Best "off-the-shelf" keg fridge

Discussion in 'Home Bar' started by Wingman65, Mar 9, 2012.

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  1. Wingman65

    Wingman65 Initiate (139) Apr 3, 2002 Minnesota

    Looking on-line and have seen many brands. Don't know which ones are best but I've seen some reports on which ones are not worth looking at. Any recommendations from those of you who have them? Anything I should watch out for?
  2. cracker

    cracker Aspirant (294) May 2, 2004 Pennsylvania

    You get what you pay for. The commercial made ones (such Bev-Air and True) will last you years and years. Other brands while much cheaper can cause issues within 1-2 years or less.

    I have a Bev-Air 23 and am very happy with it. No issues at all in the 2+years I have had it.
  3. billandsuz

    billandsuz Devotee (411) Sep 1, 2004 New York

    all kegerators are "off the shelf" unless you build it yourself. which you should.

    i think for our purposes, there are only three things to consider.
    the quality/durability of the cold side, the quality of the plumbing (faucet, tower, etc), appearance. this is my opinion. you are going to have to decide what your budget is and go from there.

    avoid brands that are suspiciously cut rate. you can save alot of money but you will eventually replace the cut rate hardware with the right equipment. there is some unbelievably shitty faucets out there for example.

    the very high end brands, BevAir, True, Marvel, these will last a lifetime in a busy restaurant or bar and while nice, most people are not really going to need this level of durability. you can sometimes get a used commercial unit from your local restaurant supply or CL.

    as for appearance, fit and finish are important. again though, if you do not need stainless and ball bearing hinges you can save money with a perfectly acceptable middle of the road brand. go to the restaurant supply and kick the tires. you will see why the Home Depot kegerator is $300 and the True is $1,000. not the same appliance. there is usually no plastic in the chill box, the metal parts are heavy, the drip tray fits perfectly, there are minimal gaps and creases for mold to grow etc.

    some people around here have high end equipment and love it. others have upgraded the hardware and i think they are happy too.

    lastly, you should consider building your kegerator. not very hard. you will save alot of money and the appliance will be at least as good as any consumer kegerator. ask for help here if you like.
    homebrew311 likes this.
  4. kylep3

    kylep3 Initiate (0) Feb 1, 2012 Pennsylvania

    question, and not trying to blow up the OP's post, but say you could get a Haier kegerator on craigslist for $200, used obviously but still a working, cold kegerator, is that a good buy or do you shell out the $1k for the restaurant grade machine or build your own? to the OP: searching the classifieds is also an option.
  5. cracker

    cracker Aspirant (294) May 2, 2004 Pennsylvania

    You do what you're comfortable with and can afford. For some that's buy a kegerator for ~$200-$400 and others shelll out a bit more dough and buy a ~$1K unit. And some just say screw that, I'm going to buy a used chest freezer for under $100 and build my own keezer. To each their own....
  6. homebrew311

    homebrew311 Poo-Bah (2,190) May 19, 2008 Illinois

    I'm pretty sure you gave me a similar response when I had posted a similar question a while back. Couldn't agree with you more... I went ahead and built a keezer and had a blast doing it. The best part is that is 100% customizable.
    Chaz likes this.
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