As consumers, we tend to conflate price and quality. If a car costs ten times more than a basic car, we assume that there must be some wonderful reason. Being really expensive doesn’t mean that something is immune to terribleness. That’s not true, though. For proof, just look at the $10,000 cramped, energy-hogging Fhiaba refrigerator that our lab-coated cousins over at Consumer Reports just tested. Built-in refrigerators, like all built-in appliances, tend to be have less storage space than free-standing ones. If you have $10,000 to spend on a fridge, that probably means you aren’t too worried about its effect on your electric bill. People who are concerned about energy consumption, though, might be surprised to learn that the Fhiaba Series MG Stand Plus MG8991TST6/3U costs an estimated $98 per year to run. A top-rated competitor doesn’t just cost less, but uses only around $60 worth of power each year. That’s not a huge amount of money, but notable if you’re trying to get your total energy consumption down.
The thing is, you know that EnergyGuide label that appliances always have when you buy them? This refrigerator doesn’t have one yet. The manufacturer says that their testing isn’t completed yet, but in that case it shouldn’t be sold to consumers.
The company estimates that it uses only 398 kilowatt hours per year, but Consumer Reports estimated its usage at 829 KWh. The company’s tests were done in Italy, according to European standards, they explain. Maybe people in Italy open their refrigerators less.
The fridge also lacks other amenities like space in the door for a gallon jug, a filtered water dispenser, and spillproof shelving. What are you paying $10,000 for, then? Good temperature controls, a lot of shiny steel, and… well, the right to tell people that you spent $10,000 on a refrigerator. If that’s what you’re into.
$10,000 built-in refrigerator ranks last in our Ratings [Consumer Reports]