Need the best chest freezer for your home or commercial use? With our in-depth chest freezer reviews, you cannot go wrong.
Top Chest Freezer for Home
Midea WHS-129C1: Midea is a respected chest freezer manufacturers and with its top of the line features this 3.5 cubic feet model comfortably makes it as our top pick. It nicely hits the capacity sweet spot and achieves a balance between volume and features. It further includes removable components, silent operation, great energy savings, and an easy-open door that holds open at convenient angles.
Budget Chest Freezer
Igloo FRF472: The Igloo FRF472 is our top selection if you’re looking for a high-capacity freezer with a budget price and excellent features. The unit stores a large amount of frozen food with its 7.1 cubic foot interior, an excellent energy rating and low power consumption. It’s easy to clean and control with its adjustable thermostat and has a nicely designed compact design.
In this roundup, we look around and pick seven of the best available stand-alone chest freezers you’re likely to find. If you’re running out of room in your combo refrigerator-freezer and need overflow freezer space to keep your stuff, then you need one of these appliances.
They’re convenient and handy and can be stored anywhere around the house, and unlike chest freezers of old, modern units don’t make a lot of noise or consume much energy.
Best Chest Freezers 2020
Our #1 Pick
Midea WHS-129C1 Single Door Chest Freezer
Classic Midea WHS-129C1 Single Door Chest Freezer is a space-saving size offering mechanical control with adjustable thermostat from -12 to -28 degrees Fahrenheit.
Danby DCF072A2WDB-3 Chest Freezer
An updated classic, the Danby DCF072A2WDB-3 Chest Freezer features mechanical temperature control and an energy efficient foam insulated cabinet and lid, as well as features for sorting and organization.
Value for Money Pick
Igloo FRF472 Chest Freezer
The Igloo FRF472 Chest Freezer features an adjustable thermostat to -18 degrees Fahrenheit in a smaller footprint design.
Midea WHS-185C1 Single Door Chest Freezer
Classic Midea WHS-185C1 Single Door Chest Freezer is a mid-size option offering mechanical control with adjustable thermostat from -12 to -28 degrees Fahrenheit.
Haier HF50CM23NW 5.0 cu ft. Chest Freezer
In a space-saving flat-back design, the Haier HF50CM23NW 5.0 cu ft. Chest Freezer is a mid-size option offering adjustable thermostat control.
In-Depth Chest Freezer Reviews
Midea is one of the most well-known chest freezer manufacturers and this 3.5 cubic feet model is among its top sellers, nicely hitting the capacity sweet spot, achieving a great balance between volume and features.
It’s our top overall pick of all the units in the roundup thanks to its mechanical easy-adjust thermostat with low-temperature storage capacity, easy-clean design, which includes removable components, silent operation, great energy savings, and an easy-open door which holds open at convenient angles.
The one-year warranty, which is extended to two years on the compressor, is indicative of the quality of the freezer, which is compact and can be used to store your goodies in your small apartment, RV, man cave, gym, garage or just about anywhere else where space is at a premium.
Midea’s ‘Whisper-Quiet’ technology makes it so that you can’t detect any noise when the compressor cycles on and off.
The cooling range of this freezer is outstanding, going from an icy -0.4-degrees F all the way down to -13-degrees F.
The interior is made of anodized aluminum, which is sturdier and easier to clean than typical silicone/aluminum plates used in other freezers. Removable storage basket and gasket also makes it easy to clean and to organize the interior so that you can store food with ease.
Some interesting features of the WHS-129C1 are the recessed handle, smooth cabinet finish, and the spacious 3.5 square foot capacity that can hold up to 122.5 pounds of frozen food. The unit has a defrost drain and is manually defrosted, has an accurate mechanical temperature control thermostat, and has an excellent energy consumption rating at 193 kWh/year.
The Midea unit is our top pick and will make the delight of anyone who needs to put away food for long periods but wants an energy saving appliance that doesn’t take up a lot of room and is silent.
This Danby chest freezer is an excellent choice if you’re looking for a large capacity chest-format unit that doesn’t use a lot of power to keep your frozen food stored in for days. It has a smart-foam insulated cabinet and a stylish round lid, among its high-end features. The unit’s interior is easy to clean and it has a great temperature range and control capability.
Because of its slight 22.5-inch depth, the unit is easily moved and fits through tight spots and doorways. It has two front-mount leveling legs and two rear-mounted castor wheels to make it even easier to transport and set in place.
It’s easy and convenient to turn on and off and to set a storage temperature with the front-mounted thermostat that regulates temperatures between 10.4-degrees and -11.2-degrees F.
The freezer is very conveniently accessed with its rounded-edged door leading to a sliding storage basket that keeps smaller, frequently used items.
Keeping the interior organized can be done with the handy vertical compartment divider and a strong vinyl-coated basket.
It’s also easy to defrost through the easy to get at front mount defrost drain that siphons melted ice and frost out of the freezer really quickly.
This is an excellent pick from a well-known North American (Canadian) manufacturer with years of experience in making quality appliances. Danby’s contemporary designs and features recommend this unit.
#3: Igloo FRF472 Chest Freezer (Value for Money Pick)
The Igloo FRF472 is a good selection if you’re looking for a higher-end freezer with respect to price and features at a relatively low budget price.
The unit is great for storing a large amount of frozen food with its large 7.1 cubic foot interior, an excellent energy rating, and low power consumption. It’s also easy to clean and control with its adjustable thermostat and has a nicely designed compact design. This unit’s resistant surface takes on everyday scratches and handling with its durable cabinet.
It’s tech specs relate that it has an automatic defrost feature, which makes it unique among chest freezers, though reviewers complain that the freezer doesn’t actually have this feature.
It has a classic chest freezer design with Power On indicator and Defrost LED mounted on its lower front panel.
This freezer takes up relatively little room given its large storage capacity and has a number of convenient high-end features like an adjustable thermostat, a reversible door, a defrost drain cap on the bottom, a durable finish that resists scratches and everyday use, a power-on indicator light, and a basket.
The Igloo’s energy consumption is on the lower end of the freezers we reviewed at 205 kWh/year, resulting in an estimated yearly operating cost of $23. This means you’ll be spending very little money on electricity to keep your food frozen every year.
This WHS-185C1 5 cubic foot model stands smack in the middle of Midea’s chest freezer offering. It’s a bit bigger than the 3 cu ft and 3.5 models we also cover in the roundup, and a bit smaller than the bigger 7 cu ft Midea WHS-258C1.
It sells for a similar price or slightly higher than the two smaller units, and may very well be worth the slight price difference if you need the extra room.
Like the other models, it has outstanding adjustable temperature control, good interior organizability, angled door opening, and very handy maintenance and cleaning features.
The unit supports a pretty wide temperature range (-0.4-degrees F to -13 degrees F) thanks in part to its mechanically controlled adjustable thermostat.
It has an easy-to-clean interior, with a removable gasket, as well as a removable wire basket. The anodized aluminum interior is resistant and also easy to keep clean when compared to the silicone/aluminum plates of other freezer units.
It has great design features such as a recessed handle and simple lines, a balanced hinge that allows for easy packing and unpacking since the door stays open at angles between 45 and 75-degrees. Its 5 cubic foot capacity results in an ample approximate frozen food storage capacity of 175 pounds, and its energy rating is excellent at a 218 kWh/year estimated annual energy consumption.
The Haier 5 cubic-foot unit is a good mid-range chest freezer model with an outstanding space-saving upright design that can be placed even in tight spots around the home or office. It has accurate temperature control, easy defrosting and cleaning, and with an outstanding energy consumption rating.
The freezer’s 5 cu ft capacity is ample for most small family’s needs and can hold as much as 175 pounds of frozen food. It has a sturdy, easy to clean aluminum interior and a removable basket for easy organization and access to frequently used items.
The adjustable thermostat control is mounted on the front-bottom right-hand side panel of the unit and gets the temperature to ranges of 0 to 5-degrees F.
A handy defrost drain makes it easy to defrost with the water easily running off the unit mess-free. It has a smooth easily cleaned surface, is easy to move around and place anywhere thanks to its relatively light-weight.
It runs pretty quiet and does a pretty good job of keeping all kinds of food frozen and ready for you to eat when you need it.
At 7 cubic feet, this is the biggest Midea chest freezer unit of the three we reviewed in this roundup and also the most expensive. It may be worth paying the extra price, which really isn’t very much if you have a big family or need to store lots of frozen food.
Like the other Midea units we’ve looked at, the WHS-258C1 has an excellent mechanical temperature control thermostat that reaches very low temperatures, ideal for long storage of food.
It’s also compact in size, given its high capacity, runs very quietly, is easy to clean and defrost, and is very energy efficient.
The unit has a classy compact streamlined design so that it will fit in nicely into any kitchen or playroom decor, especially places where space is scarce.
The advanced coil technology is sturdy and will keep the ice and food frozen for days on end while drawing little power for its size (250 kWh/year). Because of its low profile, it can even be used as a side table if you have a small apartment or other utility areas, and it’s light and can be moved with ease.
It comes with an easy and convenient defrost system, including a bottom drain and a removable inner basket for easy cleanup. The WHS258C1’s ‘Whisper-Quiet’ technology means the compressor can hardly be noticed or heard as it cycles on and off. Midea’s reputation as an international manufacturer of small appliances is well established and this freezer has a full one-year warranty and an extension to two years on the compressor.
This mid-range RCA chest freezer is compact in size despite its relatively large 5.1 cubic foot capacity. It will fit in tight spots around the house, is easy to clean, and runs pretty quiet. It should satisfy a small to mid-sized family’s food storage needs.
It has a front-mounted temperature control adjustment knob that sets its mechanical thermostat, as well as a power indicator and a compressor on or run indicator.
Also on the front-facing panel is an exterior drain dial that you need to remove when the frost becomes ¼-inch thick as it may damage the cooling coils.
No information is provided by the manufacturer regarding the freezer’s operating temperature but reports by users talk of a lower range of about -2-degrees F, which is cold enough to keep most foods well frozen and conserved.
Also from other reviewers’ comments, this freezer is pretty energy efficient at a range of about 180-240 kWh/year, though no official Energy Star or other types of energy certification data is available from the manufacturer.
Although it’s the lowest-rated chest freezer in the roundup, most buyers are satisfied with its features and performance.
Chest Freezer Buying Guide
Buying and choosing a chest freezer shouldn’t have to be an adventure. Dozens of manufacturers and models, with a multitude of options, exist on the market, it’s just of a matter of figuring out what it is that you really need, and the decision should be easy. We’ll try to give you some pointers here and clear up common misconceptions.
Understand your needs
First of all, do you really need to buy a chest freezer? They are generally pretty big appliances that can store a lot of food and ice. If you’re a consumer that likes to buy lots of bulk items, like fresh produce when it’s in season, sides of beef, whole hogs, chickens… then that’s you.
Fishermen, berry gatherers, and hunters also know the advantages of a chest freezer. When you make these kinds of bulk acquisitions you’ll save money and have seasonal products available year-round if you can store them in a freezer.
An important thing to take into account is that chest freezers are very big and can take up lots of room in your house. Some of the freezers in this roundup have streamlined designs that minimize this impact.
Sizes go as high as 7.2 cubic feet in size, and some are small units, as low as 3 cubic feet, which will be mitigating factors. In fact, some chest freezers can even double as side tables in small efficiency apartments, tiny homes, RVs or condos.
If you’re worried about noise, you should look out for quiet compressors, like those used by Midea with their ‘Whisper-Quiet’ technology. Freezer compressors are especially noisy when they alternate between on and off cycles and can be irritating if your unit is somewhere in the middle of the house where you expect your environment to be quiet.
You should also look out for things like an easy and convenient defrost system. There’s no getting away from having to defrost these units and having a bottom drain spigot is a must.
Automatic defrosting is not an option in any of the chest freezers in the roundup as this would make them prohibitively expensive. Also, the ease of cleaning of the freezer is important, which comes from having smooth surfaces, removable food baskets…
Other important features to consider: Chest Freezer vs Upright Freezer
They work by keeping the chest freezer open at a fixed position after you’ve lifted it, so you don’t have to prop it up with one of your arms or hands while you’re handling items inside the freezer. Some units, like our top pick Midea WHS-129C1, have a door that remains open from 45 to 75-degree angles.
These baskets can typically be mounted on a side, on the upper part of a chest freezer to keep smaller items that you may want to access with frequency and makes it easier to find them, or for storing small bulk items like beans, berries or peas, and holding them upright so that they won’t spill. These baskets can often be removed for easy cleaning.