refrigerators
Expert Score
8.1
Expert Score
8.1
Expert Score
8.1
Expert Score
8.1
Expert Score
8.1

Frigidaire FFTR1821TD Top Freezer Refrigerator Review

This economical refrigerator delivers every inch of space it promises

Credit: Frigidaire
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 Frigidaire FFTR1821TD (available at AppliancesConnection for $758.10) is a good looking top-freezer fridge that lets you use just about all of its 18 cu. ft. of storage space. If you're looking for an American-made budget model to keep food cold in a smaller kitchen, this one should be on your consideration list.

Frigidaire-FFTR1821TD-front
Credit: Reviewed / Kyle Hamilton
This American-made top freezer refrigerator is a basic economy model that looks very stylish in black stainless steel. (And yes, that stick comes off.)

Design Features

You can choose from many different finishes for this refrigerator, so you can have it pretty much any way you like. The smudge-proof black stainless steel model we tested in our labs would lend updated style to any kitchen, but if regular stainless steel (LFTR1821TF) is more your taste, go for it: it's $100 less. For $150 less, you could select it in black (FFTR1821TB) or white (FFTR1821TW). Some retailers sell it in silver mist (FFTR1821TM, $25 less than the black stainless), but you might have trouble finding that color. If you need a certain finish to match your existing appliances, the price differential may not matter to you.

Gettyimages 804867610 opening fridge

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We liked the interior glass shelves that can capture a spill. That helps with cleaning when something tips or leaks.

Frigidaire-FFTR1821TD-door
Credit: Reviewed / Kyle Hamilton
There is room for a few gallon size containers in the door.

Most people want a door that can hold gallon-size containers of milk and juice, and there's a full-width shelf in this fridge that will serve you well in the beverage department.

The covered dairy compartment is a nice little luxury, since butter can pick up off-flavors if it's exposed to strong odors in the fridge.

A half-width adjustable deli drawer is a nice-to-have. We're not so crazy about the crispers, which didn't do a great job maintaining moisture. Don't expect them to keep your produce fresh and crisp for long.

Frigidaire-FFTR1821TD-drawers
Credit: Reviewed / Kyle Hamilton
The deli drawer is half-size. Both crispers are deep, but moisture escapes, so produce won't stay fresh and crisp.

The basic freezer compartment is what you'd expect at this price point, with a wire shelf in the middle. There's no light, and no ice maker. A pair of shelves on the freezer door extends storage area. Although the shelves are narrow, an edge guard holds packages in place, maximizing space.

Performance

To preserve your food, a refrigerator needs to stay close to 37°F and a freezer has to hold steady at 0°F. In this case, the fridge compartment is the winner. The recommended option is what you need to keep your food cold, with the temperature averaging just over 37°.

Frigidaire-FFTR1821TD-freezer-adjustment
Credit: Reviewed / Kyle Hamilton
Since the freezer temperature is not cold enough at the recommended setting, adjust the control to make it colder. You can check the temperature with your own refrigerator thermometer. Freezers should be 0° to keep frozen food safe to eat.

Our main concern is with the freezer, where the temperature vacillates. In our labs, we measured it as high as 8°—that is much too warm. You can test it at home with a freezer thermometer, and you can't control the inconsistency, but for safety's sake, if you buy this fridge, turn down the temperature. You can't set it by degree, so just turn the control toward "colder".

In the lab, this freezer took an hour and 42 minutes to cross the 32° line, which is relatively slow.

Efficiency is one of this refrigerator's strong points. We calculate it will cost about $24.30 to run it for a year.

What Owners Say

Four out of five owners who posted reviews feel very positively about this refrigerator. Many mentioned the upscale beauty of the black stainless model. A few users pointed out that this fridge can be noisy, and a small number noted, as we did, that the freezer doesn't get down to 0° on the factory setting.

The Bottom Line

With a street price under $700, the Frigidaire FFTR1821TD offers economy, style, and virtually all the space it promises. It's a good value for a fridge that stays plenty cold. Make sure you turn down the freezer temperature, though. It will still bounce up and down, but it will keep your frozen food in the safe zone.

If you'd like an alternative, another budget 18-cu.-ft. fridge that did very well in our lab tests is the Whirlpool WRT318FZDB. You'll be able to snap one up in the same price range as the Frigidaire, and we rated the Whirlpool as one of the best fridges under $1,000.

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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Compare Prices
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.
Compare Prices
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.
Compare Prices
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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