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Gap between wall and rangetop

Stan McFarland
4 days ago

Hi, any suggestions as to how to fill the space between our new rangetop and the wall? Moving it further back isn't really an option because my wife really likes the look of the front being flush with the supporting cabinetry. The gap shown is 3/4" but a new tile backsplash will fill in 3/8", leaving me 3/8" to fill. Any suggestions?

Comments (23)

  • cpartist

    If you're tiling the backsplash the tile will fill the space.

  • M

    I agree with @cpartist that the backsplash is most likely going to take care of things. If it isn't, then a small gap is actually not a big deal. Most kitchens have a gap there. In fact, many manufacturers specify varying amounts of gaps, for some of their stoves.

    If there still is a gap, then you could fill it with non-combustible high-temperature caulking. This is a place that gets hot. But since you don't have an oven vent, it doesn't get crazy hot. Expect that the caulking will get grimy though over the years and it might also crack. So, you probably have to replace it every so often.

    If the gap is very large, then a backer-rod is usually required to apply caulk. But again, that's tricky because of the heat and open flame. You don't want to install anything flammable. You might have to improvise some non-combustible backer-rod. Maybe, an old piece of metal that you can squeeze in there.

    Speaking of metal, you could also have somebody fabricate a custom piece of stainless steel that perfectly hides the gap. But that'll be a more expensive solution.

    To be honest, I'd just leave it alone. You are not going to notice over time.

  • Bri Bosh
    Remember the tile thin set will also take up space.
  • Anne Duke
    It won’t be noticeable at all. I’ve been in my home 25 years and its remodeled kitchen for five years and didn’t know it existed until I measured for a slide in a few months ago.
  • Stan McFarland
    OP here. thanks for all the comments. We'll see what it looks like once the tile is in place but I'm inclined to just leave it alone, as some of you suggested.
  • PRO
    The Cook's Kitchen

    Read your specs. This appears to have a 10” horizontal clearance requirement to combustible surfaces. That’s more than most ranges. One of the tall back guards appears to be the best option instead of the island trim.

  • kaseki

    If so, as we have seen from other looks at this topic here, regular sheet rock, as well as the wood studs usually found behind it, are considered combustible. I second your taking a close look at the installation directions.

  • Stan McFarland
    For everyone concerned with the installation, please read the original post. Tile will be installed behind the rangetop and will go up to the hood.
  • mmilos

    If there's still a gap after tile installation you could put a high heat silicone gap cover.

  • catinthehat

    Tile is not a barrier for combustible materials behind the tile. If you have a 10” clearance to combustible materials requirement, tile isn’t going to help. Typically a backgaurd specifically designed by the range manufacture can eliminate the clearance requirements. A plain old stainless backsplash will not do and doesn’t solve the problem, just like tile doesn’t solve the problem. Hope that clears up any confusion.

  • PRO

    Covering a combustible product (drywall and wood) with a non combustible material doesn’t make the combustible into a non combustible assembly. It just transfers the heat to the combustible surface. Just like you burning the pork chop in the pan. You can cook your studs behind the wall, which lowers their ignition point every time you do.

  • Kathi Steele

    Stan, you need to read the requirements for your range. Most ranges require a back guard to keep the drywall and wood protected from combustion. Your range has an island trim, not a back guard trim. They are sold separately. And the tile will do nothing. There are lots of previous posts about this subject.

    You just need to know what your range requirements are regarding installation.

    According to the Miele book.....

    " RBGDF Backguard

    Depending on the model, you can ex- change the existing island trim of your appliance for a larger range backguard. The backguard is available in the fol- lowing heights: 12“ (305 mm) and

    20” (508 mm)."

    According to public codes.....

    G2409.2 (308.2) Reduction table.

    The allowable clearance reduction shall be based on one of the methods specified in Table G2409.2 or shall utilize an assembly listed for such application. .

    Tile applied directly to a wood framed wall or gypsum board is NOT an approved method of protecting the wall from heat, or an acceptable alternative to the listed backguard for the specific appliance. The listed stainless steel backguard has an air gap behind it to dissipate the heat. A sheet of stainless steel applied directly to the drywall is not a code approved method either.


  • Stan McFarland
    Kathi, I get it now, although I'm not happy. My wife saw the Miele brochure and they've got beautiful pics of our range with the island trim right up against a tile backsplash. And neither the sales person or the installer said a word about it. Pretty unhappy.
  • Kathi Steele

    I totally understand. It is a huge problem with sales people. And the installers just install. Pretty disheartening and dishonest, IMHO.

    If it weren't for Houzz, many would have made the same error. It won't cause a fire today or tomorrow. But it eventually will cause a fire. Better to take care of it today and have peace of mind.

  • Brown Dog

    Once you have your tile installed there may be a small gap. Don't sweat it. Will not be noticeable. Let it be.

  • Stan McFarland
    kathi, I just spoke with Miele customer support and two different guys there both told me that their definition of "non-combustible" was ceramic tile or some other non-combustible surface. One of them told me his parents have my new rangetop with just a tile backsplash. He seemed to think it was pretty funny that I was worried about it. Maybe the manufacturers use the term "non-combustible" in a less precise fashion?
  • Rita / Bring Back Sophie 4 Real

    You can always over-engineer a problem.

  • Kathi Steele

    And yet, it is not up to code. Putting tile over a combustible surface does not make it non combustible. Just saying.

    If your house catches fire, will they be willing to pay for the damages???

  • Stan McFarland
    Kathi, I get it. It wouldn't meet code. That said, it doesn't necessarily mean it's unsafe. To be honest, we will probably only use the back burners once or twice a year at most. The Miele support guys basically said those specs are written so people don't put wallpaper or pine paneling or the like behind the unit.
  • Rita / Bring Back Sophie 4 Real

    I am confused. I thought the question was about Miele specs, not building code. Code trumps Miele. I would not violate the building code under any circumstances. There is far too much at stake. In fact, I would return the range top in a heartbeat if I could not make it work properly in my space.

    Get your building inspector's opinion. That is all that matters in this case.

  • Stan McFarland
    Rita, building inspectors go by manufacturer's specs.
  • Kathi Steele

    Here is an interesting discussion.


    Maybe your burners don't have the high output that others have.

    Fred S explains this all very well in the above discussion.

    Building inspectors go by code. Not manufacturers specs. Code is code.

  • catinthehat

    Hi Kathi,

    Building inspectors go by code that’s true. The building code typically delegates the determination of clearances to the manufactures, which in turn develop the proper specs with approval from a third party UL certification. Thus, an inspector who is thorough will request to see the manufacture spec to ensure an installation is code compliant.

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