Sunday, February 5, 2023

How to install a built-in refrigerator?

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Built-in refrigerators are quite common kitchen appliances today, without which in some cases it is difficult to do without. Such models save space in small kitchens, allow you to fit the refrigerator into the chosen style, hiding it behind a single facade. Perhaps, for the time being, someone is scared away by additional difficulties in such a solution in the form of the need to embed equipment in a cabinet – but in practice it is not at all so difficult, you can deal with it yourself (although sometimes physical strength is required) – and we will tell you step by step how what exactly to do and what to consider.

Preparing for the process
Before choosing a specific refrigerator model, first of all, of course, you need to make sure that it is suitable for your kitchen in terms of dimensions – you need to consider that you should look at the parameters of the recommended cabinet for the model. However, they are usually standard in width (60 cm), and differ only in height.

In our case, we will choose a cabinet for the built-in refrigerator Beko BCNA275E2S, with dimensions of 56×178.8×55.5 cm (WxHxD).

Choosing a refrigerator cabinet
You can choose a ready-made cabinet, or, in the case of custom-made kitchen furniture, you can simply tell the manufacturer the dimensions of the selected refrigerator for embedding, they must be indicated in the model specification.

We chose a ready-made solution for embedding – a cabinet with dimensions of 60x60x200 cm. A height of 200 cm should just be enough for a refrigerator with a height of 178.8 cm – a small margin of space must be taken into account, since there must be free space inside the cabinet for normal ventilation of the device.

Of the tools and consumables, we only need the following list:

fridge fixing kit
screwdriver
screwdriver (not necessary if you do not need to drill grooves for hinges in the facades)
yardstick
building level (optional)
pencil
Cabinet assembly
Ideally, it is much more convenient to assemble a tall cabinet together – we recommend that you do not neglect this advice, it will be really difficult to do it alone, especially if the cabinet parts are made of heavy chipboard. The accuracy of the assembly is also important – the walls must stand strictly perpendicular to the partitions and without distortions – otherwise it will not be possible to put the refrigerator in the cabinet evenly.

As you can see in the photo, the refrigerator is placed in the cabinet on the lower shelf on reinforced brackets with plane adjustment, and there is free space below – about 10 cm. Also on top – the shelf leaves about the same 10 cm above it.

The legs of the cabinet must be adjusted to the desired height before installing the refrigerator – then it will be much more difficult to do this due to the heavy load. If the cabinet is attached to a single contour of the kitchen set, it must also be fixed to the wall bracket and leveled.

The facades on the cabinet can be hung before installing the refrigerator in the cabinet – this will make it easier, you can do it after – there may be difficulties due to overlapping of the hinges by the body, depending on the specific dimensions of the model.

Cabinet installation
Choosing a place to install a cabinet with built-in refrigerators should not be random – there are a number of restrictions that can be expressed in a few general rules:

The refrigerator should not be installed next to heating appliances such as an oven.
Doors should open to the maximum angle, do not interfere with the passage
It is most convenient to install a refrigerator near the sink and hob – the so-called rule of the working “triangle”

Before installing the refrigerator, it will be most convenient to remove the doors from it – this will reduce the weight of the device and allow it to be installed in a cabinet alone if necessary. Also, you must immediately lead the power cable through the hole at the back of the cabinet, and during installation, make sure that you do not accidentally put the refrigerator on the cable. To avoid scratches on the chipboard shelf, you can seal its edge with masking tape.

After installation, you need to set the refrigerator in a niche evenly – the distance to the walls should be even along the entire height of the case. The width of the gap between the frame is about 20 mm, and the refrigerator also needs to be pushed inward at a certain distance – usually about 40-50 mm, in order to fit the doors (here the distance may vary for different models, see the instructions).

After the refrigerator has been placed correctly in the niche, it must be fixed. For this, special elements are provided in the middle part of the body.

As a rule, decorative trims for such brackets are included in the mounting kit for built-in models – do not forget to install them after tightening the screws.

Further, by analogy, we fix the refrigerator from above and below.

Decorative plastic trims are also put on the hinges for the refrigerator doors, which have so far been removed.

After the refrigerator is fixed in the niche, you can proceed to the remaining moments – seal the gap on the side of the door opening with a special corner tape.

There may also be decorative overlays – for example, covering the control panel with touch buttons, as in the rental case.

After the refrigerator is fully installed in the niche, we can proceed to the next step.

Facade installation
It will be most convenient to install the refrigerator doors after the hinges and fronts of the cabinet – so they will not block the space for screwing the screws into the fasteners. In our case, the round grooves for the cups of the hinges in the facades have already been made, so all that remains for us is to fasten the hinges. Otherwise, you will need to make them yourself – prepare for this a screwdriver and a Forstner drill of the desired diameter (usually 35 or 26 mm).

After hanging the facades, it is time to install the refrigerator doors – now they will no longer interfere. It is necessary to ensure that they open freely, without resting against the hinges of the facades.

You also need to immediately set the position of the doors of the facades by means of adjustment – it is necessary to achieve an even gap between the doors, as well as an even position relative to the vertical walls of the cabinet frame.

Next, we can proceed to the final touches – connecting the refrigerator doors to the facades. The principle here is quite simple – special brackets are attached to the door from the end, and the guide “rails” are fixed to the facades. Thus, when the cabinet door and the refrigerator door are opened, they can slide relative to each other and open freely.

It’s worth starting with the installation of sliding guides on the facades – this, of course, must be done in those places where a seat for the bracket is planned on the refrigerator door.

After that, we check how accurately the guides are placed – they should slide easily and be parallel to the doors. If necessary, their position must be adjusted, after which the brackets can be fixed with self-tapping screws.

This completes the installation of the refrigerator in the cabinet – it remains only to double-check all the nuances and enjoy the result of the work done.

When embedding a refrigerator in a single contour of a kitchen set, it may also be necessary to close the legs of the cabinet with a plinth. It should be borne in mind that in this case you will need a special insert in the plinth in the form of a grid, which allows you to effectively ventilate the refrigerator in the cabinet – otherwise the device may overheat.

Conclusion
If you want to choose a built-in refrigerator for the kitchen, then you should not be afraid of the complexity of its installation – there is nothing special here, only some physical strength is required to install the device in a niche. And if we talk about the advantages that are usually characteristic of built-in refrigerators, then this is a lower noise level, ergonomics, ease of maintenance (no need to wash the side walls), as well as a reduced noise level. In addition, we get a visual win – the refrigerator becomes part of the kitchen. It is clear that you literally have to pay for this – a significantly higher price of built-in models, but here everyone already makes his choice.

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