Fridge thermometer reviews

We tested 24 fridge thermometers of varying types to find out which give the most accurate readings.
 
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01 .Introduction

Fridge thermometer

Test results for 24 fridge thermometers of varying types

We tested for:

  • Temperature accuracy and consistency between samples.
  • Response to changed temperatures.
  • Ease of use.

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Please note: this information was current as of October 2007 but is still a useful guide to today's market. 

Why a thermometer?

To keep food safe to eat, it must be chilled at below 5°C or frozen at or below –18°C. Any warmer and you have the potential for harmful bacteria growth.

Measuring the temperature in your fridge allows you to accurately set the controls so as to get the best quality and longest storage times for your food.

Thermometers for fridges may even help reduce your household’s CO2 emissions. We calculated that a current-model freezer, running just four degrees colder than is needed (–22°C instead of –18°C, say) would produce around an extra 138kg of CO2 emissions per year.

 
 

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The following models scored the best results in our test.

What to buy
Brand Price
Atech Thermo Equipment In-Out Thermo QM6326 $19.95
Duratech Thermometer Module LCD with alarm and probe XC0224 $39.95
Jaycar (unbranded) Fridge / Freezer Thermometer QM7209 $16.95
Trenton (unbranded) Fridge / Freezer Thermometer 30805 $20.00

 

What about the rest?

The remaining 20 models in our test were less efficient (some totally inefficient) and not as easy to use, therefore we have chosen only to report on the top four recommended models.

Note: Fridge temperatures vary as the motor runs and stops, when the door is opened, and when warm food is added, so it’s best to check the temperature several times until you get it stabilised.

Which type is best?

All the indoor/outdoor thermometers worked well and are very good for setting fridge and freezer temperatures because both compartments can be measured at once. For best results, put the temperature sensors between some food items. You need to tape a wire between the fridge and freezer to measure both compartments at once, however, which can be unsightly.

Most of the digital thermometers with a probe also worked well and are easy to set up. You put the probe between food items or in a small bottle of water, and the temperature’s shown on a digital readout. They can’t be used permanently in the freezer, though, as the batteries can stop working, unless the probe is separate from the display, as in the Duratech.

Simple air thermometers just have a dial with a needle showing the temperature. The air thermometers we tested were mostly inaccurate.

Profiles - what to buy

Atech Thermo Equipment In-Out Thermo QM6326

Atech Thermo Equipment QM6326 Price: $19.95

Good points

  • Accurate.
  • Consistent across three samples.
  • Easy-to-read dual display.
  • Can be set up to monitor the fridge and freezer at the same time.

Bad points

  • You need to run a wire between the fridge and freezer, which can be unsightly.

Duratech Thermometer Module LCD with alarm and probe XC0224

Duratech Thermomenter XC0224 Price: $39.95

Good points

  • Accurate.
  • Consistent across three tested samples.
  • Large LCD display.
  • You can set a temperature alarm.
  • Easy to set up inside the fridge, with the probe in a tumbler of water.

Bad points

  • You need two models to monitor both the fridge and freezer at the same time.
  • You need to run a wire under the door seals, which can be unsightly.

Jaycar (unbranded) Fridge / Freezer Thermometer QM7209

Jaycar(unbranded) Thermometer QM7209 Price: $16.95

Good points

  • Accurate.
  • Consistent across three tested samples.
  • You can set it up to monitor both the fridge and freezer at the same time.
  • You can set a temperature alarm (for one sensor only).

Bad points

  • You need to run a wire under the door seals, which can be unsightly.
  • Has a single display, so you need to switch between readings.

Trenton (unbranded) Fridge / Freezer Thermometer 30805

trenton (unbranded) Thermometer30805 Price: $20

Good points

  • Accurate.
  • Consistent across three tested samples.
  • You can set it up to monitor both the fridge and freezer at the same time.
  • You can set a temperature alarm (for one sensor only).

Bad points

  • You need to run a wire under the door seals, which can be unsightly.
  • Has a single display, so you need to switch between readings.
Your say - Choice voice

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