Best Refrigerators of 2018: Side-by-Side Counter Depth Refrigerator

a pregnant woman with her husband beside the fridge

One of the essential appliances in any home is a refrigerator. It's tough to think of another machine that gets more use and has more responsibility. Technology has come a long way, and refrigerators are getting some serious upgrades. Ice makers and water dispensers don't even scratch the surface of what a fridge is capable of doing these days. This leads to a variety of choices when it comes to purchasing a refrigerator.

Counter-Depth Refrigerator FAQs

1. What Styles of Refrigerator Are Available?

2. What Is a Counter-Depth Refrigerator?

3. What Size is a Counter-Depth Refrigerator?

How We Came Up With This List

Shopping for appliances can be a stressful prospect. There are many choices and features offered, so it can be time-consuming to do the research. We decided to help by doing the heavy lifting. We took the time to research and gather all the relevant information and present it in a simple and forthright manner. We have no stake in any refrigerator company, so the products on our list are determined entirely by features offered, size, function and price. We enjoy helping you find the items you need for the price that fits your budget. We are quite proud to offer you reasonable and responsible advice when it comes to all things refrigerator-related. We took the time to look at the available side-by-side counter-depth refrigerators available right now and ranked them by size, features, price, customer feedback and reviews. We then put our own stamp on each product, so you know how it ranks among the many available.

Overall Price Range

The price of refrigerators varies greatly. The factors that affect cost the most are size and features. In general, we found counter-depth side-by-side refrigerators available from $799 all the way up to $3,000. The cheaper options are typically smaller, such as apartment-size models, while the most expensive ones feature more technological components. Stores such as Lowe's, Best Buy, Sears and Home Depot carry these types of refrigerators, among others. The prices reflected below are the manufacturer's suggested prices. Keep in mind they will fluctuate based on store. Appliances usually go on sale during certain holidays such as President's Day, Memorial Day and Labor Day.

The 7 Best Counter-Depth Side-by-Side Refrigerators of 2018 


LG Electronics 21.7 Cu. Ft. Side-by-Side Smart

Key Features:

The door-in-door feature allows quick access to the most-used items without having to open the door. Knock on the door two times to see inside through the Instaview glass door (refrigerator side only). It is Smart Home enabled, allowing alerts about abnormal function via text, email or app. The ice (crushed and cubed) and water dispenser in the door can fill pitchers.


Where to Purchase: JCPenney, Lowe's, Home Depot

PROS

  • Technology allows remote monitoring of fridge and freezer function
  • Alerts if the temperature drops
    Door-in-door feature saves energy
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    Five freezer and fridge shelves
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    Move-able shelves and bins on doors

CONS

  • Shelf spacing in the fridge isn't always easy to utilize
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    Sliding bins at the bottom of the freezer are hard to access
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    No alarm to alert if the door is ajar
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    WiFi doesn't always work

Whirlpool Model # WRS571CIHZ 36 in. W 21 Cu. Ft. Side-By-Side Refrigerator

Key Features:

The in-door water and ice maker dispenses filtered water, ice cubes and crushed ice. It also shows how much water is dispensed at a time in ounces.


Where to Purchase: Sears, Lowe's, Best Buy

PROS

  • Sleek finish
    Four shelves in both fridge and freezer
  • Adjustable door shelves
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    Spill-proof glass shelves
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    Deli drawer in the refrigerator

CONS

  • No fancy or tech features offered
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    Noisy when refilling the ice and water dispenser

Samsung 21.5 Cu. Ft. Side-by-Side Refrigerator

Key Features:

The in-door filtered water and ice dispenser offers cubed and crushed options as well as a dispenser light. The food showcase door allows for easy access to the most-used items kept on the refrigerator door (like milk and juice) without opening the door entirely.


Where to Purchase: Sears, Home Depot, JCPenney

PROS

  • No handles to protrude
  • Glass spill-proof shelves
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    Three crisper drawers
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    Door alarm
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    Five freezer shelves and three refrigerator shelves
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    LED lights

CONS

  • Pricier product
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    Poor customer service complaints

LSXC22426S 22 cu. ft. Smart wi-fi Enabled Side-by-Side Counter-Depth Refrigerator

Key Features:

An in-door ice maker (crushed and cubed) and water dispenser with a space-saving system inside the freezer door gives more space to allow for food on the inside. There is LED lighting inside and out. It is also equipped with WiFi for easy integration into the Smart Home system to allow for monitoring and alerting of any potential issues.


Where to Purchase: JCPenney, Lowe's, Home Depot

PROS

  • Lower price point
  • Gallon-size door bins in both refrigerator and freezer
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    Smart Cooling System to keep the temperature on both sides at the proper setting
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    Six slide-out compartments and door bins in the freezer
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    Door alarm
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    Compatible with Amazon Alexa and Google Home

CONS

  • Specifications aren't accurate, as the dimensions are larger than reported by the company
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    Compressor can be noisy at times
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    Temperature in the refrigerator can sometimes dip too low, causing food to freeze

KitchenAid 36 In. W 22.7 Cu. Ft. Side-by-Side Refrigerator

Key Features:

A FreshFlow air filter helps to keep food from spoiling for a longer period of time while keeping unpleasant odors from circulating through and contaminating other food. The in-door ice (crushed and cubed) maker and the measured water dispenser are LED-lit. Clear door bins help with sight lines to the food you use frequently.


Where to purchase: Best Buy, Lowe's, Home Depot

PROS

  • Spacious 13.8 cubic feet of space in the refrigerator and 10.10 cubic feet in the freezer, larger than most of this size and style
  • Adjustable spill-resistant shelves
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    Edges aren't slanted or raised to allow for whole-shelf utilization

CONS

  • Dispenser frame can become loose and peel/not enough shelves on the fridge door/lower quality drawers

Frigidaire 22.2 Cu. Ft. Side-by-Side Refrigerator

Key features:

There is an in-door dispenser for filtered water, cubed ice and crushed ice, with an indicator that lets you know when the water filter needs to be replaced. A lock feature allows you to keep little hands from operating the dispenser.


Where to Purchase: Sears, JCPenney, Home Depot

PROS

  • Three adjustable shelves in both the freezer and refrigerator
  • Five baskets or bins in the freezer
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    Humidity control allows for a crisper section
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    Wire shelves in freeze
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    Glass spill-proof shelves in fridge side
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    In-door adjustable shelving
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    Deli drawer in the fridge

CONS

  • Display on the in-door dispenser is difficult to read
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    High-pitched noises from the compressor
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    Drawers are not easy to use

GE 36 In. W 21.9 Cu. Ft. Side-by-Side Refrigerator

Key features:

There is an in-door ice (cubed and crushed) maker and water dispenser. The water filter is an advanced filtration mechanism that eliminates trace pharmaceuticals that may be present in the water supply. This extra-large refrigerator measures 14.07 cubic feet is the largest one of this style.


Where to Purchase: JCPenney, Lowe's, Home Depot

PROS

  • Door alarm to notify if either door is left open
  • Limited one-year replacement warranty from the manufacturer (GE)
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    LED lighting in both fridge and freezer
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    Large water dispensing area lets you fill large pitchers and bowls
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    Digital display on the dispenser to tell you how much water is dispensing
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    Adjustable glass shelves

CONS

  • Smaller freezer capacity (7.79 cubic feet) due to extra-large refrigerator
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    Bottom drawers are shallow
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    No deli meat drawer
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    Light in the middle can pose an issue with putting taller items on the shelf

Comparison Table

PRODUCT

SPECS

PRICE

OVERALL RATING

LG Electronics 21.7 Cu. Ft. Side-by-Side Smart

LG Electronics 21.7 Cu. Ft. Side-by-Side Smart Refrigerator Model # LSXC22396S

• 35.87 wide by 29.37 deep by 69.34 tall

• 21.7 cubic feet

21 Cu. Ft. Side-By-Side Refrigerator

Whirlpool Model # WRS571CIHZ 36 In. W 21 Cu. Ft. Side-By-Side Refrigerator

• 36 wide by 27.5 deep by 68.88 tall

• 21 cubic feet

Samsung 21.5 Cu. Ft. Side-by-Side Refrigerator

Samsung 21.5 Cu. Ft. Side-by-Side Refrigerator Model # RH22H9010SR

• 35.9 wide by 28.4 deep by 69.8 tall

• 21.5 cubic feet

LG Electronics 21.9 Cu. Ft. Side-by-Side Smart Refrigerator Model # LSXC22426S

• 35.8 wide by 31.81 deep by 69.3 tall

• 21 cubic feet

KitchenAid 36 In. W 22.7 Cu. Ft. Side-by-Side Refrigerator

KitchenAid 36 In. W 22.7 Cu. Ft. Side-by-Side Refrigerator Model # KRSC503ESS

• 35.75 wide by 27.5 deep by 71 tall

• 22.7 cubic feet

Frigidaire 22.2 Cu. Ft. Side-by-Side Refrigerator

Frigidaire 22.2 Cu. Ft. Side-by-Side Refrigerator Model # FFSC2323TS

• 35.625 wide by 27.125 deep by 69.38 tall

• 22.2 cubic feet

GE 36 In. W 21.9 Cu. Ft. Side-by-Side Refrigerator

​GE 36 In. W 21.9 Cu. Ft. Side-by-Side Refrigerator Model # GZS22DSJSS

• 35.75 wide by 27 deep by 68.75 tall

• 21.9 cubic feet

The Verdict

When it comes to selecting a refrigerator, you want to make sure you get the best one you can afford on your budget. This fact alone doesn't mean you can't get a different price at other times of the year. If the counter-depth side-by-side refrigerator you want is on this list, do some comparison shopping now and see if you can save some money. Aside from money, all the refrigerators we reviewed offered a wide array of features. However, when it came down to the most efficient use of space, technology and features, we chose the LG Electronics 21.7 cu. ft. Model LSXC22396S with the door-in-door access and Instaview as the clear winner. With relatively few complaints or cons, it was tough to put it anywhere but first place. The price point, however, is quite high, but keep in mind that with refrigerators, as with many other purchases, you get what you pay for. Taking the time to do your homework with local sales may be the key to landing your dream refrigerator for less.

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