Frigidaire FFTR1814QW Refrigerator Review
Affordable and efficient—but keep an eye on the thermostat.
The 18-cu.-ft. Frigidaire FFTR1814QW (MSRP $649) is a smaller, simpler, and cheaper iteration of the FFHT2131QP. The FFTR1814QW shares many of the FFHT2131QP's strengths and weaknesses, such as finicky controls, and replaces some of the glass shelves with wire ones.
With a fantastically low retail price of about $515, the FFTR1814QW is a great option for folks on a budget, or anyone who wants a second fridge in the garage or basement.
Design & Usability
Basic, but adequate
While not quite as spartan as some budget models, this Frigidaire definitely errs on the side of simplicity. The textured white finish should be easy to keep clean, but you can also purchase the black 1814QB for the same price, or the stainless 1814QS for about $120 more.
It’s worth mentioning that the handles on our test model didn’t sit perfectly flush with the doors, even after multiple adjustments. Hardly a deal-breaker, but still a disappointing aspect of the overall fit and finish.
Inside the fridge, wire shelves make up most of the available storage surfaces, so you’ll want to keep an eye on anything that might leak. You do get some flexibility, as the two wire fridge shelves get four different slots to sit on.
Unfortunately, fridge door storage is completely fixed in place, so you're at the mercy of the plastic shelves as far as finding a home for gallons of milk or bottles of juice.
The freezer is split by a single wire shelf, and lacks both an interior light bulb and icemaker—a common omission for models in this price range.
More alarming was the amount of noise this model made. We noticed more of an ambient hum than usual, especially when the doors were open. Keep that in mind if you’re planning to put this fridge in a small apartment.
Performance & Features
Be careful with the controls
This Frigidaire could have been one of the better budget top-freezer refrigerators on the market, but the vague controls work against it.
When we test a refrigerator that doesn’t use a digital thermostat, we always defer to any manufacturer-recommended setting. Unfortunately, the recommended setting on this model’s control dial caused both the fridge and freezer to run very, very warm. We’re talking no cooler than 41°F in the main section, which could cause food to spoil more quickly than it should. The freezer was just as bad, which increases the risk of freezer burn.
But, there is some good news: Temperatures in both sections were at least highly consistent over time, which means users can just turn down the thermostat to improve performance. Be careful though: If you start to see ice crystals in your yogurt, move the dial back a bit.
Temperature issues aside, this fridge has a lot to offer. There's lots of room for storage, great energy efficiency, and good-enough crisper drawers. Plus, we think spending some time inching controls to the correct temperature is a small price to pay for good temperature control from a fridge that costs barely more than $500.
For in-depth performance information, please visit the Science Page.
Worth the Extra Effort
A solid bargain
Across Frigidaire’s latest top freezer lineup, we’ve noticed a trend: Decent prices for great fridges with thermostats that need a little tweaking. The FFTR1814QW is no exception, featuring consistent temperature output over time and an exceptionally low price.
With retailers offering it for as little as $515, this is a bargain that’s hard to beat. Whether you’re looking for a cheap fridge for your kitchen or a second one to keep in the garage, the FFTR1814QW is worth a peek.
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