Whether you’re thinking about a kitchen remodel or have just moved into a new place, you’ve probably wondered if you can put a fridge next to an oven? Common sense tells us we should probably keep these two appliances apart; after all, one’s hot, and the other’s cold!
However, if you’re short on space, have an awkwardly shaped room, or if placing them adjacent would allow you to gain more space for your other kitchen appliances, then it’s a question that’s well worth asking. So, can you put a fridge next to an oven? Read on to discover the answer.
Can You Put Your Fridge Next to Your Oven?
Provided that you own modern appliances and the manufacturer has not specifically stated not to, it is possible to position your fridge next to your oven. Is it a good idea? Possibly not, as your fridge will already be displacing a lot of heat from its cooling mechanism, so placing a hot oven right next door isn’t really the best idea.
Ideally, you should weigh up the pros and cons of your personal situation and kitchen layout and consider the type of oven you own. If you are struggling to plan out your new kitchen, you may prefer to enlist the services of a kitchen designer. Don’t forget to carefully consult the general installation guidelines that come with your appliances.
An integrated oven will dispel heat towards the front and rear and is enclosed inside a kitchen cabinet. If you place your hand in the cupboard next to your oven, you are unlikely to notice much of a rise in temperature. In this case, it is perfectly fine to place your fridge and oven next to each other. Also, if you have an integrated fridge, that’s another layer of heat protection and insulation between the two.
If your oven is freestanding, as well as your fridge, then you can still place them next to each other, provided there are no manufacturer warnings against doing so. In the case of freestanding appliances, your manufacturer will normally give you a minimum safe distance at which you can install your refrigerator from your oven.
Gas stoves may have specific installation requirements. Ensure that your gas stove has enough space from your fridge, back wall, and surrounding kitchen units. Always check the installation instructions carefully for any gas appliance.
If your refrigerator or oven has seen better days, you may need to consider replacing them to position them next to one another. Older appliances are not as energy-efficient nor as safe as modern ones. If you have dated appliances, it’s probably a bad idea to locate your fridge next to your oven.
Installing an older fridge next to an oven will mean that it has to work extra hard to stay cool, which could mean that it will need replacing sooner anyway. If you do end up having to replace your fridge, you could opt for a different style, such as an under-counter integrated fridge that you could then place elsewhere.
Another important factor to consider is how often you use your oven and hob. If you rarely use your oven or only have it on once a day for an hour, then it isn’t likely to force your fridge to work that much harder.
Alternatively, suppose you regularly use your stove for cooking large joints of meat and tend to have your oven on for long periods several times a week. In that case, you may want to reconsider placing your freestanding refrigerator next to your freestanding oven, as there may be too much heat for your refrigerator to cope with. If you’re short of other options, take a look at the following section for ideas on how to improve your fridge’s efficiency.
How to Improve Your Fridge Efficiency When It’s Next to Your Freestanding Oven
Suppose you have no alternative but to position your old freestanding refrigerator next to your freestanding oven. In that case, there are still many things you can do to help protect your fridge from the extra heat and ensure that it continues to work as it should.
Create a Partition
Standard sized fridges will not fit in kitchen column spaces, and the under-counter space is designed for integrated models. That doesn’t mean that you cannot create a partition wall yourself. Just make sure that your fridge has adequate ventilation to stay cool enough, or else it will risk overheating. Always respect the manufacturer’s minimum distance guidelines to ensure that your fridge has adequate space for air circulation.
You could install a floor to ceiling partition or even just use some insulation material to help protect your fridge freezer from your oven’s heat and any cooking oil splatters. If your refrigerator is only half-height, you could easily install an under-counter partition that attaches underneath your worktop, separating your fridge from your stove. You could also add some insulation material to this to better protect your refrigerator.
Ensure that any modifications you are planning will not prevent you from fully opening your fridge door or your oven door, especially if they are located in a corner.
Install a Slide Out Unit
If you have a short distance between your two appliances, you could look at installing a thin pull out unit. These are typically found under the counter in fitted kitchens next to ovens, although some pantry slide-out units can be full height. As they are generally only around 20cm wide, installing a small slide-out cabinet can be a great way to protect your fridge from your oven and gain some useful storage space.
Bring Your Fridge Forward
If warm air from your stove is accumulating around the back of your refrigerator, it will have to work overtime. Moving your fridge a couple of centimetres forward, away from the wall, will improve the circulation around its cooling radiator for improved performance and a lower temperature. Even if you do not end up moving your appliance, you should still check that your fridge is at the correct minimum distance from the wall behind it.
Install a Mini Fan
Buy a small fan and locate it, so it can blow air from behind your refrigerator back over to your oven side and away. When you switch your stove on, switch on the fan, and the hot air will be displaced from around your stove, with cooler air replacing it. This will ensure that your fridge doesn’t have to work harder to keep its temperature down and your food cool. You should also use your extractor fan whenever you have your stove switched on.
Place Your Fridge Elsewhere
If you do not want to place your fridge and oven in close proximity to one another but don’t have any other option in your kitchen, you may have to place your fridge elsewhere. It could be across the room from your kitchen units or in a different room of your house altogether. While this may seem like an issue, as we need access to our fridge for drinks and snacks and food to cook, it isn’t actually that bad, provided you can open your fridge door properly.
Where Should You Install Your Fridge and Oven?
Before you finalise your plans and get around to setting up your fridge next to your oven, you might want to still brainstorm any alternative kitchen layouts that could be better possibilities or even consider contacting some kitchen designers. Even if you are happy putting your fridge next to your stove, you should still think about how your kitchen layout will work on a day-to-day basis.
Consider the Kitchen Work Triangle
You’ve surely heard about the kitchen work triangle if you’ve been looking for kitchen design ideas. The idea is that your stove, fridge and sink, i.e. the three main essentials that you use for cooking almost all meals, are located so they form a triangle. This helps to improve access and kitchen functionality. As a side note, installing your fridge and oven apart is also good feng shui.
That being said, if you have an integrated oven under a microwave installed in a kitchen column, for example, your hob is going to be separate from your oven. In cases like this, you can still achieve the golden kitchen triangle with your hob, sink and fridge, even if your fridge and oven are right next to each other.
Make the Most of Your Space
Overall, can you put a fridge next to an oven? Ideally, ovens and refrigerators should be placed far apart when possible. However, thanks to today’s modern, integrated and energy-efficient kitchen appliances, it is possible to locate your stove right next to your fridge with little effect on performance.
For freestanding ovens and fridges, it is still best to locate them at a distance if possible, or else preferable to install a heat-protective partition to ensure that your refrigerator stays in adequate working order for as long as possible.
If your appliances are outdated, we do not recommend installing your fridge right next to your stove; try to leave even a small gap and create a partition or use insulation material to create a heat barrier. Investing in newer appliances will help improve your energy bills and make your kitchen more energy efficient.