refrigerators
Expert Score
7.8

GE GTS16DTHWW Refrigerator Review

As basic as it gets

September 22, 2014
Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.

The GTS16DTHWW (MSRP $599) is the most affordable entry in GE's new line of top freezers. Unfortunately, it's not a strong performer. Still, great energy efficiency—far better than a mini-fridge—and ample size actually make it a good choice for a secondary fridge in your garage or basement. It's ideal for storing cold drinks and ice, and stuff you bought in bulk. But if you want a primary fridge for your kitchen, you'll definitely want to look elsewhere.

Design & Usability

GE GTS16DTHWW Exterior
It's an unassuming white top freezer. Pretty straightforward. View Larger

As basic as it gets

This GE is a little more than a truly basic product, but not by much. The white matte finish is great at hiding smudges, while smooth glossy handles are comfortable to grip.

The interior is identical to the GE GIE16DGHBB. A single incandescent bulb offers some illumination in the main fridge section, while the freezer has no interior lighting, nor does it have an icemaker.

Inside the fridge, you get two wire shelves that offer no spill protection whatsoever. They’re lightweight, though, which makes them easy to adjust or remove for cleaning. One of those shelves is broken up into two-tiers, which allows you to easily accommodate tall items—like liters of soda—if you don’t want to put them on the door.

The freezer comes with a single wire shelf of its own, which splits the compartment into an upper and lower section. There are two slots for the shelf to live and, without the obstruction of an icemaker, where that shelf goes is entirely up to you.

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Performance & Features

As inconsistent as modern politics

As is the case with the other GE fridges in this series—including the more expensive, stainless steel GE GTE16GSHSS temperature controls are frustrating. A loose dial, set just deep enough back to be difficult to see without stooping, makes setting this fridge a trial-and-error exercise.

Even if you can get the fridge to deliver optimal temperatures—37°F in the fridge, 0°F in the freezer—there’s nothing you’ll be able to do about the shifts those temps will experience over time. We recorded temperatures fluctuations in both compartments of a full degree on average. That kind of inconsistency can damage delicate groceries, while other fridges keep fluctuation within half a degree or less.

GE GTS16DTHWW Crispers
Twin crispers with adjustable sliders are rare in a fridge this affordable. View Larger

Dual crispers with adjustable sliders are a nice touch, especially for a low-budget model like this one. They do a decent job, and should serve your produce just fine.

We also measured low power consumption. Without an icemaker, there’s nothing extra to draw power. In fact, all you get by way of extra features is a manual ice cube tray.

For in-depth performance information, please visit the Science Page.

Great for the Garage

GE GTS16DTHWW Interior
This fridge has plenty of space, but not a whole lot of performance to back it up. View Larger

But keep this thing away from your kitchen

They say “you get what you pay for,” and so it is for the GE GTS16DTHWW. But with retailers selling this 15.5-cubic-foot top freezer for as little as $500, it’s a size-to-price ratio that might just work for some consumers.

That being said, if you don't mind spending more, or buying a smaller fridge, finding something superior—and larger—for as little as $100 more is easy. Alternatively, you could always buy the adorable Whirlpool WRT111SFAW apartment fridge, which offers just under 9 cu. ft. of total storage.

If you're looking for something cheap to put in the garage for storing hardy items—drinks, ice packs, etc.—you should absolutely take advantage of this bargain. If you’re hunting for a new kitchen fridge, though, do yourself a favor and keep looking.

Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.
Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.
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Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.

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