Getting a refrigerator requires a lot of thoughts and attention to detail, such as the style, brand, and model to go for, the type of refrigerant it uses, its storage capacity as well as the cost of the refrigerator.
Knowing how much a refrigerator cost is a smart money move, as it helps to streamline your choice in line with your financial capacity.
Now, when looking at how much a refrigerator costs, a major mistake many make is to consider things only from the price tag on the unit itself at the store.
However, beyond the obvious price tag, there are many other costs attached to running a refrigerator.
Even if it is quite affordable on the market when you buy it, if you don’t do the right cost analysis, a refrigerator may end up raking up more costs than you bargained for, putting a damper on the joy you felt upon purchase.
So, it would be of great benefit to have an idea of ALL the costs involved and prepare yourself ahead.
To answer the question “how much does a refrigerator cost?”, we would say, it varies, as there is no one-size-fits-all answer.
But to explain this a lot better, we will break down refrigerator costs into purchase costs and running costs in the next section.
How Much Does A Refrigerator Cost? – Purchase Costs
The purchase cost of a refrigerator depends on the style, brand, and how basic or high end it is.
Below is a list of the 5 general refrigerator style options and their price ranges from affordable to high end.
Top-mount Refrigerators: 200 to 3,000 dollars
Bottom-mount Refrigerators:: 750 to 10,000 dollars
Side-by-side Refrigerators: 500 to 7,000 dollars
French door Refrigerators: 1,700 to 13,000 dollars
Compact/Mini Fridges: 100 to 6,000 dollars
Note that this price range is what holds now. So, it may vary with time. But do your research and confirm when you are ready to buy yours.
Something else to consider in the purchase cost of a refrigerator is the cost of delivery and/or installation which is a few extra dollars depending on the seller, company and how far you are from the delivery company.
By the way, here’s a short video from Yale Appliance with information on how much a built-in/Integrated refrigerator costs. Check it out!
How Much Does A Refrigerator Cost? – Running Costs
These are the costs that go into the day to day usage of the refrigerator. They include:
Maintenance and repairs
Regular maintenance is very important if you want to keep enjoying an efficient performance from your fridge.
It usually costs nothing or very little.
Repairs, on the other hand, cost between 200 to 500 dollars on average.
There are many factors that go into determining this and these factors may vary.
Need an in-depth breakdown of the cost of refrigerator repairs? Then get all the answers you need from our post, “How Much Does a Refrigerator Repair Cost“.
This is the most obvious running cost that comes to mind. The energy demands of your unit will reflect on your energy bill.
So, it is important that you have an idea before you make that purchase.
Having said that, newer refrigerator models are becoming increasingly energy-efficient, requiring much less energy to run than older models, which is a good thing.
Even amongst these, refrigerators with compressor systems are less energy-efficient than their thermoelectric counterparts.
Those that are Energy Star-rated also consume less energy than those that are not. When looking at your options, check the yellow Energy Star label on them to know the annual energy consumption rate and cost so that you can plan your purchase properly.
For those without the label, you can check the tag on the compressor to know how much power it consumes.
Factor this in to decide if you can afford the refrigerator at the end of the day.
How To Measure the Cost .vs. the Value Of A Refrigerator
Deciding if an item is affordable or expensive is subjective, depending on whether you are getting value for your money or not.
And we get it, a refrigerator is a long-term commitment, and you need to deal with the consequences of your purchase for many years (possibly decades) to come.
So, it would be extremely painful if you shelled out precious money (whether little or much) for something only to discover that it wasn’t worth the money you paid to have it.
Not to worry, here are some factors when you want to weigh the cost of a refrigerator versus the value that it offers.
Consider what you need the refrigerator for in the first place.
Is it for home, office, or commercial use?
This helps you look out for details like the capacity, shelves, dedicated compartments (for cold cuts, milk, cheese, eggs, etc.), style, energy efficiency, convenience, color, etc., that suit you best.
After your primary needs are covered, you may want to look at the extra features offered, which may come at an additional cost.
Some of these special features include cameras, energy monitors, voice control, mounted TVs, etc.
Separate your must-haves from the nice-to-haves and go for what you can afford, even if it does not offer fancies.
If you like the feeling, extra convenience, and exclusiveness those with extra features offer and you don’t mind slapping down an extra amount, then go for those.
Check out these other in-depth articles/reviews…
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- Garage Refrigerators: How to Buy the Best
- Igloo 12-Bottle Wine Cooler — Detailed Review
- NewAir 12-Bottle Wine Cooler — Extensive Review
- Westinghouse 6-Bottle Wine Cellar — Detailed Review
Simple Ways to Cut Running Costs on Your Refrigerator
Nobody likes their money going down the drain from excessive running costs when there are simple ways to cut back and save some extra.
Here are some suggestions on how to cut back on running costs on your refrigerator:
i. Don’t overload your refrigerator: Reduce energy usage by keeping your unit about 2/3 full. Overloading puts extra strain on the refrigerator, making it draw more energy to keep things cool.
ii. Let hot foods cool before placing them in the refrigerator. That way, your unit would not have to use extra energy to cool them down.
iii. Carry out regular maintenance like timely defrosting and dusting the condenser fans regularly, etc.
This reduces the risk of breakdown, which saves you money on repairs. This also keeps your refrigerator running efficiently.
iv. Reduce the frequency of opening and closing to prevent heavy loss of cold air and entry of hot air from outside.
Otherwise, the refrigerator would have to do extra work to bring the temperature back to its cold state, consuming more energy, and adding to your electricity costs.
v. Keep your refrigerator in a good location that allows for airflow and is out of direct sunlight. This ensures smooth operation and reduces the risk of damage to the unit.
A Quick Recap
A lot of consideration is required when making the decision to buy a refrigerator and there is no direct answer to the question of how much a refrigerator cost.
Not only do you have to consider the price tag, but you also need to consider the cost of running the unit over time, such as cost of repair, maintenance and especially, energy consumption.
You also need to weigh the cost with your storage needs and extra features offered to decide if the refrigerator offers good value for the cost paid.
Upon purchase, simple things like not overfilling or stocking with hot food and carrying out regular maintenance and timely repairs can go a long way in helping you to cut running costs and maintain the efficiency of your refrigerator.
Related FAQs — How Much Does A Refrigerator Cost?
What Factors Should One Consider Before Buying a Refrigerator?
i. Energy consumption: A refrigerator with an Energy Star label is the simple choice for saving energy, money, and helping to protect the climate. Also, because the refrigerator is one home appliance that tends to consume a significant amount of energy, it is best to choose a refrigerator that uses less energy compared to other types. Also note that the larger the size of a refrigerator, the more energy it will consume.
ii. Refrigerator Size: Even though one of your priorities may be a refrigerator that caters to your storage needs, it is also important to consider how energy-efficient the refrigerator is and well it will fit into your space.
iii. Features: Think about the special features you want your refrigerator to have, and make a choice with them in mind.
How Long Before Plugging in a New Refrigerator?
When you get a new refrigerator, allow the refrigerator to stand upright for 4 hours before plugging it into a wall outlet. This is to allow the oil in the compressor to settle.
Also, do not load food into the refrigerator immediately you plug it in. Ensure that the thermostat control is set to ON and give the refrigerator some time to cool down to a set temperature. You may want to allow up to 12 hours after setting the temperature before you place food items in the refrigerator.
When Can I Replace a Refrigerator?
i. When the refrigerator is beginning to overheat. Most refrigerators run on a motor, so it very possible for the motor to overheat. Also, it is okay to feel some heat when you touch the back of your refrigerator but it should not be so hot that you have to take out your hand quickly so you won’t get burned.
ii. When the refrigerator freezer is running too cold. No doubt, the whole point of a freezer is to keep food frozen. However, when you begin to pick ice off of your food before you can cook it, then there’s a problem.
iii. When you can hear the refrigerator running, and you are nowhere close to the kitchen.
What Causes Refrigerator Damage?
- High voltage surge: When there is an increase in voltage from a power surge, it leads to an inflow of electrical current in the refrigerator. This surge brings up an excessive amount of heat, which can damage several parts in the refrigerator, including the control board and compressor.
- Lack of maintenance: Refrigerators last longer if they are properly maintained. When they aren’t, the sad results may include a mechanically locked compressor, failure of the fan motor, dirty condenser coils, etc.
What Should Not be Stored in a Refrigerator?
Here are some items that should not be stored in a refrigerator:
- Bread: Bread dries out and goes stale much faster in the refrigerator. Instead, store in a cool, dry place.
- Onions: Onions in your fridge will transfer their smell to other food items. Onions are best stored in dry, ventilated areas. However, do not keep them in dark places so they do not sprout.
- Garlic: Just like onions, garlic is best in dry, ventilated areas.
- Avocado: Storing avocados in a refrigerator is one way to make them go from hard to mush instead of ripening. However, once they’ve been cut open, it is best to store them in the refrigerator.
How Do I Maintain a Refrigerator?
- Keep the coils clean: A refrigerator cannot work effectively if the condenser coils are covered with dust. Twice a year, check the coils at the back of the refrigerator, unplug the refrigerator, and vacuum with the brush attachment.
- Maintain the temperature: Keep the refrigerator temperature between 37 to 40 degrees Fahrenheit and keep the freezer at 0 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Always check the refrigerator door seals: A loose seal will allow cool air to escape from the refrigerator and warm air to go in. This will cause the refrigerator to work harder than it is supposed to. So, ensure that the seals are always firm.
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