Recommendations for a ‘DIY’ kitchen

Listed below are some recommendations, tips and tricks and things to avoid when designing your new kitchen or laundry.

Place wall cabinets at a minimum of 500mm clearance off the bench surface. With a Gas cook top this will need to be a minimum of 750mm off the bench surface. With Induction and Electric cook tops, some manufactures will allow you to place them at a minimum of 650mm clearance off the bench surface. Always read the appliance manual, the building code or consultant a professional.

Always allow a minimum of 1000mm between your sink and cooking surface. Whilst others may say you can go less, the reality is it doesn’t work very well. It is worth noting that you will also need to plan bench space either side of the hob for a working area for hot pots.

You should plan to have a walkway clearance between cabinets of 1200mm. When you go tighter than 1200mm, you need to consider opening depths of fridges, dishwasher doors dropping down and adjacent drawer cabinets that may hit each other when fully extend.

When using Filler Panels at right angles, these should always be a minimum of 50mm wide. The Filler Panel is supplied 100mm wide to be cut for this reason. Any less than 50mm in width, you may end up with handles colliding or drawers/doors opening onto fridges or ovens etc. Given the normal depth of a Base or Tall cabinet is 590mm, when you add a 50mm Filler to this, then you will end up with a right-angle depth of a minimum of 640mm.

If the kitchen layout provides an option for an elevated Oven, consider using the Oven Tower cabinet. Ergonomically, ovens that are at bench height are far easier to use than an oven placed below the bench.

If you are using a Dishwasher in the kitchen design, place it next to the sink and waste bin. This makes a nice seamless scrape, rinse, stack process as well as locating all your water and waste in one location. A tip, place your cutlery drawer next to the dishwasher if space allows, it makes for a far quicker unload of your dishwasher.

As shown in our “ERGONOMICS” tab, drawers are a far better option if the budget allows, as they provide full access to the cabinet and a great overview of its contents. Whilst drawers cost more than door cabinets, study show that this is one of the main buying decisions in current kitchen design and can make for a truly wonderful kitchen user experience.

Place the storage cabinets that house your utensils and pots and pans close to the cooking surface. If you can place your cooking surface within a drawer cabinet, this gives you the perfect place for the utensils and pots and pans in the drawers below. Three Drawer cabinets are great here, or if your kitchen is based on a Two Drawer line, consider and Inner Drawer Two Drawer cabinet. Word of advice, just make sure you check the venting requirements for your cooking surface before placing it in any cabinet.

Task lighting within your kitchen design can really help with day-to-day functions, especially LED Strip lighting under wall cabinets. It illuminates the working surface, plus looks spectacular when lite in the evening.

Don’t place sinks, cooking surfaces, ovens, or dishwashers in corners or against walls if you can. It makes life very difficult only having a work surface on one side. If cooking surfaces are placed against walls, you will need at least 200mm clearance to the wall, to fit within Building Code regulations, mainly pertaining to Gas cooking surfaces. This vertical wall surface will also need to be flameproof. Glass or tiles work well here. The 200mm clearance also provides room for your pot and pan handles.

Remember to allow space to the wall for fridge doors. Having fridges hard up against walls will prevent the doors fully opening, preventing slide out bins within the fridge from pulling out correctly. This can make it difficult to clean as well. Remember your fridge handle if it has one.