Stupid question about fridges

I'm sure this is very basic but forgive me, I've not encountered it before. In the new (to me) house there's a fridge under the kitchen worktop with a panel door matching the other decor attached to it and by which it's opened. When it finally goes to fridge heaven and I have to replace it do I have to buy a special fridge to which a panel door can be attached and do they come with door attachment points built in or do you have to drill and tap the steel door of the new fridge to suit the panel door (left or right opening) of the other kitchen units?
I actually have a little used fridge suitably sized for fitting under counters which I bought for the old house but it has no attachment points on its door that I can see. Does that make it a general purpose under counter height fridge that no panel door can be easily attached to or can it be used (perhaps with modifications) when my existing fridge bites the bullet?
Is there a convention about counter heights under which things like fridges, dish washers, washing machines can be fitted so they're all the same height?
Are all under counter fridges left-opening like mine or can they also be right-opening?
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Dave Baker wrote:

Any fridge that says it's "integrated"

Self-tappers to screw a couple of brackets to the door, which a couple of sliding bars fit through in my (sample size of one) experience.

Dunno, my tall fridge/freezer can be either handed.
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Well, you can say sample size of two, now, because mine's the same.
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I have them. They are usually specially designed to for the front door to be attached but they are a common variant on the standard fridge. The thought has crossed my mind that it should be possible the fit the sliding door joining thingys to any fridge but not certain about this. Some at least have bits of trim and the door handle missing in the hidden ones as unneccesary. Every fridge I have encountered has had a reversible door.
There is a convention about counter hieghts. Many have adjustable legs to give a degree of adjustment (for uneven floors etc). Amount of adjustment varies. (up to three or four of inches) The kicking strip can be cut down and usually just clips onto the adjustable legs.
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Certainly you can alter the opening side on most of them I've seen, but I'd imagine you would need to look at the existing fridge to see how the door facia is attached. Bearing in mind somefridges are flat fronted, some are rounded and there are even some with small freezers with doors of their own it makes me think that in reality, matching doors will only be there if the fridge is supplied by the Kitchen company and then probably after some years designs will go obsolete. Brian
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>Certainly you can alter the opening side on most of them I've seen, but >I'd imagine you would need to look at the existing fridge to see how >the door facia is attached.
>Bearing in mind some fridges are flat fronted, some are rounded >[...etc]
Only the former will be the "integrated" type that the OP needs to buy. And the same considerations apply to dishwashers and clothes washers (although integrated versions of the latter are quite unusual).
The house I bought last year had integrated versions of all three (which made it fun for visitors playing "find the fridge", although I've since replaced it with a standalone full height fridge-freezer as part of a major kitchen re-modelling exercise). Oddly for a house very well equipped in many ways, there was simply no-where obvious to put either a freezer or a tumble-dryer. The temporary standalone freezer ended up in the dining room and the temporary standalone dryer on the first floor landing!
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On 10/11/2013 02:37, Dave Baker wrote:

Don't know for sure, but I suspect that fridges are either designed to be free-standing or built-in. The built-in variety will have some means of fixing the body in place, and of attaching a wooden (or whatever) door.
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On 10/11/2013 10:02, Roger Mills wrote:

Also, built-in fridges are set up for the kitchen cupboard plinth. I think they either sit completely inside a cupboard or stand on the floor but with a heavily recessed bottom edge and a door that stops well above the floor.
A standalone fridge door will probably stick out below the cupboard door.
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Colin.
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I feel particularly qualified to answer this one as I had one of these fridges fail on me last week (in a rented-out property), and have just had to find, buy and fit a replacement!
Yes, they are definitely a special type of fridge, with special fittings to attach the 'cosmetic' door panel (designed so that they can be adjusted slightly to line up the height of the door precisely with the adjacent doors. These are usually sold as 'built-under' and/or 'integrated'; there's no standard terminology and you have to check them carefully to ensure the appliance is indeed what you are expecting. NB not to be confused with the 'tower' type of 'built-in' fridge, which are taller, and fit at eye-level *within* a kithen unit. The 'built-under' types stand directly on the floor, and have variable height legs (about 2" of height adjustment).
As someone else mentioned, they are recessed at the front bottom, so that a continuous plinth panel can be fitted the length of the worktop.
I've got scanned user/intsllation manuals for two different models here; If you're interested, post a munged e-mail address and I can send you them.
The built-under and built-in models come +/- an icebox.
What does piss me off is that these integrated appliances are vastly more expensive than standard models, and I really can't see the justification (and then you're expected to spend another 50+ on a square of melamine-coated chipboard for the cosmetic door!). The one I bought this week was the cheapest I could find anywhere (170 at Curry's); for some reason that was about 100 cheaper than any other model I could find anywhere. Compare that with about 100 for a basic under-counter fridge.

I really can't imagine it would work; you'd never get it aligned correctly front-to-back or up-and-down, and you'd be better off just leaving the fridge as it is with a white metal door or whatever. At least the old one should just slide out leaving you with a clean 'slot' into which a non-fitted fridge could be placed.

Yes; but as mentioned there's enough adjustment in the feet to cope with a bit of variation (there has to be to cope with non-true floors over a long length of worktop)

Never seen one where you can't change the doors round.
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Me too.
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It's probably because they don't make so many of them. With perhaps a small measure of most being bought wholesale by builders. Few retailers see the need to break ranks and sell cheaper to the occasional DIY person who already convinced himself that nothing else will do.
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Very interesting, ta.
Eeh bah gum mail addy would be 'daveuk9xx' combined with 'aol.com'.
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Sent. Enjoy!
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David

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Cheers!
To be honest the fridge is a waste of bloody space. It's barely big enough to hold sufficient food for the sole occupant of the house - me, and if a family lived here it would be pointless. As soon as I moved in I had to put my old upright fridge freezer in the corner of the kitchen anyway because the under counter one only has an icebox big enough to keep a couple of ready meals in and that's no use to man nor beast. I'd actually prefer to ditch it when it dies and make that space another general purpose cupboard but have no idea how easy that would be. It would need shelves installing and possibly a back to the unit but I can't tell what's behind the fridge without pulling it out.
It's a Crosby kitchen so maybe I can phone them and someone will know.
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Yep these fridges are pretty tiny - best to get the larder style really (ie no icebox) and have a separate freezer.
I'd actually prefer to ditch it when it dies and make that

Presumably the gap between the adjacent units (into which the fridge fits) is 600mm? In which case, when released the fridge should slide out and leave a 'clean' hole into which in theory you should be able to slide a standard 600mm-wide base unit. Your obvious problem though would be to find a matching door though...
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remarked:

Doesn't he already have the door - currently fitted to the fridge?
All you need is a pair of hinges (IKEA sell them) and a suitable hole-cutting drill bit (a standard item).
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remarked:

Yes
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That's why most fridges don't have a freezer compartment (see: Larder Fridge).

That's easy.

What's behind the other cupboards - is it the wall, or a hardboard sheet held between grooves, or a more serious bit of coated chipboard?
It would be easy to retro-fit one of the latter to the wall with a few timber spacers. With the panel cut to size of course.
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On Sunday, 10 November 2013 02:37:20 UTC, Dave Baker wrote:

The main issue is ventilation. A standard fridge usually ventilates by convection up the rear, and an integrated fridge is designed to ventilate from the bottom via a grille in the plinth.
John
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remarked:

It's not unusual to find countertops with a small grille at the back designed to allow that sort of ventilation "up the rear" (ooh err missus).
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