How do I say the words fridge and freezer while keeping the distinction?

There seem to be a lot of Chinese words for each, which is most accurate/natural?

I don't trust Google. But here is what I could find:

Google English to Chinese:

  • Fridge -> 冰箱,电冰箱
  • Refrigerator -> 冰箱,电冰箱
  • Freezer -> 冰箱,电冰箱

Google Chinese to English:

  • 冰箱 -> Refrigerator
  • 冰柜 -> Freezer
  • 冷柜 -> Freezer
  • 冷藏箱 -> Freezer
  • 冷藏室 -> Refrigerated room
  • 冷冻室 -> Freezer
  • 冷冻机 -> Freezer
  • 雪柜 -> Refrigerator
  • 冰箱冷藏室 -> Refrigerator freezer
  • 冰箱冷冻室 -> Refrigerator freezer
  • 1
    jukuu: 3. It has a refrigerator, a freezer, an electric stove and a dishwasher. 这里有电冰箱、冷冻机、电炉和洗碗机。14. Clean out refrigerator. Clean under refrigerator and freezer. 清理冰箱。清扫冰箱和冰柜底下。 48. freezer compartment 家用冰箱低温室 refrigerator (电)冰箱, freezer 冷冻机,冰柜, freezer compartment (of refrigerator) 家用冰箱低温室 w/o 家用冰箱, 低温室 could denote cold-chamber; cool house
    – user6065
    Commented Apr 20, 2017 at 17:57
  • What distinction do you have in mind between fridge and freezer? Do you mean the colder compartment in the refrigerator vs. the refrigerator as a whole, or are you thinking of the household appliance vs. a more specialized device that keeps everything in it frozen solid?
    – wpt
    Commented Apr 21, 2017 at 11:18

3 Answers 3


In mainland China, when people refer to 冰箱 or 电冰箱, it most likely means a fridge-freezer or a fridge/refrigerator. Freezer is formally referred to as 冰柜,冷柜, although it can also be orally referred to as 冰箱.

雪柜 is 冰箱 in Hong Kong.

To sum up:

冰箱,电冰箱,雪柜 -> fridge, refrigerator, fridge-freezer

冰箱,电冰箱,雪柜 -> freezer (oral)

冰柜,冷柜 -> freezer (formal)

冷藏箱, 冷藏包 -> ice storage, ice chest

(冰箱)冷藏室 -> fridge

(冰箱)冷冻室 -> freezer

冷冻机 -> refrigerating machine

A useful tip:

冷藏 something means refrigerate something.

冷冻 something means freeze something.

Although 冷冻机 violates the above rules but there is no such thing called 冷藏机.


冷冻 leng3 dong4

This refers to freezing.

冷藏 leng3 cang2

This refers to refrigeration.

So while 冰箱 refers to a refrigerator, as in the whole appliance, if you want to refer to the freezer section you would say 冷冻室, with the other larger section for things you don't want to freeze being the 冷藏室.

  • 电 electronic
  • 冰 ice, cool
  • 冷 cold
  • 冻 froze
  • 箱 box
  • 柜 cabinet, cupboard
  • 机 machine
  • 藏 hide, store
  • 室 room

冰箱 - fridge, common little ones with doors. 冰柜、冷柜 - refrigerating cabinet, ice chest, ice cuber, larger ones with movable cover. 冷藏室 - cold storage room.

  • Chinese words are presentive, they are made up by characters, so that you can combine characters properly to make a new word, unlike that the basic morpheme of English is word, so you may find many Chinese expressions correspond to one English word.
    – xenophōn
    Commented Oct 31, 2017 at 8:28

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