Erin Doman on May 25, 2016 8 Comments You might be thinking about buying a beverage refrigerator. Perhaps you’re starting to entertain guests more, or space in your main refrigerator is now at a premium. If you’re not sure where to start, don’t worry. We have answered some common questions about beverage refrigerators which should help you prepare to shop for a unit that’s best for your needs. Why Do I Need a Beverage Refrigerator? What Kind of Beverage Refrigerator Do I Need? What Sizes/Capacities of Beverage Refrigerators Are Available? How Does Location Affect What Type of Beverage Refrigerator I Should Buy? Can I Store Drinks With Two Different Temperature Requirements? Do They Have Any Safety Options? What Other Special Features Do They Have? How Much Do These Appliances Cost? Do Beverage Refrigerators Make a Lot of Noise? How Do I Maintain My Beverage Refrigerator? 1. Why Do I Need a Beverage Refrigerator? Click Here to Shop for Beverage Refrigerators Beverage refrigerators allow you to store your cold drinks in locations away from your main refrigerator. Although sizes vary widely, most of these products are easily portable and can be installed in many places around your home. This offers the flexibility of keeping your cold drinks available indoors or outdoors as well as saving space in your refrigerator. Additionally, adjustable settings in the majority of available models allow you to chill certain types of products, such as beer or wine, to their optimal temperatures. 2. What Kind of Beverage Refrigerator Do I Need? Because of the seemingly endless variety of sizes and options, it’s easy to find a model that is perfect for your usage. Generally, these kinds of appliances are either free-standing or built-in. Free-standing models can be kept any place indoors or outdoors where there is an appropriate electrical outlet to power them. However, you’ll want to make sure there is plenty of open space around it to allow its compressor to operate properly. In contrast, built-in models must be installed in an empty space under a counter. These types of refrigerators are specifically designed to safely vent the hot air out and away from themselves during operation. 3. What Sizes/Capacities of Beverage Refrigerators Are Available? Beverage centers come in small, mid-range, and large sizes. Smaller capacity products hold around 60 cans or less and are perfect for one to two people, while mid-sized models store between 80 and 100 cans. Larger units can hold 150 cans or more. Keep in mind that as capacity increases, so will the size of the appliance, so be sure you have the room to accommodate your unit of choice. Also, understand that internal capacity can be affected by whether you’re storing canned drinks, small bottles, bottles of wine, or a mix of the three. 4. How Does Location Affect What Type of Beverage Refrigerator I Should Buy? Where you intend to put the beverage refrigerator is a very important factor that will determine what type you need to purchase. One of the first questions you’ll need to answer is whether you want your refrigerator outside or inside. Outdoor beverage refrigerators are excellent for storing cold drinks on your patio, deck, or back porch, and can also be great to have near your barbecue grill, swimming pool, or hot tub. If you anticipate having your refrigerator outside, you’ll need a sturdy product with a stainless steel exterior and possible triple-pane glass doors. On the other hand, models intended for indoor use can either be free-standing or built-in. Built-in units are designed for areas where space is at a premium, and can easily fit under a countertop or in a kitchen island. In some cases, spaces vacated by old appliances such as garbage compactors can provide room for your appliance. For this reason, built-in beverage refrigerators are great for your kitchen or home bar. 5. Can I Store Drinks With Two Different Temperature Requirements? Dual-zone temperature control is a feature that allows two different temperature zones to be set within the same machine. Usually they either have side-by-side or top and bottom compartments, and are a brilliant solution for storing wine, which has a higher chilling point, alongside canned beverages. 6. Do They Have Any Safety Options? Nearly every company offers models with a safety lock. Customarily, these appliances allow you to lock the door with a key, which prevents anyone else from opening the fridge and accessing its contents. This is particularly helpful to prevent anyone underage from getting to alcoholic drinks, or to stop theft of expensive products. 7. What Other Special Features Do They Have? The most common additional options on beverage centers include digital temperature control, LED lighting, and reversible doors. Digital temperature control allows you to see an exact temperature readout and adjust it easily. LED lighting is energy-saving, often using less current and lasting longer than traditional refrigerator lighting. Reversible doors offer the flexibility of adjusting the item’s front door to hinge and open in either direction. 8. How Much Do These Appliances Cost? Price points for beverage refrigerators are largely determined by their size and the options included. The least expensive, smaller models can cost as low as $170, while higher-end or commercial grade models price out around $1,800. 9. Do Beverage Refrigerators Make a Lot of Noise? Generally, these appliances make about as much noise as a standard sized refrigerator. You might hear some humming from the compressor, but normally nothing louder than that during customary operation. If you hear any loud noises, it might be a sign that your beverage refrigerator requires some maintenance. 10. How Do I Maintain My Beverage Refrigerator? Maintenance of your product will depend on whether it has manual defrost or auto-defrost. A manual defrost unit must be emptied of all contents and then unplugged to allow it to defrost. Additionally, you must defrost it outdoors to avoid potential damage from its leaking water. However, in an auto-defrost product the internal coils are heated at regular intervals to rid them of any ice or frost build-up. Remember to gently wipe off the coils on the back of the machine about every six months to keep them free of dust build-up as well. Cleaning this kind of appliance is typically no different than cleaning a standard refrigerator. However, be mindful to check the product manual and follow its instructions for cleaning. Shop With Confidence Now that some of your common questions about beverage refrigerators have been answered, finding your appliance should be easier. If you know the options you need, where you want to put the fridge, and your price range, this information will help you find the perfect beverage refrigerator. You can use these questions and answers as a guide to help you in your research and comparison shopping.