Your refrigerator’s freezer may not be enough to hold a large volume of frozen items. Suppose you normally stock frozen food items. You want to minimize your trips to the grocery or just because there is a great deal on your favorites. A separate freezer is ideal, where the best chest freezers come into play.
There are several types in the market, with the upright one and the chest freezer being common. An upright one typically looks like a refrigerator. The door is on the long side of the unit. The downside with this type of freezer is the utilization of available space. You will not be able to fill it with food because you will have to consider the food items from falling. A chest freezer would be a better choice. It is a rectangle-shaped or square-shaped one that opens from the top. You can fill it with items without having to worry about safety.
No matter which type you choose, they come in all sorts of sizes and dimensions. Some are compact, while others are large. Some are cheap, while others come at a premium price tag. Regardless, there is surely one that is going to fit your needs. A wide selection of brands offers these types of products. Arctic King and GE are some of the brands that offer the best 3.5 to 22 cubic foot chest freezers. Frigidaire and Haier are also popular brands, such as áre Igloo and Idylis. Finally, we’ll look at Whirlpool and Kenmore.
Factors to Consider
Picking which make and model to buy is a confusing task. The number of choices available in the market could easily turn into a nightmare. Lucky for you, we have a list of factors to consider when purchasing your freezer. You can use these factors as a guide when searching the market for the one that works best for you. Knowing these factors gives you more idea of the options available for you.
The cost of a one is most likely a huge determining factor of which make and model you will be buying. Cost is directly associated with your budget, so it is only logical to consider well within your project. If you think a certain model is way out of your budget, don’t consider it anymore. Also, keep in mind how the long-term costs would be. Buying a cheap one now may only cost you more in electricity bills in the long run. Compared to buying an expensive one now, paying less for your electricity might be better.
Suppose an energy-efficient model costs more upfront than other less efficient models. You may want to consider paying more upfront, as you will most likely save more money in the long run. Other features will likely cost you more, such as automatic defrost and no frost. When you think about it, the convenience of automatic defrost is worth the premium price. You will no longer be dealing with manual defrosting, which takes a lot of time.
Should you decide to purchase yours online, consider the shipping cost. They are heavy and large, so shipping costs will likely be expensive. Consider looking for a vendor that offers free shipping or offers the lowest total price.
Households who already have a refrigerator and are thinking of buying a separate freezer should consider the amount of space it takes. Before you even start looking, measure how much space you have left at home. When you get this information, that is the time for you to browse for options. This way, you won’t be wasting your time looking into options that won’t fit at home.
|Most popular sizes, in cubic feet.|
You can find the dimensions in the specifications section on the manufacturer’s website. Sometimes, vendors have this information too. Chest freezers will likely need more space than an upright model, so make sure you have enough space at home before buying one. When picking a size, add a bit of allowance on each size to have some space to breathe.
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Not all models and brands are energy-efficient. Since they need to run continuously 24/7, it is advisable to look for one efficient in using energy. When looking at it long-term, you will see that energy-efficient ones will save you more running costs and footprint.
Energy Star-rated ones are great. When it is Energy Star qualified, you can easily identify if it is energy-efficient or not.
Amount of Use
How often will you be using it? There are several factors to consider when looking into the amount of use. How many food items will you be storing in it? How many people will be using it? How often will you be opening and closing it? These are only some of the questions you need to ask the users. Look into the habits of your household and then decide from there. Remember, each household is unique. You can’t base the answer on someone else’s household.
Chest freezers usually come with one or two hanging baskets. You even have the option to purchase more hanging baskets if needed. Stacking food is most likely the approach with these models. One good way to organize your food items is to place them inside plastic containers. If you want to defrost some chicken, you can pull the chicken container out and choose which pack of chicken you want to defrost. Another thing to consider is users will have to bend more often, especially when trying to reach the bottom. It becomes a much bigger problem if the unit is tall.
Climate and Temperature Considerations
The FDA says you should keep your freezer at -18°C. All models in the market can and will reach this temperature. However, its climate will have a huge effect on it. If it is inside your home, this is probably one of the least concerns. Maybe you plan to place it in your garage, where the temperature fluctuates. You will have to check the optimal temperature it should be. Some models will have no issues in the garage, while others may show issues.
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They will have different noise levels. Some are quiet, while others are noisy. It has something to do with the internal parts. There is not much you can do about it but live with it. If you stay for a long time in an area where your freezer is nearby, consider getting a quiet model. Otherwise, don’t bother at all. Typically, automatic defrost models are noisier than manual defrost ones.
The blackout performance refers to how long it can retain cold during a power interruption. To consumers, this is an issue that will not happen often. If it does, having the right model makes a huge difference. The ones with great blackout performance can instantly save you from spoiled food. Luckily, chest freezers have a solid reputation for blackout performance.
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What is a good size?
Freezers come in several sizes, much like refrigerators. Picking the size depends on how much space you will need. It boils down to how many food items you will be storing at a single time and how many people are there in the household.
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A 3.5-cubic foot option falls under the compact size category and typically measures 21–28″ Width x 32–34″ Height x 19–22″ Depth.
Magic Chef HMCF35W2
A great example of this is the Magic Chef HMCF35W2. It is a chest-type model and has a capacity of 3.5-cu ft. It weighs about 65 lbs. It has dimensions of 22.2″ x 32.6″ x 22.0″. Some of the key features of this product are as follow:
- The stylish all-white exterior design allows it to match well with all types of decorations at home.
- Manual defrost keeps the inside clean and in top shape.
- A storage basket that comes out of the box allows for easy access to small frozen delights.
- The temperature knob allows you to control the temperature, helping you set it at an optimal level.
- When defrosting, a water drain provides an easy way for water to leave the inside of the unit.
- For a more streamlined and modern look, the door handles in this model are recessed.
- If you don’t need more food frozen, it will help save space.
- It comes at an attractive price point.
- We had great experiences when we tried it.
- We loved the storage basket.
- It’s often not available on Amazon.
- We wish it looked more modern.
Other notable brands that sell these models are Igloo and Insignia. Should you wish to look into these brands, we suggest visiting their website.
A 5-cubic foot freezer can fall under the compact or small categories. They typically measure 21–38″ width x 32–34″ height x 19–27″ depth.
Insignia NS-CZ50WH6 model
We have two great examples for the 5-cubic foot options. The first one is the Insignia NS-CZ50WH6 model. It weighs about 70.5 lbs. and has dimensions of 33.5″ x 28.67″ x 20.6″. It features the following:
- The 5-cubic foot storage capacity gives enough storage space for a family of up to 3.
- Door hinges are counter-balanced hinge, which allows you to open and stay at different angles ranging between 45 degrees to 75 degrees.
- The removable storage basket lets you arrange food items easily. Sliding it out gives you extra room.
- A water drain provides a path for water to exit when defrosting.
- The legs in this unit are adjustable, ensuring the unit is always level. It also helps in insulation.
- The power indicator light indicates the unit is running normally.
The Insignia NS-CZ50WH6 has an estimated annual electricity consumption of 218-kilowatt hours. Its defrosting type is manual and does not come with a defrost indicator. Overall, this beast does not have any special features to it. If you are looking for a basic unit that can do the job right, this one is for you.
|Capacity||5 Cubic Feet|
|Item Weight||55 pounds|
|Product Dimensions||24.9 x 24.9 x 33.5 inches|
- It provides enough space for 2-3 people.
- We love the counter-balance feature.
- The defrosting water drain is very convenient.
- We liked the light indicating proper performance.
- It’s more expensive than the previous model.
The second option is the Kenmore 17552. It weighs about 68 lbs. and measures 28.13″ width x 33.25″ height x 21.81″ depth in dimensions. It is a perfect size that can accommodate the food your family loves. Some of its key features are as follows:
- The 5-cubic storage capacity is ideal for storing food items in bulk.
- Mechanical temperature control lets you adjust the temperature manually.
- The power indicator light easily tells you if the unit is running.
- The wire basket is removable, allowing for great customization.
- Simple and easy maintenance is made possible by its cleanable gasket.
- Manual defrost
- Kenmore is a more-trusted brand than Insignia.
- It still has a convenient size for 2-3 people.
- The cleanable gasket is a nice touch.
- It’s costlier than the previous model.
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A 7-cubic foot freezer falls under the small category. These models typically measure 29-38″ width x 32-34″ height x 22-27″ depth.
The GE FCM7SKWW is a 7-cubic foot manual defrost model. It weighs about 75 lbs. and measures 37.25″ in width x 33.5″ in height x 21.25″ in depth in dimension. These are some of its features:
- It works flawlessly in your garage for temperatures ranging from 0°F to 110°F.
- The power indicator light lets users see that the unit is running without having to open the door.
- Two storage baskets allow storage of your favorite foods.
- Manual temperature control allows for adjusting the temperature whenever needed.
- Recessed door handles offer a streamlined design.
- A water drain serves as a path for water to flow out of the unit when defrosting.
This GE chest freezer comes with a limited one-year part and labor warranty.
|Brand Name||General Electric|
|Capacity||7 Cubic Feet|
|Item Weight||122 pounds|
|Manufacturer Warranty||Free 10yr Warranty on Major Components|
|Product Dimensions||22 x 37 x 33.25 inches|
- 7-cubic foot is great for 3 people.
- GE is a trusted name.
- The water drain makes defrosting very easy.
- The two individual storage baskets were appreciated.
- It’s more expensive than a 5-foot option.
- It’s commonly unavailable on Amazon.
Weight of a 7-cubic foot freezer
There are no available run-on heavy or light 7-cubic foot options. When it comes to weight, several factors come into consideration. Things like the design and material contribute to the unit’s weight. For example, the GE FCM7SKWW weighs about 75 lbs. On the other hand, the Haier HF71CM33NW weighs about 83 lbs.
A 10-cubic foot freezer falls under the medium category. The ones in this category measure 23–30″ width x 60–73″ height x 27–30″ depth.
The GE FCM11PHWW is a 10.6-cubic foot manual defrost model perfect for medium to large households. It measures 50.75″ Width x 33.5″ Height x 27.5″ Depth in dimension and weighs about 114 lbs. Some of its notable features are as follows:
- It works without any issues in the garage, with temperatures ranging from 0°F to 110°F.
- The power light indicator lets users easily see that the unit is working.
- Three removable storage baskets provide flexibility in storing and organizing food items.
- Lock with key feature lets you safeguard your food items from unwanted entry.
- Interior lighting makes it easy for you to see what is inside the unit.
- Temperature control is adjustable, making it easy to control the temperature.
|Item Weight||114 pounds|
|Product Dimensions||5.8 x 27.5 x 33.5 inches|
- The 10 cubic feet is great for 3-4 people.
- It’s great to see it can handle 110 degrees.
- It’s very quiet.
- It does well in terms of frost.
- It’s often out of stock at Amazon.
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15-cubic foot chest freezers still fall under the medium category. Similar to the 10-cubic foot options, these units measure 23–30″ width x 60–73″ height x 27–30″ depth. We have two models we want to share with you for these models.
The first is the Frigidaire FFFC15M4TW 14.8 cubic foot option. It measures 55.75″ width x 32.5″ height x 29.56″ depth in dimension and weighs about 144.5 lbs. Some of its key selling points are the following:
- Optional casters let you conveniently move the unit.
- The power indicator light lets you know if the unit is working.
- Adjustable temperature control
- The lock key automatically pops out after locking the door, so you will not leave it.
- The removable and adjustable baskets let you organize items the way you like.
The Frigidaire FFFC15M4TW comes with one-year labor and part warranty. Check with the nearest service center to know more about warranty claims.
- Frigidaire is a trusted name in the space.
- It’s a nice touch that the lock key automatically comes out.
- We love the way the baskets were included and their functionality.
- It’s very quiet.
- It’s hard to come by right now.
The second unit we recommend is the Amana AZC31T15DW unit with two baskets. This specific model weighs about 150 lbs. and measures 47.38″ width x 33.38″ height x 30.25″ depth in dimension. Below are some of its main features:
- DeepFreeze Technology goes down to -8 degrees to help preserve your food items for the next month.
- Removable baskets let you store items such as chocolate fries and so much more.
- The large storage capacity allows you to store food in bulk.
- You’ll have trouble filling it.
- It will make you want to go grocery shopping.
- You can save money at the grocery store buying stuff on sale.
- It consumes more electricity than smaller units.
- It’s more expensive.
- Amana isn’t a big name in refrigeration.
If you need something larger, the 22 cu ft chest options are a great option to look into!
How much does it cost to run a 3.5, 5, 7, 9, 10, 15, 22 cu ft chest freezer?
Generally speaking, chest freezers are more energy-efficient than upright ones. However, the cost of running one depends on several factors. To know the estimate, get the annual wattage figure of your unit and divide it by 12. It gives you the kilowatt-hours per month.
Next, check your utility bill and find the baseline kilowatt-hour rate. Multiply the kilowatt-hours per month with the kilowatt-hour rate when you have these two values. Then you get the estimated cost of running the unit per month.
Currently, GE Garage Ready Chest Freezer is the most popular freezer on the market. It’s called garage ready for the simple reason that it can be stored quietly in the garage corner while saving you tons of money.
A deep freezer can store a large amount of food for a long time. It has large insulation, which allows it to do this. A chest freezer is simply a deep freezer in the shape of a chest. It opens from the top facing up and needs plenty of headroom to store it.
Each family member requires 2-2.5 cubic feet of space in the fridge for their food. That means your freezer requires anywhere from 8-10 cubic feet of space.
There are plenty of things you can buy or cook and freeze in your freezer to save a couple of bucks. This includes the more expensive ingredients like cheeses and other fussy ingredients like ginger that quickly go soggy. You can also store tomato sauces or pasta sauces you’ve made in bulk. You can even buy a whole loaf of bread and stash them in the freezer, and toast it when you want to consume it. Vegetables like citrus and spinach in the freezer are a lifesaver for college-going young chefs.
Here are a couple of tips to make the most of your chest freezer.
How to save money with a freezer
- Stock up on the meat.
Meat is a favorite and yet luxury. When you find a meat-special discount, buy a few bags and dump them in the freezer.
- Make pasta sauces.
Make some sauces like tomato or pesto sauces and freeze them in ziplock bags. Just pop one out and cook with your favorite pasta when you’re hungry!
- Buy tomato puree.
When you’re tired of throwing away expensive tomatoes gone bad, buy tomato puree or paste instead. Dump them in the freezer and forget about the mess.