french door or side by side (depth constraint)

kickballSeptember 28, 2013

Pros and cons of each pls. We have clearance for 34 inch depth. Have side by side now....always creative to get everything in. Do have trouble bending top drawer of French door for me...bottom would be for husband. Like water and ice in door. Maybe 4 door ? Like two drawers on bottom , and really like handles that lift to start drawer moving on its own. Need white. Recommendations pls.

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The ones with two drawers come in two types. In the LG derivatives the upper drawer is a freezer drawer. In the Samsung derivatives, the upper drawer is a refrigerator drawer.

A FD frig will most likely give you more organization space for the fridge part. I don't care for the freezer drawer myself, so it depends on how you use your unit. IE, do you live out of the freezer or the fridge?

    Bookmark   September 28, 2013 at 4:55PM
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Have a Samsung counter depth french door w/ice and water in the door. And a second ice maker in the freezer. I absolutely hate the bottom freezer. For me, it is just miserable digging through everything to find things. I always had a top freezer and found that superior for organization. We use the freezer a lot, so if I had to do over again, I would not get a bottom drawer freezer.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2013 at 8:34AM
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Matt - sounds like we have the same fridge. Can you comment on sound? I find it reasonable except for a quiet but irritating oscillating sound that reverberates throughout the house. Wondering if you have that?

Kickball - If you're not a heavy user of the freezer, I think you'd be ok with bottom mount. The upper drawer is reasonable to reach into, but it doesn't hold a ton. If you pack your freezer tight and access it often then I agree with Matt. Not much to do except for pile stuff in and dig for it when you need it.

Having come from a SxS (standard depth) I can say I prefer that layout by far, except for the obvious width issue. It's really give or take, esp when dealing with counter depth. It really comes down to how you use your fridge.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2013 at 9:20AM
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Pros and cons of FD vs SxS have been discussed at some length in numbers of threads over the last year. If you are having trouble with finding them using the GW search engine, try going out to google and use "gardenweb" as part of your search string.

One big negative for SxS is that they are the most repair prone type of fridge these days. The annual membership surveys at Consumer Reports show almost all brands are equally problematic with about 15% (one in seven) having major problems in the first five years of ownership. Except for LG whose SxS models have been showing a 22% rate (more than one in five).

Probably about half of the problems are with the ice and water dispensers. I've noticed a similar trend with French Door models except that it is not quite as bad. A couple of years ago, for example, Whilrpool FD models were running about an 8% defect rate which was lower than the KitchenAid versions (they ran about 10%, slightly higher because a larger portion of the KA line included ice and water dispensers.) In the last couple of years, the proportion of WP/KA models with ice and water dispensers has increased and the defect rate is now running about 12% for the FD models (one in eight over the first five years.) Not as bad as with SxS models, but getting up there.

Another possible negative for SxS fridges for you, with trouble bending, is that most SxS fridges have the the produce drawers at the bottom. Hard to get at them without some serious bending.

As for four-door (aka two-drawer) FD models, I recall that four-door FD models are also available from Liebherr, Whirlpool, Kenmore and GE as well as Samsung and LG. I think (but am not sure) that the Kenmore is made for Sears by LG.

GE: For a while, GE was outsourcing its fridge production (and had the same defect rate that LG did) but it opened a domestic production line in the summer of 2012 and started making FD models in Kentucky. The domestically produced ones ones seem --- so far --- to be more reliable than the lines that GE outsourced previously. IIRC, both drawers on the current GE models are freezer drawers. Don't remember if the freezer drawer handles were standard pulls or the kind that lift up to assist with opening. Try searching on this model number: PGSS5RKZSS and PGCS1RKZSS. IIRC, the latter one is a counterdepth 4-door. Not sure if it is available in white, but a search at AJ Madison, Lowe's etc. should turn up that info.

Whirlpool: The company sells 4-door/two drawer models under its Whirlpool, Amana, Kitchenaid and Maytag brandnames. I believe all are avaiIable in white. The Whirlpool models I looked at (I think) were the WRX988SIBW and WRX735SDBM. On one of them, both drawers were freezer compartments; on the other, the upper drawer was a refrigerated "pantry drawer." IIRC, the Maytag branded ones are still called "Ice2O" and, like the similar KA model, also use the top drawer as a fridge section (or deli drawer.) Also, avialable in white, as I recall.

My recollection is that the LG and Samsung 4-door/two-drawer models were only available in with stainless steel door finishes, or at least I could only find them in that kind of finish.

When you say you want a "34-inch depth," is that with ot without the projection of the handles? My recollection is that the 25 to 28 cu. ft. capacity four-door units are all pretty much around 33 inches deep but handles project out more to around 35" to 36" deep. The 21-22 cu. ft. models are around 31" inch deep, sans handles.

Liebherr fridges have a following here but are built-in models and about twice the cost of the models listed above. I do not believe they are available in white and, AFAIK, they do not have lift-assist door handles for the freezer drawers.

This post was edited by JWVideo on Mon, Sep 30, 13 at 14:21

    Bookmark   September 30, 2013 at 1:54PM
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"Matt - sounds like we have the same fridge. Can you comment on sound? I find it reasonable except for a quiet but irritating oscillating sound that reverberates throughout the house. Wondering if you have that? "

No...have not had that issue. It was a model from Lowes with 2 ice makers.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2013 at 2:27PM
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Thanks Matt , that's the one I have. I'll get around to calling service one of these days.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2013 at 2:36PM
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