The refrigerator is one of the most important parts of your kitchen, so you'll naturally want to think long and hard about what type of refrigerator to use. One common cause for confusion is the difference between a side-by-side refrigerator and a French door refrigerator, and that's a distinction well worth learning before you move ahead.
Side-by-Side vs. French Door: What's the Difference?
The difference between these two styles is actually pretty easy to grasp. Essentially, a side-by-side refrigerator has a freezer compartment running from top to bottom along one half and a refrigerator section running from top to bottom along the other half. A French door refrigerator has a freezer compartment at the bottom, usually taking up the lower third, and a refrigerator portion above, usually taking up the top two thirds. The French doors open onto the refrigerator compartment, while the freezer section generally uses its own pull-out draws.
Why Should You Use a French Door Refrigerator?
In most cases, people store more in the refrigerator section than in the freezer section, and the freezer section usually doesn't need to be accessed as frequently. This is why people tend to like French door refrigerators – you get more space for the area that tends to be used most. French door refrigerators also tend to be a little more spacious than side-by-side refrigerators.
You'll also have more door space. Each door can be equipped with its own interior shelves, and those shelves usually fill up fast. With a side-by-side, only one door can be fitted with interior shelves. French door refrigerators can even save you some energy because you'll open up freezer draws individually instead of all at once, and the lower part of the refrigerator is a lot easier to keep cool than the top part.
Why Should You Use a Side-by-Side Refrigerator?
French door refrigerators tend to be a little pricier than side-by-side ones, which is worth taking into account if you need to keep to a strict budget. However, the biggest advantage is having a larger freezer section that is much easier to access.
If you tend to store a lot in the freezer, it can be tough fitting everything into a French door model, especially since items need to be stacked up on top of each other. Additionally, smaller items can easily fall out the baskets and drawers French door models use in the freezer section.
If you have children, a side-by-side can be more convenient since younger ones can take items from either the freezer section of the refrigerator section without having to be lifted up. If you want an ice dispenser, keep in mind that these take up less space in side-by-side refrigerators.