- Best Upright Freezer
- Best Chest Freezer
- Best Small Freezer
- Best Frost-Free Fridge Freezer
It always seems your refrigerator’s freezer is never large enough to hold all the food items you need to store, especially those sale items you want to stockpile away. If this frequently happens to you, consider purchasing a separate stand-alone freezer to alleviate the problem. The lists we've assembled encompass the best compact, upright and chest freezers on the market to help make your selection a little easier. We've also provided a helpful buyer’s guide below which provides all the basic information you’ll need in your search for the perfect freezer unit.
Best Upright Freezer:
When your family has outgrown the refrigerator's freezer, it's time to look into purchasing a stand-alone unit. These units have doors which open much like a refrigerator with several shelves lining the door and freezer body along with one or two wire baskets to store larger bulk items. Upright freezers allow for better organization of frozen foods, and since most of them come with interior lights, it's easier to find what you're looking for. An upright freezer takes up a small amount of floor space and they’re available in both frost-free and manual defrost configurations. These best upright freezers, were chosen because they offer large capacities for accommodating frozen food items, dimensions which take up minimal floor space, great options for efficiently organizing contents such as their adjustable shelving and door bins, as well as having additional features for convenience and functionality.
This upright freezer from GE offers a total capacity of 20.9 cubic feet, with plenty of shelving and door bins so you can organize your freezer’s contents. The FUM21DHRWW has adjustable temperature control and a lock, but manual defrost means you’ll need to periodically clean out the unit yourself. Read Full Review
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The Whirlpool WZF79R20DW can be had with an optional ice maker, and offers plenty of useful shelving and door bins to keep frozen items organized. This frost-free freezer includes intuitive electronic controls, a fast freeze feature, and a temperature alarm to notify you if the internal temperature rises. Read Full Review
The Frigidaire FFFH17F4QW is an excellent option for when you need added freezer space. This upright freezer makes excellent use of its capacity with adjustable baskets and color-coordinated clips, while offering LED lighting and automatic, frost-free operation. Read Full Review
This Energy Star-rated compact upright freezer is a great option for when you have limited space for installing additional appliances. With 4.3 cubic feet of space, scratch-resistant top, and designed for easy installation, the Danby DUFM043A1WDD promises consistent, energy efficient performance. Read Full Review
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If you're looking for top quality, the Summit SCFF51OSWH has features such as a hospital grade power cord, frost-free operation, and a fully finished cabinet. Although 4.72 cubic feet might seem small for the price of this freezer, its high quality and ease-of-use are worth the price of admission. Read Full Review
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Best Chest Freezer:
Unlike its upright counterpart, a chest freezer will hold slightly more food per cubic foot simply because there are no shelves to take up space. Since these freezer types open from the top like a storage trunk, the lid seals tighter than an upright freezer making the unit more energy efficient. In the event of a power outage, a chest freezer will keep your foods frozen longer because of its superior sealing capability. Since they usually are kept outside of main living areas, chest freezers can stand to be a bit louder when they're on. We’ve chosen these best chest freezers because of their reliable performance so your items stay frozen, large storage capacities for their size, and convenient yet functional features such as power indicator lights and audible alerts if the freezer temperature suddenly changes.
The Whirlpool WZC3115DW is capable of storing large amounts of frozen goods while keeping them organized and accessible thanks to large storage baskets and interior lighting. Although this chest freezer requires manual defrosting, it has been designed with a drain and hose adapter to make this task as simple as possible. Read Full Review
This chest freezer can accommodate a very large amount of frozen items thanks to its 22 cubic foot interior capacity. Although the Frigidaire FFFC22M6QW does not feature automatic defrost, this freezer operates efficiently while making it easy to keep your frozen goods organized. Read Full Review
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The GE FCM15DHWW offers reliable performance and plenty of space for an affordable price. This chest freezer has basic features such as a temperature alarm and locking door, as well as sliding and lift-out storage baskets to keep contents organized. Read Full Review
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The Danby DCF096A1WDD1 is an excellent option for additional freezer storage space, offering 9.6 cubic feet of space. This chest freezer is also energy efficient and easy to keep clean, as well as providing options to help keep contents organized and easy to access. Read Full Review
The Avanti CF6216E is an excellent choice if you’re looking for a compact and affordable chest freezer. This smaller unit offers 2.1 cubic feet of space, as well as useful features such as a fast freeze setting and a removable storage basket. Read Full Review
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Best Small Freezer:
When you've outgrown your refrigerator's freezer space or you simply don't have enough space for a larger, stand-alone freezer, a small freezer can be an affordable and functional solution. You can find freezers as small as 1.1 cubic foot that can easily accommodate overflow freezer items, or even serve as a primary freezer for one or two people. The following freezers are primarily basic models, lacking features such as automatic defrost. However, thanks to their small size these freezers are easy to keep clean, defrost, as well as situate in the home. Rated highly by users for their reliable performance, these selections are readily available at a variety of major retailers.
Despite its compact size, the GE FCM5SHWW offers a surprisingly large 5.0 cubic feet of space. This chest freezer also includes a power-on light, making it easy to verify the interior remains cool without lifting the freezer lid. Read Full Review
This upright freezer offers a good amount of storage space in a compact package, with a scratch resistant top that allows it to be used as additional surface space. The Danby DUFM043A1WDD is an excellent choice for smaller spaces where each appliance needs to be multi-purpose. Read Full Review
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The Avanti VF306 offers a good amount of interior space in a compact freezer package, allowing this selection to find the perfect spot in a variety of home environments. If you have limited space and need a small amount of extra freezer storage, this is an excellent and affordable option. Read Full Review
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The EdgeStar CRF150SS-1 is a compact solution for those who need only a small amount of supplemental freezer space. This compact freezer can also be used as a refrigerator, thanks to its full range thermostat. Read Full Review
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Best Frost-Free Fridge Freezer:
With all the modern technology being incorporated into all home appliances these days, it would seem like the issue of frost buildup would be a thing of the past. Most higher-end fridges and freezers do indeed include automatic defrost, but many of the more affordable models remain prone to buildup and require regular maintenance. Because of this, we've compiled a list of some of the best frost-free freezers with all of the following picks falling under $1,000. Features on these units can vary, from bare-bones models to those with perks such a locking doors and temperature alarms to let you know when temperatures rise above acceptable levels. However, all of our selections have automatic defrost to keep your new appliance frost-free and manufactured to provide consistent performance.
The Whirlpool WZF79R20DW frost-free freezer offers excellent overall performance for a reasonable price. This freezer is energy efficient and includes useful features such as a temperature alarm to let you know if temperature rise, a fast freeze setting, and excellent use of interior space. Read Full Review
The Frigidaire FFFH17F4QW frost-free freezer offers a 16.6 cubic foot capacity with good interior space organization. This efficient freezer is also reasonably priced, making it a great option for anyone looking for a mid-sized solution to needing extra freezer space. Read Full Review
This low-maintenance freezer comes with a locking door and plenty of shelving to secure and organize its 20.5 cubic feet of interior space. The Summit UF21FF features frost-free operation, so you'll never have to worry about defrosting it yourself. Read Full Review
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This basic and affordable freezer offers frost-free operation thanks to its automatic defrost feature, allowing you to spend less time on maintenance. The Frigidaire FFH20F2QW has a large capacity and easy-to-use controls, making it a solid overall option. Read Full Review
If you don't need the larger capacity of the other freezers on this list, the GE FUF14DHRWW offers a smaller capacity at a budget-friendly price. However, this freezer still features automatic defrost and a locking door, making it secure and low-maintenance. Read Full Review
Finding the Best Freezer for your needs
Unlike modern refrigerators, today’s stand-alone freezer units don’t look much different than they used to but do operate with greater efficiency. The obsession with flashy refrigerator styling hasn't transferred over to these appliances, making it a bit easier to find a good model freezer based solely on performance merits.
When looking for a new freezer, it’s important to consider your food shopping and preparation habits. If you purchase food products in bulk or prepare and freeze fresh/in-season foods, a larger freezer will serve you well.
You should also consider where the freezer is going to be installed as well. While stand-alone freezers are as quiet as your kitchen refrigerator, their size means they’ll need to be placed in an out of the way area. If the freezer is going to be installed in the basement or garage, keep in mind most units are rated to operate between 32 to 110 degrees Fahrenheit.
Once you've determined your space restrictions and capacity needs, determine what features you’d like to have and check reviews for different brands before purchasing a freezer within your budget. You’ll then have a good idea of what type of freezer would work best for your household.
These freezers provide more usable space than a comparable upright freezer, making them ideal for storing very large quantities of food. However, they aren't as good for space management because other than some removable baskets, these freezers usually don’t offer shelving or other content organization features. Despite this drawback, chest freezers are usually more energy efficient and tend to keep food frozen for longer during power outages. They’re also less likely to cause freezer burn and are priced more affordable than upright units.
Upright freezers are shaped much like a refrigerator, with shelving and door bins inside to help organize contents. They take up less space than chest freezers thanks to their smaller size but the trade-off is less usable space overall than chest freezers. These units are also more expensive to both purchase and operate.
Capacity and Size
Measure the space where you want the freezer to go before purchasing to make sure it will fit where you need it to go; this will also help determine whether a chest or upright configuration will be the right option. Most freezers offer interior capacities ranging from 5 to 18 cubic feet.
Freezer capacity will depend upon the size of your family and your intended use for the unit.
A good rule of thumb to figure out the ideal household freezer capacity in cubic feet is to multiply the number of people living in your home by 2.5.
Manual vs. Self-defrost
With a manual defrost freezer, you’ll need to periodically remove everything and turn off the freezer long enough to clean out ice built up inside; this requires a fairly large time investment and many people simply hate the hassle. However, manual defrosting units tend to be more affordable, energy efficient, and operate much quieter compared to self-defrosting models.
Self-defrosting freezers briefly heat their cooling element to melt frost and prevent ice build-up; however, this does require drainage for the resulting water. While this offers tremendous convenience, self-defrosting models usually have less consistent temperature control, tend to use more energy, and run noisier overall. The slight variances in temperature may also contribute to freezer burn.
Removable Baskets/Adjustable Shelving
These features keep your freezer’s contents organized and easily accessible. Upright models will have more organization options while chest freezers provide larger storage capacities.
An audible alarm will sound if the freezer interior heats above desired levels, giving you the chance to save the contents from spoiling.
Some freezers come with a door lock to keep contents secure (such as keeping kids away from the ice cream).
Most freezers provide an interior light to make finding items much easier. This feature is especially helpful if you’re planning on keeping your freezer in a dark area such as a garage or basement.
An external light indicates if the power is on, allowing you to see if the freezer is operating without opening it up to check.
Some freezers have a quick-freeze feature for quickly lowering the temperature for a short amount of time. This freezes items faster and certain fresh foods retain their nutritional value much better.