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LG LFC22770ST 22 Cu Ft Largest Capacity 30" French Door review: Cramped style limits LG's fine performing fridge

LG trimmed a lot off of its French door fridge to make it space-conscious and budget-friendly, but kept the performance intact.

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Andrew Gebhart
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Andrew Gebhart

Senior Producer

Andrew loves writing about cool, futuristic technology. He's reviewed everything from vacuum cleaners to beer brewing robots in pursuit of the perfect smart home. He wants the smart home to make him feel powerful, and it's getting there.

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14 min read

For once, an LG fridge didn't make it through our review process smelling like roses. Both its $4,000 door-in-door and its $1,800 bottom freezer model outclassed most refrigerators from other companies of similar type and cost. The LG LFC22770ST aims to dominate yet another fridge group -- low-end French doors.

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6.8

LG LFC22770ST 22 Cu Ft Largest Capacity 30" French Door

The Good

The LG LFC22770ST packs a basic, but helpful assortment of features into its compact frame. LG didn't skimp on performance in making this French door model more budget-friendly.

The Bad

Due to rigid shelf placement, this French door fridge feels more cramped than necessary. You'll run out of space quickly and have a hard time finding a spot for tall items.

The Bottom Line

The LG LFC22770ST performs well enough to be worth your consideration if you're looking for a small French door fridge, but you can find fridges that cost less and make better use of limited space.

At $1,800 it's budget-friendly for a French door model. With a 30-inch width, it also brings the premium feel of a French door fridge to those with limited space. It's just not able to best the $1,600 GE GNS23GMHES French door model . Both do well with temperature consistency, with GE gaining a slight edge, but the LG doesn't give a lot of options for shelf placement on the LFC22770ST.

It's a small fridge that feels small. GE's model escapes that trap with a more customizable, better-designed fridge interior. If you have room for the GE GNS23GMHES's 33 inch width, I'd recommend that fridge over the competent but clumsy LG LFC22770ST.

Get cozy with LG's fun-sized French door fridge (pictures)

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A horse of a standard color

The LG LFC22770ST does its part to look like a typical premium fridge, but therein lies the problem. It's too typical. It makes sense that it doesn't stand out as much as LG's $4,000 French Door model, but the $1,600 GE GNS23GMHES uses a Slate finish to be distinctive for less.

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It looks fine and inoffensive, if average. Tyler Lizenby/CNET

It doesn't look bad, by any means. The stainless finish gives it a pleasant sheen, unbroken on the outer front save for the logo and the curved handles. The silver steel smudges more easily than GE's Slate coloring or Frigidaire's smudge-proof variation on stainless used on both its $1,000 FGTR1845QF and $2,600 FGHB2866PF9A , so if you buy this LG fridge, be sure to stock up on stainless-specific cleaners.

The gentle outer curve of the fridge's front panel doesn't save it from looking like yet another big silver box. Still, it's inoffensive and has a high-end look. It's just a generic high-end look.

It's what's inside that counts

Open the French doors, and the interior has a similar familiarity. Few fridge interiors stand out with looks, though, so the all white inner surface and bright LEDs shining down from the top work well enough. It strikes a friendly, welcoming tone.

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The friendly confines. Tyler Lizenby/CNET

You won't find the folding shelves or custom temp drawer of LG's more high-end models, but the LG LFC22770ST does include four half-width spill-proof shelves, humidity sliders on the two fruit and vegetable drawers with an additional full-width shelf forming their ceiling, and a full-width deli drawer called a "Glide N' Serve Drawer" at the bottom of the compartment.

On the left door, you'll find three movable bins and a small immovable compartment at the bottom. The right door has that same small bin, two movable bins and a butter bin at the top.

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The shelves handle spills well. Tyler Lizenby/CNET

The spill-proof shelves work well. We see how easy it is to clean up a mess in our of our fridges by dumping an 8 ounce glass of water on the top shelf and seeing how far down it drips. The LG LFC22770ST gained top marks by not letting a drop over the sides during the initial dump or the cleanup.

At the top of the fridge, the flat panel controls feel sparse, but are responsive and intuitive. Green LCDs show the current set temp for both the fridge and the freezer, there's a button letting you scroll through the ranges for each, as well as a button to control a door alarm, and one called "Ice Plus" to put the automatic icemaker into high gear.

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Simple controls. Tyler Lizenby/CNET

Ice, ice baby

That icemaker sits in the upper left corner of the freezer, and can holds 6 pounds of cubes, producing at a reasonable rate of 3 pounds a day. You can turn the icemaker on or off with a simple switch just above the bin.

The bin sits in a cozy spot on the freezer's only shelf. LG calls that all-white full-width shelf a drawer, since the front of it is closed in by a plastic cover with a handle, but nothing encloses the top, so we'll have to agree to disagree. Beneath the shelf, the main bin of the freezer uses the rest of the space well. A single divider splits the deep white plastic compartment front to back, and you can scoot it side-to-side to separate the space as you see fit.

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The freezer keeps things simple, but includes a sizable ice bin. Tyler Lizenby/CNET

That bin pulls out with the drawer-style freezer door. For any unit with the freezer on the bottom, I much prefer a drawer over a hinged door , as the latter makes accessing your frozen food more ergonomically tedious. Generally, freezer drawers cost a little more, but it's a price I recommend paying and I'm glad this model includes the upgrade. The handle for the freezer makes things even easier to maneuver by gently pivoting upward as you pull on it.

Minor stumbles

The freezer's shelf glides a little too easily on its rails, and slides out over the lower bin when you open the door. I found it annoying to have to push the shelf back in every time you open the freezer and want to reach food in the main compartment. The shelf has a handle; I'd have preferred it stay put when I open the door and wait for me to pull it out when I needed it.

The fridge also has a minor annoyance with the door, though this one has the potential to be worse than a nitpick over time. Most French door fridges have a mullion attached to one of the doors which helps to create a seal between them when shut. It's the part that flattens out parallel to the doors when the fridges are shut, and swings perpendicular to them when open.

A small knob sticking out from the top of the mullion usually slides into and out of a rail at the top of the fridge to guide it open and closed. The mullion on this LG fridge plays by the same rules, but the opening of the rail isn't narrow enough to ensure the part goes perfectly perpendicular to the left door every time it opens.

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The mullion can jam on the wire rail you can see behind it. Tyler Lizenby/CNET

Most of the time, the doors still work fine, but over the course of our testing, that mullion didn't open properly several times, and its knob would then slam on the rail when we tried to shut the door, as opposed to sliding into it.

If you shut the door gently, it'll still sound and look like you've shut it all the way. That could cause you to accidentally leave your fridge open for an extended period of time without knowing it. Alternatively, if you shut the door with force, the mullion whacking its rail repeatedly could be a durability concern. It's a simple issue to fix once you notice it, but one that could have long term durability implications.

Availability

Door issues aside, the freezer takes up 7.3 cubic feet of the 21.8 cubic total, and it does well to keep things simple with just enough storage options to be helpful but not get in the way. The fridge holds the other 14.5 cubic feet, and includes an adequate mix of basic but helpful features.

You can purchase the LG LFC22770ST from Home Depot, Best Buy, Amazon, Sears and other major appliance dealers. The LG site can direct you to retailers in your area. The MSRP is $1,800, but you can find it for closer to $1,400 at the stores listed above.

Similar models are available overseas. The US price converts to approximately £1,159 and AU$2,281.

Searching for space

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Things got cramped quickly when we tried to load the fridge with food. Tyler Lizenby/CNET

At first glance, LG looks to have smartly trimmed the LFC22770ST for the sake of space and cost, but the interior of the fridge became much less pleasant to me once I started trying to load it up with food. Most of this fridge makes sense to me, but I can't figure out why LG so severely limited the number of spots where you can put your fridge shelves.

Each one has to stay on its respective side. The inner part of the half shelves have hooks that go into slots at the back of the fridge, the outer part slides onto a rail, so you can't switch them around and do three shelves on the right and one on the left.

Additionally, you only have four possible slots for those hooks, so you can really only move each shelf one step up or down short of removing them entirely. As a result, when we started to load food into the fridge, we had a lot of trouble finding spots for tall items.

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With evenly spaced shelves, the milk wouldn't fit in the main body of the fridge. Tyler Lizenby/CNET

We use an assortment of groceries to put the space of each of our fridges to the test. We don't take the listed cubic feet at face value. Some models use space more efficiently than others and are able to fit more food as a result.

On the first round of our test, we keep the shelves spaced evenly from top to bottom, then fill the fridge with everyday groceries such as jugs of milk, bottles of soda, condiments, snacks and veggies. We avoid stacking items or placing them too close together on this round; doing so isn't great for air circulation in the fridge, and something to avoid during day-to-day use.

We also try to place milk jugs in the main compartment, since the doors of lots of fridges run warm. We aim to place veggies in a drawer, dog food separate from human food, and condiments on the door. In round one, the LG LFC22770ST struggled with these basic groceries.

The milk had nowhere to go in the main compartment, and our two jugs took up two door bins. That led to us not having enough space in the door for the condiments, and we had to lay a couple of our taller bottles of sandwich fixings on the shelves of the main fridge. In turn, those shelves didn't have enough room for everything else without stacking and cramming a few items.

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Even with everyday groceries, the fridge was stuffed. Tyler Lizenby/CNET

Round one was only partly over -- we use large items like party platters and cake trays to push the space even further after loading the normal groceries -- but already the space felt overfull.

The comparable GE GNS23GMHES didn't have a lot of room to spare after we loaded the normal groceries. It even had the same trouble with tall items on round one -- we still had to load the milk bottles in the door -- but we were able to fit the condiments in the door with the milk jugs on GE's fridge.

The GE model also felt less cramped when it came time for our large items. We try to fit each of our six stress test items individually, then see how many the fridge can fit simultaneously. The LG fridge fit the pizza box, the casserole dish, and the cake tray one at a time, and the latter two together. It couldn't fit the party tray, the roasting pan, or the pitcher.

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Our six stress test items. Tyler Lizenby/CNET

GE fit four of the six individually. It wasn't deep enough to fit the pizza box, and couldn't squeeze in the cake tray. It also fit two of the six at the same time. GE won the round based on a more ideal food layout of the normal groceries and fitting one extra large item individually.

Outside of French door offerings, the $1,000 Frigidaire FGTR1845QF top freezer and the $1,200 GE ABE20EGHBS Artistry bottom freezer both have 30-inch wide frames and less cubic feet with 18 and 20.3 respectively, but they fit more food on this test. Both squeezed in five of the six items one at a time. The Frigidaire fit two and the GE fit three simultaneously. The LG French door model didn't suffer because of its width.

On round two, we're allowed to move the shelves as we sit fit to try to make the most of the space. Here's where I discovered how limited this LG fridge really was. You don't have the options for customization that we've seen on other models from that company, or even other models of a similar price from different companies. The GE GNS23GMHES costs less, and offers a lot more flexibility.

With the LG LFC22770ST, we put both shelves on the bottom position and were just able to fit the milk on the top row. That's an acceptable spot, but still not an ideal one since it's right next to the fridge's fan. The cold air blowing directly onto the milk could cause it to freeze. More troubling is the fact that we really didn't have any other options.

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Without removing any shelves, the tallest gap we could create was just enough for a jug of milk. Tyler Lizenby/CNET

If you want this fridge, I recommend setting one of the half shelves aside. That should relieve some of the logjam, but it's too bad that you have to find storage for one of your fridge pieces and lose a good deal of shelf space in order to comfortably fit tall items.

For our tests, we keep all shelves in the compartment, and we still couldn't fit soda bottles or wine bottles on any shelf. The deli drawer, while a nice add on, actually hurts the fridge here, as it takes up some of the possible height.

That said, with the milk bottles in the main compartment, we were able to fit the condiments in the door and get the rest of the groceries in the fridge more easily. It still looked full when it came time to squeeze in large items, but not crammed.

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We still managed to squeeze in several stress test items. Tyler Lizenby/CNET

It did, however, have enough nooks and crannies for us to cram in all six stress test items individually, and four simultaneously. The GE GNS23GMHES still wasn't deep enough to fit the pizza box, but it fit all five other items and four simultaneously. The LG gained a slight edge on the numbers, but GE's model was much easier to use and fit everything more comfortably.

The GE Artistry fit all six stress test items individually, and an impressive five out of six together. The Frigidaire top freezer got all six in as well, but only three of the six simultaneously. Both prove that with proper shelf flexibility and room for tall items, you can do more with less.

GE's budget French door fridge has 22.7 total cubic feet of space in the fridge with 15.8 in the fridge. The LG LFC22770ST isn't much smaller at 21.8 and 14.5 in the fridge, yet it feels much more cramped, even more so than the 20.3 cubic feet of the GE Artistry or the 18 of the Frigidaire top freezer.

I don't imagine you rearrange your fridge shelves often, but when you first get the fridge, you'll want to set up your space to best fit the items you buy the most, and with the LG LFC22770ST, you don't have many options.

High-end cooling

Some aspects of the LG LFC22770ST do get noticeably hurt by LG's efforts to streamline the fridge. Fortunately, performance doesn't fall into that category. The LG LFC22770ST still gets bested by the GE GNS23GMHES, but only barely so. The previous LG fridges we've tested have shown extremely well in our temperature tests, and here, the LG LFC22770ST stays right with them and shines.

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The main body of the fridge maintained accurate temps. Tyler Lizenby/CNET

On our first temperature test, we set the fridge to 37 degrees Fahrenheit and the freezer to 0. That's the recommended default setting across the industry. We place thermocouples on every shelf and in every compartment, then we let it run for three straight days, gathering data and opening the doors regularly to simulate use.

The accuracy of the main body of the LG LFC22770ST looks great, with the shelves a degree or less from the set point. The drawers weren't quite as on-point, but still stayed consistently below our upper benchmark -- 40 degrees Fahrenheit, the number given by the FDA for maintaining spoilable foods. You'll want to keep fragile items below that. After 2 hours above it consecutively, or 4 hours over the course of the life of a food, the FDA recommends tossing it.

Beyond the averages, we also look for the ebb and flow of the temperatures in our fridges. They'll all see some fluctuation, but better ones keep a mostly steady hand throughout the test. The LG LFC22770ST succeeds here too.

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Other than the top shelf and the butter bin, the fridge temps stay nice and steady. Jared Hannah/CNET

The butter bin and the top shelf show a bit of discrepancy between their respective peaks and valleys. Again, the top shelf sits next to the cold air fan, so it gets hit first when the compressor turns on. Then, the cold air sinks and the temp rises before the thermostat triggers the next cycle.

The butter bin sits across from the top shelf, and is generally the warmest part of any fridge. That's intentional, so you can put toppings in that compartment to make them more spreadable.

Performance-wise, the top shelf fluctuation isn't an issue. It's pretty normal. It just added to my frustration when loading the fridge since that's the only spot where I could fit milk in the main compartment. That said, it never drops below 32 or climbs above 40.

In fact, all of the shelves and drawers in the main compartment do well to stay between these marks. That bottom right drawer has an average that would suggest it spends time over 40. Fortunately, it maintains great stability and spent less than an hour over that mark during the course of the 72 hour test.

The doors run warm, but that's typical of fridges, and we why recommend saving those bins for condiments. When we turned the temperature down, the door bins found a comfortable spot under 40. For round 2, our fridges spend three days with the temp turned to its lowest setting. For most refrigerators, including this one, that mark is 33 degrees Fahrenheit. The freezer stays at 0.

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The averages weren't quite as accurate at 33, but they still stayed within the usable range. Tyler Lizenby/CNET

Every compartment stayed between 40 and 32 for the entire duration of this test. That's a great result. Unfortunately, the accuracy took a hit. The GE GNS23GMHES did better on this test by averaging closer to the set point. The LG one plays it safe and keeps everything far away from that lower 32 degree benchmark. That's understandable, just not perfect if you want some extra chill to your food.

LG packed great performance prowess into the LFC22770ST. It keeps temperature steadily and mostly accurately, putting it in the top tier of performers from any fridge category and at any price range. It does get edged out by the GE GNS23GMHES due to a familiar shortcoming -- the LG LFC22770ST lacks flexibility.

It's great at the default, and keeps things within a usable range at multiple settings, but it doesn't let you stray from the standard as far as you might like. For most, that'll be a non-issue, but it makes it that much harder to look past the competition.

The verdict

LG cut quite a bit from the brand's premium French door fridges to get the price down on the $1,800 LFC22770ST. That's reasonable, and a number of the sacrifices make sense. If you're looking for an entry point into French door fridges and have strict space restrictions, the 30-inch LG LFC22770ST will perform well for you temperature-wise, and is worth your consideration.

Just expect a few frustrations when you try to load in a lot of groceries, particularly tall items. If it's price, not space that's your primary concern, the 33-inch GE GNS23GMHES looks more distinct, performs slightly better, and offers better shelf flexibility so you can fit more food, and all for $200 less. If you need a fridge with a 30-inch width, consider the stylish GE Artistry bottom freezer , or the simple but competent Frigidaire top freezer . Between the performance, the good-looking stainless finish, and the spill-proof shelves, the LG LFC22770ST can make due with tight spaces, it's just not flexible enough to rise above them.

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6.8

LG LFC22770ST 22 Cu Ft Largest Capacity 30" French Door

Score Breakdown

Features 7Design 7Performance 8Usability 5