There are plenty of reasons to invest in a mini fridge; if you are living in a college dorm, for example, this little appliance might help you store healthier food options for your late night study sessions. Or perhaps you just had a new baby and you’d like to keep the milk or baby formula inside the nursery room for easier access. Maybe you have a large backyard and would love to enjoy that bright summer sun with a nice cold drink without having to go back inside the house.
And just as there are many reasons why you might be thinking about buying a mini fridge, there are also many factors you should take into consideration in order to make an informed purchase.
For example, did you know that different mini fridges can employ different cooling methods which might affect their noise levels or energy consumption? Or that there are some mini fridges that are small and light enough to be portable, making it ideal for a day trip to the beach or long car rides? And were you aware that where you place your mini fridge might affect how loud or quiet it is?
Well, if you are serious about making this investment, then reading this guide is a good first step towards acquiring appliance. The guide below compiles some helpful tips and information to help you find the perfect quiet mini fridge for you.This website is supported by readers. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases.
Buying Guide: What Factors Should You Consider?
Despite their small sizes, mini fridges can not only be incredibly versatile, but they can also be incredibly energy efficient. Be it if you’re using them just to store some cosmetics or light refreshments, or if you plan to keep perishable items and meals, a good mini fridge is very reliable and tends to not break down as much as a regular sized fridges. They are also typically on the quieter side.
So, if you are thinking about purchasing one of these appliances, what factors should you consider before making your decision?
Though it may go without saying, capacity should probably be one of the first things to think about. How exactly are you planning on using the mini fridge, and where do you plan on placing it? Also keep in mind that while the dimensions of the appliance are important and affect how much food, drinks, and other objects the unit can carry, there also other features to consider; shelves and partitions, for example, might affect what you can store inside and how much of it will fit. For this reason, removable shelves can be a helpful component. Not only can they offer you more flexibility with the layout of your fridge, but they are also easier to clean.
Another factor to take into account is noise level, especially if you want something to keep by your dorm room, your office at work, or your baby’s nursery. But how can you know whether or not the mini fridge you’ve been eyeing this whole time is truly quiet? Unfortunately, it is not standard for companies to have the noise levels in the product description, making finding this information a little bit more difficult. Rather than just relying on claims that the unit is “quiet” and produces “no noise,” look instead for specific numerical quantities, preferably measured in decibels (dB, with 0 to 30 being incredibly quiet). If none are available in any part of the product description, then see if the information is listed in the reviews.
Power consumption and charging capacity are two other things that should be looked at carefully. Most mini fridges are pretty energy efficient, and some even have USB ports to charge them! If you’re looking for a Star-Certified model, make sure to look for ones that only that use between 100 to 200 watts in power. They are environmentally friendly and can help you save money on your electric bill.
If you know whether or not you’d prefer to have control over the appliance’s temperature, make sure to keep an eye out for temperature adjustment features and look into what is the temperature range of the mini fridge.
Finally, there are some extra features to take into account that, though not a necessity, can still be useful. These include a reversible door which gives you more freedom and flexibility with where you wish place the mini fridge; a see-through design that, though at first appearing to be just an aesthetic choice, can help you see the contents inside the mini fridge without opening it, preserving the coolness inside; safety locks to prevent children from opening the fridge; portability in case you move or wish to take the mini fridge with you on a road trip; and other small things like an freezer feature (which is not available in most unites) and LED-lights.
Expert Tips: Questions to Answer Before Making Your Decision
Before picking up your card to buy your next appliance, take careful consideration where you will place your new mini fridge. Like their standard sized alternatives, mini fridges need proper ventilation in order to do their job well.
Think also of what type of cooling technology your mini fridge will be using, and how that will affect noise levels and energy consumption. Compressor systems tend to make a bit more noise, but they are also incredibly energy-efficient. On the other hand, absorption-powered fridges are among the quietest you’ll find in the market, but they are also less environmentally friendly.
There’s also the thermoelectric cooling method, which is typically half-ways between both of the above mentioned methods in both categories. Its cooling system takes up little space, but as a result the appliance is more sensitive to heat and will not get as cold as a mini fridge that uses a compressor cooler. This makes it more suitable for a smaller indoor space.
These are all factors that you should consider carefully before making your decision. Where are you keeping your mini fridge and what exactly do you plan on storing inside it? Is it perishable produce, beauty cosmetics, soft drinks? Will you keep it under your counter or close to your bed? Which factor is more important to you, noise levels or energy consumption? Answering these questions will help you narrow down your choices to the one that perfectly fits your lifestyle.
Did You Know? Mini Fridges Can Last for Years
Though durability may vary depending upon the specifics of the unit, you can expect your average mini fridge to be an investment that will stick with you for years and years to come. After all, there are many of these mini sized appliances that can last up to a decade!
For Your Safety: Stay Away from Extension Cords
Depending on where you’re planning on placing your mini fridge, you might be considering using an extension cord. Unless you know what exactly what you’re doing, this not advisable, and it can even be dangerous. Using the wrong cord could lead to a number of accidents or disasters, ranging from electric shock to even a fire. To avoid such things, plug your mini fridge directly into a standard wall outlet.
Caution: Be Aware of Soft Surfaces
Some online guides might suggest placing the mini fridge on a carpet if it is making too much noise. While there are anti-vibration mats made specifically to reduce noise levels, this does not equate to being able to place the appliance on any old soft surface. It is important to know that doing so might prevent proper ventilation, reducing the amount of airflow that goes into condensers typically located at the very bottom of the fridge.
A little below you will find better ways to reduce noise levels if your mini fridge starts to make too much noise.
Quotes: How Much Does a Good Mini Fridge Cost?
Let’s talk about one of the most decisive factors when purchasing a quiet mini fridge: your budget.
Like with everything else in life, the amount of money you can spend will directly influence what you can purchase. Mini fridges come in a wide range of sizes and, as mentioned above, can come with an incredible variety of features; while some might just be able to fit a few cans of soda, others will be powerful enough to keep perishable produce fresh and even come with a freezer compartment.
What this means for you budget is that you can spend as little as $60 or as much as $350 when purchasing a quiet mini fridge. Once again, we must emphasize the importance of knowing where you’ll keep your appliance and what your long term plans for it are.
Little compact cube mini fridges typically cost anywhere between $60 and $80. As the name implies, they are incredibly small and are typically only used to store drinks or a snack for short periods of time. One of their greatest perks is that they are incredibly lightweight and, therefore, very portable. If you’re looking for something to take on a long road trip or if you plan on having a mini fridge that you can take wherever you need (be it your dorm, a guest room, work), this is a great and cheap option. Another perk is that many of these units also include warming features.
Next you have mid-sized mini fridges, which typically range between $130 and $200. These tend to be around 28 inches high, and are great cheaper option to keep under the counter or in a dorm room. They can store more things than the compact cube ones, but are not as easily portable. Due to their price point, they might also not have as many interesting features, and hardly ever come with a freezer compartment. Still, they are very serviceable and work great for the amount of money you’re spending.
Finally, we have the tall mini fridge, which can go well above $300 in price. That being said, the steep price tag means these work almost as well as a standard sized fridge; they almost always have shelving, partitions, and even drawers to help you store different types of products. Some might come with a freezer! They can go up to 35 inches in height, and work great in mini bars, small apartments, studios and workshops, entertainment spaces… They are a great long term investment and are better suited for being kept in a single location rather than transporting it around. They also typically use a compressor based cooling system.
Tips: What If My Quiet Mini Fridge is Not So Quiet?
Even if you buy the quietest mini fridge available on the market, there is always a chance that, at some point, the little appliance will start making loud noises for no apparent reason.
Well, if that happens to you, here are some tips on how to handle a not so quiet mini fridge!
First, you need to know where exactly the noise is coming from, for noises coming from different locations might mean different things. Noises coming from the bottom of the fridge, for example, might mean that the moving parts on the fridge are the problem. Make sure to check the footing of the fridge, since uneven surfaces can cause vibrations that will make loud noises. Adjusting the footing can easily solve this problem.
If it’s from the back of the mini fridge, there’s a chance that the problem is coming from the cooling system. Unplug and then plug the mini fridge back again, and if you still have the noise problem, you might need to replace the compressor.
It’s important to always make sure your mini fridge has enough room to ventilate. If the space is too tight, there’s a chance the unit is working overtime in order to keep itself cool, causing the noise. Depending on the location, there’s also a chance that its surroundings are amplifying the noise the mini fridge makes.
Another option you have is buying anti-vibration mats, just as you would use on a treadmill. These are usually made of rubber and work great in reducing noises from all sorts of appliances, including washing machines and bench top machinery
A mini fridge is a great convenient appliance that offers tons of versatility while being durable and reliable. There are plenty of reasons why you might be considering purchasing one of these units, and there are plenty of factors you should consider before deciding which model is best for you.
Size capacity, everyday usage, temperature range, power consumption, noise level, placement… Variations in these components will affect whether or not a mini fridge is right for you, your family, and your life style. You should even make sure to think about the different cooling methods employed by mini fridges and whether something more quiet or more energy efficient is more suitable to you.
It is important to remember to take precautions such as not using extension power cords, and if you wish to reduce noise levels by placing your mini fridge on top of a soft surface, anti-vibration mats are probably your best choice.
Whether you’re a simple college student trying to get through finals or you’re someone seeking to upgrade your home entertainment center, we hope this guide was able to offer some great insights to help you find the best quiet mini fridge available.