Sick of bending down every time you grab the milk? A bottom mount fridge bends the rules of traditional fridge design and turns the 'freezer on top, fridge on the bottom' form factor on its head, quite literally, elevating commonly-reached-for coldstuffs to more convenient heights.
If you're still not sold on flipping the script fridge-wise, our resident refrigeration expert talks top features of bottom mounts, and more importantly, which ones to avoid.
Plus, for CHOICE members only, we'll reveal the three top-scoring bottom-mount fridges from our rigorous lab testing. If you want to find out which bottom-mount fridge comes out on top, join CHOICE to get instant access to all of our expert, independent reviews.
Why buy a bottom-mount fridge?
If you grew up with the old-fashioned freezer-on-top fridges, you might be wondering what the point is of a fridge with a freezer on the bottom. We asked CHOICE fridge expert Ashley Iredale.
"Why would you want a bottom-mount fridge? It's all about convenience – a bottom-mount fridge means you don't need to bend down to get the milk, or any fresh food for that matter, and I can guarantee you do that far more often than diving into your freezer," he says.
In a bottom-mount fridge, the things you're likely to be reaching for most are much closer to eye level, making it easier to find what you're looking for.
"Purchase price and running costs tend to be slightly higher for bottom-mount fridges than their top-mount counterparts, but it's a small price to pay for the improved utility and convenience," says Ashley.
The freezer capacity tends to be around the same in top-mount and bottom-mount freezers, but bottom-mounts are generally built with sliding drawers, whereas top-mounts generally have shelves, which can make it harder to access frozen goods buried deep at the back of the freezer. Ultimately, which one is best comes down to personal preference.
The worst bottom-mount fridge
- CHOICE Expert Rating: 47%
- Keeping food fresh longer: 48%
- Total volume: 407L
- RRP: $999
This fridge performed so poorly that when our expert testers were asked about its good points, they couldn't think of a single thing. Ouch!
Its temperature is uneven throughout the fridge, especially in the fresh food compartment (not good for your lettuce!), and it demonstrated a poor response to changes in external temperature. It also doesn't have a chiller or humidity control on the crisper, and has a poor range of temperatures available, especially in the freezer.
This is one of the cheaper bottom-mount fridges in our tests, but we'd suggest that what you save in upfront costs you'll lose in replacing soggy lettuce and sour milk over and over again for the 10–15 year lifespan of the fridge.
What are the best bottom-mount fridges?
We recommend fridges with an overall score of 75% and at least 60% for all aspects of temperature performance.
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