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What is a Counter Depth Refrigerator?[Answered]

Its depth is closer to the depth of your kitchen worktops (24-30 inches, not including handles), resulting in a shorter depth than conventional refrigerators (24-30 inches, not including handles) (30-36 inches).

Counter-depth refrigerators are usually larger and somewhat taller than conventional refrigerators in order to compensate for their smaller depth.

Is a counter-depth refrigerator the best choice for you?

Including their advantages and design choices, this guide will teach you all you need to know about these sleek, contemporary appliances.

A French door counter-depth refrigerator in a cabinet cutout.
What is a Counter Depth Refrigerator

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CAN YOU EXPLAIN WHAT “COUNTER-DEPTH” MEANS, AND WHAT IT MEANS FOR YOUR KITCHEN?

The term “counter-depth” refers to the distance between the front of your kitchen worktops and the rear wall or backsplash of your kitchen.

These refrigerators are typically 24–30 inches deep, which is shallower than other refrigerators, and are designed to fit neatly at the end of your cabinets and blend in well with most contemporary kitchen layouts.

Furthermore, you won’t have to compromise on space since counter-depth refrigerators are typically somewhat taller and/or wider than full-size refrigerators in order to provide the same amount of useable space as a full-size refrigerator without protruding from the counter.

A graphic showing the dimensions of a counter-depth refrigerator

Refrigerators that are counter-depth vs those that are normal depth

A counter-depth refrigerator is one that has about the same depth as a kitchen counter, measuring 24–25 inches deep.

Counter-depth refrigerators are almost level with the counters and cabinets, while standard-depth refrigerators are usually 30–36 inches deep and may protrude half a foot or more beyond the counters.

Counter-depth refrigerators may be a few inches broader and higher than standard-sized refrigerators, despite the fact that depth is the primary distinction between the two types of refrigerators.

This additional width or height may help compensate for the loss of depth by providing a capacity that is comparable to that of a conventional refrigerator but with a lower profile.

Counter-Depth Refrigerators: A Comprehensive Guide [In-Depth Guide]

In recent years, if you’ve remodeled your kitchen or keep up with current design trends, you’ve most likely seen counter-depth refrigerators in freshly updated or renovated kitchens, and you’re not alone.

With their streamlined appearance and beautiful construction, counter-depth refrigerators are becoming more and more popular.

But what exactly is a counter-depth refrigerator?

taking fresh produce out of crisper drawers
Counter-Depth Refrigerators: A Comprehensive Guide [In-Depth Guide]

This specific refrigerator type is somewhat higher than a standard-depth refrigerator, which is intended to be more space-efficient and to blend in smoothly with the surrounding cabinets and worktops.

Despite the fact that counter-depth refrigerators provide almost the same amount of storage as conventional full-size refrigerators, they won’t protrude beyond the kitchen cabinets and obstruct your walk route.

One method to determine your “counter-depth” is to measure the distance between your backsplash and the front of your kitchen countertops.

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Counter-depth refrigerators are shallower than standard-depth refrigerators in order to fit into this area, with a common depth ranging from 23 to 27 inches.

In comparison, most full-size standard-depth refrigerators are deeper than 30 inches, with the majority of them falling between 35 and 36 inches deep.

The result is that a conventional refrigerator may protrude more than six inches from the edge of the countertop in certain cases.

So, what is the ramifications of this for your kitchen?

Adding a counter-depth refrigerator to your kitchen enables you to create the sleek, polished appearance you’ve been longing for while still having plenty of storage capacity.

It is possible to reduce congestion and interruptions in your workflow by using a flush installation, which is particularly useful when there are many cooks in the kitchen.

Some of the best-rated counter-depth refrigerators are as follows:

  • LG French Door Refrigerator with Counter-Depth Door (LFXC22596D)
  • refrigerator with counter depth and side by side design by GE (GZS22DSJSS)
  • Refrigerator by Fisher & Paykel, Series 5, Counter-depth Bottom-Freezer Model (RF170BRPX6 N)

Refrigerators with a Standard Depth

Freestanding refrigerators and standard-depth refrigerators are perhaps more known to the majority of people.

Standard-depth refrigerators continue to be the most prevalent kind of refrigerator seen in daily kitchens, despite the fact that counter-depth refrigerators are becoming more popular.

Standard-depth refrigerators do take up more room than counter-depth refrigerators—as previously stated, they typically measure 35- to 36-inches deep when the doors and handles are taken into consideration.

However, although this increased depth offers more space for groceries and leftovers, it also takes up more space in your kitchen, which may make it more difficult to move about in it.

If you have a tiny kitchen, the additional depth may be a problem since your refrigerator will protrude somewhat from the surrounding worktops and cabinets.

This isn’t a life-threatening situation, but it may be a little nuisance and a visual issue from time to time.

Given the increased availability of standard-depth refrigerators, you’ll most likely be able to find a wider variety of colors, finishes, and designs when you search for and begin to plan out your freshly built kitchen area.

Café 40door fridge full of food
Refrigerators with a Standard Depth

The following are some of the best-rated standard-depth refrigerators:

  • Refrigerator with bottom freezer from Viking 3 Series (RVRF3361SS)
  • Café 4-Door French Door Refrigerator (FFTR1821TS) from Frigidaire with Top Freezer
  • (FFTR1821TS) and 4-Door French Door (CVE28DP2NS1)

Other Type of Refrigerators

Styles for Fridges

The side-by-side refrigerator and the French door refrigerator are the most common designs, while the top-freezer refrigerator and the bottom-freezer refrigerator are the least popular.

Top- and bottom-freezer freezers with a shorter width and depth are available for those who have a smaller kitchen area, allowing them to better use the little space they have available to them.

When there are so many style choices to select from, you’re certain to discover the perfect refrigerator type for your new kitchen.

In case you need a quick reminder, let’s go over some of the different kinds of refrigerators.

Refrigerator with a French Door

The French door refrigerator design has two doors on the top portion and one or more freezer drawers on the bottom area of the refrigerator.

French doors extend outward to reveal one intact refrigerator compartment on the other side of the room.

Because a French door refrigerator needs less space to access each compartment as compared to a single door refrigerator, they are a popular option for kitchens of all shapes and sizes.

Refrigerators that are side-by-side

Refrigerators that are side-by-side are precisely what they sound like.

These refrigerator types feature two doors that stretch the whole height of the refrigerator.

Refrigerators often include two compartments: one for the refrigerator and one for the freezer.

The refrigerator section is usually equipped with a water and ice dispenser, and the freezer compartment is usually located on the opposite side.

Refrigerator with a top-freezer compartment

The top freezer refrigerator is a classic and conventional refrigerator design that includes a freezer compartment on top of the appliance and a single refrigeration section below.

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The handles will usually be located on the left side of the appliance, with the appliance opening toward the right side, although this may vary depending on the model you choose to purchase.

Refrigerator with a freezer at the bottom

The bottom freezer refrigerator has the appearance of a French door refrigerator type, however, instead of having two refrigerator doors, it only has one refrigerator door.

Even though the refrigerator portion is still on the top, there is also a freezer drawer placed on the bottom.

Once again, depending on the model you choose, the refrigerator door may open to the right or to the left depending on the design.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of having a counter-depth refrigerator?

The Advantages and Disadvantages of Counter-Depth Refrigerators

The most important reason to get a counter-depth refrigerator is for aesthetic reasons.

They just seem to be more attractive!

Even so, be careful to measure accurately since even the smallest mistake in the opening of your refrigerator may cause a significant issue.

They’re also more costly and provide less versatility in terms of features — most are configured in a French door design, and there aren’t many choices for a single-door, counter-depth refrigerator, for example.

They have the advantage of creating the most seamless appearance.

Counter-depth refrigerators are intended to seem as if they were custom-built for your kitchen.

When properly placed, they slip neatly into their tiny nook, resting flush with your cabinetry to the point that you almost don’t realize that they’re there at all!

That’s a bit of a stretch, but the point is that they’re visually appealing and may help to elevate the overall appearance of your kitchen.

The fact that they are broader than standard-depth ones is a plus.

It is possible to obtain somewhat greater width in variants with the same cubic capacity (although losing a little depth in the process, of course).

If you’re always squeezing cold-cut platters and pizza boxes into your refrigerator, this might be a significant benefit.

The disadvantage is that they are not as deep as normal versions

Because the primary aim of a counter-depth refrigerator is to have it sit as near to flush with the countertops as possible, you’ll often have to give up room at the rear of your refrigerator — and it’s not necessarily a little amount of space.

The depth of counter-depth refrigerators is generally between 23 and 27 inches, whereas the depth of standard-depth refrigerators is often 30 to 34 inches.

Granted, the area at the back of the fridge isn’t utilized very frequently, but it’s still something to keep in mind, particularly when it comes to the drawers in the refrigerator.

If you have to struggle to get your carrots and celery into a crisper, you’ll probably notice that they’re shorter than the rest of the vegetables.

The disadvantage is that they are more costly

The refrigerator equivalent of the tale of Goldilocks is that regular-depth, freestanding refrigerators are the least costly, built-in refrigerators are the most expensive, and counter-depth refrigerators fall somewhere in the middle.

They typically begin at about $1000 and increase in price from there.

The price difference between regular-depth and counter-depth cabinets isn’t very significant, but it’s something to keep in mind when you design your kitchen.

Instructions on how to measure for a counter-depth refrigerator

Are you ready to reap the advantages of having a counter-depth refrigerator in your kitchen?

To begin, you’ll need to carefully measure your kitchen area in order to locate the model that would suit you the best.

For precise measurements for your new counter-depth refrigerator, grab your tape measure and follow the steps outlined in the following section.

Step 1: Take a measurement of the depth of your counters

Start at the wall (not the backsplash) and measure all the way up to the edge of your countertop to get an accurate measurement.

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The depth of your counter should be about 24–25 inches in depth.

Make sure there is an inch of space between the back of the fridge and the wall to allow for adequate refrigerator ventilation.

Before purchasing a counter-depth model, be careful to check all of the depth measurements that are given, including the depth with the doors and drawers open.

For kitchen islands, make certain that the refrigerator doors and drawers can be opened without striking any obstructions or other objects.

Step 2: Take a measurement of the width of your cabinet opening.

Begin by taking a measurement of the width of your cabinet cutout at its smallest point.

Add an inch to your width measurement to allow for a half-inch of room on either side of the refrigerator for optimum ventilation.

You should allow 212 inches between the wall and the hinge side of the refrigerator door so that it may swing open if one of the refrigerator’s sides is close to a wall on one of its sides.

It is reasonable to anticipate that your new counter-depth refrigerator will be a little broader than your existing standard-depth refrigerator.

Refrigerators with a counter-depth depth are generally larger than conventional refrigerators in order to compensate for their shorter depths.

Step 3: Take a measurement from your floor to the top of your upper cabinets.

Beginning with the floor, take a measurement from there to the bottom of any cabinets that will be placed above the refrigerator.

After that, remove a half-inch from your measurement to ensure that the refrigerator has enough ventilation.

Counter-depth refrigerators are often a bit higher than standard-depth refrigerators in order to offer a comparable amount of storage space.

More information about refrigerator sizes and dimensions may be found in our refrigerator sizes and dimensions article.

Once you’ve taken precise measurements of your kitchen’s width, height, and depth, you’ll be able to shop for a counter-depth refrigerator that’s the greatest fit for your space and has the amenities your family needs.

Our Final Thoughts

This simply goes to show how important it is to measure your area before placing your purchase.

With today’s bespoke kitchen designs, there is a greater danger of straying from what some would consider being the conventional design.

Also, be sure to check the appliance’s complete specifications since the word “counter-depth” may not be included in the model title.

Once upon a time, counter-depth refrigerators were difficult to come by on the market, but now, this popular type is much more readily available.

Frequently Ask Questions

What’s the difference between counter-depth and normal depth, and why should you care?

Standard depth refrigerators take up more room than standard-depth refrigerators, which typically measure 30 to 34 inches in depth or 35 to 36 inches in depth when the doors and handles are included.

With a depth range of 23 to 27 inches, counter-depth refrigerators are shallower and broader than standard-depth refrigerators in terms of depth and width.

What is the difference between a counter-depth and a standard-depth refrigerator?

Counter-depth refrigerators are often shallower than standard-depth refrigerators, although they are typically broader or taller than standard-depth refrigerators.

This unit is usually 23 to 27 inches deep; the shorter depth makes it simpler to reach things towards the rear of the fridge and gives the unit a more integrated appearance with the rest of the room’s decor.

Is it true that counter-depth refrigerators take up less space?

Because counter-depth refrigerators are shorter than regular refrigerators, they tend to have less internal food storage capacity in cubic feet than standard refrigerators.

Standard fridge/freezer combinations have an average cubic capacity of 22 to 31 cubic feet, whereas standard counter-depth refrigerators have an average cubic capacity of 20 to 23 cubic feet.

Shallower depths may be restrictive in certain situations

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