Finding the right upright freezer for you depends on everything from budget and storage needs to personal aesthetics, and we cover all this and more along with our recommendations for the best upright freezers currently on the market.An upright freezer can be a total lifestyle game changer. Imagine being able to lounge around on weeknights, thanks to a freezer stuffed with make-ahead dinners. Think of the money you can save by purchasing meat and other groceries in bulk. And don’t forget about all the ice cream you can keep on hand!
To increase your cold storage capacity, a standalone upright freezer is a smart appliance to add to your home. Whether you have a large family, love to bulk buy frozen food, or just want additional freezer space, there’s an upright freezer on the market to fit your needs. Unlike chest freezers, which are more like one big icy compartment, an upright freezer has a swinging door and may have drawers, shelves, and door storage.
If your kitchen refrigerator isn’t large enough to hold all your family’s food, an upright freezer may be a worthwhile investment for your home. Similar to chest freezers, these appliances offer ample storage space for frozen goods, yet they’re more convenient to access thanks to their upright orientation and inner shelves.We researched dozens of models from the top brands, evaluating capacity, durability, temperature control, and value.
The 10 Best Upright Freezer of 2023:Tested & Reviewed
1.Frigidaire FFFU16F2VV 28″ Upright Freezer
Customers said that this upright freezer ran quietly, held a lot of food, and cooled quickly upon arrival. Those who weren’t satisfied with the freezer stated that the product took a long time to ship to their homes.
- Features a temperature alarm that goes off if the door is left open
- Has an EvenTemp cooling system
- Can adjust the height of the shelves
- The door seal sometimes allows cold air to escape
- Arrived dented for some customers
2.Galanz GLF11UWEA16 Convertible Freezer/Fridge
Depending on the time of year, you may need more freezer space to store meats or other favorite foods, or you might need more refrigerator space for fresh produce. That’s why the Galanz convertible freezer and refrigerator caught our eye: With just the flip of a switch, you can turn the upright freezer into a refrigerator.
The single-door unit has slide-out, adjustable glass shelves and a transparent crisper drawer for keeping fruits and veggies fresh. The LED light is helpful when grabbing items, and the narrow shape is great for smaller kitchens. Keep in mind that some reviewers noted that this model can be noisy so it’s best to put it in a location where it wouldn’t disturb anyone.
- Converts from freezer to fridge and back
- Equipped with a light
- Adjustable glass shelves and crisper drawer
- Some reviewers noted that this model can be noisy
3.Midea MRU03M2ABB Upright Freezer
With two fixed shelves and a removable pull-out basket, the Midea upright freezer makes the most of its 3-cubic-feet of interior space, and at a wallet-friendly price. Barely 20-inches wide, this compact freezer holds up to 105 pounds of frozen food.
If your floor is slightly uneven, this budget upright freezer has adjustable front feet to help it stay level, and keep all your frozen food from tumbling out when the door opens. Speaking of doors, a reversible hinge allows you to change the way it opens, so you can easily fit it into your space without worrying about obstructions.
- Ideal for small spaces
- Easy to clean and maintain
- Manual defrost
- No interior light
4.Frigidaire EFRF696-AMZ Upright Freezer
It’s reasonably priced with a relatively small footprint to tuck into a corner, but it still has a very decent 6.5-cubic-foot capacity to store plenty of food on its three fixed shelves.
Top features include a flat back, recessed handle for a streamlined appearance, and a reversible door. However, it does require manual defrosting, which may be a dealbreaker for some.
- Affordable price
- Flat back and recessed handle
- Reversible door
- Manual defrost
- Fixed shelf height
5.GE FUF14DLRWW Upright Freezer
The GE 14.1 Cubic Feet Frost-Free Garage Ready Upright Freezer is our top pick because it has everything you could want from an upright freezer: a ton of storage space, electronic temperature controls, frost-free operation, and it’s Energy Star-certified.
The four glass shelves can hold frozen meat or pizzas, while the clear slide-out drawers make for easy access to ice pops in the summer. There’s also storage in the door for smaller items or grab-and-go smoothie packs. The electronic temperature controls make it easy to adjust the temperature on the door, and this GE appliance can withstand temperatures from 0 to 100 degrees Fahrenheit, so it’s garage-friendly.
This upright freezer is frost-free, so you don’t have to worry about manually defrosting, and it even comes with a turbo freeze setting to get your items chilly quickly. If your power goes out, this appliance will keep your food frozen for up to 48 hours, and it also comes with a lock and key for peace of mind.While this GE freezer has many convenient features, the exterior aesthetic is basic and doesn’t come in other colors or finishes. It’s also a bit smaller than other large upright freezers. However, if you think 14.1 cubic feet isn’t enough space, this model also comes in a 17.3-cubic-foot-capacity size.
- Energy Star-certified
- Turbo freeze feature
- Slide-out drawers
- Frost free
- Electronic temperature controls
- Unimpressive exterior
- Smaller size
6.Koolatron Compact Chest Freezer
The difference between a deep freezer vs. a regular refrigerator freezer is primarily around size and space. Deep freezers are standalone appliances ranging from 5 cubic feet to 22 cubic feet of freezer space. They have larger capacity allowing for more bulk storage and improved organization.”
With 5 cubic feet of storage in this appliance, it’s compact yet offers plenty of space for organizing frozen goods. Unlike deep chest freezers, this mid-sized freezer is big enough to store a lot of food, but not so big that food gets lost. The upright design features one large cavity and a removable storage basket that is helpful for small or commonly used food items.
Useful as a deep freezer, the external temperature control means you don’t need to open the freezer door to adjust the levels. When you do open the door, there’s a helpful stay-open lid design, which frees up both your hands to add or remove items from the freezer.The lid can stay open anywhere from a 45 to a 90-degree angle, depending on your needs and where the freezer is placed in the house. A front access drain with a leak-proof plug makes this appliance easy to clean and defrost.
- The slim design and top opening design make this a cross between an upright and a chest freezer.
- There are no shelves, just one removable storage basket.
7.Kismile 3.0 Cu.ft Compact Upright Freezer
It’s available in three small sizes, making it perfect for storing items in offices, kitchens, dorm rooms, and garages. You can also choose from three colors to further customize it.
- Features a seven-grade adjustable temperature knob
- Has a reversible door
- Designed with energy-efficient technology
- Can be difficult to contact the seller
- Can accumulate frost
8.Whynter UDF-139SS/UDF-139SSa 13.8 cu.ft.
It’s a spacious 13.8 cubic feet with a stainless-steel door, plus it’s mounted on wheels and is Energy Star-certified.
Inside, there are four sliding shelves, four freezer door racks, and a slide-out storage basket, along with a bright LED light. There’s also a “quick-freeze” mode that rapidly cools to -11 degrees Fahrenheit. But at this price point, manual defrost is a disappointment.
- Convertible design
- Stainless-steel exterior
- Energy Star-certified
- Good interior design
- Manual defrost
9.Frigidaire FFFU16F2VW 28
This technology circulates air to prevent warm spots from forming and ultimately spoiling your food. It’s one of many features this upright freezer has that make it an excellent option.
In addition to the cooling technology, this model also can keep your food frozen for up to two days in a power outage, which is a relief to anyone living in an area prone to storms and outages. You can also install this freezer in a garage, so if you’d like to keep your extra frozen food a little further from your kitchen, it’s not a problem. It can withstand temperatures from 0 to 110 degrees Fahrenheit and even sports a reversible door, so you can shimmy it into any spot that’s most convenient for you. A design that’s both thoughtful and accessible continues within the 15.5-cubic-foot interior, outfitted with four shelves and a sliding storage basket. For any items that don’t easily stack on shelves or you’d like to reach for quickly (like a container of ice cream), there are five spacious door bins as well.
Other helpful features include an alarm that sounds if the door is left open, a light at the bottom that tells you at a glance if the freezer is working properly, and LED interior lights so you can see what you’re looking for. While the freezer itself is stellar, some customers have reported delivery delays. However, we think it’s worth the wait. This upright freezer checks off all the boxes and would be a great buy for any household.
- Reversible door
- Able to withstand a power outage
- Plenty of storage options
- Frost can build up inside
- Possible delayed delivery
10.Danby DUFM043A2WDD Designer 4.3
If you prefer an upright freezer with a manual defrost function, this trusty appliance will work well.To use the manual defrost, you’ll need to empty your freezer of all foods. Then simply turn the manual temperature dial to zero, unplug the unit, and open the door. The entire freezer will defrost. When defrosting your unit, plan to place a towel under or around the unit to catch any drips from the melting process.
When in use, this freezer has a temperature control dial on the inside of the unit. There are three wire shelves and three door shelves that hold smaller or often-used items. With an overall capacity of 4.3 cubic feet, this unit is in the smaller range of our top upright freezers, but the brand makes larger models. For a good comparison, check the size of your current refrigerator/freezer unit to see your freezer’s capacity and know how this size will compare.
- The door hinge is reversible, so it can be left or right open.
- The manual defrost function may result in a wet floor.
What to Look for in an Upright Freezer
The interior of an upright freezer is measured in cubic feet. It can range from as little as 1.1 cubic feet to nearly 22 cubic feet. The larger the capacity of your model, the more you can store, so you’ll need to consider how much you want to store before buying. The average upright freezer has around 16 cubic feet of space, and is divided up with four or five shelves, as well as a basket. To put this in perspective, that’s enough space to store 560 pounds of meat.
Manual vs. Automatic Defrosting
Upright freezers either manually or automatically defrost. If a freezer manually defrosts, that means that ice and frost will build up in the interior over time. To maintain the model and ensure the cold air can flow evenly, you must unplug the model, remove everything from inside, and give the frost some time to melt away. You can speed up the process by chipping away at the frost build-up, before then draining the water, and plugging in your appliance. Automatic defrosting eliminates this routine, and allows the model to regulate itself. This type of freezer is also known as frost-free or self-defrosting, and can make your experience much easier, but will cost more to operate and purchase upfront.
The temperature range of an upright freezer will determine what you can store inside of it. In most models, this range goes from -10 to 10 degrees Fahrenheit, which is ideal for storing food for long periods of time. Compact or budget models typically have a smaller range, and only allow for the internal temperature to be set between -4 and 7 degrees, while convertible models can be set as high as 44 degrees. To find the right fit for you, consider what you’re storing, and know that the internal temperature range is separate from the exterior temperatures your upright freezer can withstand.
If an upright freezer is garage-ready, it can be used in an outdoor setting where temperatures can be very flexible. Despite a very hot or cold external environment, the unit will run reliably and effectively. A garage-ready model is most suitable for households who don’t want to eliminate space inside their home for more frozen food storage, or want their appliance to have several installation options.
Quick Freeze Setting
When you turn on your upright freezer for the first time, or add new items to it after going to the store, a quick freeze setting will help the internal environment get cold fast. When activated, it’ll override the temperature you set, and circulate the coldest air possible. It will continue for up to 50 hours—packing in the flavors of your meats, fruits, and vegetables. This is useful for households who want an entirely hands-free experience, or are interested in a convertible model.
An upright freezer with a reversible door can be opened by swinging the door to the left or right. This is a convenient feature if you plan on installing your freezer in a tight space or cluttered garage. You’ll notice that this type of door features recessed handles and airtight seals. The seals can become worn over time, but can be replaced if needed.
To reduce the cost of running your upright freezer, keep it as full as possible, don’t leave or open the door often, and check that the door seals are properly closing. Any freezer with the Energy Star label will indicate that your appliance has passed strict energy efficiency specifications.
If you plan to keep your upright freezer in a garage or other space with minimal temperature control, you may pay for extra energy use.
The size of an upright freezer determines how much floor space it’ll occupy and how much it can store. Compact freezers that have 3 cubic feet of storage space or less are great for dorms, apartments, and RVs. Larger freezers that are over 55 inches tall are perfect for garages, kitchens, sheds, and other areas that can accommodate a lot of freezer space.
To prevent pets or children from accessing the contents inside your upright freezer, some models including a locking mechanism.
2023 Upright Freezer Buying Guide: Capacity, Features, and Prices
|Product Name||Capacity||Type||Features||Dimensions||Price Range|
|Frigidaire FFFU16F2VV 28″ Upright Freezer||16 cu. ft.||Upright||Frost-Free, Adjustable Shelves, LED Lighting||74.75″ x 32″ x 32″||$800-$900|
|Galanz GLF11UWEA16 Convertible Freezer/Fridge||11 cu. ft.||Convertible||Reversible Door, Adjustable Temperature Control||58″ x 24″ x 23.5″||$500-$600|
|Midea MRU03M2ABB Upright Freezer||3.0 cu. ft.||Upright||Adjustable Thermostat, Reversible Door||20.59″ x 19.72″ x 33.46″||$200-$300|
|Frigidaire EFRF696-AMZ Upright Freezer||6 cu. ft.||Upright||Adjustable Temperature Control, Removable Shelf||32.5″ x 22″ x 21.5″||$400-$500|
|GE FUF14DLRWW Upright Freezer||14.1 cu. ft.||Upright||LED Lighting, Adjustable Shelves, Frost-Free||61.25″ x 28.75″ x 32.75″||$900-$1000|
|Koolatron Compact Chest Freezer||3.5 cu. ft.||Chest||Defrost Drain, Removable Basket||22″ x 20.5″ x 33.25″||$300-$400|
|Kismile 3.0 Cu.ft Compact Upright Freezer||3.0 cu. ft.||Upright||Adjustable Thermostat, Reversible Door, Removable Shelf||20.3″ x 22.2″ x 32.1″||$200-$300|
|Whynter UDF-139SS/UDF-139SSa 13.8 cu.ft.||13.8 cu. ft.||Upright||Frost-Free, Adjustable Temperature, LED Lighting||28″ x 28″ x 62″||$700-$800|
|Frigidaire FFFU16F2VW 28||16 cu. ft.||Upright||Adjustable Shelves, LED Lighting||74.75″ x 32″ x 32″||$800-$900|
|Danby DUFM043A2WDD Designer 4.3||4.3 cu. ft.||Upright||Reversible Door, Mechanical Thermostat||21.5″ x 20.75″ x 33.25″||$300-$400|
Pros and Cons of Stand Up versus Chest Freezers
The Pros & Cons Of Chest Freezers
A chest freezer is your standard home appliance: a deep freezer with a top lid that opens like a chest. Most of these models are rectangular, with some more compact models shaped more like a cube. The pros of chest freezers include:
- Consistent temperatures. The temperature in a chest freezer stays consistent because it doesn’t have a self-defrost system.
- Lower chances of freezer burn. Because air doesn’t circulate as much in a chest freezer, there’s a lower chance of freezer burn than in a stand-up freezer.
- More useable space. The simplicity of the interior means chest freezers have roughly 20 percent more usable space than stand-up models.
- They work better in an emergency. In the event of an electricity outage, a chest freezer will keep your food frozen longer than a stand-up freezer.
The drawbacks can include:
- Difficult organization. It’s harder to organize and find the food you need in a chest freezer without searching and removing items.
- Space. While you might get more useable space, chest freezers take up more space. For instance, a 22-cubic-foot chest freezer uses a rectangle floor space of 2 feet by 6 feet, making it impractical for many kitchens.
- They can be too simple. Chest freezers have one purpose. This can be a drawback for those who need a freezer for specialty cooking or business.
The Pros & Cons Of Stand-Up Freezers
Stand-up or upright freezers look like refrigerators, but all the interior space goes to freezing foods. The pros of stand-up freezers can include:
- Organization. Upright freezers have shelves and compartments that make it easier to organize.
- They take up less space. A 22-cubic-foot stand-up freezer takes up 2.5 feet by 2.5 feet of floor space. In many kitchens, these freezers provide more space and a better flow.
- Easier to match other appliances. Stand-up freezers typically come in a wider range of finishes than chest freezers.
- More features. Many upright models have more functionality, such as quick freeze modes, exterior control panels, etc.
The drawbacks can include:
- Less space. As mentioned above, stand-up freezers have less space than most standard chest freezer models.
- Inconsistency on the shelves. Though they are convenient, the temperature of door shelves can be warmer than the inside of the freezer.
- Noise. Upright freezers tend to be noisier than their chest freezer counterparts.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the best-sized freezer for a small house?
The best-sized freezer for a small house usually ranges between three to 10 cubic feet of storage space. This size range offers plenty of storage for frozen items while maximizing an otherwise compact living area. Upright freezers are also available in mini models, which are as small as one cubic foot.
How do I clean my upright freezer?
You can clean your freezer by defrosting it and wiping it with a cleaning solution. Some customers also rinse their defrosted freezer with a garden hose if it has sticky spills on its shelves.How to Clean and Sanitize Freezer
How often should I defrost my freezer?
According to most manufacturers, you should defrost your freezer at least once a year to eliminate any accumulated frost build up.
How can I avoid freezer burn?
You can avoid freezer burn by storing food items in airtight containers or bags. Additionally, to avoid overstressing your appliance, make sure it has plenty of space around it for the compressor and/or coils to draw fresh air.
What’s the difference between an upright freezer and a chest freezer?
The primary difference between an upright freezer and a chest freezer is in their door design. While upright freezers traditionally open from the sides, a chest freezer lays flat and opens from the top.Chest vs. Upright Freezer: Which Is Best?
What are the pros and cons of an upright freezer?
There’s a lot of benefits to an upright freezer, the biggest being that food is easier to access. Instead of bending over to reach goods in a deep freezer, you can simply open an upright freezer’s door and grab what you need. They’re also easier to clean and typically have an auto-defrost feature. One downside, however, is they take up more vertical space (but less floor space!).
What’s the difference between a garage ready freezer and a regular freezer?
Garage ready freezers can handle a large change in temperatures, ranging from 0-110 degrees. Regular freezers on the other hand are only designed to operate in areas of the home with small changes in temperature, like the kitchen or well-insulated basement.
How do I set the temperature on an upright freezer?
To set the temperature on an upright freezer, first locate the temperature controls. The controls could be a manual dial, which you turn to your desired setting, or an electronic panel, where you tap buttons until the readout shows the proper internal temperature. To properly store frozen food, you should set the internal temperature to 0 degrees Fahrenheit. Some upright freezers have a warm temperature or door alarm that’ll notify you if the interior gets warmer than that.What’s the Best Freezer Temperature?
How do you organize an upright freezer?
When organizing an upright freezer, or any freezer, you want to keep one rule in mind: first in, first out. In doing so, you won’t forget about certain packaged meats, and inevitably throw them away after you find them months later. Another tip to follow includes putting your fruit, frozen meals, or vegetables in their own designated storage bins. In addition, plan to store bread and butter in the door bins, as it’s a bit warmer. For more, check out our guide on how to organize a freezer.6 Tips For How to Organize Your Freezer
What is better, a chest or an upright freezer?
In terms of space, an upright freezer is better than a chest freezer. It has a smaller footprint, leaving space for other items in your home. Upright freezers are also easier to organize—since shelving and door bins provide many thoughtful organization options. In contrast, chest freezers use less energy and are less noisy. This is essential if you want to save money or are planning on installing the unit in your home. For more, check out our guide on chest versus upright freezers.
Do upright freezers have ice makers?
Some upright freezers do have built-in ice makers, while others will have the option of purchasing one separately. If you need an upright freezer with an ice maker, note that it will likely cost you more than getting one without an ice maker.
What’s the best way to organize an upright freezer?
Items you frequently reach for should be easily accessible—put them on the door or easily in view. Many upright freezers come with shelves or storage baskets, which you can use to group together similar items. Purchasing additional bins, dividers, or baskets will keep your foodstuff organized. Clearly label and date any items that are in freezer bags or containers.
How long do upright freezers last?
How long do upright freezers last?
10 to 15 years
Chest freezers are expected to last between 15 and 20 years while upright freezers have a lifespan of 10 to 15 years.How Long Do Freezers Last?
Do upright freezers use a lot of electricity?
An ENERGY STAR certified chest freezer uses about 215 kWh of electricity and costs about $30 per year to run, while an ENERGY STAR certified upright freezer uses about 395 kWh of electricity and costs about $50 per year to run.Freezer Wattage Results