Smeg is typically a name that conjures images of Nigella Lawson-like bliss; evenings spent in the kitchen mixing batters and preparing dishes with appliances that range in all manner of pastel shades. They stand atop stove tops and kitchen benches like portable works of art, something that will cause anyone stepping foot in your kitchen to gaze at in wonder.
As for their latest Smeg model fridge though, the same can’t be said. The cult brand known for its retro-style appliances can now own the title of Worst Fridge Ever, according to the consumer advocacy group Choice which gave the FAB38RCRAU model the lowest testing result in its history.
“We’ve seen some epic fridge fails in the past, but nothing like this,” the watchdog said in its review. The 510 litre fridge scored a rating of just 22 per cent, amid “serious” concerns regarding fluctuating temperatures (a big no as far as cold meats and cheeses are concerned).
So, just what makes this Smeg fridge so terrible? According to Choice fridge expert Ashley Iredale, the Smeg fridge is a huge disappointment - not least because of the price. “It’s even more appalling when you consider that it costs a whopping $3,990. You get a 1950s-style aesthetic from this fridge, but you’ll also get ‘50s performance to match.”
Iredale told news.com.au that the fridge is expensive to run and has “terrible” cooling performance. It scored a rating of zero after experiencing terrible fluctuations in temperature which could prove disastrous for the longevity of food. Iredale said perishables “are likely to go off far more quickly than they should” after the fridge’s temperatures varied more than 5 degrees Celsius inside and 10 degrees Celsius in the freezer. This means if the fridge is set at 3 degrees, temperatures could rise to 8 degrees.
“If you buy this fridge, you’ll need to constantly adjust the settings as the seasons change, or even if there are significant day-to-day changes in the area you live in.”
He added, “If you don’t, cold weather will make the fridge and freezer even colder, and hot weather will make it even warmer, which could leave you with melted ice cream and much worse.”
It might look pretty, but this Smeg fridge is a hard pass from us.