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GE vs. Whirlpool Refrigerators: 7 Key Differences & How to Choose

Are you shopping for a new refrigerator but need help deciding between GE and Whirlpool?

What are the differences? How do they compare across categories like price, warranty, reliability, features, technology, design, and more?

In this comparison of GE vs. Whirlpool refrigerators, I answer these questions. Plus, I share what appliance repair professionals say about both brands.

By the end, you’ll be able to confidently decide which is best for your kitchen.


Use the links below to navigate the comparison:


Difference 1: Reliability

Reliability is one of the most important factors when choosing between GE and Whirlpool refrigerators.

I recently conducted a study to determine the most and least reliable fridge brands.

To determine the winners, I interviewed several appliance repair companies, analyzed hundreds of customer testimonials, and reviewed service rate data across the industry. Fortunately, both brands received high ratings.

Four of the seven appliance repair professionals I interviewed said Whirlpool is one of the most reliable refrigerator brands, and only one said it’s not. Three of the seven called out GE as one of the most reliable brands, while one said to avoid it.

The table below summarizes the responses I got from each company. And below the table are the direct quotes. As you’ll see in their responses, both GE and Whirlpool are not only reliable, but it’s easy to find replacement parts when issues arise.

BrandVotes for Most Reliable RefrigeratorVotes for Least Reliable Refrigerator
Whirlpool41
GE31
KitchenAid31
Bosch20
Maytag20
Jenn Air10
LG06
Samsung07
Frigidaire02
Electrolux01
Blomberg01
Beko01

The appliance service team at Hunter Appliance in Littleton, Massachusetts, said, “We tend to see the lowest service call rates on Bosch, GE and KitchenAid French door fridges, and the highest on Samsung, LG, and Frigidaire.”

Appliance Services, LLC in Epping, New Hampshire, said, “We suggest Whirlpool. Not because they’re better but because everyone will service them, including us. As a rule of thumb: the fewer bells and whistles, the better.”

The service technician at Another Cycle Appliance Repair, Inc. in Londonderry, New Hampshire, said, “We recommend Whirlpool, Maytag, and KitchenAid refrigerators — those brands are the most reliable.”

Harrison Refrigeration & Appliances in Hyde Park, Massachusetts, said, “GE, GE Profile, and Bosch are the most reliable refrigerator brands. These brands are built more sturdy, the parts are generally in stock, and they offer better customer service. KitchenAid, Jenn Air, Maytag, and Whirlpool are also reliable, but their customer service has declined lately, and parts are often on backorder.”

Ray’s Appliance in Taunton, Massachusetts, said, “The brand we recommend above all others is GE. They have the best service and parts availability of all of the brands we carry. Samsung lacks parts availability and local service companies, and as a result, we elect not to sell the brand.”

The expert at United Appliance Parts in Schenectady, New York, said, “Most refrigerators are about the same right now. The only brands I don’t recommend are Samsung and LG because they are more expensive on parts and harder to get parts for.”

Hub Appliance in Boston, Massachusetts, said,  “Stay away from LG, Samsung, and GE. Whirlpool refrigerators are the most reliable. Fancy models have fancy (and expensive) problems.”

Another valuable report to read when shopping for appliances is Yale Appliance’s annual reliability report. Yale is an appliance sales and service company that’s been in business since 1923. Each year they publish reports that show the Service Rate of each brand.

Service Rate is calculated by dividing the number of service calls by the units sold. So if they sell 2000 GE fridges, and 20 of those units need service within the first year, the GE service rate is 10%.

As you can see in the data below from the three most recent reports, GE Profile has the 5th best service rate, and GE Appliance refrigerators came in sixth place. Unfortunately, Yale doesn’t sell Whirlpool refrigerators, so it’s not included in the report.

While this data is helpful, take it with a grain of salt. Service rate varies by model and can be highly volatile as sales volume fluctuates. Also, since they don’t sell Whirlpool, we don’t know how their service rate compares to GE.

Refrigerator BrandService Rate 2023Service Rate 2022Service Rate 2021
Fisher & Paykel5.0%N/AN/A
LG6.9%4.5%27.8%
Café Appliances9.9%12.6%21.9%
Bosch10.7%14.9%16.9%
GE Profile16.5%10.2%22.8%
GE Appliances19.6%16.5%12.21%
KitchenAid25.5%17.0%21.6%
Beko25.9%32.6%18.1%
SamsungN/A8.4%20.9%
JennAirN/A15.8%36.7%
*Yale didn’t sell enough Samsung or JennAir refrigerators to include them in the most recent report.

Overall, GE and Whirlpool are two of the most reliable refrigerator brands. Some appliance repair professionals recommend GE, while others see fewer issues with Whirlpool. According to Yale’s report, the latest GE Profile fridges are more reliable than GE Appliance fridges.

Difference 2: Price

When comparing similar models, GE and Whirlpool are competitively priced, and neither extends too far beyond the other for affordability.

GE offers more entry-level refrigerator models than Whirlpool. GE has 117 models listed under $2,000, while Whirlpool has 65.

On the high-end side of the price scale, GE offers 14 options over $3,000, while Whirlpool has only three above that mark. GE Profile is the brand’s higher-end appliance line. These fridges have a sleeker design with more features but a higher price tag.

GE Profile Refrigerator
GE Profile Refrigerator

The key point is that GE offers more options across all price ranges.

PriceGE Refrigerator ModelsWhirlpool Refrigerator Models
Under $2,00011765
$2,001 to $2,500103
$2,501 to $3000176
$3,001 to $3,50082
$3,501 to $4,00051
Over $4,00111
Note: The number of models includes color and finish variations. This data was pulled from GEappliances.com and Whirlpool.com. Prices and models are subject to change.

Difference 3: Warranty

Whirlpool and GE offer different types of warranties. GE’s warranty varies depending on the model type and extends up to 12 years from purchase, and Whirlpool’s warranty applies to all of its refrigerators and covers units for five years.

GE offers a one-year warranty if the fridge fails due to a defect in materials or workmanship if it has a capacity greater than 6.6 cubic feet.

The warranty length varies depending on the sealed system from 1 year onwards. A two-year warranty is offered for GE’s 42- and 48-inch built-in models, which covers the cost of repairs for any part that fails to operate.

GE will cover parts and labor for one year for compact refrigerators.

The company offers varying warranties on the sealed systems (compressor, condenser, evaporator, connecting tubing), depending on the model.

GE Profile and 42- and 48-inch built-in fridges come with a five-year warranty on the sealed system, including labor. From years six to 12, GE’s warranty only covers the cost of replacement parts, not labor.

Whirlpool offers a more straightforward guarantee, with a one-year warranty on all refrigerator parts (including labor costs) except the water filters and a five-year warranty on the sealed system.

There is a 30-day limited warranty for the water filter components on models with a water filter.

I know this can be confusing, so here is a chart that outlines the specifics of each of the warranty types:

Warranty PeriodGE*Whirlpool
30 DaysReplacement of defective water filter parts (labor not included) N/A
One YearFull replacement for any part that fails due to a defect in materials or workmanshipFull replacement for any part that fails due to a defect in materials or workmanship
Five YearsFull replacement of any part of the sealed refrigeration system (compressor, condenser, evaporator, and tubing)Full replacement of any part of the sealed refrigeration system (compressor, condenser, evaporator, and tubing)
Years Six – TenFor GE Profile 42- and 48-inch built-in fridges: Full replacement of any part of the sealed refrigeration systemN/A
LifetimeReplacement of extension slides (parts only)N/A
* All GE models except PSB42LSR, PSB42LGR, GMR02BAN, GMR04AAM, and GMR06AAP

Difference 4: Features

GE offers a few additional features that Whirlpool fridges do not, but both offer enough to operate correctly.

Some of the additional features GE fridges have include:

  • Dispenser lights
  • LED walls
  • Flat back designs

Of the two brands, GE is the only one that offers garage-ready fridges.

The chart below provides a side-by-side comparison of each brand’s features. You don’t get all of these features with every model, but this gives you an idea of what’s available across both brands.

FeatureExplanationGEWhirlpool
Ice and water dispensersUsually located on the front of the fridge
Dispenser lightDispenser lights allow you to see how much water you’re putting into the cup at night
Hidden HingesHinges are concealed inside the refrigerator, giving the appliance a seamless look
Reversible door hingeReversible door hinges let you change the swing direction of the fridge doors to fit your kitchen layout
LED lightsEnergy-efficient LED lights illuminate the inside of the fridge
WheelsWheels are located on the bottom, making it easier to move
Door alarmWhen you accidentally leave the fridge door open, an alarm will sound
Child lockChild lock disables the front control panel, preventing children from changing the temperature and disabling/enabling the ice maker
Sabbath modeDisables the lights, door alarms, and dispenser in observance of the Sabbath and other Jewish holidays
Smudge-proofSmudge-proof refrigerators won’t have unsightly finger smudges when you touch the door or handle
Digital temperature controlThe digital temperature controls on the front of the fridge let you adjust the temperature with the push of a button
Door within doorDoor-in-door fridges have an outer door and an inner door. You can grab items from the outer compartment without letting out cold air from the inner compartment
Flat-back designFlat-back fridges do not have any raised areas on the back, allowing them to sit against a wall without any gaps
Garage readyDesigned to maintain the proper temperature, even in extreme heat and cold
LED wallBrighter LED lights along the entire back wall

Difference 5: Technology

In terms of technology, GE offers more add-ons, while Whirlpool builds reliable appliances with fewer bells and whistles.

Most GE refrigerators come with these smart tech integrations:

  • Remote Control: GE has developed an app called SmartHQ, which allows users to control the fridge’s temperature, turn the icemaker on and off, enable Sabbath mode, and schedule hot water for their morning coffee, among other things.
  • Alerts: The SmartHQ app will also send notifications when the fridge needs maintenance or action, like when the water filter needs to be replaced, the fridge temperature is high, or the fridge door is left open.
  • TurboCool and TurboFreeze: These modes allow you to rapidly cool the fridge or freezer after you put hot items inside or open the door frequently.
  • Built-in Keurig: Some GE models have a built-in coffee machine, a great space saver for kitchens with limited counter space. Thanks to the remote control capabilities of the SmartHQ app, you can time the brewing of your coffee, so it is ready when you wake up.
  • Autofill: When you press the autofill button on the water dispenser, it automatically fills your glass or bottle with the right amount.

GE has fewer smart features than LG and Samsung, but it has far more than Whirlpool.

Whirlpool doesn’t make smart refrigerators, but it offers smart ovens and laundry machines, so they’re likely coming in the future. But for now, the company is sticking to its reliable fridge construction with limited additional features.

Difference 6: Models and Options

Whirlpool and GE offer dozens of refrigerator models, but the number of options across each color and style differs.

The chart below highlights the key differences. Whirlpool distinguishes itself by offering a freezer-less model that GE does not. GE provides more colors, including slate, black slate, and silver.

Colors/Finish:

ColorNumber of GE FridgesNumber of Whirlpool Fridges
Stainless Steel5749
Black2933
White3432
Slate190
Black Slate60
Black Stainless29
Silver20
Bisque26
Model counts are based on GEappliance.com and Whirlpool.com and are subject to change.

Type:

TypeNumber of GE FridgesNumber of Whirlpool Fridges
French Door4211
Side by Side2916
Top Freezer6122
Bottom Freezer506
Freezerless01
Model counts are based on GEappliance.com and Whirlpool.com and are subject to change.

Difference 7: Top-Rated Models

Both GE and Whirlpool have extensive catalogs of refrigerators. But to get to know each brand better, let’s review the details about two of their top-rated models.

GE

The GE French Door Refrigerator is a french door fridge with a bottom freezer. It is available in four colors: black, white, fingerprint-resistant slate, or fingerprint-resistant stainless steel. It has an internal water dispenser and built-in ice maker and boasts 27 cubic feet of space. Smart features include Turbo Cool and Turbo Freeze settings to restore optimal temperatures and a door alarm to ensure the fridge is never left open.

The GE Side-by-Side Refrigerator is an upright fridge with a freezer on one side and fridge on the other. It is available in five colors: bisque, black, white, fingerprint-resistant slate, or fingerprint-resistant stainless steel. It also has integrated water and ice machines and an external dispenser, so you don’t have to open the fridge to get water or ice. This fridge has an electronic display showing you real-time data on the fridge’s internal temperature. It features a door alarm, adaptive defrost, and Sabbath mode.

Whirlpool

The Whirlpool French Door fridge is a unique french door fridge. It has an additional exterior fridge drawer for most used items and a bottom freezer, which allows the main fridge to retain its temperature if you need to open the drawer often. It is available in two fingerprint-resistant colors: black stainless or stainless steel. This fridge features an external dispenser for integrated water and ice machines. The outside display offers convenient tap-touch temperature controls to set the temperature without opening the door. Finally, this model offers 24.5 cubic feet of storage space.

The Whirlpool Bottom Freezer is a single-door fridge with a bottom freezer available in four colors: black, fingerprint-resistant stainless black, stainless steel, or white. This fridge doesn’t offer many tech integrations beyond the built-in ice maker, but it is a solid appliance priced reasonably for the cost-conscious consumer.

Whirlpool refrigerator on display
Whirlpool bottom freezer refrigerator on display

What Others Say About GE and Whirlpool Refrigerators

Both GE and Whirlpool have made appearances on popular review sites. In this section, I summarize what other experts say about each brand.

The New York Times Wirecutter identified GE as the refrigerator brand with better customer service. The reviewers also named Whirlpool the brand with fewer features but fewer complaints.

Insider.com named Whirlpool the best refrigerator overall, attributing the honor to solid components and reliability. GE was also featured on Insider’s list. It was called the best cheap refrigerator for its 17.5-cubic-foot Top-Freezer fridge that costs under $1,000.

The Spruce awarded GE one of the eight best refrigerator brands, citing its reliability, innovation, and warranties as contributing factors to its ranking. They did highlight some issues with GE that they didn’t like, which included the prices and the fact that the repair fleet isn’t available in some states.

GE appeared three times on Popular Mechanics’ best refrigerators list, claiming titles of best overall for its french door refrigerator, best bottom freezer, and best top freezer. Whirlpool was also given a shout-out in the rankings for its generous capacity and well-designed space in its french door refrigerator.

Reader’s Digest awarded GE the honor of best side-by-side refrigerator, and Whirlpool claimed the title of the best budget refrigerator. GE’s pros included affordable pricing, energy efficiency, external water and ice dispenser, and a range of color selections. Whirlpool’s pros included the price (below $750), plenty of interior space, and a compact exterior for small apartment kitchens.

Bottom Line: Should You Buy a GE or Whirlpool Refrigerator?

Now that you know how GE and Whirlpool refrigerators differ in features, technology, warranties, reliability, price, and colors, it’s time to decide which brand is right for your home.

Before you make your decision, let’s recap the most important points:

  • Both brands are praised for their reliability, parts availability, and customer service. Four of the seven repair professionals I interviewed recommended GE, while three recommended Whirlpool.
  • GE and Whirlpool are competitively priced, but GE offers more models across the mid and higher-end price ranges.
  • 42″ and 48″ built-in GE fridges have the best warranties, with coverage on all parts for two years and the sealed system for 12 years. Whirlpool offers a warranty that covers all fridges in their catalog for one year on all parts and five years on the sealed system.
  • GE fridges have smart integrations, like Turbo Cool and Freeze, a built-in Keurig machine, and remote management via a mobile app. Whirlpool fridges have basic functions but no built-in smart tech.

Ultimately, both GE and Whirlpool are reliable refrigerator brands. They don’t come with as many bells and whistles as brands like Samsung and LG, but you get sturdy appliances that will last.

Since reliability is essentially a tie, the two most important things to consider are features and price. With GE, you can opt for additional perks like water dispenser lights, door-in-door, and flat-back design. Plus, you can manage your fridge remotely with the SmartHQ app.

Whirlpool focuses on the basics, offering simple but affordable fridges. A handful of high-end Whirlpool fridges exist, but most models are built with budget-conscious consumers in mind.

My best advice is to decide which features you need and then compare the costs of the models that include those features across both brands. The good news is that whichever you choose, you’re getting a brand that will last, and finding replacement parts is relatively easy when something goes wrong.

Andrew Palermo Founder of Prudent Reviews

Andrew Palermo - About the Author

Andrew is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Prudent Reviews. He began his career in marketing, managing campaigns for dozens of Fortune 500 brands. In 2018, Andrew founded Prudent Reviews and has since reviewed 600+ products. When he’s not testing the latest cookware, kitchen knives, and appliances, he’s spending time with his family, cooking, and doing house projects. Connect with Andrew via emailLinkedIn, or the Prudent Reviews YouTube channel.

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