erinsean

We had a 25 year old upright freezer in our basement. We did not need it anymore so we unplugged it. What a difference in our electric usage! So if you are going to use a refrigerator or freezer for extra, be sure it is high efficiency, if that is important to you.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2013 at 3:04PM
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Madeline616

I have a very basic fridge/freezer, one of the least expensive models from Sears (fridge on bottom and freezer on top) in my garage.

I live in the deep South, it's extremely hot in the garage. I don't know exactly how much electricity the thing sucks up, but I love having it for freezing meals. Don't know what I'd do without it (well, freeze less meals, I guess...).

If I had it to do over, I'd get one with more freezer / less fridge space, and I'd get the most energy efficient model I could find for a reasonable price.

    Bookmark   September 22, 2013 at 4:01PM
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