Kenmore 16542 Freezer Review
Basic and functional
With fast chilling and really cold temperatures, the Kenmore 16542 (MSRP $569.99) chest freezer does exactly what you’d expect. We weren't thrilled with some of the temperature fluctuations over time, but when it comes to bulk freezing, this machine gets the job done.
It’s as cold as ice
If nothing else, this Kenmore does cold really well. Average temperatures came in at -1.1ºF, and it's of the few machines we’ve seen that actually hits below the ideal 0ºF when we set the thermostat to the manufacturer's recommended setting. With an average difference of just 1.5ºF across space from any two given points in this freezer, it’s also quite consistent internally.
The only problem we had was with temperature fluctuation. Over the course of our 72-hour test, we noticed some spikes. Cranking down the thermostat all the way to compensate might run up your electric bill a bit more, but it may save you from freezer burnt food.
Freezing & Thawing
Faster than the speed of ice
This Kenmore managed to blow away the competition when it came to freezing times. It took about one hour and 42 minutes for room-temperature food to hit 32ºF—nothing special. However, it only took a total of just over 11 hours for that same food to reach 0ºF, which is really impressive.
After 36 hours without power, the internal temperature of our test materials had only thawed to 29.4ºF. That’s still quite chilly, and means that your food should be alright to eat as long as your local utilities can fix any outage within a day and a half.
A comfortable middle ground
This Kenmore straddles the line between a compact freezer and a massive one. In a word, it’s average sized. At 14.8-cubic-feet, it should accommodate the freezing needs of an average-sized family quite comfortably. Two buckets and three plastic partitions help break up the large internal cavity. Since all of these pieces are easily removable, we measured the amount of usable space without them, which totaled 14.53 usable cubic feet.
Get Our Newsletter
Real advice from real experts. Sign up for our newsletter
Thanks for signing up!