Buyer’s Guide: How to Choose a New Fridge

Perini Team

In Kitchen Posted

Whether you are updating your existing kitchen’s appliances or planning a kitchen renovation, there are a few things to take into consideration when selecting a new refrigerator for your home including the actual type of unit, it’s size and capacity, additional features as well as the model’s energy rating, each of which will play a role in your final decision to ensure an appliance that will perfectly fit into your design and lifestyle. 

Different Types of Fridges

There are many different types of fridges available, each designed to suit different kitchen styles and user preferences. These include:

Integrated Fridges

An integrated refrigerator is installed as part of your kitchen cabinetry and will require a custom made cabinet face to suit your kitchen. These models are available as either a complete unit that includes a freezer or as separate units for the fridge and freezer sections. 


Our Armadale kitchen renovation includes a fully integrated refrigerator system with two separate freezer drawers, allowing for incredible versatility in the space. The fridge is perfectly concealed behind matching cabinetry to create a clean and seamless look in this modern kitchen design.

Built-in Fridges

A built-in refrigerator is also installed within your kitchen cabinetry however unlike an integrated model it does not include a custom made cabinet face. Once again, these models can be found with both fridge/freezer combos or as separate units.

Freestanding Fridge/Freezers

A freestanding refrigerator is perhaps the most popular option as it allows for more flexibility when upgrading your appliances later on as needed. These models are not attached to your kitchen cabinetry and are also available as fridge/freezer combos or as standalone units.

Other Types of Fridges: Fridge Drawer, Bar Fridges wine

Other refrigeration systems include Fisher & Paykel’s CoolDrawer™, smaller bar fridges, wine storage units, mini-freezers as well as chest freezers. These specialised units are each designed to meet specific user needs, offering a a personal experience that will best suit your lifestyle.  


 Fisher & Paykel’s CoolDrawer™ can be installed as part of your kitchen cabinetry for ease of access. The unit can be customised to suit your needs, offering impressive flexibility to be used as either a refrigerator, a pantry or even as a freezer with a simple push of a button, making it an excellent option for a busy kitchen where it will provide additional food storage space.

Size, Capacity and Clearances

When looking at purchasing a new fridge for your kitchen, whether for an existing space or as part of a kitchen renovation, it is crucial to keep your space’s dimensions in mind. Take note of how much space is available for your refrigerator in order to narrow down your options and select the perfect model that will best suit your needs. It is also especially important to allow some space around the fridge itself in order to accommodate for air circulation; each fridge’s installation manual will specify how much space your new fridge will require on both sides as well as at the back of the fridge in order to adequately allow for air to circulate and keep the unit running at its best.

Each unit will also specify its overall capacity, referring to how much usable space is within the fridge itself. This is an all important factor to take into consideration when making your final decision as it of course, will influence the amount of actual storage that is available. If you use large platters for example as part of your entertaining guests, it may be important to consider whether or not these will actually fit into your new fridge. 

Door Swing

Another important feature to keep in mind is the direction of the fridge’s door swing in relation to your kitchen’s layout and any potential obstructions. Ensure the doors of your new fridge are able to properly swing outwards without colliding into any cabinetry, walls or doorways as this will ensure that all internal elements of the fridge are easy to access (i.e. pull-out shelves and drawers are able to properly operate without any collisions) while also allowing for better user circulation throughout your kitchen. The actual direction of the door’s swing will also be an important factor to consider; ensure the door opens in a way that will be simple to access in your kitchen’s layout, ensuring a comfortable user experience. Some models of fridges allow you to reverse the door’s swing so this too is an important factor to take into consideration when searching for the perfect fridge for your kitchen. 

Fridge Features

Modern refrigerators include an impressive range of different features. Frost-free systems have become the norm in modern fridge designs, as well as vegetable crispers that will help keep your product fresher for longer, pull-out shelves for better ease of cleaning as well as door shelving for smaller goods however, more advanced designs can also include an integrated computer system that connects to your home’s WI-FI and can be used to display shopping lists, recipes, weather and news updates as well as to play audio. Other exciting features to be on the lookout for include innovative door designs that either allow the user access to the necessities stored on the door shelving of the fridge or the entire fridge’s contents with a flick of a switch, reducing the unit’s energy consumption. You will also find models that include an ice and water function on the door that will keep cool water ready at all times; these models are available in both plumbed and non-plumbed versions, allowing you the flexibility of selecting an option that will best suit your needs, budget and space. 


Our Albert Park kitchen renovation includes a freestanding French door refrigerator with a pull-out freezer drawer at the base. The unit also includes an ice and water feature on the door for a versatile solution in this organised kitchen.

Energy Rating

Finally, keeping an eye on each model’s energy rating will also affect your final decision. Each fridge is assigned an energy rating that is shown on the model using a six star system. The higher the star rating, the more energy efficient the particular model will be, reducing your energy bills while also decreasing your home’s carbon footprint in the process. 

Selecting your kitchen appliances can seem a challenge at first however, when you are aware of which factors will influence your final decision, the process becomes infinitely simpler. Our design team at Perini Renovations will recommend the best appliances to suit your needs while also guiding your through the process of making your final selections to ensure each item in your kitchen is the perfect fit!