Bottom freezer refrigerators offer a number of key advantages. The refrigerator is at a convenient height so fresh food is easy to see and reach. Some have shelves wide enough for party platters or dessert preparations. They also cost less than a similar French door refrigerator.
If you’re undecided this is the refrigerator for you, our in depth guide will help. And, our selection of the best bottom freezer refrigerators highlights technical and design details, as well as user feedback and reports.
Bottom freezer refrigerators can be very basic, but some come with a few nice extras. These may include at least one humidity controlled crisper drawer, gallon door bins, multi-airflow cooling, or maybe a temperature controlled deli drawer.
They typically don’t have luxuries such as through-door water or ice dispensers, twin evaporators, or air filters. These are usually found in more expensive French door refrigerators.
Best Size for Bottom Freezer Refrigerator
Bottom freezer refrigerators come in quite a range of sizes. Around 33 inches is a popular width for a family refrigerator. For smaller kitchens, or for less storage needs, you can consider a 24 inch.
Counter depths look nice but have less space inside. Tall column refrigerators are a good compromise for limited kitchen space, and also suitable for families.
Standard heights vary somewhat between 66 to 70 inches, while column refrigerators are often around 78 inches tall. If you’re putting your refrigerator into a space with an overhead cabinet, always check the refrigerator height including the top hinge just in case.
Bottom Freezer Refrigerator Capacity Guide
A general recommendation is 4‒6 cubic feet of space per adult, but many people manage with a lot less. The actual space measured between bins and shelves tends to be at least 20% less than advertised.
If you’re looking to bulk buy or store a lot, 32-34 inch models can have up to 24 cu.ft., but less if they are counterdepth. For the slightly smaller 30 inch models, you can expect about 20 cu.ft. or a little less.
On the other hand, smaller 24 inch apartment-sized refrigerators seldom have more than 10 cu.ft. in total. Tall column refrigerators can have around 12 cu.ft. and this makes them a good choice for the average family if you like the design.
Ice Makers and Water Dispensers
Your bottom freezer refrigerator may have a factory installed ice maker. Some people like the convenience, while others don’t. Automatic ice makers increase the price point and energy costs, as well as being the biggest reason for repair call outs.
Ice makers of course need a connection to a water source. This will require some installation which may cost extra. You will also need to check whether the refrigerator has an inbuilt water filter, or whether you’ll need an inline-water filter.
Not so many bottom freezer refrigerators come with a through door or ice and water dispenser, or an indoor water dispenser. For this convenience, you should consider getting a side-by-side refrigerator or a more expensive French door refrigerator.
Basic features are what you can expect on most popular models, while advanced features come with more premium models.
Crisper drawers don’t always have a humidity control for each drawer. It’s ideal, however, to have fruits and vegetables kept at slightly different humidity levels.
A snack box doesn’t have temperature control, but they are very useful for separating snacks, deli meats, dairy, and sandwiches.
Multi airflow systems circulate air across the shelves thus preventing odors from mixing, and help to maintain a more even temperature.
Turbo cooling allows you to rapidly cool things and to stabilize the temperature after the door has been opened for loading or cleaning.
A temperature controlled deli drawer adds to the cost, but you can store meat and dairy at ideal temperatures.
Most bottom freezer refrigerators usually have just two full-length adjustable shelves. Always check how many adjustable shelf positions there are. More shelf slots allow you to adapt the space better to your changing needs.
Half length shelves or sliding and flip up shelves are not so common on bottom freezer refrigerators, but Whirlpool is a good choice for this.
A lot of people like gallon door bins that can take large bottles, and these can also be found on cheaper models. Half length or split bins are great for better organization, but some usable space is lost.
See our top bottom freezer refrigerator selection — all Energy Star Rated for better cost savings. Top picks run from top of the range counter depth, to small apartment sized, and tall column refrigerators.
- Fisher Paykel 32 Inch Bottom Freezer Refrigerator – Best to Buy
- GE 30 Inch Bottom Freezer Refrigerator – Best for Door Bin Design
- Danby 24 Inch Bottom Freezer Refrigerator – Best Apartment-Sized
- Summit 24 Inch Bottom Freezer Refrigerator – Best Column Refrigerator
- Smeg 24 Inch Retro Design Bottom Freezer – Best Chic For a Refrigerator
Here are our top picks for the best bottom freezer refrigerators:
1. Fisher Paykel 32 Inch Counter Depth — Best to Buy
Fisher Paykel is a nice choice for a more luxurious bottom freezer refrigerator. It has a through door water dispenser, an ice maker, and some other really nice features. It’s a counter depth refrigerator and has two years on the warranty.
- Energy Star Rated
- 2-year warranty
- Extra slim water dispenser
- 3 gliding stop shelves
- Multi airflow
- Different sized crisper drawers
- Freezer pantry draw
- Freezer bottle chill
- Ice booster
- No split shelves
- No wine or bottle rack
- No built-in water filter
This polished RF170BRPUX6N, with its counterdepth fit and snug pocket handles, has a really crisp and stylish aesthetic. The refrigerator capacity is 12.3 cu.ft. which is just about large enough for a family of four.
The two humidity controlled crispers are a thoughtful and ergonomic design. They come as a third-sized drawer and a two-thirds sized drawer. This is ideal because most people need more room for vegetables rather than fruits, and it’s best to store these separately.
Two full length door bins are easily customized with a sliding separator. The two half bins above are slightly adjustable for height, and on the top are two hatch lid boxes. There are no gallon bins and the door can fit half gallons at the most.
Although the shelving appears basic, there are four shelving levels instead of the usual three. These Fisher Paykels also have the most rack slots of any refrigerator. The shelves are gliding stop shelves, so you can safely pull them out for loading and unloading. They also have raised spill proof edges.
The 5.3 cu.ft. freezer is not overly large. The ice tray takes up a fair bit of space, but the spacing is well designed. The pull-out draws are all plastic and the largest one on the bottom is transparent. The pantry draw is convenient for small packages.
A premium feature on this model is the ice booster. You can use it to increase ice output by 30% on those really hot days. There’s no built-in water filter for the through-door water dispenser or freezer ice tray, so you may need to consider an in-line water filter.
The bottle chill feature control is on the smart touch panel just inside the refrigerator. Basically, it’s a 15 minute timer that alerts you to remove whatever beverage you have placed in the freezer.
Fisher Paykel bottom freezer refrigerators are beautifully designed with premium freshness features and excellent thermostat control. For the extra price, these counter depths will add some real class to your kitchen, and they have a two year warranty.
In general, people have few problems with these refrigerators, and customer service often gets high appraisal.
2. GE 30 Inch Bottom-Freezer Refrigerator — Best for Door Bin Design
For a 30 inch refrigerator, this GE GDE21EMKES has a spacious interior and a particularly good arrangement with the door bins. It also has advanced features like multi-airflow, turbo boost, and an automatic ice maker.
- Energy Star Rated
- Fridge 14.93 cu.ft.
- Sliding snack drawer
- Gallon door bins
- Multi airflow
- Turbo cooling
- Water filter
- Automatic ice maker
- Freezer unit small
- Freeze baskets low quality
- Sometimes noisy
The door bins on this refrigerator are all gallon-sized. The upper two half bins can also adjust height to make room for tall bottles below, or for putting a gallon jug higher up.
The two crispers each have separate humidity controllers, and the neat dairy box makes for some nice organization. The rest of the space is as it is because there are no split or sliding shelves. The adjustability of the upper two shelves is basically sufficient.
The freezer compartment is 6.04 cu.ft. — so fairly average and it’s a pull out type. The lower full-length plastic basket is fully extendable. There are no special features for the freezer box, except that GE refrigerator water filters are fully certified and top class. This refrigerator uses the XWFE filter.
For a 30 inch model, the refrigerator space is quite good, especially in the door. The freezer space is not the best, nor is the pull out basket. However, it’s enough if you don’t buy too many on-sale items. One overall concern is the noise. This refrigerator is given to occasional loud or high pitched sounds – so it’s not ideal for a compact living situation.
3. Danby 24 inch Bottom Freezer Refrigerator — Best Apartment-Sized
This Danby is a good choice for a small refrigerator that isn’t a top mount freezer. It’s good enough for two people, a single’s apartment, an office, or a more accommodating dorm. It’s also good for extra storage.
- Energy Star Rated
- Smudge free
- Rolling can dispenser
- Rack slots plentiful
- Gallon door bin
- Automatic defrost
- Deep freezer basket
- Reversible door
- Controls at the back
- Crispers feel cheap
For its size and class, this Danby has everything you need. The gallon capacity in the door bin is well appreciated, although some people have less use for the 6-can dispenser. The door bin arrangement, however, is fixed. The width of the unit is 26.4375 inches, so a little bit more than counterdepth (24-25 in).
There’s plenty of adjustability for the glass shelves, but the crisper drawers are not the highest quality. Some people would prefer one large crisper to gain on storage space.
The only issue with the freezer may be the basket. It’s deep, but not so big, and it doesn’t pull out very evenly. The basket measures 16.5Wx10Dx12.5H inches.
4. Summit 24 Inch Bottom Freezer Refrigerator – Best Column Refrigerator
If you’re wondering about the height of this lanky refrigerator, it’s 78.25 inches (198 cm) which is also 6.5 feet tall. Column refrigerators look very sleek and stylish and fit nicely at the end of a counter. They’re also good for keeping things out of reach from children.
- Energy Star Rated
- Rapid cooling
- High temperature alert
- Humidity control crisper
- Full-length multi box
- Wine or bottle rack
- Manual ice maker
- Door bins a little shallow
- Shorter than average product life
This Summit has some really nice features and people are especially happy with the storage space. The refrigerator is 8.15 cu.ft. and the freezer 3.46 cu.ft. This is also a counter depth refrigerator, so it has a nice fit wherever you put it.
Apart from a full-length humidity control crisper, it has an additional full-length flap box. This can be used as a deli box and it is also air tight. The shelves can also be adjusted to store two levels of 1-gallon containers.
The only critique is the door space. The design could be better and the bins are a bit shallow, so tall objects may fall out if you open the door roughly. Although Summit has a service, repair, and distribution center in the US, a number of consumer reports say these refrigerators don’t last as long as others.
5. Smeg 24 Inch Retro Bottom Freezer — Best Chic for a Refrigerator
If you’re into some extra panache for your kitchen, these Smeg column refrigerators are an item. Although the typical height of a column refrigerator, they are not counter depth. Apart from the design, they have some decent features for the price.
- Energy Star Rated
- Full 8-color range
- Chrome finish
- Frost free
- Multi-flow cooling
- LED lights both sides
- Telescopic glides on crisper
- Deli temperature control
- Door bin design basic
Apart from the design, people love how quiet they are and reports on thermostat control are excellent. Overall, these are good quality for the price. They fit a 24 inch space, but the depth is 31.1875 inches — so not counterdepth.
Perhaps the only fault can be found in the boor bin arrangement. It’s very basic, all full-length bins with no divider, and not such good use of the space. The freezer though is nicely done with 3 good quality pull-out drawers.
|Product||Dimensions & Capacities||Key Features|
|Fisher Paykel||32 inch||Pocket handles, gliding stop shelves, ice boost, bottle chill.|
14,93 + 6.04 cu.ft.
|Auto ice maker, water filter, gallon bins, multi air-flow.|
6.37 + 2.82.cu.ft.
|Can dispenser, gallon bins, auto defrost.|
|Summit||24 inch |
8.15 + 3.46 cu.ft.
|Counterdepth, 2 full-length drawers, wine rack.|
9.0 + 3.5 cu.ft.
|Multi air-flow, deli drawer, double LED lighting.|
In our selection of the best bottom freezer refrigerators we carefully researched and detailed five of the top refrigerators from the best rated bottom freezer refrigerators to the most popular, and an affordable pro range bottom freezer refrigerator. If you have anything to add, or would like to ask a question, feel free to use the comment feature below. We are always here for you.