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Kids can be a nightmare when it comes to leaving the fridge door open or flooding the kitchen using the water dispenser. This got me thinking. Can smart fridges be locked to keep kids from messing with the settings or accidentally changing something when the display panel is touched?
Smart fridges can be locked. The type of lock will vary from one model to the next, but you can at least expect a basic lock that prevents any changes from being made until the fridge is unlocked. Some will also lock the use of the water and ice dispenser, but the doors themselves cannot be locked.
I did some research into five popular smart fridges from different brands to find out more about the locks they use and how the locking mechanism is activated.
Smart Fridges and Their Locks
Smart fridges don’t have the ability to lock the doors themselves, only to prevent the use of the touch display and sometimes the water and ice dispenser.
The lock function is intended to prevent kids, or perhaps even some pets, from making any changes on the display panel. Accidently changing an important setting could result in your food going bad, so the lock function can be useful for families.
Whilst researching different smart fridges, I found that they do all have at least a basic lock function that prevents the display panel from being used, but some are a bit more sophisticated and have different types of locks. For example, some of the popular Samsung smart fridges have an automatic control lock, a dispenser lock, and a child lock.
Here is a table with information on the fridges that I researched and the type of locks they have.
|Smart Fridge||Automatic Lock||Display Panel Lock||Dispenser Lock|
|Samsung Family Hub 2.0||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Kenmore Smart 75043||No||Yes||Yes|
|LG InstaView ThinQ||No||Yes||Yes|
As you can see, there are different types of locks that do more than just prevent the touch display from being used.
Let’s take a closer look at each one and how it may be useful for you.
Automatic Control Lock
The Automatic Control Lock found on Samsung smart fridges can be useful if you need to frequently lock the fridge but may often forget to do it.
It would be typical for the one time that you forget to lock the fridge, the kids come along and make some changes when they keep pressing the display panel.
This type of lock stops you from needing to keep remembering to lock the fridge by automatically locking it after a minute of inactivity.
When you come back and need to unlock it, just press and hold the Door Alarm button until you hear a chime to unlock it. The fridge will then lock itself automatically when you have finished.
The dispenser lock will disable the use of the water and ice dispenser but allow other parts of the display panel to still function.
It could be useful to turn this lock on whilst the dispenser is empty and then unlock it when the ice and water containers have been re-filled.
The child lock will lock both the display panel and dispenser at the same time. This could be a life saver for families with young children that like to press as many buttons on a display as they can get their hands on!
How to Lock and Unlock a Smart Fridge
How a smart fridge is locked and unlocked will vary depending on the manufacturer and the model, but most will involve simply pressing and holding a lock button for a few seconds.
You’ll know when the fridge is locked by an icon illuminating on the display or hearing a chime.
Here are some quick steps on how to lock and unlock the five smart fridges described above to show you how easy it really is.
Samsung Family Hub 2.0
Automatic Control Lock
This feature will automatically lock the control panels located inside the fridge or on the top of a door after 1 minute of inactivity.
- Press and hold the Door Alarm button for approximately 3 seconds until you hear a chime to unlock it
Locking the use of the water and ice dispenser on the Samsung Family Hub line of fridges is a bit more involved and requires the use of the display panel itself.
- From the Home screen, swipe left
- Touch Fridge Manager
- Touch Fridge Settings
- Touch the Unlock button next to Dispenser Lock
- Touch Lock
- Touch Proceed
- To unlock the dispenser, touch Lock next to Dispenser Lock
- Touch Unlock
- Press and hold the Ice Maker Off button for approximately 3 seconds until you hear a chime
- Press and hold the Ice Maker Off button again for approximately 3 seconds until you hear a chime to turn off the lock
- Press and hold the Lock button for approximately 5 seconds until the key icon on the display lights up
- Press and hold the Lock button again for approximately 5 seconds to turn off the lock
Kenmore Smart 75043
- Press and hold the Control Lock button for approximately 3 seconds until it illuminates
- Press and hold the Control Lock button again for approximately 3 seconds to turn off the lock
LG InstaView ThinQ
- Press and hold the Lock button for approximately 3 seconds until the closed lock symbol appears on the display
- Press and hold the Lock button again for approximately 3 seconds to turn off the lock
- Press and hold the To Lock button for approximately 3 seconds until the padlock symbol on the display changes to be closed
- Press and hold the To Lock button for approximately 3 seconds to turn off the lock
Smart fridges can be locked but are limited to locking down the use of the display panel and sometimes the water and ice dispenser.
You can’t lock the doors themselves to prevent access to midnight snacks unfortunately!
Perhaps in the future, we will see more lock types that only allow access to certain people at certain times of the day, but for now, the locks are relatively basic.
Even these basic locks will still go a long way in preventing changes to your smart fridge being made which I’m sure is very much welcomed by families with young children.