Most helpful critical review
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Nice fridge with some odd quirks
on March 30, 2012
First, Amazon has these delivered via JBHunt, and that experience was great. They call when they say they will, they're friendly, and they know what they're doing. And they arrived when they said they would, put the fridge in the place, asked if I wanted them to take mine to recycle...very professional service. You might find the fridge itself for a couple bucks cheaper, but then you get to wrestle with a 183 pound fridge. I didn't even touch this one...delivered, installed, and I just transferred the food.
Onto the actual fridge. My first thought was that it looked pretty sleek (almost like plastic, but it's certainly metal.) Slightly larger than my old Frigidaire, it fit into the spot and everything was going well. The door is reversible, but it came with the hinges on the right side, just like I needed it, so that was an added bonus.
About the door - opening the door, there are various compartments, which is good. However, the "Quench Essentials" spot (basically, a large bin on the door they think you'll put drinks in) isn't quite as firm as the other shelves, and has a bit of rattle to it. Not a big deal, but it's not solid feeling like the other shelves. And the other shelves...the 2nd to the bottom shelve is large to accommodate gallon-jugs, but there's actually one more shelf beneath it that you can use to keep everything you'd like to forget about: standing up, if you open the door, the 2nd to last shelf blocks the view of the very bottom shelf.
The door shelves: I've had an issue with a child closing my previous fridge by pulling on the shelf itself, and then having the shelf snap right down the middle. This Amana shelves feel a bit sturdier, and not all of them span the entire door, so here's hoping that they're end up being a bit more durable. They certainly feel a lot more durable than even the brand-new replacements I've been buying for my other fridge.
The freezer has door shelves as well, but they are incredibly narrow. You can squeeze a bag of frozen veggies in there, but it will NOT hold a carton of icecream. In fact, the depth of the freezer door shelf can hold ONE blue-ice ice chest thing...two would be too wide. The rest of the freezer has plenty of space with the top and bottom shelf being used to organize everything.
The drawers/crispers in the fridge are also a little different from what I'm used to. First off, the plastic seems a bit cheaper (as in, it could crack easier) than my Frigidaire, but a couple quick hits with a glass jar didn't make it snap right away, so maybe it's thinner but just as strong. I'm also used to the drawers opening on the top via some kind of tab. These drawers open from the bottom, via an opening to put your fingers and pull. The crispers have independent humidity controls, so you can put most of your veggies on the larger (left side) one, and other items in the smaller one, which is an improvement over the other fridge, where the drawers were the same size, but I often had one drawer overfilled, and other with 2 items in it.
The fridge cooled down a lot faster than I thought it would, and moving everything from the old to the new didn't give any surprises: no "what, it doesn't have..." or "wow! it has a..." Except, when opening this one, the hand grips are on the side which is a little weird for me to grab at - but I quickly found they also have a ridge on the top for folks like me that just want to grab the top of the door and reel the thing open.
Really, this is a very basic fridge that, aside from personal preferences of how you want your drawers laid out...does what everyone would expect from it: keeps thing cold (and frozen), and does do without making much noise. My biggest complaint is that the freezer door shelves are so narrow that they likely won't find much use, but while narrow, they're very sturdy.
For whatever reason, Amana points out that the temp controls are in the front of the fridge. Yeah, that's nice, but my last 2 fridges have had that and I haven't seen anyone put controls in the back for some time. Maybe somebody does...
Thus far, I'd recommend this fridge to anyone looking for a basic fridge. It looks nice, works well, and depending on the types of food you buy and your desired layout, could be an ideal small fridge.
That's it for the first impressions. Will update if anything changes, good or bad.
OK, so the bottom door shelf on the fridge has all the contents hidden by the 2nd to the bottom shelf. But that's not all! I'm about average height for a guy, around 6 foot. Opening the fridge door and standing there to find something to eat, the width of the freezer door (closed) also hides the top shelf of the fridge! This was not a problem with my old Frigidaire, but it's kind of annoying so I have to stoop down just to see what's in 2 different areas of the fridge. Probably not a problem for shorter folks, but it is for me, so I'm going down to 3 stars (which means "It's OK" - not great and not bad, either.) Shorter folks may not have the problem...but my old fridge didn't have the problem, either. Still functioning great, but the ergonomics of it leave something to be desired.
So I'm still torn between 3 and 4 stars - it's a basic fridge, but the fact that the top shelf in the fridge and the bottom shelf on the fridge door have their contents hidden after opening the door is the biggest problem. HOWEVER, here's an added bonus I just figured out: The plastic-looking (but it is metal...really) front door exterior doubles as a DRY ERASE BOARD! Not sure how it'll hold up long term, but after a day of having dry erase ink on it, it erased cleanly and completely, and now instead of a separate board, we're just going to write directly on the fridge. Pretty nice feature, if only by accident (it certainly wasn't noted anywhere.) Two weeks later, fridge is still working like a champ, too.
OK, four months later...fridge is still going strong being used as the primary one in our house. Since the door of the fridge works as a dry erase board, across the top of it, we have some elegant handwriting with what we've named this fridge: "THE WHISTLER." Sometime in the past month, closing the fridge door makes the entire thing WHISTLE. Doesn't affect functionality at all, but it sounds like I would think of a person wheezing out their last breath or something. A high pitch wheeze, almost. Still a nice refrigerator, but it has a creepy whistle now.