A new appliance is an investment, so shopping for a refrigerator requires careful consideration. We researched the best places to buy a refrigerator, including big-box retailers with in-store and online purchase options, and online-only retailers. We evaluated the overall shopping experience, selection and availability of inventory, pricing, delivery and installment services and fees, and warranties and return policies.
Our top picks include Home Depot, which has detailed product descriptions online and free delivery, and Wayfair, which frequently runs good sales and has a wide selection of products you may not be able to find elsewhere.
Ahead, the best places to buy a refrigerator for a successful kitchen upgrade.
Wide range of products
Detailed product listings
Offers free delivery and installation
Strict return policy
Uses third-party companies
Home Depot is a great place to buy appliances of all kinds, including refrigerators. The online selection is not only vast, but easy to browse, so you can really narrow in on the right product for your lifestyle and needs. You can shop refrigerators based on style, features, finish, brand, or price, and you’ll find all of the major brands, including Whirlpool, GE, Samsung, Bosch, and Frigidaire. The LG LRFCS25D3S 25-cubic-foot French Door Refrigerator may not have the latest technology or features, but it is a strong contender for a reliable, basic refrigerator. This model’s sleek design, coupled with a 10-year warranty on the linear compressor, make it an ideal choice as a starter fridge.
Of course, you can also visit one of Home Depot's brick-and-mortar stores to check out appliances in person. Just note: they don’t have their full selection of offerings on the showroom floor, so be sure to inquire before you go if you're seeking a particular model. However, no matter how you choose to shop, the retailer's stellar price-matching policy ensures you get the best deal. For the greatest savings, take advantage of Home Depot's holiday sales or look for items with the "Special Buy" designation, which typically indicates savings of 25 percent or more.
Once you’ve made your purchase, delivery is free on appliance purchases of $396 and up—which includes most refrigerator models. Just don’t count on them taking the old one away, unless you opt-in for the added haul-away fee. In addition, be prepared to face a strict return policy if you change your mind, or come across any defects or damages. Home Depot's return policy for major appliances states that, once an appliance has been delivered and accepted by the customer, you must identify the damages and call their service number to report them within 48 hours of the delivery. This is quite a small window, so plan accordingly.
Return Policy: Only if damaged or defected | Delivery Options: Free deliveries on appliances over $396 | Return Window: 48 hours from delivery | Restocking Fee: Not applicable | Payment Options: Credit or debit, special financing on orders of $299 or more with Home Depot credit card | Haul-Away Fee: Not listed, but applicable
Wide range of products
Online chat service with an expert
Charge to haul away old appliances if not Lowe's Pro customer
Like its largest competitor, Lowe’s offers a wide selection of refrigerators from the biggest brands like Maytag, Whirlpool, GE, and KitchenAid. (Lowe’s also offers some brands not as common at other major retailers, such as Haier.) If you’re in the market for a paneled, built-in refrigerator that blends seamlessly with your kitchen, check out the Bosch B36IT905NP Benchmark Series 19.4-cubic-foot Counter-Depth Built-In French Door Refrigerator. This stylish model includes “Home Connect” which allows you to control the temperature of your refrigerator from an app. You can also use your Amazon Alexa device to control this fridge with your voice and make your smart home even smarter. While this model does not include a water and ice dispenser, it’s worth the price tag for its custom appearance, ice maker, and cooling capabilities.
Plus, this in-store and online retailer has a similar price-match guarantee. You can browse a vast line of offerings on the brand’s site or you can check out a more limited selection in-store before deciding on a new appliance for your kitchen. Either way, there are experts on-hand to help you make the best choice based on your needs, whether that relates to door configuration, features, or a panel-ready design.
The big-box retailer offers free local delivery on appliances. This service includes unpacking, leveling, and connecting the refrigerator. If you're not a Lowe's Pro customer, Lowe's does charge fee to haul away old appliances. However, in general, you can typically rely on this retailer to have a top-notch selection, and easy-to-navigate policies and services.
Return Policy: Must have proof of original purchase to make returns or exchanges, must be in original factory packaging | Delivery Options: Free local deliveries | Return Window: 30 days for appliances returned like new in original factory packaging, 48 hours for appliances delivered by or picked up at Lowe’s | Restocking Fee: Special order items are subject to a 20 percent restocking fee | Payment Options: Credit or debit, lease-to-own, fixed pay financing, 18-month special financing | Haul-Away Fee: Free for Lowe’s Pro customers
Massive selection online
Partnered with Affirm for financing options
Carries specialty models
Only three physical locations
Installation services are only available for certain zip codes
Website is a bit confusing
AJ Madison may not be on your radar yet, but it should be. Though not quite as recognizable in name, the retailer offers an expansive selection of refrigerators, including many of the top brands and models. They also carry a relatively impressive selection of specialty refrigerators, including built-in and panel-ready models.
While options abound at pretty enviable prices, it’s worth noting that the site isn’t as user-friendly as some other retailers. For starters, their search is a bit lacking, so you’ll need to do a fair amount of filtering to narrow things down. That said, they do have some very helpful filters, including one that allows you to find the best price possible by filtering for instant savings, mail-in rebates, free delivery, and more.
The Whirlpool WRS321SDHZ 21.4-cubic-foot Side-by-Side Refrigerator is a more budget-friendly option for someone looking for the aesthetic of a French door refrigerator without the extremely high price tag. While this model may not have any innovative features, it has an ice and water dispenser, deli drawer, and in-door can caddy for plenty of organizing possibilities. It’s good to know that the drawers on this model don’t slide easily when overfilled, so be sure to optimize your space wisely.
When it comes to delivery, you have three choices: standard, white glove, or in-home. The downside is none of these options include unpacking, plugging in of your new refrigerator, installation, or debris removal. Shipping also takes up to two weeks, and installation services are only available for certain zip codes. However, AJ Madison is partnered with Affirm to help you create a financial plan around your big purchase. The retailer is also partnered with Allstate so your purchase is protected under a three-year or five-year warranty, depending on what you opt into.
Return Policy: Can't be installed or attempted to be installed, must be in original packaging, contact AJ Madison within 24 hours of receipt, must report damaged or incorrect items within 15 days after delivery | Delivery Options: Standard, white glove, or in-home | Return Window: 15 days | Restocking Fee: 35 percent of refund, plus shipping and handling of return | Payment Options: Credit or debit, Affirm | Haul-Away Fee: Not applicable
Geek Squad offers extensive customer support
Can set up a free consultation
Free, same-day warehouse pick-up for in-stock appliances
Doesn't have a large in-store selection
You may know Best Buy for its electronics, but the retailer has a pretty wide selection of refrigerators, too. The customer service is top-notch, particularly if you're shopping for a refrigerator with high-tech, smart home features like built-in Wi-Fi. This is thanks to Best Buy's Geek Squad service, which can help you online, over the phone, in-store, or in your home after you schedule an appointment.
The KitchenAid KRMF706ESS 25.8-cubic-foot 5-Door French Door Refrigerator is a five-door refrigerator that takes innovation to a new level. With three pull-out drawers that offer custom temperature settings and a three-tiered freezer section, you certainly won't run out of room for your fresh and frozen food with this fridge. However, it is paired with a hefty price point, but we think its design makes it a worthy splurge.
Best Buy's showroom is limited—and in some cases absent—on refrigerators, but the website is easy enough to shop by type: French door, side-by-side, counter-depth, or bottom-freezer. Plus, Best Buy also offers free, nationwide, in-home delivery services for refrigerators priced at $399 or more. In some locales, customers can even select free, same-day warehouse pick-up for in-stock appliances—a great option if you’re replacing a refrigerator that unexpectedly bit the dust.
Return Policy: Call about defects, damages, or other issues | Delivery Options: Free shipping for appliances over $399 | Return Window: 15 days | Restocking Fee: Not applicable | Payment Options: Credit or debit, 24-month financing on appliances $699 and up, lease-to-own | Haul-Away Fee: $199.99 without purchase of new appliance, $29.99 for one appliance with purchase of a new one
Frequently has good sales
Flexible return window
Selection includes hard-to-find models
Shopping is online-only
Won't haul away all appliances
Doesn’t carry a full suite of all major brands
In addition to furniture and home decor, you can find a wide selection of appliances at Wayfair—including refrigerators. They don’t carry as many brand names as some other retailers on this list, but they’re exceptionally reliable when it comes to specialty and luxury brands not seen everywhere else. (Think, Smeg.) This makes Wayfair a great place to start your search if you’re looking for a colorful fridge or a high-end model with plenty of character, style, and advanced features.
The BLACK+DECKER BCRK43W 4.3 cu. ft. Freestanding Mini Fridge with Freezer is a garage-ready mini fridge with thoughtful door storage and a reversible door hinge. Although the shelves aren’t adjustable on this model, it’s an energy-efficient choice with plenty of room for a week’s worth of groceries in a small living space.
Wayfair has a nice, reliable shipping service, too. It’s free on most models, and you can even select delivery directly into the room of your choice for a small fee. Either way, don’t forget to fully inspect the unit carefully before installation—unless the fridge is defective, returns aren’t accepted once it’s installed. In addition, don't expect Wayfair to haul away your old refrigerator when delivering your new one. Luckily, you can expect this online-only retailer to run lots of good sales that mark down top models for your kitchen.
Return Policy: Appliances must be in original packaging and not yet installed | Delivery Options: Curbside, basic outside front door drop-off, inside home entrance drop-off, backyard delivery, room of choice delivery, all-inclusive delivery | Return Window: 30 days of delivery | Restocking Fee: Not listed | Payment Options: Credit or debit, Wayfair credit card, Affirm | Haul-Away Fee: Varies and not applicable for some brands
Large selection of portable and compact units
Partnered with Allstate for protection plans
Shipping tends to be more affordable
Home services are fairly new
Not many details included with product listings
Amazon is a great and very reliable resource for a mini fridge or compact model for your apartment, dorm room, or office. They also offer beverage-only or beauty fridges that are so small they fit on your countertop. But, if you’re looking for a full-size refrigerator, because of the small selection, you may want to go elsewhere.
Of the few full-size refrigerators that Amazon has available, the GE Profile PVD28BYNFS 27.6-cubic-foot French Door Smart Refrigerator is a great option. It includes a swiveling door bin, which can help you reach your favorite items in the fridge without having to open the entire door, and it features an LED light wall, making your viewing experience feel just a bit more luxurious. This model also includes an adjustable temperature drawer that can be programmed between four settings for specific food and drinks.
While browsing, you’ll love the familiarity of the site, since it’s likely a shopping destination you use for a host of other things. Plus, you’ll find a mix of brand names like GE, Frigidaire, and Danby, as well as some less recognizable (but super affordable) options. Amazon has also partnered with Allstate to provide four-year and five-year protection plans for your major appliance purchases. Just to be sure to add one to your cart during checkout.
Return Policy: Major appliances returnable for any reason | Delivery Options: Free delivery depends on item, adult must be present to provide signature, multiple delivery options available for unpacking and connecting your refrigerator | Return Window: 30 days | Restocking Fee: Varies based on item | Payment Options: Credit or debit, Amazon store card | Haul-Away Fee: Not listed, but applicable for some brands
P.C. Richard & Son
Learning Center guides
Great financing options
Select in-store locations
Strict return policy
P.C. Richard & Son may not be nationwide, but it’s a particularly good choice for those in the greater New York area (New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, or Connecticut). It’s worth familiarizing yourself with this retailer, even if you live outside of this area. The store is known for great prices and financing options for all buyers. Delivery is not free if you're not local or also want your appliance installed.
One of Frigidaire’s newest models, the Frigidaire Gallery GRMC2273BF 21.5-cubic-foot Counter-Depth 4-Door French Door Refrigerator, available at P.C. Richard & Son, has plenty of storage, making it a convenient choice for busy families or large households. A collapsible shelf can slide back to make room for tall pitchers, and a "Custom-Flex Temp" drawer can switch settings between refrigerator or freezer mode.
The retailer’s website is vast and relatively easy to navigate, with plenty of details on product offerings. It features tips for measuring for installation, as well as cleaning and maintaining your appliances. If there’s any downside to shopping at this retailer, it’s their strict return policy. Make sure to inspect your appliance thoroughly before signing. If opened or used in any capacity, you cannot return it.
Return Policy: Must be unopened in new condition with original packaging | Delivery Options: Free delivery for local orders | Return Window: 30 days | Restocking Fee: Not listed | Payment Options: Credit or debit, 12-month financing on orders of $499 or more with P.C. Richard & Son credit card | Haul-Away Fee: Not listed, but applicable and not an option for non-local deliveries
Effective search filters
Physical locations to shop
Can shop big sales
No delivery or installation services
No haul-away services
You can get great everyday deals on everything from clothes to electronics at Walmart. But, what you might not realize is that the retailer also stocks home appliances, like refrigerators, at rock-bottom prices. When they have a big sale (a frequent occurrence at Walmart), you’ll score even more. The website is easy to navigate, too, thanks to a variety of search filters.
Now, it’s worth noting that you have to keep an eye out for third-party retailers. Not everything on the site is sold directly by Walmart. If you feel more comfortable, you can also visit a Walmart store in person, but it’s worth calling ahead to see if your store stocks the specific model you’re interested in. Even from notable brands like GE, Whirlpool, and LG, in-store offerings are limited.
The Maytag MRT311FFFZ 20.5-cubic-foot Top-Freezer Refrigerator, available at Walmart, includes Maytag’s PowerCold feature, which cools down the fridge with the push of a button. This model also features bottom-mounted crisper drawers, so even the most overflowing drawers will glide easily. A gallon door storage section also offers extra organization for food items like condiments or a container of milk. This model is also compatible with an ice maker, if you'd like to purchase this must-have separately.
Walmart may not have any delivery or installation services, but they do offer purchase protection, which can help put your mind at ease for such a big-ticket item. It’s pretty affordable, too—you can choose three-year or four-year plans for well under $100.
Return Policy: Must have receipt | Delivery Options: Expedited shipping available on some items | Return Window: 90 days | Restocking Fee: Not listed | Payment Options: Credit or debit, Affirm | Haul-Away Fee: Not applicable
Short delivery window
Excellent return policy and warranty plans
Membership required to shop
Not just for toilet paper, big cuts of meat, and family-sized bags of chips, Costco is a great place to shop for refrigerators in all sizes, from compact to large-capacity.
While it’s true that you’ll need a membership to shop, it only costs $60 per year, so it’s well worth the upfront investment given the savings you’ll score when you make your purchase. In addition to the great value you’ll get on the product itself, Costco also offers an easy delivery process and extended warranty coverage. If you’re looking to splurge and still save on a refrigerator, the Café CFE28TP4MW2 27.8 cu. ft. French-Door Refrigerator with Hot Water Dispenser is available at Costco for members. With a larger capacity than most refrigerator models and a hot water dispenser, this refrigerator is high on function and design.
Most appliances are delivered for free and come with complete basic installation services—you may even be eligible to have your old refrigerator hauled away without additional cost. Unlike other retailers, Costco also offers plenty of support after you make your purchase. They provide free tech support, an impressive 90-day return policy, and in some cases, an additional two-year warranty plan.
Do note, you won’t be able to check out most available models on the floor, so you need to be comfortable browsing online before purchasing at the warehouse.
Return Policy: Can return to a local location or request a pick-up online | Delivery Options: Free shipping for most items | Return Window: 90 days | Restocking Fee: Not applicable | Payment options: Credit or debit | Haul-Away Fee: Free
Installation services available
Restocking fees apply to built-in appliances
Confusing haul-away policy
While Sears may not have as many brick-and-mortar stores throughout the country as it once did, the retailer’s online presence is still going strong. Their refrigerator selection includes brands like Samsung, GE, and Frigidaire. If you’re a Sears Card holder, you can save even more on appliances and establish a no-interest payment plan. Even without a Sears credit card, the retailer offers competitive pricing on most of its products, making it a great big-box store option.
Be wary that a 15 percent restocking fee will be applied to any built-in appliance returns, in addition to a pick-up fee. Sears’ haul away policy is also confusing and varies based on appliance type. When selecting your delivery preferences online, you can opt for additional installation help.
If you’re hoping to find a counter-depth, built-in refrigerator, the GE GLE12HSPSS 11.9 cu. ft. Built-In Bottom Freezer Refrigerator is a great choice, and available at Sears. A sleek stainless steel finish tops off an inside that’s just as functional as it is stylish. Seven shelves can easily hold all of your refrigerated food essentials and store wine bottles with no problem. While this model isn’t as spacious as other options, its removable and adjustable shelving make it an optimized pick for smaller households.
Return Policy: Must be in new condition with original packaging, must notify within three days of delivery or installation if there are damages | Delivery Options: Additional delivery fees apply, in-home delivery and installation available | Return Window: 30 days | Restocking Fee: 15 percent of original purchase will be charged for built-in appliances, pick-up fee also charged | Payment options: Credit or debit, Shop Your Way or Sears credit card | Haul-Away Fee: Varies based on appliance, one-for-one policy
Detailed product listings
"Buy Now, Ship Later" program
Additional charges for haul-away services
Must cover shipping on returns
Appliances Connection offers a large selection of refrigerator brands at a variety of price points. The retailer often offers savings opportunities and will offer pop-up bundles while shopping on the site. Their “Buy Now, Ship Later” program allows customers to schedule when they’d like to receive new appliances. This feature would be especially useful for new homeowners or customers currently remodeling their home. While Appliances Connection offers a 30-day return window, they won’t accept used appliances, and your return must be in new condition with the original packaging.
If you’re looking for a compact refrigerator, consider the Frigidaire FFET1022UV 10.1 cu. ft. Top Freezer Refrigerator, which is Energy Star-certified and has two door shelves for storing condiments and beverages. Although this refrigerator has plenty of space, we wish it came with a deli drawer and butter keeper for even more convenience. It’s still a great compact refrigerator option, though, with a capacity comparable to that in standard refrigerator sizes.
Return Policy: Must be in new condition and never installed with original packaging, cannot return special order or final sale items | Delivery Options: Free delivery on all orders over $99 (some exemptions apply), expedited shipping is available, white glove delivery | Return Window: 30 days | Restocking Fee: Must pay shipping and handling of return, additional fee varies based on return method | Payment Options: Credit or debit, Appliances Connection credit card | Haul-Away Fee: Varies based on desired help, must be requested through an additional purchase online
Free tech support
Payment plans available
Must pay shipping fees on returns for some items
No haul-away service for non-local customers
ABT may have had humble beginnings as a large brick and mortar store in the Chicagoland area, but it has since expanded to a major online retailer for appliances. They carry home staples like GE and LG, as well as higher-end brands like Bosch and Viking. Their website will prompt you with bundle options and they offer major discounts on full kitchen suites.
Free shipping is available for most appliances, and free delivery is offered for those within 100 miles of the ABT warehouse. If you need help setting up your appliance, free tech support is available to all customers. Free returns are available on some appliances—look out for the “Free Shipping, Free Returns” prompt on product listings—but, you may have to cover the cost of shipping on some product returns. If you’re not satisfied with your purchase, you have 30 days to return it.
If you’re searching for some of the most innovative refrigerators with smart technology, check out the LG Electronics LFXS26973S 26.2 cu. ft. French Door Smart Refrigerator with Wi-Fi Enabled. This model can be controlled through your smartphone. You can make temperature adjustments, and receive notifications if the door is left open or a maintenance issue occurs. The ice maker can be rather noisy on this model, but its French door design and luxe appearance make up that minor mechanics issue.
Return Policy: Can return items directly to store if you live in the Chicago area, exchanges and full refunds offered | Delivery Options: Free local delivery within 100 miles of ABT warehouse, white glove delivery | Return Window: 30 days | Restocking Fee: Must pay shipping and handling of some returns | Payment Options: Credit or debit, financing through Synchrony Bank, Affirm | Haul-Away Fee: $39 for freestanding refrigerator, $159 for built-in refrigerator, for local customers only
What to Look for in a Refrigerator Retailer
Some of the best deals in home appliances are found online, and most retailers have user-friendly websites to help you browse models and research products before making a purchase decision. If you're comfortable with not seeing an appliance in real life before adding it to your cart, then you'll definitely want to check out online-only retailers or stick to shopping a big-box store with an easy-to-navigate website, virtual shopping assistance, and detailed product listings.
If you want to physically check out an appliance before buying, you may want to consider a retailer with a brick-and-mortar location. Do note that many appliance retailers have limited showrooms or only put a small fraction of their offerings on display in-store. However, you can call ahead to see if your model is being displayed. The perk of shopping, or even just viewing, an appliance in-person is that you can get a feel for the features, finish, and size of an appliance better than you could while looking at a product listing. If you're shopping for more than one appliance, you can also often work with a sales associate to pick out an entire suite of products from one or multiple brands, and may even be able to score a bundling deal or bargain.
In general, return policies for refrigerators (and other large appliances, for that matter) are relatively strict. The vast majority of retailers won’t accept returns after the fridge has been installed—unless there’s a defect. Some won’t even accept returns after the box has been opened, or will only accept returns within 48 hours or so of you receiving your delivery. It's best to review these return policies in advance, and also look into warranty options. That way, you know how and when you're covered if your appliance is a no-go.
Buying multiple appliances at once is called bundling, and it’s a great way to get a discount on a very expensive set of purchases. Shopping this way is particularly helpful if you’re remodeling or moving into a new home without any existing appliances, but it’s important to note that not all retailers offer this service. Keep an eye out for bundle specials that your desired retailer may be running. Typically, bundles are offered for appliances that all come from the same brand (like GE or Samsung), and will be offered by retailers with physical locations.
Installation and Delivery Services
Many retailers offer delivery and installation for free, but it’s worth reading the fine print, since there are often some “catches.” For example, they may deliver the fridge for free, but not install it or even bring it into your home. Many retailers also charge a fee to take away an old appliance, or don't haul away old appliances at all. You'll want to look into these "catches," in addition to scheduling options your retailer provides and whether the installation is performed by a third-party company. Some big-box retailers rely on third-party companies to complete installation, opposed to having an in-house team that will take care of this process from start to finish.
When is the best time to buy a refrigerator?
The latest refrigerator models arrive in stores during the summer, which means the best time to buy a refrigerator is late spring. You may even be able to negotiate the clearance price at this time. If you need to shop sooner, say since your refrigerator unexpectedly quit, try to wait for holiday sales. The best deals on refrigerators often take place on Black Friday, Cyber Monday, the Fourth of July, President's Day, and Memorial Day.
How long should a refrigerator last?
With proper care, you can expect your refrigerator to last up to 13 years. Just make sure to regularly vacuum the air intake at the base, maintain the rubber door gaskets by wiping them with a mild cleanser, and check the drain pan on the bottom to ensure it doesn’t fill with water and spill out. If your refrigerator doesn't keep its cool, that may be because the air vents are blocked internally by food you've stowed inside. The condenser coils may also be dirty. If you are having trouble diagnosing and fixing the problem in a timely manner yourself, call for repairs right away.
What are the most reliable refrigerator brands?
There are tons of models out there, but the most reliable ones tend to be from well-known brands like Maytag, KitchenAid, GE, and Frigidaire. These brands are all known to produce quality appliances with a wide range of features. They also stock ample inventory and have great warranties, all leading to a great overall value.
Why Trust The Spruce?
This roundup was written by Erica Puisis. She is an experienced product researcher with years of experience in covering large and small appliances. Puisis has been writing for The Spruce since 2017, and has also contributed to Forbes, and leading smart home blogs like TechDigg.
This roundup was updated by Brigitt Earley, a writer who has spent nearly 15 years writing about consumer products, including home appliances. She has a large family of six, including four children under the age of 4, so when she renovated her kitchen a few years ago, choosing a large, quality refrigerator was key. After extensive research, Earley landed on a KitchenAid appliance from P.C. Richard & Son. The refrigerator is still running efficiently, despite being filled to the brim at all times.
This roundup was also updated later by Emma Phelps. Phelps is an updates writer for The Spruce and works across every commerce beat to ensure the most up-to-date and accurate information is present.