How much room does a refrigerator need?

red_eared_slider86August 16, 2010

I am in the planning stage of a kitchen remodel, and I want to change the location of my fridge. I currently have a side-by-side. It sits right next to the doorway leading to the dining room. On the other side of the fridge is a recessed, L-shaped nook. There's a few feet of countertop space, and then a small, useless desk area.

I want to replace my side-by-side with a French-door fridge, and I want to relocate it in that recessed nook. (I will put new cabinetry in the fridge's current location, thus creating a new workspace and storage that is closer to the stove.)

My concern is will I have enough space to open the refrigerator doors as far as I need to? In order to be able to open the doors all the way (180 degrees), I calculate that I need about 72" of space -- 36" to account for the width of the fridge, and 18" on each side to account for the width of each door. However, if I keep the countertop space that I was hoping to keep, then I would only have 58" of space (which would only allow each door to open about 135 degrees).

Would this be enough space for a French-door fridge? Or would I likely regret not allowing more space?


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Each brand of refrigerator is different. YOu're going to have to check the specs of the fridges that you are thinking about. Some only need 90° to be able to access the drawers and some need much more space. There are also a lot of other factors to consider in planning your reno. You need to come over to the Kitchen Forum here and do some reading for a day or two and then post your plans for comments.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2010 at 11:25AM
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How far you need to open the doors on a daily basis will depend on the fridge. Do some research on-line and read reviews. I've seen some people complain about one model (I think Samsung) that has a meat drawer spanning the entire width which requires you to open both doors quite far to pull out the drawer. Other fridges also seem to have drawers that won't pull all the way out for cleaning unless the door can swing all the way back(although that is a less regular issue). That is the kind of thing you can test out if you go see a few fridges in a showroom. You may find that in your alcove a side-by side makes more sense for the door swing the space will allow.

    Bookmark   August 25, 2010 at 2:49AM
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