Distance between kitchen counters(appliances) and kitchen islands
September 25, 2013 in Design Dilemma
What is a good working distance between kitchen islands and counters with appliances
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36" is the bare minimum, but will feel very cramped. 42" is much more comfortable and is probably the most standard distance. 48" is a good distance if you frequently have more than one person working in the kitchen, or if you have family members with spacial / coordination issues. Once you start using larger distance, depending on the space it can start to feel cavernous, and it becomes more dangerous to be moving hot or sharp things between the counter and island.
September 25, 2013 at 1:58pm     
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We are in the middle of a remodel and did 4' between all areas around our island in our kitchen. Although the 42" can work in a real pinch. I wish I had more room where the eat in table is, but not possible with my other wishes. I would also have liked more room behind my stools but couldn't do it, as I wanted the island centered in the room.

In our bar area in the game room we did 42" between the back and front bar because we had limited space. 42" was what I set as my minimum in that area.

Make sure you leave room for opening doors, i.e. oven door, dishwasher, fridge, etc. I would want a minimum of 4' behind an oven door and cooktop.

It's a good idea to hit a kitchen design store (even home depot or loses to start) and get advice on minimum clearances before you get too involved in your design. That way you save time on "redesign" from mistakes.

Have a floor plan we can see?
September 25, 2013 at 2:20pm   
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Marilyn Wilkie
We have 41" on the side of the island with the wall oven and 40 1/2" on the side with the cooktop on the island and the sink and dishwasher on the wall. It's fine. We have seating at the end where there are no opposing cabinets.
September 25, 2013 at 2:46pm   
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Jenny Youngblood
I have 54" between my island- where there is a dishwasher and the back wall of cabinets- where there is a 48" range- I can open both simultaneously and still walk in between- and that is what I wanted- but making that distance made it so that one side of the island is 36" from a wall and the other side is wide open to the den- I thought the 36" close to the wall would be an issue- but both my husband and I are petite people, so it has been no big deal, but the 54" between island and cabinets is GREAT! and I'm so glad I did that.
September 25, 2013 at 3:25pm   
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JandB Kitchen Designs
For over 34 years Brigitte and I have designed between 70-90 kitchens/year. We always look for a 42"(+) situation but will go as small as 36" ONLY if door/appliance swings aren't across from each other, or close. There are other factors (how many people working in the kitchen) that come into play but generally "bigger is better" in these situations. However, sometimesit is what it is.
September 25, 2013 at 6:12pm   
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All About Interiors LLC
I suggest no less than 42" otherwise you will be cramped especially if two are working the kitchen.
September 25, 2013 at 6:29pm   
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going with 36"-48" clearance.
September 25, 2013 at 8:51pm   
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