Should You Replace an Old or Broken Sub-Zero 500/600 Series?

Image credit: The Kitchenworks

Your Sub Zero 500 or 600 model has served your family well over the years. The Sub Zero 500 series was introduced in 1987 while the 600 series came later in 1996. Even high-end manufacturers like Sub Zero have a product lifespan where they work well, and then start to break down more and more often. These award-winning models typically last for about 18 to 20 years. There’s a good chance that your Sub Zero 500 or 600 series model may be going towards the end of its normal life cycle. It can be beneficial to move forward with a new refrigerator.

Why You May Hesitate

There are a few reasons why you may hesitate to replace your Sub Zero 500 or 600 series refrigerator, especially if you’re not noticing any problems with it per se.

  • One of the first reasons people wait to replace their refrigerator because they feel if it’s not broke, don’t fix it. It can be hard to pay out money for a new item when the old one seems to be doing its job. However, even if your old refrigerator appears to be working as it should, it may be close to breaking down or could be costing more money to run than a newer more energy efficient model would.
  • That also goes hand-in-hand with the pricing. A high-quality appliance being replaced can be an expense you weren’t expecting, but in the long run, it can often be a cheaper option. You won’t have to worry about costly repairs, losing a whole refrigerator and freezer full of food when the old one breaks down or paying more on your electric bill for an old refrigerator that isn’t energy efficient compared to modern appliances.
  • Others may hesitate because the refrigerator is built into the cabinets in the kitchen, and it seems like it may be a real hassle to have to replace it. It will take some expertise to be able to take out the old unit and have the new one installed in the same spot without being able to tell that it wasn’t the same refrigerator as before.

Benefits of Upgrading

It can be easy to think that any new refrigerator is going to be the same as your old refrigerator, but that’s not the case. There are some amazing upgrades to the Sub Zero refrigerator line that can make upgrading to a new refrigerator a great idea.

  • They are more energy efficient and fall under Energy Star qualifications compared to older models.
  • You’ll notice that the newer refrigerators are quieter compared to your old one due to upgrades in the compressor. Food will last longer and taste better thanks to improvements made in newer refrigerators. For instance, there are added air purifiers that will help with filtering out things like odors, ethylene, bacteria, mold, and viruses. As ethylene makes your food ripen and over-ripen it when the food is exposed to it, having it filtered out will give you more time with your fresh produce at its optimum taste and texture.
  • There are also dual compressors in most newer models that will help with odor transfer and stop freezer burn from happening. A newer model will also provide you with better control over the temperature of the refrigerator.    

Matching Your Model With a New Model

Once you decide that you’d love to start taking advantage of these new benefits, it’s time to match up your old refrigerator with a new one, especially if you need it to fit in your cabinets. It can be frustrating to try to match up what Sub Zero refrigerator model best replaces your old model. We’ve created some charts to make it easier for you to find an exact model that will replace the refrigerator model that you’ve enjoyed for years.

What model replaces 500 series Sub-Zero?

Old Sub-Zero ModelNew Sub-Zero Model
501F SeriesBI-36F
501R SeriesBI-36R
506 SeriesUC-15i
511 SeriesBI-30U
532 Series648PRO or 648PROG
532 SeriesBI-48S or BI-48SID
542 SeriesBI-42S or BI-42SID or BI-42UFD
550 SeriesBI-36U or BI-36UFD
561 SeriesBI-36S or BI-36UFD
590 SeriesBI-48SD or BI-48SID


What model replaces 600 series Sub-Zero?

Old Sub-Zero ModelNew Sub-Zero Model
601F SeriesBI-36F
601R SeriesBI-36R
611 SeriesBI-30U
632 SeriesBI-48SD or BI-48SID
642 SeriesBI-42S or BI-42SID or BI-42UFD
650 SeriesBI-36U or BI-36UFD
661 SeriesBI-36S or BI-36UFD
680 SeriesBI-42S or BI-42SID or BI-42UFD
685 SeriesBI-42S or BI-42SID or BI-42UFD
690 SeriesBI-48SD or BI-48SID
695 SeriesBI-48SD or BI-48SID

Other replacement models

Old Sub-Zero ModelNew Sub-Zero Model
201FD SeriesBI-36F
215FD SeriesBI-36F
211 SeriesBI-30U
215R SeriesBI-36R
235 SeriesUC-15i
241 SeriesBI-36U
244 SeriesUC-24
251 SeriesBI-36U
2511 SeriesBI-36U
2711 SeriesBI-36U
2811 SeriesBI-36U
3211 SeriesBI48S or BI-48SID
315i SeriesUC-15i
361 SeriesBI-36S

Need help matching up the correct new model for your existing refrigerator? Not ready to upgrade, but need to repair your old Sub Zero refrigerator? Contact us at to get the information you need for your Sub Zero refrigerator needs.