“ Samsung / Upright freezer, 1.65 cubic metre, A+ efficiency rating, „
Having recently refubished our kitchen, we were going to go for an american fridge/freezer but lacked the space, this is perfect! We also wanted to get a fridge with a water/ice maker but that was going to be an extra £100 and decided we werent so lazy that we couldn't walk to the tap!
This fridge has great features such as an alarm which beeps if you leave the door open too long, a child lock (although not sure how that works as never used it!) and an easy to regulate temperature control.
It has a large veg box at the bottom and great door storage for all your bottles/jars/cheese/eggs etc... and great sized shelves. I dont know how we managed with a smaller fridge for 20years! but most of the fridge is taken up with jars that no one eats!
A beautiful sleek fridge that I would highly recommend!
GOING FOR THE SYMPATHY VOTE
It never rains but it pours, as they say.
Having just had to replace a nearly new car tyre because of a strategically-placed nail, and having shelled out £85 for the privilege, I later the same day found my car broken into and my mobile phone stolen. Could I claim for it? Could I buggery!? Keeping the claim to a 'glass only' affair meant that I had only to pay out £50 to Autoglass, whereas if I claimed for the stolen contents, this would raise the excess charge to £100 and lose me one of my 'protected no-claims lives', all for being able to claim for a replacement phone that had only cost me a further £60, so for the loss of a 'life', I get an extra £10. Great, not.
What's this got to do with freezers? Good question, and I thought you'd never ask, except that having sorted this all out in double quick time, we went off to a hired cottage in Somerset during the Easterl holidays, only to return and find that the freezer hadn't been working for about three days - well that was my estimate based on the fact that items at the bottom were still frozen and the rest was at fridge temperature!
"Never mind", thought I, dusting off the home contents policy, "maybe e-Sure will come up trumps". Dream on Chris.
"Whoopee-doo! I've got £500 of freezer contents cover!" he exclaimed with a degree of relief.
"Bol****s, the actual amount wasted doesn't even exceed the excess!" he groaned after speaking to e-Sure.
Why do we have insurance? Does it exist merely to protect a no-claims bonus? Does your chewing gum lose its flavour on the bed-post overnight? Is the meaning of life really 42?
Why am I asking you?
BUYING WITH YOUR BACK TO THE WALL
Anyway, the upshot, with my 60th birthday 'at home' looming was that we needed to find a new freezer in double time otherwise the mastodon steaks and pterodactyl wings were going to go off, not to mention the Syrup-Of-Figs-flavoured ice cubes, guaranteed to make any party 'go' with a swing. There was no time for reading around, this was more a case of going to a large Currys, finding out how many freezers were within the grasp of ordinary iconoclastically-carnivorous and laxative-quaffing people and asking what could be delivered the following day!
As I remarked to my wife - "Ad Ah known I were goin' ter be buying a new freezer, Ah'd NEVER have bought missen a new bike*!"
The only good news was that, that very morning I'd been to the Post Office to collect a registered letter, which contained £40 of Currys vouchers, courtesy of one of the many survey sites I wear down my finger nails at; MyVoice I think it was.
(*Not sure why I lapsed into 'cod-Yorkshire' there - probably prompted by the alarm system of trapped moths in my wallet!)
This is where the Samsung RZ60ECMH (1.65 cubic metres) comes into the equation. At around £450, it was at the upper end of what I was prepared to pay, especially since the previous one probably cost £19/19s/6d. (I jest, but only just). When we set about working out how old the old one was, the figure of 20 years was the best we could come up with, and even then it was only a 'BEJAM's-own' model **.
However, as it happens, it looks like we've got a good 'un but more by luck than judgement! Yes, it was 60 cm wide, yes, it had an A+ rated efficiency rating and yes it looked good. That was about the extent of our decision-making process - oh yes, I nearly forgot - AND it was in stock! Curry's must be slipping, which accounts for why it was reduced to £450 from nearly £500 - they wanted to reduce their stock level to zero for consistency!
Taking out the extended warranty is not something I normally fall for these days, especially as it doesn't cover lost contents, but the Currys' plan, which includes a same-day replacement freezer in the event of a breakdown had a certain degree of appeal, which as long as we were at home at the time, was even better than being insured and finding the house invaded by bluebottles! At least now we've a sporting chance of NOT losing the contents even though it's not an insurance policy!
Well apart from being a tasteful metallic grey and having a subdued blue LED display on the door, which is itself is useful as you don't have to open it to adjust it, the Samsung freezer has many interesting features, which having gotten rid of an antediluvian predecessor may well be old hat by now, but they're new to me!
Gone are the days of a chilled top shelf spilling it 'coldness' to the rest of the freezer, in between having to defrost it. Gone are the days of losing all of the cold every time the door is opened through the lower wire baskets.
This machine pumps in freezing cold air, which as anyone with air-conditioning in their car will know, is bone dry and even works as a rapid demister in winter, and it pumps it in at various levels so there's no dependency on that top shelf keeping everything else sub-zero. Bone dry air is significant as without moisture, ice can't form. Sure a little gets in every time the freezer door is opened, but thanks to the fact that every shelf has a solid clear acrylic drawer front, keeping the cold in as much as possible, there's very little dry cold air to be exchanged for the warm moist variety.
I'm getting the distinct impression that defrosting one of these is a VERY rare occurrence.
Likewise, I've never had a freezer with a light in it before, the heat from an ordinary bulb not being sympathetic to keeping things cold. This one however is an LED lamp with no detectable heat output at all.
Like a fridge, there's storage in the upper part of the door for all those ice creams and lollies that you don't want to break your teeth on or 'freezer-burn' your lips, this area being just a tad warmer.
Main storage drawers come in two sizes, there being three really deep ones and two of medium depth. They all form a good 'seal' so as to spill as little cold as possible when the door is open. There is also an ice-cube facility, which you are free to remove if not needed to gain some more room maybe for bread or something whose wrapping will keep it together. This consists of a pair of upper ice trays, which can be tipped over with a dial on their ends, dumping the contents into a hopper below. I feel this is a much better approach than that of those 'American-style' combination fridge freezers that take up huge amounts of internal door space just to have some ice facility on the front door, used once in an Icelandic eruption in our house***. Incidentally, if you really want to push the boat out, there's a matching larder fridge to stand next to it, and for slightly less if you shop around.
(*** I was going to say a 'blue moon' but thought I'd bring the allusion to Krakatoa into the 21st century)
You also get two freezer blocks for use in insulated bags, e.g. picnic bags or the ones you take to the supermarket for the frozen stuff.
One of the drawers has a means for 'spilling' cold air into the one below, keeping it slightly less cold, which means that items like ice-cream in 2-litre tubs won't need a Kango hammer to serve them.
On the control front, it's all done by a touch-sensitive panel on the front. You can set your own low temperature, switch to fast-freeze for...well, freezing quickly, and select the economy mode which holds the temperature within at a constant -18°C, unless told otherwise.
There's an option to turn on or off the audible alarm, and you can 'childproof' the settings by holding down the uppermost button which must be a good 5 feet off the ground (significant that!) for three seconds, to keep the little darlings from turning it all to mush. This alarm warns you after a certain period with the door open - three minutes I think
Size-wise, the business end, i.e. the compressor must be a lot more compact than in our old one, where half the bottom shelf was lost to a step covering the innards of the freezer. In the Samsung's case, you only lose a small wedge shape, the drawer being almost the same size as the one above it.
INSTALLATION AND RUNNING COSTS
The delivery men said something about letting it stand for 6 hours before using it. The manual made no mention of this, but I guess they were just being cautious in case it hadn't always been stored upright. Maybe they knew something we didn't, like Jeremy Clarkson was driving the lorry in preparation for the new Top Gear feature, "The Schtupid Schmuck In A 3-Ton Truck"!
Anyway, after a short stand in its final position in our outhouse, it was ready to roll as it were. To move it into position it has the usual arrangement of two rollers at the back and bump-stop feet at the front which can be adjusted to tilt it slightly backwards. I've always favoured this idea as it encourages the door, and therefore its seals to stay shut. There's no real provision for evening it up on a sideways-sloping floor as in our outhouse though, as the rear rollers aren't height-adjustable. Slivers of hardboard to the rescue!
Remarkably, this is the first time I've ever had anything in the refrigeration line delivered with the door hung to hinge from the left, the handle being on the right. As luck would have it, this saved me a job, as I always seem to be the one who has to find out about the door hinge kit pretty quickly. As there are controls in this door, I assume there are also electrical connections, albeit low voltage, to be remade via the other hinge, should you decide to swap it over. The handle does actually lift away slightly as you open it, the purpose of this movement being not to unlatch some door catch, but to slightly crack open the magnetic seal, making the rest of the opening very easy.
The freezer is VERY quiet, being hardly audible even when initially cooling it down for a couple of hours.
Thanks to its 'A+' energy rating, no doubt boosted by its ability to keep most of its cold air in when opened, it's projected to use about 300 units (a.k.a. kilowatt/hours) of 'lecky' a year, i.e. less than one per day, which at my current tariff, is about 12p, which is the equivalent of leaving a 35 watt bulb on continuously. For comparison, the camping fridge I pressed into action to chill beers for my 'do' uses 80 watts, and that's only a small fridge!
Still never mind - I've been able to switch it off, as I've drunk all the beer!
Energy Efficiency / Short name: Samsung RZ60ECMH