Refrigerators these days can do some pretty amazing things. From syncing with your home’s Wi-Fi to touchscreen refrigerators that work as a multipurpose hub for recipes, calendars, and more, it’s impressive how far these appliances have come. With so many possibilities at our fingertips, it’s easy to take for granted all the previous functions that were once considered ahead of their time—like the humble ice maker.
Once a luxury, automatic ice makers are now a common refrigerator upgrade, but that doesn’t mean they’ve become obsolete. From advanced filtration to new shapes and sizes, refrigerator ice makers have been rebranded to provide more functions than ever before, and we’re highlighting them for you in this article. Follow along for considerations before you buy, the brands to shop, and five exemplary models recommended by us, your local experts.
Discover More: 5 Stainless Steel Refrigerators with Ice Makers
At a Glance:
We lament to tell you refrigerators with automatic ice makers still can’t make you a cocktail at your whim (fingers crossed for the future), but the luxury of having ice whenever you need it for whatever the occasion is a big incentive that often goes overlooked. True, it’s an optional upgrade that does raise the price tag on otherwise conventional refrigerators by an average of $200, but these two buying options offer some wiggle room for your budget.
⊳ The affordable option – Refrigerators with no ice dispensers store ice inside a freezer bin. Sometimes, this compartment is found on the door to optimize as much shelf space in the freezer. These models are the more affordable option available, and since there is no dispenser, they’re also a smidge easier to maintain.
⊳ The splurge – Then there are refrigerators with built-in dispensers where users can enjoy water and ice for easy refreshments at the push of a button. Some high-end refrigerators with in-door water and ice dispensers go the next step by offering a choice of ice cube shapes, and there are even models that serve as a hot beverage station that pour ice cubes along with a steady stream of hot and cold water. For high ice demands, a refrigerator with dual ice makers is a simple solution that ensures you’re always beverage ready.
By now, we bet you’re wondering how much ice a refrigerator with an ice maker makes in a day. That ultimately depends on the brand and model, but you can expect an average of four pounds of ice production from one of these fridges, or about the size of a small bag of ice. More impressively, fridges on the higher end of the spectrum produce anywhere from 6–11 pounds of ice a day—talk about an entertainer’s dream!
The Benefits of Refrigerators with Automatic Ice Makers
Did you know having an ice maker in your refrigerator comes with more benefits than convenience? See for yourself all the advantages of installing a refrigerator with an ice maker in your kitchen.
- On-demand ice
- No need for ice cube trays
- Several ice cube shape options
- Saves space without the need for a separate ice maker
- In-door ice dispensers help preserve cold air in the freezer
But perhaps the biggest incentive for our Arizona shoppers is the quality and taste of ice you get with an automatic ice maker. Since most models use a filtration system, ice (and water on dispenser models) is purged of harmful chemicals and byproducts that are found in tap water.
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An automatic ice maker is a nice perk to have in the kitchen, but to be considered a top-performing refrigerator, it takes more than a few ice cubes. Take a look!
Best Overall: Frigidaire Gallery® 21.8 Cu. Ft. Stainless Steel Counter Depth French Door Refrigerator (FG4H2272UF)
The French door fridge design gets a convenient update with this Frigidaire Gallery refrigerator, complete with a Custom-Flex Temp Drawer and an extra-tall water and ice dispenser to treat your storage and thirst needs. Deliciously refreshing water and ice filtered by PureSource Ultra II technology are ready at the pour, and with TwinTech Cooling, produce remains farm-fresh and ready to enjoy.
- Extra tall ice and water dispenser
- PureSource Ultra II Ice & Water Filtration
- TwinTech Cooling System
- OpenAccess Door
- Custom-Flex Temp Drawer
- Energy Star certified
Best Value: GE® 17.5 Cu. Ft. White Top Freezer Refrigerator (GIE18DTNRWW)
Raise a glass to simple designs that provide major function, like this GE top freezer refrigerator under $875 with 17.5 cubic feet of storage. Included in the mix is a factory-installed icemaker for fresh ice made daily, ready to scoop and serve inside your treats and beverages. Skip the guesswork with an uncomplicated layout featuring adjustable shelves, produce crisper drawers, and ample in-door organization that keeps all your items on display and easy to find under the vibrancy of LED interior lighting.
- Factory-installed icemaker
- Gallon door storage bins
- LED lighting
- Made in the U.S.A.
- Energy Star certified
Best Luxury: LG 27.1 Cu. Ft. PrintProof™ Black Stainless Steel Side-by-Side Refrigerator (LRSOS2706D)
Brace yourself for a whole new way to handle food preservation with an experience only an LG refrigerator can deliver. It all starts with a fresh presentation featuring an LG InstaView door that transitions from ordinary to transparent with two gentle knocks. Cool and convenient, this function gives you a look inside for inventory while the main compartment stays shut and cold air stays locked inside. Along with an in-door ice bin, this pick also showcases Craft Ice technology with a dedicated freezer bin to drop into your signature drinks when the occasion calls.
- Dual ice maker with Craft Ice
- Smooth touch ice dispenser with UVnano technology
- InstaView door
- CoolGuard interior door panel
- Door Cooling+
- Linear Cooling technology
- Wi-Fi compatible
- Energy Star certified
Best Refrigerator with Dual Ice Makers: Samsung 22.8 Cu. Ft. Fingerprint Resistant Stainless Steel Counter Depth French Door Refrigerator (RF23A9671SR)
Celebrate your go-to drink with this Samsung refrigerator with two ice makers in a standard cube and crushed ice options for your everyday needs and the extra special moments, too. Altogether, this ice-making refrigerator produces up to six pounds of cubes a day inside two convenient storage containers, including a door dispenser with a UV deodorizing filter. Additional FlexZone and FlexCrisper compartments, plus Triple Cooling technology, work to ensure everything else you stock stays just as cool, fresh, and preserved.
- Dual ice maker
- UV deodorizing filter
- Triple cooling technology
- Wi-Fi compatible
- Energy Star certified
Best Small Refrigerator with Ice Makers: GE® 16.6 Cu. Ft. Stainless Steel Top Freezer Refrigerator (GIE17GSNRSS)
Even small refrigerators with ice makers can make a big impact. Take this best-selling GE top freezer refrigerator, for instance, with over 8,000 buyer reviews confirming it as a top performer. With its clean presentation and a traditional configuration in a total of 16.6. cubic feet of storage, stocking foods is simple, complete with sliding drawers, spacious shelving, and door bins for all favorite fresh and frozen ingredients.
- Factory-installed ice maker
- Sliding deli drawer
- Edge-to-edge glass shelves
- Energy Star certified
Don’t let the luxury of an ice maker trick you into a user experience that’s less than pleasant. When poorly designed, an ice maker can jam, cause leaks, or simply doesn’t make enough ice for your needs. By following these three specifications, we were able to pick ice makers that are fully functional and worth the upgrade.
Hands down, automatic ice makers are the way to go if you’re looking for convenience. There’s no interaction needed, no guesswork, and you’ll always have ice, so long as your water line is running and connected. Points for efficiency were also given to removable bins, especially when you can relocate them inside the freezer to accommodate space for other items, as well as refrigerators with two ice makers. As for the ice itself, a variety of shapes and sizes is great for a variety of applications (try chilled fruit juice over crushed ice for a quick at-home snow cone).
Smelly ice cubes alone are a good reason every ice maker needs a purification system, but your health is also on the line. The best freezers with water purification remove cysts, bacteria, and minerals from water and ice and remind you when it’s time to replace the filter.
The biggest tradeoff of an ice maker is the equity it takes up in the freezer. Smart bins remedy this problem either with space-friendly bins, or even better, ice compartments built right into the door for maximum freezer storage.
Get your favorite drinking glass ready—these brands are ready to help quench your thirst with standout ice makers we highly recommend to buyers.
Frigidaire Ice Maker Refrigerators
The brand with over 100 ways to organize food delivers another way to enjoy its products with ice makers on select Frigidaire refrigerator options. With the ability to produce up to three pounds of ice a day, these fridges are ideal for everyday ice needs, with single and double ice maker options across the catalog. Enjoy cubed and crushed ice on, plus PureSource Ultra II Ice & Water Filtration on upgraded fridges for ice and water that are 99.3 percent free of lead with 99.9 percent of cysts filtered from the water.
Samsung Ice Maker Refrigerators
Samsung ice maker technology is one more reason the brand is an overall buyer favorite. Basic Samsung refrigerator models with an ice maker option offer an optional removable, filtered ice maker and an automatic ice maker that creates four pounds of ice daily. On upgraded models, Ice Max and Ice Master technology produce 5.5 and 10 pounds of cubes, respectively.
LG Ice Maker Refrigerators
When it comes to the masters of the ice realm, LG sits at the top of the iceberg with exciting ice-making features everyday users and artisans alike will enjoy. LG’s ice makers go beyond the standard crushed and cubed ice with Craft Ice, signature ice spheres that melt slower and bring the pub experience home to you. Single and Dual Ice Maker options let you decide how much ice to store with up to 3.8 pounds of ice produce per bin per day. For fridges where ice demand is second to capacity, LG’s Slim SpacePlus in-door ice bin is a handy feature, clearing up freezer shelf space for easy frozen food organization.
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Here are few more pointers buyers like you are asking before shopping a refrigerator with an ice maker.
Can a fridge make ice without a water line?
Generally, when an ice maker is included on a refrigerator, a corresponding water line that connects to your kitchen’s water supply is also included. However, some models allow users to manually pour water into the ice bin to produce ice. Always read the manual to see if your model offers the option.
How does my fridge make ice?
This is the process for making ice in a freezer:
- First, the freezer needs to reach to the right temperature (usually 0 degrees).
- Once at the right setting, a sensor sends a signal to the water supply valve to open and channel water into the ice bin tray.
- After the water forms into ice cubes, they’re ejected into the bin.
- The process starts over again until the ice box is full.
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Shop Refrigerators with Ice Maker at Spencer’s
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