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How Sub-Zero transformed the kitchen

Fresh Innovation

Building design icon

Long lasting life span

Wolf brings professional cooking expertise to home.

How Sub-Zero transformed the kitchen


When Westye Bakke began experimenting with refrigeration in the 1930s, he was, in part, searching for a reliable way to store insulin—his young son, Bud, needed it to manage his juvenile diabetes.

In 1943, Westye built his first freestanding freezer out of scrap metal in his basement, bending the coils by hand.


Westye launched Sub-Zero Freezer Company in 1945, introducing the first system for preserving food at ultra-low temperatures—literally sub-zero. The company would quickly establish a reputation for quality and innovation.

"When my grandfather started the business in 1945 there were many, many refrigeration manufacturers throughout North America," says Jim Bakke, Westye’s grandson and the current president of Sub-Zero. “His strategy was always to build the best, highest-quality refrigeration, because he knew if he did that, he had the staying power that the other people didn’t. If you build a quality product, you will always have customers."

Fresh Innovation

Staying true to Westye’s earliest pioneering efforts, Sub-Zero continues to refine and invent ways to preserve your food’s freshness and reduce waste.

Prolong food life


We pioneered a dual refrigeration system with separate cooling systems for the refrigerator and freezer. This prevents hasty spoilage of fresh food and minimizes freezer burn.

Cleaner air


Sub-Zero refrigerators come with an air purification system (based on technology developed by NASA) that scrubs the air of ethylene and odor every 20 minutes.

Seals in the cold


The very doors on a Sub-Zero refrigerator are made with preservation in mind. The seals are so secure that some owners report no thawing of frozen foods after multi-day power outages.

An icon in design

At Sub-Zero, function has always preceded form, but that has not stopped our designs from becoming some of the most imitated— like the bold look of the louvered grille over our dual compressors.

Through the years, Sub-Zero has expanded its design leadership with integrated refrigeration that blends in seamlessly with your décor. Your kitchen can be anything you imagine thanks to the countless choices of Sub-Zero.

Our innovative built-in design approach impressed legendary architect Frank Lloyd Wright, who commissioned Sub-Zero appliances for the visionary homes he designed.

Built to last

Inspired by Westye’s desire to build the best, Sub-Zero has never compromised on quality. The materials, premium grade; the technologies, state of the art; the craftsmanship, of the caliber expected in the world’s finest homes.

American manufactured


Our products are built in our own Wisconsin and Arizona facilities, where we control every step of the manufacturing process.

tested for dependability


Our appliances are designed to last a minimum of 20 years. Major components are subjected to extreme stress tests prior to going into the final design, and every major function on every unit is tested before shipping.

a lifetime of support


We stand by our products with industry- leading warranties, a best-in-class customer service team of experts in Madison, Wisconsin, and a network of hand-selected and trained installers and service technicians.

Wolf brings decades of professional cooking expertise to the home

In 2000, Sub-Zero introduced Wolf cooking appliances, bringing professional temperature control into the hands of home cooks with an impressive fifty-product launch. Refined by more than eight decades of commercial kitchen experience, the technology, durability, and design of Wolf make it the ideal kitchen companion to Sub-Zero.