Please show me your "boxed-in" frig!

blackchamoisDecember 5, 2012

My kitchen cabinets are partially installed. I had told the cabinet guy that I wanted to "box in" my refrigerator. I purchased a counter depth frig and wanted a built in "look".

I was expecting the frig to have its own "cabinet", per se. Instead, overhead you see the bottom of the upper cabinet (maple color), on the right it's just the side of the pantry (again maple color), but on the left is a very nicely painted, white, completely separate panel that runs from floor to ceiling.

On the left, the panel runs straight down, without any indentation as it would for a toe-kick. On the right, it indents at the bottom toe-kick area.

The top and right side are maple color, the left side it white. Granted, my frig will be in there covering most of it, but it just looks so unfinished to me. The material isn't even the same!

I like things to look as good "undressed" as they do with all their "clothes and accessories" on! At a minimum, he needs to paint it all white, but it looks so mis-matched to me!

What does your boxed-in frig cabinet look like? And, what would you do if you were me?

(Sorry about the poor photo quality. It is night time and the lights are not yet installed in the kitchen.)

Thanks!

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may_flowers

That's how mine looks on the sides. The bottom of the over-the-fridge cab has an extra 3 inch wide "board" running underneath the front part, maybe for support. It's screwed into the bottom of the over-fridge cab. It doubles the width of the bottom shelf, and the edge of the board and the fridge cab have veneer tape over it. It's all cherry.

Once your fridge is in, it throws a shadow up there so I'm not sure the maple will even be noticeable. You might want to wait and see if it needs to be painted white.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 10:12AM
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bcafe

Here is mine, obviously without the frig. Sorry about the size, it won't show up as re-sized on here for some reason.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 10:16AM
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pektel

I think this is one of those "Wait until it's done" things, then make your call. It would be like picking apart a tile job before it's grouted. Or critiquing an artist's painting before it's completed.

So what if those panels look unfinished? You yourself said they would be covered up! Would you pay extra to have sides of cabinets finished that, when assembled, would never be seen?

"I like things to look as good "undressed" as they do with all their "clothes and accessories" on! At a minimum, he needs to paint it all white" Honestly, the only thing I see here that you could gripe about is the lack of a toe space cutout on the bottom of the panel.

p.s. Sorry if the post comes off as offensive. Bad morning, and I'm out of coffee. :(

This post was edited by pektel on Wed, Dec 5, 12 at 10:43

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 10:40AM
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igloochic

I would not wait. The bottom on each side needs to match AT A MINIMUM and I would have to say that IMO a good carpenter would have used the same materials and painted the entire inside so that the box is appealing with or without a fridge. Personally I'd insist on it.

But that baseboard issue...that's just bad! It needs to be fixed prior to the fridge going in.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 11:10AM
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bcafe

My frig panel extends all the way to the floor. Is that not how it is supposed to be?

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 11:44AM
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blackchamois

mayflowers - Is your inside mismatched though? Can you post a picture (with the frig in, of course!)? Also are the bottoms at the toe-kick mismatched too? (A pic of that would be great as well!) The different materials and unbalance are what bothers me most. The cab above the frig will have a molding as you have described.

pektel - No offense taken! And I totally understand the coffee thing :) Also, I am a little stressed right now so I may not be thinking clearly, which is why I love GW so much. Great place for a sanity check! It just seems very lop-sided,unbalanced, unfinished.

igloochic - Thanks! Right, I don't get why the box is different on either side. Just doesn't come across as a quality job to me.

If anyone has picks from their own kitchen, or from a different source, I would love to see them!!!

Thanks all!!

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 11:45AM
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bob_cville

Here's mine. Its mostly the same as yours. The right side is the outer board of the pantry cabinet. The top is the bottom of the over-the-fridge cabinet. The left side is a large panel the goes all the way to the floor, with no toe-kick space. These pictures were taken before the toe kick boards were installed. (Click for a larger image.)

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 11:47AM
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blackchamois

bcafe - "My frig panel extends all the way to the floor. Is that not how it is supposed to be?" But just on one side???? Can you post a picture please?

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 11:47AM
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may_flowers

Sorry, I didn't see that the inside panels aren't all the same finish. Yes, the sides should match. I was just focusing on the underside of the over-fridge cabs, which might not matter.

My side panel goes straight to the floor, and it and the entire base of the cabs have quarter-round molding. I think that's standard.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 11:49AM
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camphappy

My fridge has a cabinet built around it. I know the wood is stained inside but since the fridge hides it I would not know it.
What do the cabinet plans look like? Maybe by the time the doors/drawers/toe kicks go in it will all come together. I panicked a couple of times about my cabinets too but then realized my cabinet guy had it all figured out. Once everything was done, it all lined up beautifully.
I also found that I nitpicked over things I don't even notice now. :)

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 11:50AM
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cluelessincolorado

Small kitchen and hard to get a head-on photo, but this is what the "box" looks like at the floor. Same on both sides. Left side base cabs recessed. Shall we all ignore the dust? :-)

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 12:12PM
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bob_cville

On mine the right side is finished quarter-sawn oak, the left side is finished flat-sawn oak (since they only had oak-surfaced panels that had quarter-sawn oak on one side.) The top is maple-veneered plywood, in a natural maple finish. It really doesn't matter, (IMO) since there is less than a 1/4" gap on the sides of the fridge, you only ever see them when you have to roll the fridge out, which has happened only twice since finishing the kitchen.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 12:22PM
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Jodi_SoCal

Here is what our boxed 'conventional depth' refrigerator looks like. It's a *very* tight fit. Be careful what you wish for, our frige is acting up and I seriously doubt we'll be able to extract it from the box for service without doing some damage to the frige or surrounding wood.

Jodi-

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 12:34PM
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beekeeperswife

Mine is completely finished inside and the panels come down to the floor on both sides, they match.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 12:52PM
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oceangirl67

The kitchen will have a more open concept if you remove the box.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 1:08PM
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may_flowers

That's not how you achieve an open concept kitchen.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 1:16PM
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youngdeb

Ours looks similar to the way Bee's looks. The asymmetry on yours doesn't work, they need to make the sides match.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 1:49PM
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annettacm

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 2:29PM
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rhome410

We put ours up on a toe kick, to further the builtin look and also, it keeps the dust bunny collection we've usually had form under fridges down to pretty much nothing. This means our end panels stop at the toe kick, so that it's all in line with the rest of the cabinets. We also put trim around the top and sides so that the inside of the panels and the underside of the cabinet above don't show. -Mostly because the dumb fridge is white on the sides! ;)

Here is a link that might be useful: blog post with pics of the fridge all the way down to toe kick

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 2:37PM
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senator13

Ours is completely boxed in with the same materials, but that is what I specified in the plans.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 3:29PM
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bcafe

We only have a panel on one side because we had very little space to work with and adding an additional panel would have moved everything over 3/4". The one side is flush to the floor as previously mentioned.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 3:42PM
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joyce_6333

This is our old kitchen. Recessed the fridge opening about 6" so it was flush with the cabinetry.

This is the new house. Again we recessed the fridge about 6" so it was flush with the base cabinets.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 4:57PM
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Angie_DIY

Mine do not match. One side is a nicely finished panel. The other side is the REAR side of a side-opening pantry, so it looks like the back of a cabinet. Due to the way that my cabs are constructed, the plywood that forms the back of the cab is recessed in about 1" from the rear edge of the sides of the cab, and there are "nailers" (or "hanging strips") in that space. It is not that attractive.

I was a little worried about this, so I put a piece of cheap, thin luan plywood on the rear to cover the nailers and to give a color closer to the other side of the fridge cavity.

And you know what? After the counter-depth fridge went in there, you cannot see the sides at all. Made no difference.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 5:04PM
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1929Spanish

My side panels around the fridge are the width of my cabinets and the counter depth fridge stands out. It shows more because of the front panels. My husband hates it more than I do, but we'd like to get the fridge pushed bac a bit more. Just haven't bothered.

My dishwasher has a side panel the full width of the counter on one side and a cabinet other. Because it is at floor level, you don't notice the difference unless you look closely - well, we don't anyways. You can see it in the second photo.

Is he going to put in a shorter panel on the other side so it comes up under the upper cabinet? I can live with a lot, but this would really bug me.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 7:10PM
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buehl

The sides need to match - no question!

Here's mine...

Here is a link that might be useful: How to build in a refrigerator

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 11:27PM
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marti8a

Mine is like rhome's. I would like them to match on both sides if it were my kitchen. But it's probably one of those things you won't even notice once everything is finished the appliances are in.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2012 at 11:37PM
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blackchamois

Thank you ALL so much for posting your pics and for providing feedback and suggestions.

I met w/the GC tonight and reviewed many of the photos posted here.

One difference that we noted was that in several of the pics, the cabs on either side were recessed, whereas my pantry to the right of the frig will be flush with the cabinet above the frig (much like bob cville's).

He said that once those doors are on, they will be flush also with the panel on the left. To insert a separate panel on the right to match the one on the left would make the space too tight for the frig to fit.

The bottom still bugs me a bit where it indents on one side for the toe kick, but not on the other, however, I think I will just have to live with that.

He assured me that once the doors are on and the appliance goes in, it will look okay. (Not perfect in my book or what I had envisioned ... but I will make due.)

So many things that I hadn't considered. I'm learning a lot through this process! I will be sure to post pics when it's all done.

Again, thank you all so very much!

    Bookmark   December 6, 2012 at 12:11AM
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sombreuil_mongrel

Mine's at the end of the run. I had to move the door to get it to fit.The end cap is a sheet of plywood that the cabinet co. supplied but was awfully warped. I had to use a lot of tricks to get it to stay straight. Then is was overlaid with the beaded oak strips.

Casey

    Bookmark   December 6, 2012 at 11:58AM
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