How much does refrigerator performance matter to you? If your answer is anything north of "some," you'll want to pay attention, because the $1,800 LG LDC24370ST bottom-freezer fridge offers the best performance of any refrigerator we've tested to date. That includes high-end models like the Samsung Chef Collection fridge and LG's own LMXS30776S , which retails for about $4,000.
It's not the most eye-catching design, and the stainless steel finish is about as smudgeable as refrigerators get, but it comes packed with thoughtful, user-friendly features and plenty of storage space -- enough so to justify the price point. If you're looking for a refrigerator but don't want to spend more than two grand, this is one of the best options we've found.
At $1,800, the LG LDC24370ST is about as expensive as bottom freezer refrigerators come, but it works to justify the cost with a 24-cubic-foot capacity (bigger than any other top brand bottom freezer I could find) and more features than you might expect from such a simple-looking fridge.
That's not to say that it's an inherently huge fridge, or one that's particularly feature-rich -- French door models in the same price range will often boast bigger builds and flashier features. If fridge capacity and the sheer number of bells and whistles you get are your main motivations to buy, then one of those is almost certainly a better fit for your kitchen.
Bottom freezers aren't known for their fancy designs -- they're really just top freezers flipped upside down, with the fridge compartment up at a more comfortable height. Of course, that puts the frozen stuff down at your shins, but thankfully, this LG model utilizes a drawer-style freezer instead of one with a hinged door. That was a good call -- bottom freezers with hinged freezer doors are a real pain to get things in and out of, though they typically cost a little less. Sure enough, LG offers a very similar bottom freezer without a drawer for about $1,500.
You can also save $100 by passing on the stainless steel finish and going for the same fridge in white. That might be more of a temptation with this fridge than with others, as the stainless steel finish is about as fingerprint-prone as I've seen. Other stainless steel models like the Frigidaire FGHB2866PF offer smudge-proof finishes that are a lot easier to keep clean.
Inside of the fridge, you'll find three main shelves atop two crisper bins with adjustable humidity vents. There's also a third "Glide N' Serve" drawer that runs the width of the fridge. It pulls out smoothly, with the hinged plastic cover automatically lifting up and out of the way, and offers plenty of room for meats and cheeses, along with wide items like party platters.
In the default position, none of the three main shelves had enough vertical clearance to accommodate a jug of milk or a carton of orange juice, which seemed odd to me. Thankfully, the shelves are removed and replaced easily enough, and after repositioning the middle shelf one step higher, I had all the space I needed.
You'll find the refrigerator's temperature controls in the form of a digital touch display on the inside of the door frame. I was happy to see independent controls for the fridge and freezer compartments -- with some lower-end models, like the GE GTE18GMHES top freezer, the two compartments share a thermostat, which means you can't adjust one without adjusting the other. Not a problem with this LG model.
The door comes packed with plenty of shelf space, including shelves that are easily wide enough to fit bulky items like beer and soda. If you're trying to fit an especially tall item like a bottle of wine, the top right shelf folds up and out of the way to give you extra room. You'll also find plastic dividers in each of the main in-door shelves that slide back and forth to help you section things off -- not the most useful feature I've ever seen in a fridge, but a nice organizational touch, nonetheless.
Everything about the fridge felt sturdy and well-constructed. From the smooth-sliding Glide N' Serve drawer to the sufficiently spill-proof shelving, it's an interior that has the premium feel of something more expensive than it actually is. The stainless steel bottom freezer build is nothing terribly fancy, but if you're willing to pass on flashy French door looks, there's a lot to be happy with here.
The LDC24370ST is as strong a performer as we've seen from any fridge we've tested thus far, but to understand that claim, you need an idea of what we're looking for in our fridge performance tests.
First off, you want your fridge to be accurate. If it lets you select a specific temperature, then you want as many regions of the fridge to fall as close to that target temperature as possible. You also want those regions to be consistent with each other -- if one shelf is noticeably warmer than a neighboring one, then your milk might expire faster in one spot than in another. That's not good.
By that first metric, the LDC24370ST came through, but not with total accuracy. With the fridge set to 37 degrees F, the temperatures all averaged out a degree or two warmer over the course of a three-day test. That's close enough to be satisfying (everything in the body of the fridge stayed below 40 degrees, an FDA benchmark for food safety), but still, it isn't perfect.
It's really that second metric, the consistency from region to region, where this fridge truly shines. Take a look at those two graphs above. They're admittedly pretty wonky, but stick with me, because they actually paint a very clear picture of what's so great about this fridge.
The top graph shows the temperature of each region inside of the GE GTE18GMHES top freezer during our 72-hour test at 37 degrees. The lines are a little all over the place -- which tells you that its cooling capabilities aren't totally consistent. Even between the adjacent shelves in the main fridge compartment (those blue lines), you'll find differences of as much as two degrees. That's not bad for an $800 fridge, but it's not great, either.
Now look at the second graph. That's the LG LDC24370ST during the same 72-hour test. It's kind of a nightmare to look at, with all of the lines sitting more or less on top of each other -- but that's actually the really important part. The temperatures in each region -- even the door, drawers, and butter bin -- are all much, much closer to one another than in any other fridge we've tested. That tells us that the LDC24370ST cools with outstanding consistency, and it's the main reason I give this fridge a 9 out of 10 for performance. If that colorful cluster of lines sat about two degrees lower, right at the target temperature of 37, I'd have given it a 10.
In the GE graph, the difference between the coldest moment of the coldest region (the lowest point on the graph) and the warmest moment of the warmest region (the highest point) is nearly 14 degrees. Even if you take the butter bin out of the equation, it's still a jump of almost 11 degrees. With the LG fridge, the difference is less than 6 degrees. That's a very, very tight window for a large-capacity refrigerator.
We saw similar results when we repeated the test with the fridge set to 33 degrees. Again, the averages ran a few degrees warmer than the target temperature, but they also stayed remarkably consistent throughout each region, with no notable hot spots. It's a better result than we've seen with other bottom freezers, including the $1,200 GE Artistry refrigerator, which performed well save for a clear hot spot in the door's bottom shelf.
The freezer performance was also a strong point for LG. Like the fridge, each region held a very steady temperature, but unlike the fridge, they each sat right on the money at the target temperature of 0 degrees. That held true in both tests, with the fridge set to 37 and the fridge set to 33. That makes for the best performance we've seen from any of the freezer compartments that have made their way through our climate control chamber to date.
In addition to testing each fridge for its cooling capabilities, we make sure to take a good, close look at how well it stores groceries, both large and small. With 24 cubic feet of storage space, 16.3 of which is allocated to the fridge compartment, LG calls this refrigerator a large capacity model. Those numbers put it in a virtual tie with the largest models from GE and Kenmore, while Whirlpool's largest bottom freezer is just slightly smaller.
We start our tests with a standardized mix of common grocery items, and LG did fine here, easily accommodating all of them. Then, with the fridge more or less full, we test to see how many stress-test items we can squeeze in, too -- bulky things like a cake tray, a casserole dish, and an extra-large pizza box.
At first, we try and fit everything in without moving their shelves out of their default positions or reorganizing any of the groceries. In this test, the LG bottom freezer was able to fit four out of the six stress test items individually: the pizza box, the casserole dish, the cake tray, and a roasting pan. Since none of the shelves are terribly tall in their default positions, fitting a tall-size pitcher was a no-go, as was a bulky party platter. When I tried squeezing as much in as I could all at once, I was able to fit three of those four items at the same time (the roasting pan ended up squeezed out.)
Our final step is to repeat the large item test, except that this time we're allowed to move the groceries around and rearrange the shelves as much as we want. After creating a little more vertical space on the bottom shelf, I was able to get the pitcher in, and with the groceries shuffled around to free up space, I fit the party platter in, too.
That's six out of six items on their own, though I was only able to fit five of the six all at once -- the pizza box and party platter each fit on their own, but not at the same time. Still, I was satisfied that there wasn't anything the fridge couldn't fit outright, and that I was able to fit so much inside all at once. For most needs, I think it offers plenty of space.
The LG LDC24370ST is a simple-looking fridge that offers exceptional performance, and that's enough for me to tell you that it merits your consideration. At $1,800, it's about as expensive a bottom freezer as you'll find, but it earns the price tag with its large capacity, user-friendly features, and consistent cooling capabilities.
It's not a perfect fridge, though. At the price, I'd have liked to have seen a finish that doesn't smudge quite so easily, and maybe a more unique build. The $1,200 GE Artistry bottom freezer hits both of those points with style to spare, and might be worth a look for design-minded shoppers. That said, if it's performance that matters most, then the LG LDC24370ST belongs at the top of your list.