Ventilation Requirements for Integrated Appliances
by Jane Denton
It may not be the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about integrated appliances but the right ventilation can be the difference between an appliance lasting 10 years and an appliance lasting 10 days. Appliances such as ovens, fridges, freezers and even microwaves all require a sufficient amount of ventilation. This blog is designed to act as a guide and will focus on a certain model of appliance from each of these areas, so it is important to check your installation guide for the particular brand and model of appliance that you have.
Make and model in the spotlight – Liebherr ICUS 3314.
Generally speaking integrated fridges, freezers or combined fridge/freezers require air to be able to circulate in under the appliance, behind the appliance and back out through the top above the appliance. This can mean gaps or vents need to be added to any cabinetry surrounding the appliance in the appropriate areas. In most cases, an installation manual will provide a diagram of the cuts and vents required, and these can be obtained directly from the brand or supplier of the appliance.
In the case of the Liebherr ICUS 3314 fridge freezer, a gap that is a minimum of 200cm squared is required in the front base of the cabinet to allow air in from the front. A second gap of a minimum of 500mmx40mm is required in the back of the carcass panel that the appliance is sitting on (if it is not sitting on the floor), and a third gap of minimum 500mmx40mm is required at the back of the top piece of carcass for the air to flow out.
Although you will not see the second and third of these gaps, often the first is visible, it is important to realize that an integrated fridge freezer needs this air ventilation and so often installers and designers will fit a mesh panel over this gap, to allow air in but restrict objects.
Make and model in the spotlight – Ilve 600WPY Pyro
Integrated ovens are typically housed in tall cabinetry between two cabinets or under counter in their own cabinet. If being housed in a tall cabinet between others, the Ilve 600WPY will require a ventilation slot of 80mm depth cut from the back of the shelf it is resting on,the top of the shelf above it and the very top of the cabinet. Air can then circulate around the appliance. If being housed under counter, a slot is only required in the base that the appliance is sitting on.
Many integrated microwaves, especially those designed to go in tower units will have more than just a microwave function. Many are combination ovens, with other functions such as steam or fan ovens as well, and for this reason require much of the same ventilation as integrated ovens.
Dishwashers will often not have a complete carcass surround, as access is required for plumbing connections and pipework, therefore ventilation is often not an issue.
Under floor heating
It is important to tell your kitchen designer or installer if you are going to have under floor heating, it is crucially important to tell them if you already have it. Under floor heating causes heat to rise up through the floor, this is great as a method of heating space and is lovely and comfortable under foot, however particularly under islands, it can prove very problematic if there is not a way for this hot air to escape. This is of particular prominence to us, as we scribe all our frames to the floor, an island effectively becomes a sealed box and so it is vitally important that we know if there is existing under floor heating in a space, as we will need to provide suitable ventilation for the hot air to escape through the island and surrounding cabinetry. This can be done in much the same way as previously mentioned for appliances, by cutting a small gap at the top, bottom or both and either concealing these gaps, or cladding with a suitable covering.