Reasons to Invest in an Outdoor Fridge & Important Features to Look for
Outdoor kitchens can be an expensive investment but they are definitely worth the money. Nothing can beat the convenience of enjoying the beautiful outdoors with your family and friends while there is fresh meat cooking in the oven. All those summer days and nights can become even better while you are mastering your cooking skills and enjoy the beautiful weather. However, choosing and installing an outdoor kitchen takes time and careful planning. Once you choose the right kitchen cabinets and drawers, you need to pay special attention to the kitchen appliances. Having in mind that they will stay outdoor, you need to ensure you are buying appliances specifically designed to withstand the elements.
One of the things your kitchen would not be complete without is a fridge. This appliance allows you to store the foods and drinks that need to maintain a certain temperature. One of the main reasons why you should invest in an outdoor fridge is the great convenience that it provides and the time it will save you. With this appliance in your outdoor kitchen, you won’t need to go inside any time you need a cool drink or cheese for your fresh-made pasta. When it comes to choosing an outdoor fridge, you need a unit that is built to last, specifically designed with the weather in your area in mind and a unit that will keep your beverages and foods cold without straining your energy bill. Here are few expert tips on what to look for in an outdoor kitchen refrigerator.
The refrigerator you choose should be designed and certified for outdoor use. Mother Nature is a fickle environment of intense UV exposure, fluctuating temperatures and changing weather conditions. Therefore, it is crucial to buy an appliance that is certified for outdoor use to endure elements such as corrosion, rain, different temperatures, and high humidity. This is what makes all the difference between an outdoor fridge that’s made for the long haul and a unit that’s made to last just a few years. Installing and indoor unit outdoors without the proper safety implements can be really dangerous as it can lead to an electrical shock, so be smart and buy the right model for your needs.
Not all outdoor cooling units are created the same. Once you dive deeper into the range of outdoor fridges, you will notice that some of them are cold-plate while others are forced-air. What’s the difference? A cold plate is a surface located in the storage compartment of the fridge that cools via natural convection through contact with the air. One of the biggest downsides of this method is that the contents may obstruct cool airflow so your beverages and food may not be as cool as you want. On the other hand, forced air constantly recirculates the air delivering more consistent cold air circulation throughout the unit.
Sometimes, in extreme outdoor conditions, efficiency becomes more difficult to maintain. However, there are kitchen appliance manufacturers that have mastered the balance of energy consumption and cooling performance. So, make sure you check this when looking for the right fridge for your outdoor kitchen. For instance, there are refrigerators that cost you less than $25 per year to operate, while others may cost up to 50% more.
Do not get fooled by lower price models. At first, you might think that buying a cost-effective unit will save you money but if you need to service it more frequently or even replace it after a short time, then you haven’t saved at all. Instead, you’ve spent more money and have wasted your precious time. The cheaper models are usually made of stainless-steel look-alike materials that are susceptible to corrosion. On the other hand, a quality outdoor fridge is built to last longer and it’s made of quality materials featuring durable construction, parts and refrigeration technology.
Not all outdoor fridges have the same capacity. One might be able to store an extra-large pizza, while another one may be big enough for just half of it. Also, consider the depth of the fridge. Some models have 20% more depth compared to others, which means you can store extra-large pizza boxes and platters for entertaining large crowds. There are even mobile models of fridges for an outdoor kitchen which you can take with you wherever you go.
Think about the items you use the most. The ones that need to be stored in your outdoor fridge. It is normal for your storing needs to change over time and that is why you need to consider buying a unit that can adapt to your lifestyle. For example, buying a fridge with an adjustable cantilever shelving is a smart idea as this simple feature will allow you to customize the interior of the unit based on your storing needs.