What size fridge do I need?

Fridges come in all different shapes and sizes, which can make finding the right one for your home all the more difficult. If you’re wondering what type or size fridge you need, we’ve compiled a simple guide to help you find the right fit for your kitchen and family.

What size fridge do I need?

There are a few things to consider to find the right size fridge for your home, such as how much kitchen space you have, how big your household is and so on. We cover these factors in detail below.

Fridge space in your kitchen

Ok, first you need to consider how much kitchen space you actually have. You don’t want to buy a unit only to discover it can only fit in your garage. The standard dimensions for a fridge cavity/space in most Australian kitchens is about 90cm wide x 180cm high x 60cm deep − give or take.

However, it’s best to measure this space yourself just to be sure. Use a tape measure to determine the exact width, height and depth of the space where your fridge will slot in. Remember to leave 25mm of clearance space around the top, back and sides, to allow for proper ventilation and to have enough space to open the fridge door.

Fridge size

Once you have the exact dimensions of the fridge space in your kitchen, you should then be able to determine the unit size you need. If your kitchen’s fridge space is only 90cm wide, you’ll know you probably only have enough space for a single-door unit and not a French door fridge. Check out the fridge size guide below for reference.

Standard fridge sizes in Australia

Fridge type Standard width Standard height Standard depth
Top/bottom mount 54 cm – 80 cm 130 cm – 180 cm 59 cm – 75 cm
Side-by-side 76 cm – 91 cm 170 cm – 178 cm 85 cm – 94 cm
Four-door 92 cm – 96 cm 170 cm – 180 cm 90 cm – 96 cm
French door 92 cm – 96 cm 170 cm – 180 cm 90 cm – 96 cm
Pigeon pair 110 cm – 124 cm 167 cm – 178 cm 70 cm – 86 cm

Household size and lifestyle

The size and type of fridge you need will also be determined by your household size and lifestyle. For example, if you have children or like to entertain regularly, you will need a bigger capacity fridge than a couple with no kids or someone living alone. If you like to meal prep ahead of the week or tend to freeze food for later use, perhaps you’ll need a fridge with a little more freezer space. You get the gist. Fridge capacity is measured in litres. Use the chart below to size up what size you need for your household.

household fridge size guide

Design and features

Once you’ve worked out the kitchen space you’re working with and your individual household’s needs, think about what you want from a fridge. Do you need one with a larger freezer space to store family leftovers? Or maybe you’d like a smart fridge that comes with Wi-Fi connectivity and other bells and whistles? If you’re practicable you may just want a unit with a good energy efficiency rating to save money on electricity. These considerations should help with your decision.

Types of fridges

Once you know what size fridge you need, think about what type of unit you want. A top mount? French door? We explain what each design has to offer below.

Top-mount fridge

Top mount fridge size and type

This is the traditional fridge design, with a freezer on top of the fridge compartment. This layout is popular because it’s compact, without compromising on shelf and freezer space. It’s also the most cost-effective option both upfront and in running costs. A top-mount fridge would fit into most average-sized fridge cavities.

  • Cost: $500- $2,000
  • Capacity: (200- 500 litres)
Benefits Ideal for
Compact and simple design Single or two-person households
Wide range of sizes and models available Households with limited kitchen space
Cheapest running costs Students

Bottom-mount fridge

Bottom mount fridge size and type

This is the most common option in Aussie households and the opposite of a top-mount fridge design, with the fridge compartment on top and the freezer on the bottom. This is also the most convenient option because it places your frequently-used items typically stored in the fridge at eye level, so that you don’t have to bend down to reach for the Vegemite. Bottom-mount fridges are about the same size as top-mount units.

  • Cost: $500- $2,000
  • Capacity: (200- 500 litres)
Benefits Ideal for
Compact and practical design Small to mid-sized households
Most popular option Households with limited kitchen space
User-friendly slide out drawers in freezer Tall people

Side-by-side fridge

side by side fridge size and type

A side-by-side fridge has a vertical freezer and fridge compartment that sit side-by-side, as opposed to the traditional horizontal design of top and bottom-mount models. This provides easy access to both the fridge and freezer with minimal effort. The centrally opening doors also take up less depth, making it an ideal choice if have a long and narrow kitchen with limited space.

  • Cost: $1,000- $5,000
  • Capacity: (500- 700 litres)
Benefits Ideal for
Good balance between fridge and freezer space Families and medium-sized households
Come with a built-in ice and water dispenser Galley-style kitchens
Good value for money People who need extra freezer space

French door fridge

French door fridge size and type

A French door fridge features two side-by-side fridge doors on top (at eye level), with a freezer compartment at the bottom, either as a large single freezer drawer, two freezer drawers or with two additional doors containing easy-access freezer drawers. These fridges have extra width which is useful for storing larger items such as trays, pizzas and platters.

  • Cost: $2,000- $8,000
  • Capacity: (600- 800 litres)
Benefits Ideal for
Functional design and large capacity Medium-sized and large households
Smaller fridge doors don’t take up space when open Households with large kitchen space
Come with integrated ice and water dispenser People who like to entertain

Four-door fridge

four door fridge size and type

Four-door fridges are most popular for their flexible storage space. These feature two waist-high central opening doors and a complementary two-door freezer at the bottom. Some models even come with a customisable freezer space. They also come with wide shelving and ample storage space, ideal for platters, cakes and trays.

  • Cost: 2,000- $8,000
  • Capacity: (500- 800 litres)
Benefits Ideal for
Convenient design and large capacity Large households
Two-door freezer for organisation Households with large kitchen space
Come with integrated ice and water dispenser People who like to entertain

Pigeon pair

Four door fridge size and type

Instead of the traditional fridge and freezer combination as seen with most models, a pigeon pair separates the two. It features a single-door fridge placed beside a separate but matching single-door upright freezer. This provides a vast amount of both fridge and freezer space, ideal for large households, like a share house. You can also opt to place your fridge and freezer in different locations.

  • Cost: 3,000- $10,000
  • Capacity: (600- 900 litres)
Benefits Ideal for
Large fridge and freezer capacity Large households
Frequently-used items at eye level Share houses
Convenient way to store fresh and frozen foods Large kitchens

Energy efficiency

If you’re shopping for a new fridge, remember to factor in energy efficiency. Look for the energy star rating on each model, to work out the long-term cost of your appliance. There’s no point buying a fridge that’s cheap upfront, but that’ll cost bucket loads to run. The more energy star ratings a fridge has, the smaller your electricity bill will be. If you find two fridges with the same energy usage (shown in kWh per year on the label), opt for the larger size as it essentially provides more cooling (for more space), using the same amount of energy. Win-win.

Also look out for models with an energy-saving eco mode or holiday setting. Keep in mind also that fridges with an integrated ice maker and water dispenser will generally increase your energy usage by about 100-150 kWh per year. As a rule of thumb, top and bottom-mount fridges are more energy efficient than side-by-side or French door models.

Compare Fridges

Share this article