Fridge temperatures run a bit hot
It's only appropriate, then, that Kenmore's new upscale-yet-accessible Pro line features a counter-depth fridge. In fact, the Kenmore Pro 79993 (MSRP $4,499.99) is one of the best out there. Yes, it has a high MSRP, but we found it online for $2,999. That's still expensive, but if design, performance and efficient storage matter to you, it's worth every penny.
The elegant, minimalist exterior houses a cantilevered four-bottle wine rack, a slim door-mounted ice maker, and an airtight crisper drawer ideal for storing fresh greens. But even more importantly, this fridge offers consistent temperatures needed to preserve anything from locally sourced fruits to imported cheeses. If you want the look, feel, and performance of a luxury refrigerator but don't want to pay thousands more for a built-in, this Kenmore Pro is the appliance for you.
The James Bond of fridges
Elegant, reserved, and attractive are all words that describe what may be the most stylish Kenmore we’ve ever tested. Part of the new Kenmore Pro lineup, it's built by LG and based on a similar Kenmore Elite—but with a more upscale fit and finish.
As is the case with all new Kenmore refrigerators, the Sears-exclusive brand has kept the outside of this fridge as simple as possible: The only controls on the front are crushed vs. cubed ice settings for the dispenser which disappear when not in use. Handles are sturdy without going too industrial, and inside, bright LED lights highlight the shallow but accessible interior. The rest of the controls—like digital displays for fridge and freezer temperature—are found along the top edge of the main cavity, and are hidden when the doors are closed..
In addition to typical features like the door-mounted ice maker and retractable shelf, this Kenmore also has some luxurious perks. The space-saving four-bottle wine rack is a convenient addition, and the door shelves come with dishwasher-safe rubber mats for easier cleaning. You also get an Ultra Ice mode for quick cube creation, a control lock, and a full-width pantry drawer that can be set to one of three temperature categories: Meat, Deli, or Produce.
The 79993 also includes one of Kenmore’s Airtight crisper drawers. In every fridge we've tested that has them, we've been impressed by how well these crispers retain moisture and, therefore, preserve produce.
Down below, the basic drawer freezer comes with what looks like an ice bucket at first glance, but no secondary ice maker exists to fill it. This is really just an organizational tool, useful for storing ice packs or loose bagged items like frozen veggies.
In our experience, counter-depth fridges tend to run warm. That's because their smaller interiors can lose a lot of cold air when the doors open. The Kenmore 79993 is no exception. Our sensors recorded averages of 39.36°F at the top of the main fridge compartment, 39.94°F in the middle, and 40.85°F at the bottom.
That's nothing to worry about in terms of food safety—but if you're a stickler about a fridge hitting 37ºF at its coldest shelf, we found temperatures were similarly warm throughout the different regions of the compartment. A simple two-degree adjustment of the thermostat will solve the problem. Over time, temperatures fluctuated by an average of just ±0.18°F in the fridge compartment, which is excellent.
The freezer scored even better, with average temps of -1.76°F at the top and 0.38°F near the bottom. Consistency could've been better (we measured that the cooler areas could fluctuate by as much as ±0.9°F over time), but none of these results make us worry about freezer burn.
For our moisture retention test, we opted for the 79993’s Airtight Crisper to see just how well this fridge could do. We were certainly not disappointed.
After 72 hours and carefully curated measurements, we found the Kenmore’s specialized drawer lost only 0.06 grams of moisture per hour. No other crisper (including this one's second drawer) has ever come close to the Airtight's results. Delicate greens, you've met your match.
Test results? Best results.
Looks and features aside, the 79993 did a great job preserving food in our lab tests. Temperatures were mostly consistent throughout the entire appliance, energy efficiency was commendable, and freezing times were nice and short.
We reserve special praise for this model's Airtight Crisper. The specialized drawer retains more moisture than any other crisper design we’ve ever tested, making this an exceptional fridge for salad lovers.
With default settings, the fridge compartment does run a few degrees too warm at 40°F. Fortunately, the whole compartment is equally warm from top to bottom, so just turn down the thermostat a few degrees to fix this.
For in-depth performance information, please visit the Science Page.
Freezing times were acceptable. After placing our sensors inside the Kenmore’s freezer, they chilled from room temperature down to 32°F in about 1 hour 26 minutes. We’ve seen faster, but not by much.
Kenmore is offering a three-part warranty that's common to fridges in this price bracket. For the first year, owners get standard parts and labor coverage for all manufacturer defects. Second, any element of the sealed refrigeration system is covered for five years—but after the first year of ownership, the (potentially significant) cost of labor is on you. Finally, the linear compressor is covered for up to ten years. Again, if it breaks after the first year, you either do it yourself or pay to have it replaced.
A shallow fridge with some serious depth
With in-store prices of around $3,000, the expensive Kenmore Pro 79993 is still a good deal for the right type of buyer. If you’re looking for a conventional counter-depth fridge and can afford to pay a little more than what the average French door costs, this fridge sits head and shoulders above the competition.
It’s also an excellent alternative to even more expensive luxury built-ins, which can cost more than double what Kenmore's asking for its new top-of-the-line model. With superior food preservation and tons of style, the 79993 can add an air of class to your kitchen without the cost of a full-scale remodel.
Counter depth models are, by definition, shallower than conventional fridges, but this Kenmore makes good use of its space. For the purposes of our measurements, we removed any optional items, such as the wine rack and extra plastic bucket in the freezer.
The main fridge compartment, including all door shelves, offers 10.73 cu. ft. of usable storage space. Down in the freezer, we totaled 4.3 cu. ft. of usable space for frozen food—pretty standard for counter depth models.
One final feather in the 79993’s proverbial cap is energy efficiency. With the single ice maker running, this fridge requires roughly 0.1 kW/h for each usable cubic foot according to our measurements. Assuming typical American energy costs and use patterns, that works out to about $51.88 per year. It's not the best we’ve seen, but a competitive figure compared to all of the new Energy Star fridges that debuted in 2014 and 2015.
Meet the tester
Logistics Manager & Staff Writer@ReviewedHome
Matthew is a native of Brockton, MA and a graduate of Northeastern, where he earned a degree in English and Theatre. He has also studied at the Gaiety School of Acting in Dublin and spends most of his free time pursuing a performance career in the greater Boston area.
Checking our work.
We use standardized and scientific testing methods to scrutinize every product and provide you with objectively accurate results. If you’ve found different results in your own research, email us and we’ll compare notes. If it looks substantial, we’ll gladly re-test a product to try and reproduce these results. After all, peer reviews are a critical part of any scientific process.Shoot us an email