Here at BBK Direct we truly love to share some of our Bedroom, bathroom and kitchen ideas with our articles and this is actually possible due to the fact that we have thousands of customers every year, each with their own style and ideas which really helps us see trends in not only our market but in home design in general. However we also like looking back in time, because you don’t know where you are going, unless you know where you have been, and most inventions of yester year have paved the way for comforts and advancements we rely on and enjoy today, so you will always see a little history in each and every article we create.
Refrigeration is one such invention and whether you are referring to a fridge or a freezer it is a part of everyday living that can simply not be done without. Fridges for home use was introduced in 1923 but artificial refrigeration of produce can be tracked back to the 1750’s.
What is a fridge and how does it work?
Well the short answer to this question is as follows; thermally insulated compartments that expel heat to the outside environment with the help of either a mechanical, electric or chemical pump so that the interior compartments are cooled to a temperature below the ambient temperature of a room and a couple of degrees above the freezing temp of water, and this is called a refrigerator or simply a fridge. A similar mechanism that cools down an insulated compartment below the freezing temperature of water is called a freezer. The main aim of a fridge is to let perishables last longer and it does this by lowering the temperature, which in turn slows the reproduction cycle of bacteria, therefore letting your produce last so much longer. The optimal operating temperature for a fridge to achieve this is between 3 to 5 °C
Just a short history regarding refrigeration
Way before the working refrigerator it was a very common site to see icehouses, these were situated near fresh water lakes that accumulated melting snow waters and were also packed with snow. These icehouses were some of the first forms of artificial cooling and could supply “cold storage” for most of the year.
However the true start of modern artificial refrigeration started with a Scottish professor called William Cullen who designed a small refrigerating machine in 1755. Even forming a small amount of ice, he used a pump over a container of diethyl ether, creating a partial vacuum which caused it to boil and extract heat from the surrounding air.
Quick early history breakdown of fridges:
1750 - Artificial refrigeration began.
1800 - Developed further.
1834 - First working vapor-compression refrigeration system was built.
1854 - First commercial ice making machine was developed.
1913 - First refrigerator for home use developed.
1923 - Development of self-contained home refrigeration units.
Many changes after this period occurred in terms of gasses used, but the fundamental working principle has remained practically unchanged.
So what types of fridges are there to choose from?
Fridges are definitely a part of our everyday lives and not even a consideration as to whether you are going to get one or not, it’s just a given that your kitchen will have one in. Even though it is a necessity, it’s also a big focus or discussion point when it comes to the design or overall look of your kitchen, so what you choose is important.
If you want a seamless modern look or uninterrupted lines running right around your kitchen, then this is for you. Integrated fridges are just what the name implies, they are integrated into your kitchen units making it unobtrusive and basically invisible as the door of the fridge allows for you to attach a unit door onto it, making it the same as all the rest. This goes well with integrated dishwashers, washing machines and freezers as basically all your large appliances will be “hidden” from sight.
However, for a little design inspiration, imagine all your unit doors are a beautiful dark wood design or simply a dark grey, but your tall integrated fridge freezer door is a duck egg blue, light grey, white or even red. This will give that splash of unhinged colour to your kitchen creating a stand out feature and it will show that this unit has something special about it, not to mention that it will help guests or family find your fridge as well.
View all our integrated fridges here https://www.bbk-direct.uk.com/kitchens/kitchen-appliances/refrigeration/integrated-fridge-freezers/
Well this is the good old favourite and yes it’s also as the name implies, its free standing. Available as either just a free standing fridge or as a Fridge freezer combo, with either the freezer on the top or bottom section. There are many modern designs to choose from that include nifty features like ice and water dispensers, but the older designs (60’s) like the ones manufactured now by SMEG are fast coming back into style and can truly compliment any kitchen if used correctly.
We always love mixing old designs with the new, as it adds a “stop and look” affect to your kitchen. Picture a truly modern kitchen with clean lines and modern finishes like handless units and integrated appliances, like microwaves and ovens etc.. then in the centre, an open piece of wall with an antique 60’s looking fridge design in a pastel purple or duck egg blue. Now picture it the other way round, a country style kitchen with a modern fridge that has internet connectivity, touch screen display and water dispenser. Yes, either way round it will catch the eye of anyone entering your kitchen.
And then view all our freestanding fridges here https://www.bbk-direct.uk.com/kitchens/kitchen-appliances/refrigeration/freestanding-fridge-freezers/
American style fridges
If you have a large kitchen, family or entertain often then the American “Bigger is always better” style fridge is definitely for you. Huge holding capacity with either double door side by side, one side being the freezer section and the other side being the refrigerator, or a standard top section being the fridge and bottom being large freezer draws that pull out, making everything more convenient and simpler to find what you need. These go well in a large modern or traditional kitchen alike and will definitely be a feature in your home.
View all our American style fridges here https://www.bbk-direct.uk.com/kitchens/kitchen-appliances/refrigeration/american-style-fridge-freezers/
We just thought we would add this in. If you are a wine connoisseur, like entertaining and have space in your kitchen, then a wine cooler fridge is a must. However it also adds a level of sophistication to any kitchen and if positioned correctly can be a central focus point to show off your love for the finer things in life and your favourite wine selection that will complement any meal made in your stunning kitchen.
View all our wine cooler fridges here https://www.bbk-direct.uk.com/kitchens/kitchen-appliances/refrigeration/wine-coolers/
So the conclusion to this article is? Fridges are definitely one of those inventions that sometimes get overlooked as it is such an integrated part of our lives, but if you should suddenly take it away, it will be one of the most missed items in your home, as you can always make a fire to cook your food if your stove is gone and you can read a book to pass the time if your TV is broken, but there is no way to keep your meat and produce fresh on a hot summers day if you didn’t have a fridge.
Also when it comes to a kitchen design, if you use your imagination, a necessity like a fridge can also lend itself not only towards a functional and practical design but become a feature and centre of attraction as well.
We hope that this article was useful and that it helps you make an informed decision, but if you require any further assistance please do not hesitate to contact one of our friendly staff here at BBK Direct.