Frigidaire vs. Subzero
we recently purchased a home w/o appliances. So we are basically researching everything and have decided to start with the refrigerators. House currently has opening for 2 separate built in fridge and freezer each 36Wx74H. DH wants to buy Subzeroes which measure 36x84 and take out cabinets above. I am suggesting the Frigidaires that measure 32x72, for a fraction of the price. I'm not sure if Frigidaire is a good product or if it's worth it to get the Subzeroes for 3 times the price. Any comments or suggestions appreciated!
I agonized over this same decision when I built my house. The Frigidaire twins as they are known are not counter depth, AFIAk, but I could be wrong on that.
In general, Frigidaire is known as a low end brand and has a crappy rep. SubZero is top of the line and has a good rep. I'm not saying any of that is deserved on either side, just that it exists.
Here's what I know--most fridges have a life span of 8 years, and I've seen this proven time and time again. When they die, they get disposed of and replaced which I have a HUGE problem with. OTOH, SZ is NOT disposable. If it breaks, you repair it. I've known SZ's in use for 20+ years, working perfectly. You would never, ever get that out of a current era fridge. Now, whether SZ's are kept vs. disposed of just because of the initial cost is debatable, but I've not known a SZ to even sort of cost as much to repair as buying a new fridge.
Anyway, I have SZ. I call it the kitchen car because of the cost, which does seem utterly absurd. I've only been here 7 years so I can't speak to reliability, but I do know that all of my friends with the same era regular fridges have already had to replace theirs, while I have not. Nor have I needed repair.
I do agree with the point that is often made that SZ keeps food fresher longer, and I would never go back to a non-counter depth type fridge. Just keep in mind that there's significantly less cubic feet in that vs. the same size regular fridge.
We're in the beginning stages of a kitchen remodel and as much as I hate the thought, we'll be replacing our 15-year old Kitchen Aid refrigerator and dishwasher with new appliances. Neither of these KAs have ever given us a minute of trouble, yet, from everything I've been reading, I'm already anticipating problems and short life spans with the new appliances. I'm not even considering Sub Zero because of the cost. We'll be getting a standard-depth french door fridge with freezer on the bottom -- probably Samsung because of the reviews I've read. We have the space for the fridge to be set in so it will look like the counter-depth models but will give us more interior room for a lower cost.
We moved our older Amana to the garage when we re-did our kitchen and put in a KA there. Not the most energy-conscious choice, but we generally fill both of them. The Amana is ~13 years old and still chugging, though I think I need to figure out a way to tighten up the door seal in the fridge section. The Amana is a bottom freezer, and I honestly probably prefer that configuration to the SxS KA..
I haven't looked at the Frigidaire twins in a long time, but my recollection is that they had horrible energy guide ratings. Inexpensive but costly to run.